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31  Using Arduino / Project Guidance / Senior project Questions/Advice seeking on: May 07, 2012, 05:17:49 pm
I am a student at the Oregon Institute of Technology working on a proposal for my Software Engineering Technology Bachelors' Program. My idea at this point is to buy an AR.Drone http://ardrone.parrot.com/parrot-ar-drone/usa/ and attach an Arduino pro mini http://www.sparkfun.com/products/11113 and some IR Rangefinders http://www.sparkfun.com/products/639. Then I will program the arduino to interpret the data from the range finders and control the drone through it's wifi connection. Ideally my drone will start from a landed position when I turn it on and begin to fly forward until it gets to a set distance from an object/wall and turn then move until it finds another surface. This will repeat until the drone runs out of battery power. I will have a year to get this finished. Since basis of my senior project is for the software problems I will probably be getting help with the hardware installation since I haven't played with any of this stuff before. I am under the impression programming the Arduino Pro Mini will take a bit of extra hardware.

My questions are:
1. For the wifi connection which board would be the lightest and cheapest to connect over a short range wifi and still be able to send/receive data?

2. Is it possible to store enough program information on the Arduino Pro Mini to handle the sensor data and send a wifi signal? (It won't be storing any data at this point, but I may adjust project at a later date to possibly create a string that I can parse through after downloading it from the board for other uses.)

3. Would I need to have any other hardware to make this project workable?

4. I am open to suggestions, other ideas, and will do my best to respond to any questions for clarification ASAP.

I understand these are big questions and a bit open, however I hope that I have given enough (and that this is interesting enough) to warrant a bit of help for a newbie.

Thanks,
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