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Build and Program Your Own LEGO Mindstorms EV3 Robots

Book Description

Build and Program Your Own LEGO®  MINDSTORMS® EV3  Robots

Absolutely no experience needed! Build and program amazing robots with the new LEGO MINDSTORMS EV3!

With LEGO MINDSTORMS EV3, you can do modern robotics without complex wiring or soldering! This step-by-step, full-color tutorial teaches all you need to know, including basic programming skills most introductory guides skip. Even better—it’s packed with hands-on projects!

Start by “unboxing” your new EV3 kit and getting to know every component: motors, sensors, connections, remotes, and the EV3’s more powerful, easier-to-program “brick.”

Then walk through building your first “bots”…creating more sophisticated robots with wheels and motors…engineering for strength and balance…“driving” your robot…building robots that recognize colors and do card tricks…and more!

LEGO MINDSTORMS EV3 robotics is the perfect pathway into science and technology… and this book is the easiest way to get started, even if you have absolutely no robotics or programming experience!

  • Explore your new EV3 kit: both the retail “Home”  and LEGO “Education” versions

  • Get foolproof help with building the Track3r and other standard robots

  • Build cars and tanks, and hack them to do even more

  • Write programs that enable your robots to make their own decisions

  • Improve your programs with feedback

  • Handle more sophisticated engineering and programming tasks

  • Troubleshoot problems that keep your robot from moving

  • Get involved with the worldwide MINDSTORMS® robotics community

  • Marziah Karch is Senior Instructional Designer at NWEA, a Google Expert at About.com, and Senior Web Editor at GeekMom. She has more than a decade of experience in instructional technology and was senior educational technologist for Johnson County Community College, where she also taught interactive media development. She holds a master’s degree in Instructional Design and Technology, and is pursuing a doctorate in Library and Information Science. Her hands-on technology experience ranges from 3D animation to multimedia learning, content management to music video creation. She has extensively explored the educational potential of LEGO robotics. She is the author of Android Tablets Made Simple.

    This book is not authorized or endorsed by the LEGO® Group.

