Archive for the 'Progress Reports' Category
Progress Report III Prototype I Assignment

Third Progress Reports for Prototype I go here.

Green Wu- Progress Report III for Prototype I: Bicycle-powered generator

Goals for the week:

-locate bicycle
-design concept for prototype
-decide on 

Meeting times/dates

We had a meeting in the lab at 2 pm on Friday

Individual Hours:

Alex and Adrian: Worked in the lab on the Arduino. We were finally able to get the graphics file to output to the LCD shield. We also were able to output to a screen over serial the voltage being applied to the Arduino.

What we did:

Were able to load the graphics libraries on his mac and after looking at the code for the libraries, found a line in the code that was commented out that allowed our model revision of the LCD screen to work. Also, we tested the ability to read a voltage being applied to the Arudino. Thankfully, the Arduino has a built in function to read analog inputs. We were able to output the value of the voltage applied to the input pin, in real time. This output was sent over USB/serial to the laptop. We did not test output over the LCD shield because we accidentally cracked the screen attempting the seat the shield in a bread board. Oops.

What we didn’t do:

Did not get an actual bicycle to start working on
We didn’t measure the voltage output of the generator. 

Where we are stuck:

Getting a bike. We have spoken to relatives in hopes of finding an old bike. Adrian checked on the availability of his old bike, but could not locate it. Freecycle.org is not responding to my original requests, so I have created a new post in hopes to garner more attention.

Notes/Misc:

Electric Chair – Progress Report III for Prototype I: Electric Chair

Goals for the week:

Design the LED’s schematic and run the Arduino code to control on and off state 

Meeting times/dates

Thursday 7PM – 9PM

Friday 2PM -4PM

Individual Hours:

Nate and Emmanuel worked on the LED schematic.
Darko and Hengky worked on Arduino code 

What we did:

Made the LED schematic.

Modified the Arduino code that we found on the following website: http://jeremyblum.com/2011/01/10/arduino-tutorial-2-now-with-more-blinky-things/

LED’s can be turned off and on using the momentary push button.

What we didn’t do:

We completed our goals for this week.

Where we are stuck:

Purchasing parts for the project.

Notes/Misc:

[SAFE] – Progress Report III for Prototype I: SAFE (Medicine-cabinet Notification System)

Goals for the week:

1. Build the memory shield.
2. Build the database.
3. Order parts.
4. Test the LCD screens we got from Tom.

Meeting times/dates

Monday, 7pm-10pm
Thursday, 3:00-4:00pm

Individual Hours:
Each member group we’ve spent an average of 4 hours each.

What we did:

We put together (soldering) the memory shield. We’ve got some parts (led and switches) for the project. We are waiting for the Scanner, that was purchased last week. Started the Database info for some products. Ordered some a case (box) and led from Factorymation.com.

What we didn’t do:

We built the LCD circuit but weren’t to get it to work due to the potentiometer.

Where we are stuck:

Getting the memory shield to work, and the LCD display to work too.

We went to Goodwill stores to get a 12v ac-dc converter, but couldn’t find one. We will get this weekend at Radioshack.

Notes/Misc:

We will ask Tom about the Database format that he recommends for it, as in CSV, etc.

Get the piezo at Radioshack.

MAR – Progress Report III for Prototype I: Wireless GPS Tracker

Goals for the week:

* We are planning to build the PC board for the SMD device this week.

* Hopefully if we are able to finish building the PC board before end of this week, we are planning to test the bluetooth circuit.

* We are working on developing the android application.

* We are going to order a switch and a PC board if we would not be able to find the items in the lab.

Meeting times/dates

Our regular meeting times are Friday 4 pm to 7 pm and Sunday 4 pm to 7 pm.

Individual Hours:

Team members will individually spend enough time working on developing their piece of the project.

What we did:

Team members individually worked on their piece of the project during this week. We were able to meet with the CPRF resident and get her ideas for our project.

Rebecca : I developed a sample android service, and also looked information on including functionality of catching a Bluetooth signal in the application.

Abdullah:I have met Kevin for designing the PC board using Eagle program and I have download the program in my computer and I am working in it to build our board. also I met the CPRF resident who is interested in our project and i got her feedback about the project.

Mihingu: Trying to develop the app  to catch the bluetooth signal. 

http://developer.android.com/guide/topics/wireless/bluetooth.html

What we didn’t do:

We have to work on finishing up circuit board.

We still need to work on developing the exact android service application to work with Bluetooth signal.

we did not order the switch yet for the board because we still need more parts, so we are planning to buy togather.

