This is my first project shared on Hackaday. Hope to add many more in the future.
Ringo was inspired and co-designed by my 1st grade daughter and 3rd grade son. They started wanting to write code. It began as a fun family project. One thing lead to another and we decided to launch an open source hardware company based on the design.
Fellow hackers will find obvious ways to entertain themselves with these bots, but I'm also hopeful it'll encourage more people to take the first steps into coding and hardware. I'm hopeful the "cute" factor will appeal to more girls and help bring them into the world of coding and hardware also.
So the idea was to create something of a "digital pet" that you could give a personality to. Ringo sports an accelerometer, gyroscope, 6x NeoPixel RGB LEDs, sound chirper, IR send and receive, edge sensors, and onboard charging.
It's based on the Arduino UNO. It runs at 8 MHz for better efficiency with the lithium battery (we don't have to boost it to 5 volts just to feed the processor).
Planned improvements when Kickstarter is complete:
- Better motor mount (the prototype just uses 3M VHB tape to stick the motors to a brass bar). The production motor mount will be nickel plated spring steel that will solder right to the PCB.
- Better battery. We'll run this as a stretch goal. I'd really like to goto a 300 mah LiPo.
We hope to launch on Kickstarter the week of 2/16/2015.