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My Ez Robot Christmas Wish List

I would like an ezb with more digital ports.... That's about it:)

DJ and ez robot have brought us the best robot controller in the world so my wish list is rather short....:)

What's on your ez robot wish list?

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Synthiam
#2  
A customizable Ez-b with options like
Bluetooth or wifi,
Size,
Color,
And so-on.

More ports will definitely be of need for some people.
#3  
A gyro of some kind so shogun can actually walk:D

i have no problems with the number of servo ports since I am part of the glorious Dynamixel master race :P
#4  
Hardware:

For the next version of EZ-B, I would like to have the ability to regulate the voltage on the VCC pins. Ideally by individual pin or by row so some work like today and pass the input voltage, and some work like the V3 and pass 5v.

Would also like to make the signal pin deliver either 3.4v or 5v depending on either a hardware or software setting.

I agree with Richard, more ports:) I added some length and mobility to the arms of my Roli, and a headlight and I have one port left for the laser pointer I want to add, and then I have no ports left (although I could remove speed control from the H-bridge and get two ports back if I really needed to).

I would like to be able to have 2 cameras on one EZ-B (although if/when DJ releases the WiFi camera, that may be a non-issue). This way I could have binocular vision or cameras facing in different directions.

Software:
Some of these are repeats from previous posts:

I would like Google Cardboard support (goes along with the binocular vision hardware request above). Also, distance to object calculation using binocular vision/parallax.

I would like support for one of the sensor streamer type apps available for Android like we have for iPhone.

I would like "single variable watcher" objects on the desktop interface the way we can have on the mobile interface (I have just a couple of variables I want to always be able to see on my main screen. Don't have the screen real-estate for a full variable watcher window.

I am sure I have made other requests, some of which have been fulfilled and some are still pending or won't be done, but I need to go concentrate on work for a while.

Alan
#5  
Hum well just a few things for me I've been relatively good this past year.

10 Servos
2 EZ board
1 3d printer

That is all...
#6  
@Alan... I agree with your idea as well... How about this... Lets keep the 24 unregulated digital ports and add maybe 6... 5V regulated ports to be used with sensors?...

@Sudo V2... I am working on an inMoov project of my own (like Bobs) so unfortunately I can't use Dynamixels... The inmoov has at least 12 Hitec HS-805BB giant scale servos that need an external potentiometer mod to work with inMoov's large joints... Each hand uses 6 regular sized servos each... not to mention servos in the eyes, neck and head as well.... 26 or 27 servos in all... I simply ran out of ports on the ezb.... So, like Bob did I will have to use a second ezb....
I am sure I will get on the Dynamixel bandwagon sooner or later so I am sure I will be asking for your help on using them:)
United Kingdom
#7  
Is this like a realistic wishlist or a real wishlist?

Bigger capacity battery in JD would be awesome! I get to set up the auto positions but by the time I'm done I can't have him dance with them before he needs a charge.

EZ-Bit adapters on the power base too. I'm playing with a lot of EZ-Bits right now and have no way to attach the EZ-B to the structure. Also an EZ-Bit covered battery compartment would be cool. Like six but square or rectangle.

You say wishlist I say feedback:)
#8  
I didn't list EZ-Bits I would like to see mainly because I just found out I have access to a 3D printer through the Washington DC library system so I will build and share what I need.

If I were to ask, a simple male-male adapter that is smaller than the cube bit would be handy (basically, take the small part from the rotation servo, and put two of them back to back so that you can connect two EZ-Bits with slots together with little or no gap).

And, yeah, @Rich EZ-bit connector points on the power base would be nice.


@Richard R, yes, a small row of regulated ports in addition to the 24 unregulated would work fine for me as well.

Alan
PRO
Belgium
#9  
alan
i agree,more bits.


User-inserted image
#10  
Nomad, exactly what I was describing. Thanks for the picture.

Alan
#11  
I'd love to have the ability to regulate the voltage on the VCC pins also. I really miss the 5vdv regulator we had on the V3. Adjustable voltage would be the cats A**.

