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A project log for Roboartist

"Can a robot turn a... canvas into a beautiful masterpiece?" - Will Smith (I, Robot)

niazangelsniazangels 04/22/2014 at 19:180 Comments

Clearly, this is not an overnight project. We spent months turning caffeine to code and inhaled our fair share of rosin fumes. It all began in late October last year when we got together to discuss what project to take on next, switching through our sci-fi movie playlist , as we mostly do on every other weekend. That's around when awesome-bot Sonny took to screen and began his artwork. Now, we've seen I,Robot like a dozen times (like all good hackers should), but I guess that's the point where we really got thinking if that kind of thing was possible. A robot that draws pictures sounded pretty rad.

We spent our next month doodling the blocks that we'd use to build Roboartist. After we had fixed on the design, we sourced parts from the rest of the Multiverse. Aside from the minor hiccups along the way (like the time our inter-galactic shipping got delayed by 3 weeks and a random guy who ran away with our Galactic Moon Coins) we were still steaming ahead with the plan. By the end of January, we had a working model.

Prototypes are prototypes. And that meant though everything was working, there was still more to be done. We spent time modifying the algorithm for edge detection until we found a sufficiently good edge to noise ratio. Every good project deserves a case as good, so we re-worked the design to have an acrylic base. We got really funky and used Neodymium magnets to keep the paper in place. Tape would destroy the creation about to unfold on the sheet. Everything said and done we still needed a good place to showcase our work, and what better place than Hackaday, right?

Over the next few days we'll put up build specs and possibly the code. Currently the core engine is coded in MATLAB (yes, hackers use MATLAB too, okay?). However, we're also porting the core to a more open platform for the Multiverse.

Interested in finding out more? Stick with us :)

P.S. You are now up to speed