Junkbotix: Build a "follow-me" robot...

So I'm starting a new tutorial series on building a "follow-me" robot. I was originally inspired by a hackster.io post that people have been trying to get working for a while, with varying degrees of success. While I don't have anything constructed yet, that will be changing in the future!

Introduction video link - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=52zE5mKuam4

Part 1 of the "Follow-Me" Robot Tutorial is ready to view!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5-18WhZ3FNk

This video introduces the "theory of operation" of how and what the robot will use to figure out how to follow the user! Be sure to also check out the Github repository for more!

Please let me know what you think - either here, on the comments of the video, facebook, patreon, etc - thanks!

Build A "Follow-Me" Robot - Part 2 - Selecting Your Motors and Batteries

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d58bzeFVOF8

This video will show you how to select the right motors and batteries for your robot... Be sure to also check out the Github repository for more!

Again, I'd love to hear your comments, suggestions, ideas - whatever - on this tutorial or other things on my channel! Thanks!

Build A "Follow-Me" Robot - Part 3 - Controlling Your Motors

This video explains how to control your motors, what a motor controller is, and how to select the right controller for your motors. Be sure to check out the Github repository for more!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zeTaibkZ3Tk

Build A "Follow-Me" Robot - Part 4 - Chassis Assembly: Drive Motors

The first part in a series showing how I have built my chassis for my follow-me robot tutorial. This one deals with assembling the drive motors and wheels!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3PZSopR8Igc

Build A "Follow-Me" Robot - Part 5 - Chassis Assembly: Frame and Deck

I'm building of the actual frame and deck of my robot's chassis in this video. A bunch of metal-work and fabrication, using basic hand and power tools!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3I_xSwb07vQ

Build A "Follow-Me" Robot - Part 6 is ready to view!

Gotta have a way to mount your motors! In part 6 I show how to position and attach the motor mounting brackets to the frame and deck of my robot's chassis.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DKjOhdwGVQc

Build A "Follow-Me" Robot - Part 7 is ready to view!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-lXxRHiNbhw

Now that I have a way to mount the motors, I can proceed to do just that! But before that can be done, I have to build some bearing blocks to support the drive shaft, in order to keep the robot's weight off the motor itself. I also needed to modify the motors a bit...

Build A “Follow-Me” Robot - Part 8 is ready to view!

I have to mount a couple of caster wheels on the front of the chassis to support that end, and keep it level. This video shows what I came up with, and how the chassis looks in its near-final form.

Build A "Follow-Me" Robot - Part 9 is ready to view!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LijISf1I_SE

How you plan your robot's electrical needs is just as important as any of its mechanicals, electronics, or code. In this video, I design and fabricate the system that will supply the power for my robot chassis...

Excited to see more of it. Keep up the good work.

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Build A “Follow-Me” Robot - Part 10 is ready to view!

My follow-me robot is almost ready for programming, but first I need to add the embedded system to control it, and also the means for it to know its own location. In this video I show how I do all of that, and adding “alert beacons” so the robot can warn others about its presence!

I’m starting on the building of the firmware stack for the “follow-me” robot!

I’m using the Arduino IDE and core on the ESP32 (technically ESP32S-WROVER - or something like that), building custom libraries for the on-board hardware, as well as using existing libraries where they fit.

So watch the first short video of an ongoing series to make this thing sing and dance (ok, roll around):

Build A “Follow-Me” Robot - Part 11.2 - Software: Controller Process

With a framework mostly designed and some code stubbed out, I now need to think about how to implement the main controller process.

I need it to be non-blocking, while being flexible enough to allow for the features I’ll need to control the robot. It needs to be expandable and easily maintainable in the future, and the logic needs to be easy to follow and understand.

In this video I’ll show how I intend to do all of this using the framework of a basic FSM (no, not a Flying Spaghetti Monster)…

With the controller state machine stubbed out, I can begin working on the various pieces of the library for the framework. One of the most important and core pieces of that is the webserver, which is needed for serving up the interactive page I’ll use to send the GPS coordinates of my phone to the robot…