Mindsensors Releases Clock Sensor

Mindsensors.com has just released a real time clock sensor for the NXT. Details here.


Anonymous said…
Mindsensors is getting a lot of sensors out there...but what is the practicality of a clock sensor? The NXT has built in timers, and if you wanted to make a clock robot the challenge is mechanical...

Perhaps they are trying to rival Vernier labs.
David Levy said…
"a clock sensor"
That does sound a little odd doesn't it?
Maybe they should refer to it as a clock add-on.
Nitin said…
Hi David,
I agree that it sounds odd.
Maniac of Mayhem use of this is not very much is building robot but mainly for datalogging.
now you can collect the data with real time stamp for analysis rather than than some odd unknown timer value.
Anonymous said…
One could build a 'bot that could survey a room from say 9 AM to 5 PM. or to check something at the top of every hour, where a built in timer would have to be set up at just the right time.
Anonymous said…
How would you go about setting one of those things? Do they come preset? And if so, to what time zone?
Brian Davis said…
Perhaps an even more important use for this is very long-term datalogging. For instance, I may be using the NXT to datalog in a cave, and the NXT will be off during non-datalogging intervals. But with a sensor like this, the moment it comes on and resumes datalogging it would immediately know what time/day it is.

Now, if there were a way to power on and auto-run a program, or remotely power up and auto-run, I'd *really* be in buisness... :-)

Brian Davis
David Levy said…
"I may be using the NXT to datalog in a cave"

Be careful not to reveal your true identifty :)

Brian Davis
Bruce Wayne
Brian Davis said…
Actually, it was wanting to datalog in caves that first got me interested in the RCX long ago. I've been involved in survey in one of the longest caves in the world, Fisher Ridge Cave System:


And yes, I do have stories about bats :-)

Brian Davis
David Levy said…
an by the looks of that site, some other really exciting stories as well ( says you were trapped twice _)

Sounds like a great theme for a new NXT adventure
- not for the claustrophobic
Nitin said…
Regarding setting the RTC,
you will use the NXT-G block for RTC,
connect RTC to NXT brick and have NXT connected to your PC.
on NXT-G block for RTC there is button to set time.
it will take time from your PC and set the RTC.
very simple to do.
BTW they come preset to EST.
David Levy said…
besides data logging, you can probably create some fun activities:

1) cuckoo clock
2) a robot with behavior based on the day of week or time of day
3) calendar reminders
Andy said…
It would have been awsome to be able to auto turn-on the NXT brick in specific times a day. for an example, give food to the fish or dog etc. But I doubt this will be able to do... Maybe with some hardcored HW/FW hacking too change that...

Eric D. Burdo said…
I saw a modified RCX that sort of had a "self-turn on" functionality. It was based on power. If power dropped below a certain point, it went into shutdown mode. When power was restored, it woke up.

Unfortunately, it couldn't do much after it "woke up" due to limitations of the RCX (no way to run a program on startup).

The idea behind the modifications was solar power. The bot went to sleep at "night" when no power was available, and resumed activity when power was restored.
Brian Davis said…
Mr Levy wrote:

> says you were trapped twice...

Yeah, how's that for not learning my lesson? Cave trips at the time were 3-5 days basecamps, with some... problematic... sections between the exploration limits and the entrances:


(During our entrapment, the water was significantly higher than shown here). This passage is *thought* to take around 2 weeks to dry out enough to allow an exit... but we didn't know. Thus why I wanted to datalog remotely, to determine the risk. Turns out, I determined it (*twice*) from the in-cave side, for a cumulative period of about 8-9 days. Why we do this is a different issue, but you can see some of those reasons:


All the people in that picture are me (multiple exposure), and I was the first person to ever set foot in this passage (this is what I did on my 21st birthday... what did you do? :-).

Brian "Caver" Davis
David Levy said…
That was a very long time ago but I'm sure it was not as exciting as your 21st bday. If I had to guess I'd say that I was trapped in my dorm. :)
Rick Rhodes said…
Ditto...and in a "cave" of dirty laundry.

Anonymous said…
The clock could be used with the clock design on lego.com to automaticly set the time, instead of haveing to tell it the time.
Anonymous said…
Brian, has a connection every been discovered between Fischer Ridge and Mammoth?
Brian Davis said…
Who are you, Anonymous, and what have you done with the topic of this blog? ;-)

Despite a *whole* lot of effort from both the Ropple and Fisher Ridge sides of the proposed connection, none has ever been found... and believe me, we've looked! The caves come within about 800 feet of each other at one point, and at one time there was actually a dig attempt on the Ropple side of that. But for many reasons (geological), this is not perhaps the most likely place to find a connection anyway.

Nope, there is no "hidden connection", and at least on the FRCS side of things, we're too busy scooping leads on each other to keep anything secret for long in the first place!

Brian David

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