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New Robot In Build Progress

How is everyone? I'm one of the very early buyers of the EZ-B and have been quietly lurking in the background watching all the new comers and enjoying all the fresh ideas and projects. I am now in the planning and early construction of my first "real" robot. I posted a couple of pics some time ago of the "kitty igloo" that will become the base/ body of "GIZMO"; my personal assistant/ companion robot.

Design and plans include:
Speech recog. and an onboard wireless speaker that will enable his voice to actually eminate from within the bot. There will be onboard remote PC control, so Gizmo can function as an interface to the main control computer.
He will also function as an TTS engine ( within the main computer), so will be capable of reading documents and emails. There will also be a link to the National Weather Service (NOAA) so that he will be able to give a weather report by speech command.
I'm researching a possible IFR controller for the TV so Giz can change channels, regulate volume, and of course "mute" those nasty commericals.
I have plans to mount a Kinect sensor array on him at some point in the future.
I'm working on an onboard "arm" that will be capable of lifting at least one pound. One of my must have functions will enable Gizmo to fetch me a cold adult beverage from the fridge!!!!!
The design should enable Gizmo to carry a 30 to 35 lb. payload; total.
I am also considering adding a small trailer so Gizmo can deliver a load of Scooby snacks!
I've messed about with Home Automation in the past and am considering enabling Gizmo as a speech control interface for that system as well. I am going to be documenting the build with photos and videos.
@DJ........... It would be great if you could find some time to work on the servo speed function (as if you have nothing else to do,heh?) I'm going to be using some pan/tilt servos, and the one I'm developing now is very "TWITCHY" in its movements when the pan/tilt is extended to its full DOF.
Best regards to everyone;


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Cool! I can't wait to see pics of Gizmo as you continue on.
Thanks bret,
I"m waitng on my main components to arrive. Hope to get started within a week or two. I'm kinda amped about this build. Toy conversions are good for learning and getting experience; but I want to build a "real, useful" robot. That has been my goal from the beginning. I just hope I've learned enough to make my designs workable. I will be asking for help and input from the community if I get stuck.
Sounds really cool! I'm really curious to see Gizmo and how you will build him.
Also, I second ur request for the fixing of the 'servospeed' command. I am building
a Hexapod myself and mine is also very twitchy and jumpy, it definitly needs to be slowed
down for proper functioning.:P

I am looking forward to it as well.

Just curious what do you need the wireless speaker for if you are planning for an onboard PC. Maybe save some $$ as you can leverage onboard PC sound (if you are using an ITX MOBO) to do all your TTS/wav file playing etc. Love your ideas to control stuff too.


Many motherboards have a low wattage speaker output that is more than ample for a onboard sound from your mini itx computer:) 8ohm 4 inch speakers work well. I already am doing onboard computer and for a "real , useful" robot it seams to be the way to go , just make sure in your designs there is enough room for 2-4 12v 8.5ah batteries just for powering your onboard computer. I have 2 now but I believe I'm moving to 4 after some wattage testing. Awesome ideas , I'm excited to see pics , drawings and progress given your background. Thankyou for sharing your experience.
@lloyd I would use Digital servos , they have higher "resolution" and they have a tiny controller inside that smooths out the signals and is less jerky compared to using a cheaper servo. That's what I've seen on rc helicopters to get smoother more accurate controls.
Welcome back LLoyd! I wondered where you've been:)
@DJ................As I stated at the beginning of this post, I've been quietly lurking in the background. I've been doing some smaller projects and learning, and gaining experience, getting myself ready to attempt building Gizmo.I,ve been enjoying everyone elses commen,,ts and projects. Have you had any time to work on that servo speed control by any chance????? I'm going to take jstarne1 advice and try some digital servos to see if that might smooth servo movements. Hoping you can get a little time to work on the programming. Keep up the good work DJ, you,ve developed a real following,

Cant wait to see your progress! I'm interested in having my robot answer questions ie. "what time is it?" or "what's the weather outside?" So cant wait to see how you implement that:) Thanks for sharing.