Yearly Archives: 2015

Mindstorms EV3 Container Handling Crane

Container Handling Gantry Crane-06-768x576    Send article as PDF   
This is my LEGO Mindstorms EV3 powered Container Handling Crane. It also uses an Arduino Uno to control the lighting effects. This was a long term project, taking some three month of development before I had a reliable Robot capable of operating over long time periods without intervention.
​I began the build back in March 2015, but it was June before I had a reliable Robots. The first incarnation was controlled with an Arduino Uno powered EVShield from Mindsensors I was Beta Testing at the stage.

EVShield Controlled Double-Leaf Bascule Railway Bridge

Double-Leaf Bascule Bridge    Send article as PDF   
I have started work on another Bridge for my LEGO Railway layout, but this time I have built a Dual Track (Line), Double-Leaf Bascule Railway Bridge. This does mean I will need to build yet another baseboard to house it on, but I have received a large heap of LEGO Train Track, so all should be fine.

A Bascule Bridge (commonly referred to as a drawbridge) is a movable bridge with a counterweight that continuously balances a span, or “leaf”, throughout its upward swing to provide clearance for boat traffic. It may be single or double leafed.

BrickLink Order #5899654    Send article as PDF   

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Programming the BeagleBone Black with Python    Send article as PDF   

Building a surveillance system with a PIR sensor, the BeagleBone Black and Python.

The BeagleBone Black is an outstanding tool for projects that involve the Internet. Access is easy (simply connect it to the router through an Ethernet cable ), and both Python and JavaScript feature libraries that greatly simplifies matters.

Programming with BoneScript on the BeagleBone Black    Send article as PDF   

This Article introduces BoneScript, a Node.js library containing functions specially created for the BeagleBone Black. This library simplifies the process of accessing and configuring the pins of your BeagleBone Black.

Controlling an output, reading a button/sensor, controlling a motor are quite easy with BoneScript. If you used an Arduino before, you’ll find most functions very similar.

Install Cloud9 IDE on the BeagleBone Black    Send article as PDF   

The Cloud9 IDE is an open-source web based programming platform that supports several programming languages.

This great piece of software comes installed on your BeagleBone Black by default. And in our opinion this is one of the key features that makes the BBB a great programming board (the Raspberry Pi lacks a good IDE).

Getting Two ESP8266 WiFi Modules Communicating

esp-client-vs-server    Send article as PDF   

In this project we’re going to make two ESP8266 talk with each other.

How it works? We’re going to set one ESP as an Access Point (Server) and another ESP as a Station (Client). Then they’ll establish a wireless communication and the Client sends a message to the Server saying “Hello World!”.

Getting Started with the BeagleBone ‘Black’    Send article as PDF   

This Article was written by Rui Santos and Luís Perestrelo authors of BeagleBone For Dummies.


BeagleBone BlackThe BeagleBone Black is a low-cost embedded Linux computer that has found love in the workbenches of many hobbyists, engineers and developers. Operating at 1GHz, providing the possibility to have lots of memory (thanks to its microSD card slot) and access to the Internet, this tiny board is a quite powerful computer on its own. (It also looks great. Something about those rounded edges, probably) Its niche, however, is probably the fact that it features an absurd amount of input and output pins, along with several interfaces that allow different devices to be connected and different communication protocols to be used (you can see a list of those by the end of this post). This bridges the gap between the realms of computing and electronics, allowing to create complex and ambitious electronic projects — often interacting with the Web — while experiencing little to none software or hardware constraints.

Just Monkeying Around

Monkeying Around    Send article as PDF   

This is my latest Mindstorms Project, a LEGO Mindstorms EV3 Robotic Monkey that Climbs his way along a bar made from 25mm PVC Plumbing Pipe.

The Robot uses an EV3 Programmable Brick to control 3x Large NXT Servo Motors and a Medium EV3 Servo Motor. The Medium Servo Motor Rotates the Monkey’s Arms. Each of the Monkey’s Hands is opened and close with a Large Servo Motor. The third Large Servo Motor animates the Monkey’s Tail.This is my latest Mindstorms Project, a LEGO Mindstorms EV3 Robotic Monkey that Climbs his way along a bar made from 25mm PVC Plumbing Pipe.

BrickLink Order #5383362    Send article as PDF   
Added a few more Yellow parts to the inventory along with some Technic 1×2 thin Liftarms and Technic 3×3 T-Shaped Liftarms.

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Installing NodeMCU Firmware on the ESP8266 WiFi Module

ESP8266    Send article as PDF   

Why flash your ESP8266 module with NodeMCU?

NodeMCU is a firmware that allows you to program the ESP8266 modules with LUA script. And you’ll find it very similar to the way you program your Arduino. With just a few lines of code you can establish a WiFi connection, control the ESP8266 GPIOs, turning your ESP8266 into a web server and a lot more.

BrickLink Order #5783749    Send article as PDF   

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BrickLink Order #5731993    Send article as PDF   

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Computerised Vertical-Lifting-Span Railway Bridge

Vertical-Lift-Span Railway Bridge    Send article as PDF   
Movable Vertical-Lift-Span Bridges have a movable portion deck which remains horizontal as it is lifted vertically. The amount of headroom available is determined by the variations between water levels and the heights of the lift towers. Water traffic beneath these bridges are usually restricted to low-masted craft, barges and tugs.

How to Install the ESP8266 Board into the Arduino IDE    Send article as PDF   
There are a variety of development environments that can be used to program the ESP8266. The ESP8266 community created an add-on for the Arduino IDE that allows you to program the ESP8266 using the Arduino IDE and its programming language.

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