Where we are stuck:

* We could not find the right schematic f SMD rn42

* By following the documentation we are almost done developping the program to catch a bluetooth signal and send a message to a given phone number. When we tried to run the program in the phone it gives an error that the application needs packages that does not support by the current device. By researching more about the issue we found out that it’s only the latest phones which has android version 2.2 or above gives the capability for developpers to work with many inbuild bluetooth packages. For our application we used some essential inbuild bluetooth packages which has made it incompatible to run on the current phone we have ( runs with Android 1.5 and related), and on the other hand we need those inbuild packages inclued in our program to function right. So, now we have faced to an issue to find a phone running latest android version in order to test our program to make sure it’s running right with no errors.

* The other issue is, we have included some coding in our program to send a message to a given phone number. In order function that part our phone should have the connection.

* Next issue is, We can think of sending an e-mail via internet, but for that too the phone should have the data connection. Seems like we need a real working phone for our program to function instead of the old used phones we have.

* We are thinking of different options to solve the issue. We are trying to install android OS in a tablet to see whether we can use it instead of a phone. So far, we tried to install Android 4.0.3 several times to the tablet but the installation failed everytime for some reason. Now we are trying to install a version below 4.0.3 to see whether we can install that to the tablet.

* The next option we have is taking the old phone we have to “Cricket”, ask them to flash the phone, get their connection with the data plan for a month. Then, after we get the dataplan we can try upgrading the current os version in the phone. As we have researched about upgrading the phone it seems like the hardware of this phone supports only to upgrade android version 2, but not more than that. We are going to meet a Cricket agent tomorrow and get more details about it. If we follow this option we assume it can cost about somewhere around $60 to $80.

* The next option we have is if we can borrow a phone which meets our conditions from somebody. We are searching still, and are not sure if the instructer has any contacts that he can help us with.

* The last option we have is buing a phone, which can cost somewhere around $150.

Notes/Misc:

S.R.P.R – Progress Report III for Prototype I: Dual Mode Table

Goals for the week:

  • Have designed in CATIA ready for this Friday and for March 16
  • Pick up actuator and play with it
  • Try to program Linear Actuator

Meeting times/dates

Saturday at 3 pm -5 pm

Wednesday at 9 am – 11:30am

Individual Hours:

Each member of the group are planning to spend a minimum of 3-4 hours.

What we did:

  • Finished designing Table in CATIA and ready to show
  • Got 2 Linear Actuators from CPRF and playing with it.
  • Tried to run the program that John showed us on Wednesday but has some connection issues.

What we didn’t do:

  • Cutting Styrofoam to make a model of our table that we designed

Where we are stuck:

Wiring issues while connecting arduino and linear actuator

Notes/Misc:

[Team GLEN] – Progress Report III for Prototype I: [SMS]

Goals for the week:

1. Get the range of x bees and how far the signal can go.

2. Construct a sample mailbox insert with wood. 

3. We ll also reconfigure our Xbees with new PAN ID so that they don’t use the default setting they came with.

The link for the tutorial on how to do that is below:

http://forums.trossenrobotics.com/tutorials/how-to-diy-128/xbee-basics-3259/

or 

http://www.tristantech.net/articles/xbee_tutorial/1.php

Meeting times/dates

We met on Friday March 2, 2012 for about 3 hours from 12.30 PM to 3.30 PM and decided our tasks for the week.

Individual Hours:

Glen:  worked about 2 hours on finishing the construction of the insert for mailbox and lite research on xbee range enhancements.

Dhreen: Spent about one hour or so researching about the x bee pro on how to increase it’s range. 

Tetteh: spent 1 hour researching how to enhance the range of the Xbee Pro

What we did:

We went up to CPRF to actually test the range of our X Bee Pros. This is what we found:

Emitter Xbee was inside close to the Mailboxes:
Range where connection stopped was determined to be approximatly 30 ft
Emitter Xbee was outside (No obstacles like wall ….):
Range where connection stopped was determined to be approximatly 70 ft
 
The range was found by a blinking program that we made. We connected a LED sensor to one Xbee pro and it acted as the receiver and the other Xbee pro was the sender. When the two xbee pros were near, the LED would blink every 1 second. If out of range, the blinking would stop! Since these ranges are not much, we found that we can increase range by using whip antenna. http://doityourselfchristmas.com/wiki/index.php?title=Ren-W_Antenna_Info
 
The mailbox insert is now complete!  We already have code written that we used to test the IR sensors and the xbee sending & receiving units.  Now all we need to do is add all this programs together and modify the code a little to hopefully have a working prototype I model by the end of Friday this week.  If we have any time between now and March 16, we will be working on the range enhancements of the xbees. 
 
 

What we didn’t do:

We accomplished this week’s goals. 

Where we are stuck:

All is well.

Notes/Misc:

We will work on increasing the range of the xbees if we first finished a working prototype I project.  We found there are a lot of ways to dramatically increase range for the Xbee pros online.

Team X – Progress Report III for Prototype I: Wheel Chair Curb Detector

Goals for the week:

Hack into RC car to stop or slow down once the system detects a distance change(curb).

work on the code.