    Table of Contents

    1. About This eBook
    2. Title Page
    3. Copyright Page
    4. Contents at a Glance
    5. Table of Contents
    6. About the Author
    7. Dedication
    8. Acknowledgments
    9. We Want to Hear from You!
    10. Reader Services
    11. Introduction
    12. What’s in This Book
    13. How to Use This Book
    14. 1. What’s In the Box?
      1. Unboxing MINDSTORMS EV3
      2. The LEGO Family Tree
        1. LEGO DUPLO
        2. LEGO System Bricks
        3. LEGO Technic
      3. Core LEGO Units
        1. Beams
        2. Angled Beams
        3. Beam Frames
        4. Pegs
        5. Axles
        6. Bushings
        7. Axle Connectors
        8. Ball Joints
        9. Gears
      4. Parts with Flair
        1. Wings
        2. Spikes
        3. Other Decorative Parts
      5. The Brains and Brawn
        1. EV3 Intelligent Brick
        2. Servos
        3. Sensors
        4. Cables
      6. Summary
    15. 2. What’s In the LEGO Education Box?
      1. Storage Box
      2. Color Scheme
      3. Ball Caster
      4. Tank Tracks
      5. Rechargeable Battery Pack
      6. Sensors
        1. Touch Sensors
        2. Gyro Sensor
        3. Sonic Sensor
      7. Gears
      8. The Expansion Set
        1. Extra Wheels
        2. Extra Beam Frame Elements
        3. Gears and Joints
        4. Tank Cleats
        5. Wings and Other Decorative Pieces
      9. Summary
    16. 3. Comparing the EV3 and NXT
      1. The NXT Versus the NXT 2.0 Versus the EV3
      2. The Brick
        1. Sensor and Motor Connections
        2. The Sides
        3. Programming
      3. Advanced and Alternative Programming Environments
      4. Part Compatibility
        1. Sensors
        2. Motors
        3. Batteries
      5. Summary
    17. 4. Building Your First Bots
      1. Downloading Instructions
      2. The EV3 Starter Robots
        1. Track3r
          1. Mission 1
          2. Mission 2
          3. Mission 3
          4. Mission 4
          5. Mission 5
        2. R3ptar
          1. Mission 1
          2. Mission 2
        3. Spik3r
          1. Mission 1
          2. Mission 2
          3. Mission 3
          4. Mission 4
          5. Mission 5
        4. Ev3rstorm
          1. Mission 1
          2. Mission 2
          3. Mission 3
          4. Mission 4
          5. Mission 5
          6. Mission 6
        5. Gripp3r
          1. Mission 1
          2. Mission 2
          3. Mission 3
          4. Mission 4
        6. Bonus Bots
      3. Summary
    18. 5. Building the LEGO Education Bots
      1. Educator Vehicle
      2. Gyro Boy
      3. Color Sorter
      4. Puppy
      5. Arm
      6. Expansion Models
        1. The Elephant
        2. Tank Bot
        3. Znap
        4. Remote Control
        5. The Stair Climber
        6. Color Spinner Factory
      7. Summary
    19. 6. Hacking What You Have
      1. Project 1: The Car
        1. Testing
        2. Troubleshooting the Flaws
      2. Project 2: Hack Your Tank
      3. Project 3: Modify the Educator Bot
        1. Modify the Design
        2. Substitute for the Caster Ball
      4. Summary
    20. 7. Make Your First EV3 Program
      1. About the LEGO Education Software
      2. Getting Started
        1. Navigating from the Lobby
        2. Creating a New Project
      3. Getting to Know the Programming Canvas
        1. Program List
        2. Select or Pan Button
        3. Comment
        4. Save, Undo, or Redo
        5. Zoom
        6. The Content Editor
        7. The Programming Canvas, Blocks, and the Palette
        8. The Connection Area
      4. Writing Your First Program
        1. Flowcharting
        2. Dragging Blocks Onto the Programming Canvas
        3. Changing Modes
        4. Checking Your Ports
        5. Making the Bot Move
          1. Moving the Wheels
          2. Controlling Bot Direction
          3. Adjusting Motor Power and Speed
          4. Adjusting Rotation Count
        6. Connecting Your EV3 to Your Computer
        7. Making Decisions and Using Loops
        8. Saving Your Changes
      5. Alternative Programs
      6. Summary
    21. 8. More MINDSTORMS Programming: The Line-Following Robot
      1. What Is a Program?
      2. Project: The Line-Following Robot
      3. Getting Started
        1. Making Your Own Test Track
        2. Thinking About the Instructions
        3. Finding Direction
        4. Calibrating the Sensor
      4. Creating the Program
        1. Creating New Variables
        2. Calculating with Variables
        3. Improving the Program with Feedback
        4. Troubleshooting Your Program
        5. Adding a Countdown
        6. Using a Loop to Make the Robot Follow the Line
        7. Adding Switches for Steering
      5. Creating Custom Blocks
      6. Documenting Your Work
      7. Summary
    22. 9. Engineering the Floor-Cleaning Robot
      1. Programming a Collision-Avoiding Robot
        1. Activating the Touch Sensor
        2. Adding Collision Avoidance
        3. Testing Your Bot
        4. Navigating Corners
        5. Adding a Bit of Randomness
        6. Using the Education Edition’s Ultrasonic Sensor
      2. Controlling Your Bot with the Infrared Remote
        1. Programming the Remote
        2. Creating Multi-threaded Programs
      3. Adding the Floor-Cleaning Functions
        1. Building the Mophead Assembly
        2. Adjusting the Sensor Assembly
        3. Building the Floor Cleaning Program
      4. Summary
    23. 10. The Color Magic Card Trick
      1. Brainstorming and Building the Bot
        1. Building the Platform
        2. Raising the Platform
        3. Building the Wheel Assembly
        4. Checking the Assembly
        5. Placing the Intelligent Brick
        6. Controlling the Cards
      2. Calibrating the Color Sensor
      3. Creating the Program
        1. Detecting the Color
        2. Playing the Sound
        3. Adding the Motor Block
      4. Summary
    24. 11. Daisy-Chaining Projects
      1. The Daisy-Chain Test
        1. Numbering Your Bricks
        2. Programming the Test
      2. Building a Daisy-Chained Robot Car
        1. Assembling the Wheels
        2. Programming the Bot
        3. Adding a Remote Control
        4. Adding Collision Avoidance
      3. Messaging Between Robots
      4. Adding “Magic” to the Card Trick
        1. Configuring the Sending Program
        2. Configuring the Receiving Program
        3. Running the “Magic”
      5. Summary
    25. 12. Extending Play
      1. Installing leJOS
        1. Preparing Your Desktop
        2. Loading the SD Card
        3. Working in LeJOS
      2. Community-Created Models
        1. DINOR3X
        2. EL3CTRIC GUITAR
        3. EV3D4
        4. EV3MEG
        5. MR B3AM
        6. KRAZ3
        7. RAC3R
        8. EV3GAME
        9. WACK3M
        10. BANNER PRINT3R
        11. Finding More Communities
      3. Scoring Extra LEGO Parts
        1. Tetrix
        2. K’nex
        3. Erector Sets
        4. 3D Printers
      4. Robotics Competitions
        1. First Robotics LEGO League
        2. World Robot Olympiad
        3. 4-H
      5. Decorating Your EV3
      6. Summary
    26. A. Glossary
    27. Index