Asked — Edited

Good Short Tutorials On How To Use Various Sensors With Ez-Bv4

@DJ / EZ-Robot,

Do you have any tutorials you can post on stuff like adding a simple Relay to the EZ-BV4, or adding an LED light and having it blink. Asking for the basics of hooking up sensors to the EZ-B4. Then what would be great is if you show in the ARC software how to use those sensors and also show how to use the SDK to interact with the sensors to.

I think this would really help my kids learn more and keep their attention attracted to the JD, Roli, and Developer Kit.


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I want to convey a couple of thoughts that I have learned from my past. I dont know you or your children so they might not apply to you, but I will pass them along just in case they do apply.

I have raised 5 children. The first was a field medic with the Marines and is now going to school to be a nurse. He thinks what I do with robotics is cool but really has no interest in doing this himself. I tried introducing him to programming when he was about 12 and could quickly see that he had no interest. The second has just graduated college and played D1 softball in Nebraska. She thought that what I had done with robotics in the past was cool but never really cared even though there was a robot mowing the lawn, and she saw me programming a lot. The next is about to graduate from the University of Texas with his Comp Sci degree. He already has a degree in Mathematics. He loves the thought of robotics and loves what I have done so far. He had the same upbringing as the other previously mentioned children. He works as a programmer and is really good at it. Another son is really interested in what I am doing and loves everything about 3D printing and robotics. He attends college and is working toward his degree in web design and web programming. He hasn't really expressed an interest in knowing how I do what I do with robotics mainly because he is busy raising 2 children of his own, attending college and working full time. Right now there just isn't time to jump into something like this. My youngest is 15 years old now. She sees me working with robotics more than any of my other children. She thinks its cool but really has no interest in anything other than the finished product.

I also taught robotics at a school for 4th and 5th grade students. These students have to pass some pretty tough tests to get into this school and are normally 1 to 2 years older than other students in these grades. The youngest of these students is 10. The oldest of these students is 13. The school is filled with very smart students who are pushed pretty hard by the school. There isnt a night that goes by that these students don't have homework in almost every subject. By the time that they graduate from high school, about 1/4 of these students will have earned a National Merit Scholar award. The school is one that has to turn away many students from pre-K to High School because there are not enough slots for the number of students trying to get into the school. At the beginning of the year, I had 25 students who started taking the robotics course. By the end of the year I had 15 students. 40% of these students who were willing to give up an hour of their afternoon when having a lot of homework to get to decided that they were not as interested in robotics as they thought they were.

All of this sounds pretty discouraging in the number of people who want to really get into robotics, but I really don't think that it is. I think that there are a lot of people (about 50% of the population) who think robotics is neat and cool. I think that of this 50% of the population, there is only about 20% to 30% that have an interest in knowing how they work. I think that the number of people who really want to make them work and be involved in programming them to do complex things is roughly about 2.5% of the population based on what I have seen. This is based on the reactions of the students that I have taught when bringing up scripting or things like how a servo works. The entire school was excited to see my Wall-E at the first presentation of robotics at the school.

What I have found is that those that really want to learn something dig in and figure it out. This is especially true with topics like programming and robotics. I firmly believe that anything is possible given time and resources. It may take a lot of time and a lot of resources, but it is possible. Learning about robotics to me isnt something that can be done through videos or here, let me do it for you type things (even though I am guilty of doing this). It is something that to truly understand you have to dig in and decide that you really want to learn how to do it. Not a lot of people have the drive to do this. Many more are more comfortable being given a working solution and using it. This goes with 3D printing, programming and robotics. To truly be good at any of these, you have to dig in and understand what is happening with each. 3D modeling is no exception but one that I am finding that I am lacking in and need to spend a lot of time trying to get better at it. I think that if someone wants to know about any topic, there is a drive inside of them that pushes them to learn about these things. It is almost a nagging that drives some crazy :)

What I don't know, I don't know to know about, so unless I am willing to dig into a subject to find out what I don't know about, then I won't know to know, much less know. There are many example projects written by many different authors. Some are documented better than others. As far as the SDK goes, there are many example projects that show how to do a lot. I know that you found one that wasn't supposed to be in there and that is a bit discouraging. When that happens, I normally try to think "well, at least it was found and removed so that others won't face the same issue". Its how I keep myself from being frustrated I guess. I dont know, but it isn't an uncommon issue when dealing with bleeding edge technology. I find that I learn much more by digging through examples and understanding what is being done in the examples and why. Many times you might discover a better way of doing something, which allows you to share with others.

These are just my thoughts and what has worked for me. I am by no means the best at 3D printing, programming or robotics. I do pretty good at digging to find an answer or being stubborn enough to figure out something that works. I like sharing what I know or have figured out. I like helping others in technology based things. I am not trying to do anything other than convey my thoughts and I hope it helps you.


Thanks Dave for your insight, ideas, suggestions and thoughts, much appreciated! Now that baseball is out of the way, hoping the kids get back into the little projects.

When you get time, (reminder) can you email me those examples of code (classes) you was talking about in another thread.


A few sample codes for various sensors would be helpful. Especially since the EZB is suppose to connect to them. For me it would, I would like to see more detailed info and sample code provided for the digital inputs, like switches. There is next to no helpful info provided in the online tutorial.


That's what the community is for:) Ask and people will help you - and they'll earn ez-credit while they do it. We're busy building products and our tiny team of 5 people do not have the extra free cycles for making the 9,999,999,999 (i.e. infinite) tutorials that cover all of your individual requests.

RoboHappy - Sample code is as follows for turning on and off an LED

  • Connect the LED to the EZ_B:
  • Add the Digital control to turn on and off the LED:

I also wrote these little scripts for ramping a laser up to full power and then back down, and I use them with button presses on my joystick.

If you don't want the LED to go to full brightness, change the value in the "repeatwhile" statement. 100 is full brightness, 0 is off.

#ramp up an LED
$pwmset = getpwm(d12)
RepeatWhile(getpwm(D12) < 100)
$pwmset = $pwmset + 1

#ramp down an LED
$pwmset = getpwm(d12)
RepeatWhile(getpwm(D12) > 100)
$pwmset = $pwmset - 1


@RoboHappy .... DJ is right, just ask if you have a particular question on a device or sensor that you want to connect to the ezb4... Alan has given you an example script of ramping an LED, but we can set you up with example code of pretty much anything you need. Also don't forget there are tons of examples within ARC itself on using inputs/outputs and controls...

United Kingdom

Don't forget the examples in the cloud and the forum. The forum search tool is awesome for finding what you need.


I should have mentioned that the LED ramping scripts I posted were based on H-bridge ramping scripts that @Rich wrote, so like Richard and Rich said, use the forums and examples in the cloud as sources to steal borrow from.



Keep in mind, I was referring to material a 9-11 year old kid can understand/comprehend. My kids like to watch videos and learn from them. Thats just my kids and everyone has a different approach to learning and then some have that natural talent.


Hi Guys,and thanks for the response. Thank you DJ also for the sample code, that is what I am looking for. I know I seemed pushy there, but that's the way I am when it comes to looking up information. I'm use to getting out the "big book" and going straight to pages with with all the answers because I want the answer now. I don't ever mind looking for info on the site if its quick and easy to find cause I'm not a patient person. I'm not big on coding, and I learn better when I see being done in front of me, I don;t well with simply just reading about it most times. I have always learned best by watching, then repeating, before trying to vary from it on my own.

I'm sure I will still have a million more questions as time goes on, so will look forward to the many answers I hope to receive.

Have a great one folks! :D :)