Sep 22, 2009
Minimalistic remote control for the NXT
When using Philo's great NXT joystick remote control for my basketball-playing NXT robots at Fana'Briques in June, I noticed that the very young users had some difficulties in getting along with it (in particular due to the size and the problems they had with understanding how to manage turns). So for the SteinCHenwelt LEGO® event ten days ago, I decided to come up with a more simplified one that met the reduced requirements of my soccer robots that debuted there.
The result was the rather minimalistic Remote Control No 3, a Bluetooth-based NXT remote control that uses the four buttons on the NXT Brick itself to control the movement of a remote NXT robot (forward, backward, left, right).
The two attached touch sensors can be optionally used to trigger special functions on the controlled robot (in the case of the soccer robots, it was kicking the ball).
At SteinCHenwelt, the gamepad-oriented style of the remote control and its comparatively small size went down well with the youngsters (you can see its usage in the SteinCHenwelt movie).
Remote Control No 3 is a good option when you do not need to control the actual speed of the remote robot. For the SteinCHenwelt, I programmed it with leJOS NXJ, the Java platform for the NXT (the programs can be downloaded from the associated page at my NXT web site); however, writing NXT-G programs for it should not be that difficult, also.