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BeagleBone Robotic Projects

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Richard Grimmett

Developer or hobbyist, you’ll love the way this book helps you turn the BeagleBone Black into a working robot. From listening and speaking to seeing and moving, we’ll show you how – step by step.
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Book Details

ISBN 139781783559329
Paperback244 pages

About This Book

  • Get to grips with robotic systems.
  • Communicate with your robot and teach it to detect and respond to its environment.
  • Develop walking, rolling, swimming, and flying robots.

Who This Book Is For

This book is for anyone who is curious about using new, low-cost hardware to create robotic projects that have previously been the domain of research labs, major universities or Defence departments. Some programming experience would be useful, but if you know how to use a personal computer, you can use this book to construct far more complex systems than you would have thought possible.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Getting Started with the BeagleBone Black
Mission briefing
The unveiling!
Hooking up a keyboard, mouse, and display
Changing the operating system
Adding a graphical user interface
Accessing the board remotely
Mission accomplished
A challenge
Chapter 2: Programming the BeagleBone Black
Mission briefing
Basic Linux commands and navigating the filesystem
Creating, editing, and saving files on the BeagleBone Black
Creating and running Python programs on the BeagleBone Black
Basic programming constructs on the BeagleBone Black
Introduction to the C++ programming language
Mission accomplished
A challenge
Chapter 3: Providing Speech Input and Output
Mission briefing
Hooking up the HW to make and input sound
Using eSpeak to allow your projects to respond in a robotic voice
Using PocketSphinx to interpret your commands
Providing the capability to interpret your commands and have your robot initiate an action
Mission accomplished
A challenge
Chapter 4: Allowing the BeagleBone Black to See
Mission briefing
Connecting the USB camera to the BeagleBone Black and viewing the images
Downloading and installing OpenCV – a full-featured vision library
Using the vision library to detect colored objects
Mission accomplished
Challenges
Chapter 5: Making the Unit Mobile – Controlling Wheeled Movement
Mission briefing
Using a motor controller to control the speed of your platform
Controlling your mobile platform programmatically using the BeagleBone Black
Making your mobile platform truly mobile by issuing voice commands
Mission accomplished
A challenge
Chapter 6: Making the Unit Very Mobile – Controlling Legged Movement
Mission briefing
Connecting the BeagleBone Black to the mobile platform using a servo controller
Creating a program in Linux to control the mobile platform
Making your mobile platform truly mobile by issuing voice commands
Mission accomplished
A challenge
Chapter 7: Avoiding Obstacles Using Sensors
Mission briefing
Connecting the BeagleBone Black to a USB sonar sensor
Using a servo to move a single sensor
Mission accomplished
A challenge
Chapter 8: Going Truly Mobile – Remote Control of Your Robot
Mission briefing
Connecting the BeagleBone Black to a wireless USB keyboard
Using the keyboard to control your project
Mission accomplished
A challenge
Chapter 9: Using a GPS Receiver to Locate Your Robot
Mission briefing
Connecting the BeagleBone Black to a GPS device
Accessing the GPS programmatically and determining how to move to a location
Mission accomplished
A challenge
Chapter 10: System Dynamics
Mission briefing
Creating a general control structure so capabilities can communicate
Mission accomplished
A challenge
Chapter 11: By Land, Sea, and Air
Mission briefing
Using the BeagleBone Black in sailing robots
Using the BeagleBone Black in flying robots
Using the BeagleBone Black in submarine robots
Mission accomplished
A challenge

What You Will Learn

  • Unbox, power up, and configure the BeagleBone black with Ubuntu.
  • Install speech recognition software to issue voice commands to your projects.
  • Set up a webcam and a computer vision toolkit for distinguishing objects.
  • Communicate with external motors to enable you robotics projects to move in a variety of ways.
  • Process audio signals like music or other sounds.
  • Add GPS capability to your system so it will know where it is.
  • Use the building blocks you have learned to create complex robotic projects that can combine all of these features and more.

In Detail

Thanks to new, inexpensive microcontrollers, robotics has become far more accessible than it was in the past. These microcontrollers provide a whole new set of capabilities to allow even the most inexperienced users to make amazingly complicated projects. Beaglebone is effectively a small, light, cheap computer in a similar vein to Raspberry Pi and Arduino. It has all of the extensibility of today's desktop machines, but without the bulk, expense, or noise. This project guide provides step-by-step instructions to allow anyone to use this new, low cost platform in some fascinating robotics projects. By the time you are finished, your projects will be able to see, speak, listen, detect their surroundings, and move in a variety of amazing ways. The book begins with unpacking and powering up the components.This will include guidance on what to purchase and how to connect it all successfully–and a primer on programming the BeagleBone Black. Chapter by chapter, we will add additional software functionality available from the open source community, including how to make the system see using a webcam, how to hear using a microphone, and how to speak using a speaker. We then add hardware to make your robots move–including wheeled and legged examples–as well as covering how to add sonar sensors to avoid or find objects, plus wireless control to make your robot truly autonomous. Adding GPS allows the robot to find itself. Finally the book covers how to integrate all of this functionality so that it can all work together, before developing the most impressive robotics projects: those that can sail, fly, and explore underwater.

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