I'd also like to see the EZB and ARC:
*Be able to accept and use encoders for position and speed control.
*Be able to set two EZB's right next to each other and have no WIFI collusion. Right now people are complaining the signals seem to cancel each other out if closer then 1 foot. I've never had this problem but others said they have and it's stopped them from using EZ Robot.
*Run the EZB below 7 vdc without that annoying woman's voice nagging me that her batteries are low. I know you can disable it in ARC now but she nags at me till I connect. Reminds me of my first wife. *tired*

I'm afraid that if we all get our wishes though the EZB would be as big as a brick and cost as much as a car.
PRO
Belgium
#12  
alan

it would be very usefull bit
PRO
Synthiam
#13  
Thanks for all your feedback. I will address your issues individually below. I hope this helps address the issues you have...

1) We are unable to add more ports due to the size limitation of the ez-b and wifi speed limitation to reach our performance requirements. Each port is a physical wire that is a trace. A trace is a conductive surface embedded on a circuit board that carries electrical current. There is not enough space on the pcb to carry more traces. Additionally, we also have requirements for performance and the number of ports adheres to our wifi performance.

2) voltage regulators will not appear on any future ez-b. This is because the most common item attached to a robot controller are servos. A servo contains a DC motor. DC Motors should never be run through a voltage regulator for a few reasons. The first reason is the waste in power consumption. The second is the danger of heat generation. The third is the limit to the number of motors you would be able to connect. And the fourth is the issue with brownouts from servo motors (As many of you have experienced in the ez-b v3). We have a solution, if you need +5v on the port. Introducing the 5v regulator, available in our store: http://www.ez-robot.com/Shop/AccessoriesDetails.aspx?prevCat=9&productNumber=98

3) You can control the speed of any motor controller by using the motor controllers speed control interface. Usual hbridge motor controllers have a PWM or Serial interface for controlling speed. Consult your datasheet for the speed controller on what interface they use. Someone on the forum will be able to help you code against the hbridge. Natively, we support the Sabertooth and EZRobot 2.5amp motor controller. The 2.5 amp motor controller can be found here: http://www.ez-robot.com/Shop/AccessoriesDetails.aspx?prevCat=9&productNumber=14 It uses the PWM signals to control the speed. Consult the ARC manual for the PWM HBridge for more information.

4) There is nothing we can do about WiFi interference. WiFi uses radio frequency. Radio frequencies are transmitted through the air and therefore adhere to the laws of physics. If there are reports of WiFi interference by having two radio devices too close together, this page may be of assistance: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electromagnetic_interference_at_2.4_GHz

5) On newer EZ-B's v4s, the battery monitor can be disabled in the HTTP Server. This is not recommended for lipo battery users.

6) Signal output pins cannot change their voltage because the signal is an output from a microcontroller. In the ez-b's case, it is an ARM. We spent months testing various microcontrollers to find one that is 5 volt tolerant input and delivers the performance required. In order to have a selectable voltage on the output signal lines for output, the PCB of the ez-b would most likely change to approx. 4-5 times the size (making it about 6x6 inches) this is because we would now need to not only determine the input/output of each I/o but also use transistors and a separate power supply to determine what voltage setting was configured. However, if you wish to output a voltage between 0 and 3.3 volts, the PWM function is available for each pin.

7) The WiFi speed limits the use of transmitting the data of two cameras. This is another issue the physics of radio transmission :). The more distance we add, the less data bitrate is available. Additionally, one of the requirements for the ez-robot camera was to have very low latency for instant robot response. We are incredibly proud of the very low latency of the ez-robot camera. Infact, we have the lowest latency of any wifi camera that we tested against. This is also due to the wifi selection and calculations that use the wifi data bandwidth efficiently. Many months were spent testing and ensuring the lowest latency with highest distance.

8) We will not be adding a google cardboard equivalent in ARC because attaching a laptop to your head would be funny. If you are wishing to use the Google Glasses with an Android device, you can download their software and purchase the google glasses cardboard kit. However, we will be adding oculus rift support once they have identified the issues with their sdk. There are many other third party VR hardware headsets that we will be adding support too as well, when their prices are lowered.

9) Bluetooth is not an option for the ez-b because the bitrate is too slow. You would lose the ability to have vision and audio. Additionally, the Auto Position and other features would be limited due to the slower speed. Bluetooth is great for remote controls, audio headsets, and low power hid. You can find more about Bluetooth on Wikipedia here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bluetooth

10) We are unable to customize or change the size of the ez-b because it is as small as it can be. Physical circuits are not able to become smaller due to the size of their physical counterparts. Additionally, PCB's are created in factories to keep the cost down. A one-off ez-b would cost over $100 to manufacturer and therefore we would need to sell it for a higher price to return a profit margin to cover the expenses of software development. Having multiple sized (larger is the only direction we could go) ez-bs would result in a very expensive hardware cost. It would also make logistics and inventory storage very challenging for us.

