Archive for September, 2009

Robotic Amber Alert

September 25, 2009

Michael Overstreet is a robotics hobbyist in Kansas City. His humanoid  robot was stolen over the weekend. Last Sunday (Sept 20, 2009) his car was broken into and his robot along with his laptop was stolen.

Over the last year Mike has been active with the CCCKC group. More details are listed on their web site.

http://groups.google.com/group/ccckc…937094f33e6bbd

Please keep an eye out for his robot showing up at pawn shops and such. Here is a recent video of his robot in action.

Vince

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Make:KC – September Show and Tell

September 14, 2009
Scientific Glass Blowing Demonstration.

Scientific Glass Blowing Demonstration.

I bought a copy of the Illustrated Guide to Home Chemistry Experiments book last year. While reading the “Working With Glass Tubing” segment I decided to give glass blowing a try myself. The HMS Beagle store carries glass tubing so John Kuhns set me up with the supplies I needed. He also gave me a demonstration of some glassblowing techniques, prior to opening the Beagle store, John worked as a scientific glass blower and mastered that craft. I asked John if he would give a presentation at our monthly Show and Tell session.

John Kuhns describing scientific glass blowing techniques.

John Kuhns describing scientific glass blowing techniques.

John building a tee connection in two glass tubes.

John building a tee connection in two glass tubes.

Craigs MakerBot Progress Report.

Craig's MakerBot Progress Report.

While I was practicing these techniques I found additional information on the Internet. The Arizona State University has a great Scientific Glass Blowing document.

Other topics of the evening included an update from Craig Berscheidt on his MakerBot project. This evening Craig brought the structural shell of his MakerBot that he cut from his laser cutter.

We announced the next Make:KC Planning Meeting will be held at the Stone Canyon Pizza Company on Tuesday Sept. 15 from 6:00 to 8:00 pm.

Report by Vince Thompson

Make:KC at the Missouri State Fair

September 4, 2009

This year the Missouri State Fair included a Show Me Robots day. We had a booth there which included exhibits for our Make:KC group, The Kansas City Robotics Society, The Robotic Labyrinth Project, and Kansas City’s Science City.

We had a space to display information about our sponsors, the HMS Beagle Science Store, and Make Magazine. On exhibit there was an Arduino with an LCD display, a Garduino project, and the Labywiinth project.

Miss Missouri attends Show Me Robots Day (photo by Craig Berscheidt)

Miss Missouri (in background) attends Show Me Robots Day (photo by Craig Berscheidt)

The crowd checking out our group from Kansas City Robotics Society, Make:KC, The Labyrinth Project, and Kansas City’s Science City.

Visitors at our booths (photo by Craig Berscheidt)

Visitors at our booths (photo by Craig Berscheidt)

Visitors at the Make:KC exhibit. Displays of an Arduino with an LCD display scrolling messages, a Garduino project a materials provided by Make Magazine.

Make:KC at Show Me Robots

Make:KC at Show Me Robots

Craig Berscheidt created his own blog post about the day at the fair. You can get his full post at his Built to Spec blog site.

Here is a video of the Labyrinth Project exhibit we brought to the fair:

This is a video of our 3D Golf Labyrinth game controlled by a WiiFit balance board and an Arduino. For more on our labyrinth project check out our LabyWiinth web site. Our project has been selected as one of the top 40 coolest Arduino Projects of the Web at #14.

Make:KC August Business Meeting

September 4, 2009

August 18, 2009

At our August 4 meeting we announced holding a meeting on the Third Tuesdays of the month to address Business, Activities Planning, and our desire to have a Workshop/Laboratory for members to work on projects.

Lief was kind enough to take minutes of the meeting and posted them to our MakeKC Google Group.

Make:KC August 4 Meeting

September 4, 2009

Our meeting started out with a show and tell session. Our first presentation was about homemade rocketry.

DIY Rocketry

DIY Rocketry

Our second presentation was by Bob Spangler. He showed off his coffee grinding and roasting equipment. He also showed a small home built burner constructed from aluminum pop cans.

DIY Coffee Grinding, Roasting, and Brewing Equipment

DIY Coffee Grinding, Roasting, and Brewing Equipment

We had some discussions about other projects then started the formal business portion of the meeting.

We have some people who come for the show and tell session then leave when our business session begins.  I suggested that we separate the business meetings from the show and tell and have scheduled a business session for the Third Tuesday of the month.

Make:KC Kickoff Meeting

September 4, 2009

Our July 7 meetingt kicks of our Make:KC organization. We met at the HMS Beagle Science Store.

HMS Beagle Science Store (photo by Sharon Mels)

HMS Beagle Science Store (photo by Sharon Mels)

Chemical Flourencents Demonstration

Chemical Flourencents Demonstration

We had a show and tell session over the first hour where people were invited to bring in some of their projects for us to see. Lee Benson brought in a couple of examples.

Lee gave us a couple of interesting light shows. One is using chemical fluorescent light that intensifies when heated. This is using the fluid from glow sticks.

Heating fluorescence to increase intensity (Photo by Sharon Mels)

Heating fluorescence to increase intensity (Photo by Sharon Mels)

Tesla Coil Demonstrated (photo by Sharon Mels)

Tesla Coil Demonstrated (photo by Sharon Mels)

Our second light show was provided by Lee’s Tesla Coil. Our photos of his demonstration didn’t come out very well.  We were treated to about 3 foot lightning bolts coming off the coil.

There was enough electricity in the air that overhead fluorescent lighting was flashing  on and off.

We had a technical difficulty when setting up this demonstration. The ground fault outlets in the room would trip the circuit breakers. We found the ceiling outlets that overhead lights used were not GPF outlets and worked to power this Tesla Coil.

Other projects we saw included Paul Piong’s Lilypad jacket with LED’s sewn in place. Paul cautioned us about washing a garment with the electronics in place because it can cause it to stop working based on personal experience. (I didn’t get a photo of his jacket).

Sumo robot demonstration (photo by Sharon Mels)

Sumo robot demonstration (photo by Sharon Mels)

We had an example of a sumo robot competition, shown here by a First Lego League member.

Organizational meeting of Make:KC (photo by Sharon Mels)

Organizational meeting of Make:KC (photo by Sharon Mels)

After our show and tell session, we moved upstairs for our formal meeting to discuss the future of Make:KC and what goals to set for the group.