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I. Rosie

10 steps to get our robot Rosie moving around the house, using a Raspberry Pi.

We begin with basic setup of the Pi and Raspbian OS, before rapidly descending into the crazy world of the Python programming language.   And somewhere along the way, we make her wheels move using DC motors, help her to avoid collisions using ultrasonic distance sensors and make her both controllable and independent, remotely, using the power of the web.  All very useful stuff that will allow Rosie to do something more productive in the future.

1I’ve got Pi(3) brainSetup your Pi to run the Raspbian operating system
2Why-Fi-ght the Wi-Fi?Make your Pi remotely accessible, using Wi-Fi and SSH
3Hurrah-ndom inventions Create your first Python application
4Don't reinvent the eelPlay around with DC motors and wheels
5Achoo! Crash-choo! Episode IUse ultrasonic distance sensors to avoid obstacles
6Achoo! Crash-choo! Episode IIUse Python threads to run lots of tasks in parallel
7Web of PiesMake a web interface for your Pi, using Python Flask
8Hello supervision, goodbye supervisionUser Supervisor to run your application in the background
9Abject, disorientated programmingUse Python classes to make your code more sophisticated
10Rough around the hedgesCreate your own Python motor controller application

You'll get to dabble in:

  • Raspberry Pi
  • Raspbian operating system (basically Linux)
  • Hardware (DC motors, RGB LEDs and ultrasonic distance sensors)
  • Python programming language, with all the frilly object orientated bits
  • Flask web framework
  • Supervisor for starting / stopping your magnificent invention

Proof is in the pudding:



LoRa-Wan Kenobi

In the regurgitated words of Michael BublĂ©: It's a new dawn .  It's a new day .  It's a new Star Wars film .  For me .  And I'm (George Lucas, and I'm) feeling good .  Unfortunately for Canadian Mike, the Grammy that year was won by the novelty disco classic with the famous refrain: We love IoT, even in Planet Tatooine * . *Not true. Clearly, the Star Wars producers didn't sincerely mean the last Jedi the previous time around.  Return of the Jedi, released during the decade that spearheaded cultural renaissance 2.0 with the mullet and hair-metal , was less economic with the truth.  Either way, we're going to take inspiration from the impressive longevity of the money-spinning space-opera and reboot our franchise with some Jedi mind tricks.  Except this particular flick doesn't require an ever-growing cast of unrecognisable characters, unless ASCII or UTF counts.  In place of an ensemble gathering of Hollywood stars and starlets, we will b

Beam me up, Rosie!

How do you get from A to B? You can't, as As and Bs are just letters in the alphabet. But if A is your house, and B is a meerkat village at your favourite safari park, you'd probably use a device equipped with GPS.  Not to be confused with UPS, who will deliver you your chosen meerkat through the post. And why on Earth would Rosie Patrol need one? Precisely, it's because she is on Earth that she needs one. Because our planet is rather big. Big enough to get lost in. And we don't want to lose our friendly plastic boxes on wheels. And maybe, eventually when she's clever enough, she'll go and defeat baddies on her own. And return home afterwards for a well deserved Earl Grey tea. Besides, why wouldn't we want to add another three letter acronym to Rosie Patrol's repertoire? All superheroes need: One Raspberry Pi 3, running Raspbian OS Computer from which you are connecting to the Raspberry Pi Probably the most important bit: a GPS r

Battle of BLEtain

The trolling . The doxing . An army of perplexing emojis. And endless links to the same - supposedly funny - viral video of a cat confusing a reflection from a dangling key for a golden hamster, while taking part in the mice bucket challenge. Has social media really been this immense force for good? Has it actually contributed significantly to the continued enlightenment of the human (or feline) race? In order to answer these poignant existential questions about the role of prominent platforms such as Critter, StinkedIn and Binterest, employing exceptional scientific rigour equal to that demonstrated by Theranos , we're going to set up a ground-breaking experiment using the Bluetooth Low Energy feature of MicroPython v1.12, and two ESP32 development boards with inexplicable hatred for one another.  And let them hurl quintessentially British expressions (others call them abuse) at each other like two Wiltshire residents who have had their internet access curbed by the co