Meeting times/dates

Thursday 1:00PM and Sunday 4:00PM

Individual Hours:

bana: 1.5 hour

Sam: 3 hours

Nhat: 3 hours

What we did:

We got the program to sense the change in distance and alert thru a LED. The LED stays on for 2 seconds. Also when the LED is on, the power to the car is shut off by a relay.

What we didn’t do:

We haven’t tested the system with the RC car due to dead battery.

Where we are stuck:

We are on schedule.

Notes/Misc:

Green Wu- Progress Report II for Prototype I: Bicycle-powered generator

Goals for the week:

- Meet with the CPRF client to get measurements of her wheelchair
- Get the LCD screen to display simple text output
- Find an alternator/generator that will be providing the power for the modules
- Acquire a bicycle and start designing the  stand

Meeting times/dates

We had a meeting in the lab at 2 pm on Friday

Individual Hours:

Alex: Done more research on using Arduino to power the LCD screen. Found another online example that is supposed to display output to the screen. Haven’t been able to work on it yet though. Here is the link: http://www.ladyada.net/products/tfttouchbreakout/
I Downloaded PureData and now I am trying to find out if it will be able to provide output we are wanting

What we did:

Tom gave us a DC motor with gearing. We went to the lab and experimented with small 5V motor to try to simulate how we will be able to use the generator.
On Arduino front, we’ve been continuing to learn the basic programming and trying to get the LCD screen to work. We also connected the  5V motor to the Arduino to experiment with the power supply pins
We posted  a request for bicycle on freecycle.org but we haven’t had any replies yet

What we didn’t do:

Did not get an actual bicycle to start working on
We weren’t able to talk to the end customer to hear their input and get the wheelchair measurements

Where we are stuck:

We are stuck trying to get the LCD screen to work. We need help compiling the code and uploading it to Arduino.

Notes/Misc:

[Team Glen] – Progress Report II for Prototype I: [Smart Mailbox]

Goals for week 2:

  • Get Xbee Pro shields DIY kits assembled this week.  The shields are our main goal so we can start working with Xbee Pro wireless communication and programming the Xbee Pro with Arduino.
  • We now have the actual inside dimensions of the apartment mailboxes (Thanks to Beth Sneed at CPRF last week) so we can start making an insert for mailbox with mounted IR sensors.
  • Modify the code we designed that works for one IR sensor and have it work for two IR sensors.

Meeting times/dates

Our regular meeting hours are:  Friday 12:30 PM to 3:00 PM

We met last friday at CPRF to check mailboxes and take measurements for a couple of hours.

Individual Hours:

Dhreen:  Worked on the x bee soldering two hours for 3 days. I had to first understand how to do it and now I know how to do it very well.

Glen:  I spent about 10.5 hours working on the wooden insert for the mailbox prototype design.  Cut wooden insert to dimensions, finding parts to work with our new IR sensor design, soldiering microscopic parts using specialize soldering equipment and working on proper sensor alignments.

What we did:

  • We successfully completed the x bee soldering. Now we will test them to check the range they can cover.
  • We all meet up with Beth Sneed (along with a small gathering that started forming around the mailbox room) last Friday to get the actual inside dimensions of the mailboxes used at CPRF.  We also learned how the apartment style mailboxes work with the postmaster master key as shown here:  http://item.mobileweb.ebay.com/viewitem?itemId=270637425011&index=4&nav=SEARCH&nid=00878384507.  The operation of the mailbox forced a design change to the IR sensor insert we had planned.  The top to bottom sensor will not work for the inserts because postmaster would not be able to put any mail inside mailbox.  Also we have a good idea how far the Xbee Pros (which we now have) will need to transmit for the project to be successful.  We also have noticed that for Beth Sneed (and probably with other motor coordination deficit CPRF residents) that opening the box with a key is very cumbersome.  The opening of the mailbox itself is probably more important than a mass notification system for these residents.
  • Side Note:  Maybe looking into designing one RFID automatic opening and closing mailbox with mass notification system custom made apartment style mailbox for final project.  Not for sure. 

What we didn’t do:

The mailbox insert is almost done for our first prototype design.  Still got some work to do on it before it is complete.  Getting the super microscopic IR sensors (2.7mm) soldiered, properly aligned and working is not easy.  The mailbox insert plans changed after seeing how the mailboxes open with postmasters master key.  The first mailbox insert plans with top to bottom IR sensors would not have worked at all.  A lot of planning and research went into finding the best insert design that will actually work with any type of mail inside the mailbox.

Where we are stuck:

Our project is going fine and we are not stuck.

Notes/Misc:

Need to start experimental programming with Xbee Pro next week to see how far Xbee Pros can communicate.  Plan to write a blinking light (back and forth) communication program to see the distance Xbee pros can be separated before communication stops.  We will know when communication stop by observing the LED light that will no longer blink, marking our max distance we can separate the two Xbee Pros.