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Friday, 31 December 2010

December machinery

The Turing machine ran three instructions in a row on Wednesday morning. I caught the 9am Tuesday train down to London Hackspace and worked through till 9am on Wednesday. The only problem remaining is getting the ball bearings to land reliably on the correct grid space. Direction change and movement are all solved problems now. I've added a gate released by an existing cam to stop the ball bearings exiting the machine too quickly, but the ball bearings often miss their correct grid spots.

This can be fixed by placing guards onto the grid, but I really want to avoid modifying the grid. Modifying an infinite tape requires infinite effort.

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

BigTrak + IGEP

So here's what I've done with the BigTrak so far. I've mounted the IGEP on the back, mbed in the nose and arranged battery power for all the electronics and set up WiFi to remote control it. Boring technical details are at The audio on the video is poor, sorry about that. I wanted to be able to hear the motors and my voice is pretty soft at the best of times.

Annoyingly, the biggest challenge by far has been getting the drivers working on the IGEP. It's a neat board, but not very popular so there isn't much community support out there for it. It took me a couple of weeks to get WiFi and usb-acm (necessary to talk to the mbed) working at the same time, and the next challenge is to get it to recognise a USB webcam.