Tuesday, 15 September 2015

3D Printing

3D Printing is additive process of melting your printing material and layering it as per a CAD design and producing something that otherwise wouldn't exist. It is this process that enables you to print forms that would otherwise be difficult or unachievable by tradition methods of fabrication. 3D printing has enormous potential for the future and has already been implemented within the biomedical sphere to produce medical implants and robotic prosthetics. 3D printing gives back power to the consumer by letting the user decide how they want something to look function and feel. It is this power that is driving the maker movement and producing innovation like no other area.

Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Connecting the Pi to WiFi

Purchase a WiFi dongle and make sure that it is compatible with the Pi using this list of compatible products.

Connect the adapter into one of the Pi's USB slots. Boot up the Pi, login to the pi and go to the Pi's GUI. Navigate to the Pi's start menu on the top left corner of the GUI. Select the application settings and then click on the WiFi configuration program. With your internet ssid and password handy you should first press the scan button then select and double click your network as it comes up. You will be prompted to enter in your password, after you have done this you can click connect. The WiFi application should then set up the connection and tell you in the status bar that the internet is connected.

If this doesn't work or your ssid isn't coming up your WiFi adapter possibly has some compatibility issues with the Pi. To solve these problems it is a good idea to look up your adapter on the Raspberry Pi's list of compatible accessories and then follow the links to the find the available drivers for your adapter.

Setting up the Pi

So first the basics of setting up the Pi are as follows.

Get a Micro SD card

Choose your flavor of linux from the downloads page of the Raspberry Pi website
And use the installation guide link from the downloads page to write it to your Micro SD card http://www.raspberrypi.org/documentation/installation/installing-images/README.md

Find and connect these into your Pi:

5V 1A Micro USB wall charger
HDMI cable
Monitor with HDMI input
Computer mouse

Connect all of the hardware up to the Raspberry Pi and then once this is done connect the power cable up to the Pi. The monitor should come up with the first time login loading all the hardware drivers and then take you to the config menu of the Pi. In this section you can mess with it as you choose but make sure to select make the entirety of the Micro SD card available to the operating system. Once this is done select finish  and wait as the Pi reboots. Once the command line has finished loading and checking everything you can log in off the command line.
The default username is: pi
The default password is: raspberry
Once you enter this in type into the command line startx to load the gui (graphical user interface)

My Pi

The Pi I am using is the Raspberry Pi B+. The advantage of having this particular version of the Raspberry Pi is the upgrades from previous version the Raspberry Pi B. In this revision the amount of USB slots has been increased from 2 to 4 giving you greater flexibility with the number of things you can connect to the Pi. The number of GPIO pins has increased from 26 to 40 pins giving the user the ability to give the Pi more options to sense and control more things. The addition of the Micro SD card has given the Pi a greater form factor, reducing the level the card sticks out from the board which in turn reduces the chance that the card will be knocked out or damaged. The audio circuit has been upgraded with a low noise power supply to improve the quality of the audio out with the 3.5mm jack. 

At the present time the Raspberry Pi B+ has been superseded by the Raspberry Pi 2. The Raspberry Pi 2 is an exciting new extension to the Raspberry Pi family, with higher specs that basically bring it up to date with tablets and phones. It will be interesting to see how far it will drive future projects for makers. I will continue to use the Raspberry Pi B+ as for the moment it is adequate for what I need.

The Raspberry Pi

Raspberry Pi
What is it? how is it used?

The Raspberry Pi is a credit card sized ARM based processor, similar in size to the Arduino uno. The Raspberry Pi provides more processing power and is used primarily for graphical applications. Using Linux as the operating system the Raspberry Pi allows the user to adopt a trial and error method to programming and computing, as the cost for the card is low and the operating system is free. The Pi allows the user to break the system and fix it by either purchasing a new pi or for the less serious software faults reloading the system image. Raspberry Pi is a good introduction to bash commands and the Linux terminal giving the user greater control and understanding of how computers work. The possibilities for modification and control for the Pi is exciting as you can add things such as Bluetooth and WiFi making the internet of things accessible to the novice user. With these features the Pi can become an integral part of many mechanical, electrical and software projects. The Raspberry Pi often features in game console emulators, 3d printers and wireless systems the Pi is an invaluable tool for makers everywhere.
Raspberry Pi B+ (source)

Friday, 23 January 2015

Getting through the code

The last couple days I have been figuring out how to program the pitch, yaw and throttle on the quadcopter. Currently I have completed the throttle and the yaw for the machine, figuring out how to do the floating point values and the equation for the yaw has slowed me down but now that I've figured it out I should have the pitch done within the next week.

Also having done some research I may have to upgrade and possibly modify the motor drivers and the motors. The motors will have to be upgraded to brushless motors and the motor drivers may have to be upgraded to esc's, or I am thinking that the addition of a transistor to amplify the signal may be necessary to provide the amperage needed for the motors to operate correctly.

Friday, 16 January 2015

Remote control has arrived!!

I now have the ability to remotely control my motors with the controls on my transmitter. Videos are soon to follow I will be posting them on my youtube channel at: Mr Mackies channel.
Next step is speed control.

Wednesday, 14 January 2015