11) We have the EZ-Bit sensor add-on's on the list todo. They include Gyro's, Accelerometers, Compass and a few more. At the moment, we are focusing on selling the Revolution line of robots. Once we have sold enough to afford to manufacture and design more parts, we will.

12) A single variable watcher can be added to the todo list for the future in ARC.

13) If you can find a larger capacity batter that fits in JD, you can upgrade the battery. The battery we chose for JD falls within the safety requirements for shipping international and through schools, etc.. There are logistical reasons for decisions of our battery selection that include safety, shipping and inventory storage... and as well as cost to keep the product affordable. It has taken many man hours to investigate what batteries and requirements are needed for shipping. We selected LiPo batteries due to the power that they provide. However, there are very concerning legalities across countries for shipping lipo batteries, which we needed to obey. In fact, we had to purchase a certification from the battery manufacturer of our current batteries just so we can ship them to the USA.

14) We recognize that ez-bit adapters on the power base would be a great idea. Due to the multiple tens of thousands of dollars required in cost to make that change, it will be far in the future before we can afford to do that. Help us sell more robots and we can make changes like this quicker:)

15) We recognize that there are requests for more ez-bits. However, due to the cost to tool molds and create additional plastic components, we are limited with what we have. Molds, tooling and design of components cost upwards of $100,000 per part. Our company is much too small to afford to create additional parts at the moment. Tell your friends to buy more robots and maybe that will change:)

Hope those answers address you issue and concerns!
#14  
With all that Said @DJ I love the EZB as it stands. if no other changes were ever made this platform would stand as the best for years to come. Wish list are just what they sound like; wishes. Most of the things asked for are just ideas being bounced off the wall and not a complaint. It's very understandable why they are not on the EZB. Thanks for the explanation anyway. It's good to be heard.

Cheers and I'm looking forward what you do have in store for us in the future!

EDIT: that 5v regulaitor in the store is a neet little thing. Can you make it so it will handle 10 amps and not just 1amp? ....... Just kidding! Thanks for providing this! It's been long awaited. :)
#15  
sweet, now ill finally have a use for my oculus which has been collecting dust for a good year or so;)
#16  
@Dj.... I am sure I speak for all of us... Don't get us wrong we're human and as humans (and dogs too it seems) if you give us something awesome we always want more.... To be honest, I doubt you would find a single one of us unhappy with the current version of the ezb...

I plan on buying a lot more ez robot products (and not with store credits, either) even if you don't change a thing.... But, hmmmm the community by now has a little insight on how you think (I said a little, lol)... Somewhere in the back of your brain I know you gotta' be thinking about an EZB5... :)
#17  
My Xmas list is even shorter than Richards. I'm pretty happy with all things I can do with the EZBv4 and ARC. It will take me some time to be able to use them to their full potential. That coupled with the support of the EZ-Robot employees (I've stopped into the head office twice and they always made time for me) and the support of the forum members, I find it difficult to ask for more.
Ho Ho Ho!
United Kingdom
#18  
@Dave, parallel 10 of the regulators, it should handle 10A (in theory). Be safe, go for 20 just in case the load is not balanced across all regulators;)

@DJ, I guessed those would be amongst the reasons for things being how they are and can appreciate what you have said in response to my feedback (and it's feedback so unimportant I've not felt the need to mention it other than in a wish list). Having said that, it looks like the EZ-Bit adapter will fit on the bottom of the power base (it's something on my list to test out soon) so there's a way around it already:)

To be honest, to get three robots out there within a couple of years, especially knowing the shock that come with finding out the work involved in injection moulding, you've done amazingly well. The popularity of the EZ-Robot products will skyrocket, I am sure of that!
United Kingdom
#19  
@RichardR, you mention the EZ-B V5 but really, what more could anyone want to squeeze out of a single device?

Number of ports aside (you want more, get 4 more EZ-Bs, you need more than 120 ports? What in the blue hell are you building?!) I can't think of a single thing that could make it any better.
#20  
Holy crap Rich, that would be a $200 regulator! *eek*:D
Canada
#21  
How about a new interface, check this out, http://structure.io , 3d renderings and more. The structure sensor.