Hello my name is Ahmed F, and I am an uprising senior at Smoky Hill high school next year. For my starter project in BlueStamp engineering I have built the Bigtime watch kit from Sparkfun and for my main project I am building the Hand Gesture controlled robot with robotic arm. I chose the big time watch kit, because I’m fascinated in how watches work and by building it I gained an understanding in how people construct watches. I chose the Hand Gesture controlled robot with robotic arm because I wanted an understanding in how coding and mechanics worked and by building this set I got the ability to gain knowledge in those areas.
My time here at BlueStamp has been an experience I will never forget. While it may have been only one summer, I have learned so much about engineering from listening in on many different engineers around Colorado and their journeys to where they are now, to working on my own projects. Before BlueStamp, I had very little knowledge about engineering and what engineers do in order to build the incredible things they do. BlueStamp has allowed me to learn about coding and discovered that I truly do enjoy engineering and I enjoy the hands on aspect more than the programing side. Being here has allowed me to become closer to other students in Colorado that are also very interested in engineering. The staff here has encouraged me to realise the self-motivation and how waking up early to finish something can be an amazing, if challenging, experience. I also was able to learn that in engineering not everything will work perfectly on the first try. You have to step back from the problem and work relentlessly from different angles if you want to finish a project. There were times when I wanted to stop working but thanks to encouragement from the staff and family I had the support and motivation I needed to finish my project. From this experience I have realised that engineering is something I want to do as I enter college and I want to work more on my skills in coding, and I hope to continue to build amazing projects in the future!
Coordinator: code for the arduino on the robot
RouterFinal: code for the arduino on the glove
After 6 weeks I have finally finished my project here at BlueStamp. My system works similar to my last video, I have just added my motors to my code with the other flex sensors. The new code has implemented if flex sensor 3 is bent turn left, and if number 4 is bent then turn right. I also have an H bridge in my system, which means I can have my motors move forward and backwards without using negative voltages. For example if I want my system to go forward then I flex sensors 3 and 4, and for backwards I flex sensors 2 and 3. I had a huge struggle with my code this time around, since there were many bugs in the code. For example my motors continued to spin in different directions that they weren’t supposed to. Also my code stopped reading one of my flex Sensors, so I adjusted the code so it could read the sensor. I had other issues with setting up the schematic and getting my 12 volt battery pack from over heating. So I added a 5 volt regulator to my schematic to prevent my arduino from burning.
Milestone Video 2
For my second milestone, I had finally gotten my Xbees connected and got my claw working with my flex sensors. The code in the arduino, reads the values of the flex sensors, when the sensors are bent they have a high value then, when they are unbent they have a lower value. From there the XBee sends an integer over to the other XBee. That integer has a command through it telling the claw to move servos 1, 2, or just to stay still. After the other Xbee and Arduino has received the values it reads the code that tells it if flex sensor 1 is bent that to open the claw, and if flex 2 is bent, then to move the second motor. I had issues with my code and getting enough power through my motors. I adjusted my code and added a extra battery pack for my claw to power it. For my next video, my entire project with be done and ready to go!
For my first milestone, I was able to connect and set up my flex sensors and my robotic claw. I set up my flex sensors so that 5 volts travels through each sensor and my code allows me to check the values of the flex sensors when they are bent. It can tell if they are bent, when reading the value the Flex Sensors have increased for example when a flex sensor isn’t bent it will have a value of 450 and when bent it will have a value of 650. So it is measuring how much the sensor is resisting. For my robotic claw, I had 2 servo motors, I set up my code so that it allows the claw to rotate from 0-87 degrees, which is opening and closing the claw. The second motor is used to rotate through 180 degrees, and which allows my claw to rotate back and forth so it can change position.
BigTime Watch Kit
The Big time watch Kit, is essentially a big watch. The way it works is the battery sends energy through the resistor and into the microprocessor to get the voltage throughout the system. From there the microprocessor is able to look into the crystal, which keeps track of time, and is able to then display the time on the display. It was a great starter project, learning how to use boards and solder for the first time. I got a great introduction to engineering and how components work together to make something.