Overlord

Getting robots to be aware of their surroundings and know where they are can often be a real pain. Working with basic sensors one is able to make a robot to navigate a basic environment, but without very advanced sensors or mapping techniques, the robot still has no real idea of where it is.

Ladviens project over on LetsMakeRobots gives his robots an exact idea of where they are and where they are supposed to go. He calls this project ‘Overlord’, a very ominous, but certainly fitting name.

A computer running an OpenCV based custom wrote program has a webcam connected to it which is attached to the roof facing down. The program searches the video feed for the ‘big red blob’ that is the robot and assigns X and Y co-ordinates to it. The software can then create virtual ‘dots’ in the environment which the robot then heads too and ‘eats’. The software has lots of neat error checks to make sure that the ‘red blob’ is indeed the robot and that the robot is sure which way it is heading.

Ladvien intends to use this software eventually in a swarm bot setup. Having lots of little robots roaming around all being controlled by a central hub, this smells like Skynet all over.

If you would like more information on the project be sure to check out his project page. I have also spoken with him and he intends to create an Instructable so that others can create the same setup.

Ladvien also has a nice time lapse of the coding and troubleshooting of his creation:

 

Keep an eye on this guy, his creations could spell the uprising of robots.