Book Image

BeagleBone Robotic Projects

By : Richard Grimmett
Book Image

BeagleBone Robotic Projects

By: Richard Grimmett

Overview of this book

Thanks to new, inexpensive microcontrollers, robotics has become far more accessible than it was in the past. These microcontrollers provide a whole new set of capabilities to allow even the most inexperienced users to make amazingly complicated projects. Beaglebone is effectively a small, light, cheap computer in a similar vein to Raspberry Pi and Arduino. It has all of the extensibility of today's desktop machines, but without the bulk, expense, or noise. This project guide provides step-by-step instructions to allow anyone to use this new, low cost platform in some fascinating robotics projects. By the time you are finished, your projects will be able to see, speak, listen, detect their surroundings, and move in a variety of amazing ways. The book begins with unpacking and powering up the components.This will include guidance on what to purchase and how to connect it all successfully–and a primer on programming the BeagleBone Black. Chapter by chapter, we will add additional software functionality available from the open source community, including how to make the system see using a webcam, how to hear using a microphone, and how to speak using a speaker. We then add hardware to make your robots move–including wheeled and legged examples–as well as covering how to add sonar sensors to avoid or find objects, plus wireless control to make your robot truly autonomous. Adding GPS allows the robot to find itself. Finally the book covers how to integrate all of this functionality so that it can all work together, before developing the most impressive robotics projects: those that can sail, fly, and explore underwater.
Table of Contents (18 chapters)
BeagleBone Robotic Projects
About the Author
About the Reviewers

Connecting the BeagleBone Black to a GPS device

Unpack your GPS device; it is time to get started.

Prepare for lift off

Before we get started, let me first give you a brief tutorial on GPS. GPS, which stands for Global Positioning System, is a system of satellites that transmits signals. GPS devices use these signals to calculate a position. There are a total of 24 satellites transmitting signals all around the earth at any given moment, but your device can only see the signal from a much smaller set of satellites.

Each of these satellites transmits a very accurate time signal that your device can receive and interpret. It receives the time signal from each of these satellites, and then based on the delay, the time it takes the signal to reach the device, it calculates the receiver's position based on a procedure called triangulation. The following two diagrams illustrate how the device uses the delay differences from three satellites to calculate its position:

The GPS device is able to detect...