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This is a small report made by TVE, the Spanish National TV, in Campus Party Europe where Angel Hernandez talks a little bit about robotics.

Click here to see the original video.

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Moments like this make you feel you are doing the right thing. SLU, one more time wanted to write an article about us and our progress.


In few days I will start posting all the articles that were written this summer.

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Another very productive night!

Here is an RFID project I started tonight. This is still very simple, but I made it just to start playing with this technology.

As you can see on the video, I used an Skypic, to read the information coming from the RFID reader. I just made a custom board to hold the electronics of the cheap RFID reader and bought six different RFID tags.


The RFID reader uses the antenna to read the passive tag and sends the ID information and some other data through its UART. After that, the Skypic filters the Tag ID, and sends it to the computer using a standard header that I always use. On the computer, I made a little program that listens to the Skypic, and looks for the Tag ID on a Database. If the Tag ID exists on the Database it loads all the information about the tag (i.e. picture and final numbers).


Shortly I will start playing with this interesting technology and hopefully I will develop something a little more complex than this :)

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I have been looking around and fighting with some libraries for a couple of days to get the watch to send data to the computer… After some help from TI’s forum I finally got it running on Visual Studio .Net writing a quick code in Visual Basic and using the eZ430_Chronos_Net.dll made by Tobias Gärtner.


I hate all those places where you have to look around to get code and register to download everything, so if you want to download the source code, simply click here and start playing with it.

Follow this steps to make this work:

1. Plug the CC1111 AP






2. Open the program you just downloaded. there should be a .exe in the bin folder.

3. Click Connect

4. Start the Chronos ez430 in ACC mode.

5. and voilà!

I hope this helps people trying to figure out how to “talk to the device using Visual Studio. If you have any questions just leave a comment or send me an email.

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I recently got this new amazing device. Probably you haven’t heard much about it, so just to start, let me give you a brief description of this  “watch”:

  • 3 Axis accelerometer
  • Pressure Sensor
  • Temperature Sensor
  • Battery Voltage Sensor
  • The CC430F6137 with a <1 GHz wireless transceiver integrated

So you get the all that in a watch-like gadget, plus:

  • ez430 USB Programming and debugging interface
  • CC1111 USB RF AP
  • Mini Phillips Screwdriver
  • 2 extra screws
  • CR2032 Lithium Battery

But the best of all this is that you can get all this for only $49!! (Okay, I look like one of those guys selling vacuum cleaners on TV… Haha!)

I still didn’t have enough time to play with it, but My first Project will be to get all that data on the computer using any Visual Studio Language.

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Everyone in Saint Louis University is being really supportive and excited about the medals we got last week in RoboGames, so little by little they are publishing some news.

The first one was SLU’s official wesite in USA:


Right after that initial release, Jesus and I got an email from SLU Madrid asking if we minded them publishing in their own website about our story. Of course we are happy if they do it, so here it is:

SLU Madrid news Cropped

We also made it to  SLU Madrid’s newspaper  and someone told us that our picture is now the desktop background in the computers at the labs in SLU Madrid, but I will not believe that till I see it with my own eyes… hahaha

Well, we are not “Oprah”, but this is a good way to start, isn’t it?

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Little by little I’m running into more videos about the robotics area in Campus Party. I know some of you will disagree with what I’m saying here, so I’m willing to talk about it with you if you want.

Link to the original video on TVE’s website.

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This is a small report made by TVE, the Spanish National TV, in Campus Party Europe where I talk a little bit about robotics.

Click here to see the original video.

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“A team of SLU students, Angel Hernandez and Jesus Dominguez, competed in the RoboGames 2010. RoboGames, formerly know ROBOympics, is the biggest robot competition in the world, with 170 teams and over 600 engineers competing last year. IEEE, KEEN (Kern Engineering Entrepreneurship Network), and the Electrical and Mechanical Engineering departments sponsored the team RoboMadness.”

Check this link for more information.

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For the first time ever, Spain has been competing in RoboGames (Formerly known as ROBOlympics). Jesus and I have been representing Spain and SLU under the team name “RoboMadness”. Thanks to people like Bob Allen, Ted Larson, Tony, Simone and David Calkins, we have had an awesome weekend in Silicon Valley… Well, besides spending a great time there, we also got three medals with the three robots that we took with us.

Jesus y Angel

This is how we did in the contest:

  • BalanBot was the first robot getting a Silver medal for Spain. Thanks to his incredible driving skills, Jesus beat Bob and Ted, Gold medalists in 2009. So it is a great achievement for the first time competing there.
  • Escalador, in spite of all the technical problems that we ran into, gave us our second Silver medal. We are shutting for the gold medal in 2011 since our mechanical and electrical design was probably the best there. We just need more powerful batteries.
  • TupperBot finally won the Gold Medal being the “Best of Show” . I still dont really like the idea of competing with TupperBot, but it seems to always work. As most of you know, the last time I competed was 4 years ago… in 2006 I got the first prize at MadridBot, held in Colegio Antonio Machado (Madrid) competing in “Prueba Libre”, wich is basically the same free style category that we found in RoboGames. Thanks to MadridBot I started making more robots but I didn’t really compete in any other event. Now all that passion that has been growing in me for those 4 years has taken me to get a Gold Medal in the ROBOlympics, held in San Antonio, known as Silicon Valley, worlds capital of engineering and technology.

From now on, ROBOlympics is a Mandatory event in our agendas, so we will be there next year trying to get even more medals competing in even more categories.

Robot builders, please, keep making your amazing machines… keep imagining the present, keep designing the future.

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