$49 Balancing Robot

ercoerco Posts: 19,697
edited 2017-06-16 - 23:24:07 in Robotics
For Dads & Grads, Toys R Us has the Zoomer Chimp marked down ~half off. I bought a used one off Ebay a while back for $50. Internal LiPo battery, voice recognition, the works. ERCO SAYS BUY!

Comments

  • Nice, but I actually prefer the WowWee Coder Mip which is on sale at Best Buy for $41
    bestbuy.com/site/wowwee-coder-mip-transparent/5459603.p?skuId=5459603&ref=06&loc=01&ksid=59b59be5-e26c-4e31-8de8-6280fee4e88f&ksprof_id=3&ksaffcode=pg196568&ksdevice=c

    However, these self balancing bots would be the perfect project for the FLiP. Add a OLED and you could have a bot with a face. This certainly on my projects to work on list.
  • ercoerco Posts: 19,697
    Dangit, JonM out-ercoed me. I need one of those too!
  • Remember this jumping robot?



    It also balances. According to erco they cost $25.

    I was just playing with mine today (my niece's family stopped by). It's always a hit with kids. Occasionally it also hits kids (sometimes it ends up jumping into a very startled child).
  • ercoerco Posts: 19,697
    Dog drat you, Duane! Now I need one of those too!

    It's noteworthy that Pololu's Balboa robot is $70, without wheels or motors.

    https://www.pololu.com/product/3575
  • Did you ever see the movie Big? (I know you did, I'm just teasing.)

    Who wants to just WATCH a toy? Talk to it? Been there, done that. Lead it around with your hand? Yawn.

    Like many of these types of robots, Zoomer Chimp looks like a one-time toy: bring it out once, show it off to family and friends, then it's off to the back of the closet.

    On the larger genre of self-balancing robots, I think they have limited appeal unless you built and programmed it yourself, or at least have played around with its programming. As a project base, I see it as holding little interest beyond initial play because it doesn't have a very broad use case. The Pololu bot looks interesting, and they're all about getting into its programming, so that's a start in the right direction.
  • ercoerco Posts: 19,697
    What if the monkey transformed into a building? :)
  • Kinda like the "Optimus Primal", but in a balancing bot?

    https://youtube.com/watch?v=jKAeyyxScmg
  • ercoerco Posts: 19,697
    edited 2017-08-01 - 16:52:46
    I finally got a Coder MiP from Best Buy for $25. This is what JonM mentioned previously for $41. Great toy & value at $25, clear case. Curiously, this Coder version is on clearance while regular MiP isn't. STEM failure? Coder Mip does more and comes in a bigger box with optional large "offroad" tires and a neat see-saw ramp to drive over.

    Grab one now, ask questions later. I got the last one in LA, and I would have bought 2 more if they had them! Cool gift for any tech savvy kid IMO.

    http://www.bestbuy.com/site/wowwee-coder-mip-transparent/5459603.p

  • They have one near me!!! Thanks erco :D I'm gonna have to go grab it.
  • ercoerco Posts: 19,697
    OK David, put $2 in the Corvair oops twins' fund.
  • Darn you erco - I bit!
  • ercoerco Posts: 19,697
    Gimme $2 and your lunch money, Padre! :)
  • Nice. I guess the Coder Mips wasn't a big hit. It is cool that it supports multiple options for coding it. I had grabbed a Coji a while back as well just to Hack the Bluetooth on it and control it from a Raspberry Pi.

    Best Buy also has the Meccano for about 50% off, $78.99, so it might be one to watch as well.
    bestbuy.com/site/meccano-meccanoid-g15-personal-robot-silver/4359800.p?skuId=4359800
  • ercoerco Posts: 19,697
    edited 2017-08-03 - 16:02:16
    They really are getting rare/sold out at Best Buy. I just searched a dozen wildly different zip codes and only found one within 250 miles. I really must have gotten the last one in LA.

    You snooze, you lose!

    Edit: One big difference between Coder Mip and the regular one is that Coder comes with a rechargeable Li-Ion battery, regular uses alkalines. Score! BTW mine took a loooooong time to charge the first time. Instructions were unclear. Green LED isn't mentioned, only orange. Turns out that it's a bicolor LED. Green is always on when charging, then the red comes on (sorta making orange, combined) when full, flashing red when medium charged. Mine was green only for a long time, I thought something was wrong at first.
  • xanaduxanadu Posts: 3,322
    edited 2017-08-03 - 18:15:36
    Did you ever see the movie Big? (I know you did, I'm just teasing.)

    Who wants to just WATCH a toy? Talk to it? Been there, done that. Lead it around with your hand? Yawn.

    Like many of these types of robots, Zoomer Chimp looks like a one-time toy: bring it out once, show it off to family and friends, then it's off to the back of the closet.

    On the larger genre of self-balancing robots, I think they have limited appeal unless you built and programmed it yourself, or at least have played around with its programming. As a project base, I see it as holding little interest beyond initial play because it doesn't have a very broad use case. The Pololu bot looks interesting, and they're all about getting into its programming, so that's a start in the right direction.

    I couldn't agree more. As traditional remote control systems become less and less exciting, their robot counterparts follow along.

    For me, the answer could be EEG. I don't like the idea of having a host computer, or their subscription model, but this looks like a lot of fun (and programming). https://www.emotiv.com/epoc

    Edit: I didn't realize how much that headset costs. I'll have to read some reviews on cheaper units.

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