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RzLi
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Feb 13, 2018 6:53 pm

An affordable robotic cat runs like Boston Dynamic Dogs?

Wed Feb 14, 2018 9:25 pm

Hi there,
I just made a post on Makezine with a demo video: https://makershare.com/projects/opencat
A same post on Hackster: https://www.hackster.io/petoi/opencat-845129

If you are interested in the project and want to have one in hand sooner, please like the video and share. I also love to see your comments to make it better.
Thanks for your support!

original post below:
_____________________________________________
Hi,

You may have seen Boston Dynamic Dogs and the recently released Sony Aibo. They are supper cool but are too expensive to enjoy. I'm providing some affordable alternatives that have most of their motion capabilities. Currently I have two functional prototypes:

* The mini model is a stand-alone 8-DoF Arduino motion module that holds all skills for multiple gaits and real-time adaptation. It can also be a "leg-hat" for your existing project. It's targeted at STEM education and Maker community. I'm already selling the kit to local institutes and this model will kickstart my initial campaign. Its price is similar to some robotic car kits.

* The full version uses a Pi for more AI-enhanced perception and instructs an upgraded 16-DoF motion module. Besides Pi's wifi and bluetooth, it also carries touch, infrared, distance, voice and vision interfaces. All modules have be tested on its light weighted body. It also adopts some bionic skeleton designs to make it morphologically resembles a cat. It's targeted at consumer market with less tech backgrounds. You can imaging it as a legged iPhone or Alexa that has an app store for third party extensions. I have a regular routine for duplicating the model, but need better industrialization to reduce the labor. I expect the price to be close to a smartphone.

* I also have an obsolete version that uses only Pi for controlling both AI and motion. The movement is not as good though.

You can focus on coding it on either motion (Arduino with C) or AI (Pi with Python) part. And the two can communicate with string tokens. Currently it can run at about 2.6 bodyLength/sec for 75 mins. And it's pretty easy to teach it new postures and behaviors with a couple lines of codes.

I bought my first RasPi in Jun.2016 to learn coding hardware. I made the 6 major iterations between Jul.2016 and Sep.2017. I bought an Arduino in Jul.2017 for better motion control. I really want to devote full-time for this project. However, I'm at the bottleneck with my personal resources. Now I'm applying for several accelerators and will probably try Indiegogo. Before that campaign, I'd like to know your needs and expectations for this kind of product.

- Would you be interested in this project?
- What features do you care the most for a quadruped robot?
- How much would you pay for your ideal robotic pet?
- Would you prefer a dog version?
- Most importantly, would you prefer it to be an open-source platform supported by our Maker community or a well-packed commercial product supported by investors? I may post the link to my demo video if appropriate.

Thanks!
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Last edited by RzLi on Fri Feb 23, 2018 8:37 am, edited 10 times in total.

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rados-dataplicity
Posts: 40
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Location: UK
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Re: A robotic cat cheaper than smartphone?

Thu Feb 15, 2018 11:34 am

Looks amazing! :D I'd love to see the demo video!
I tinker around with Raspberry Pis daily and make sure that people can easily access theirs remotely.

Community outreach @ dataplicity.com

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RzLi
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Feb 13, 2018 6:53 pm

Re: An affordable robotic cat runs like Boston Dynamic Dogs?

Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:49 pm

Thanks for your interest! This post serves more like a market research. I'm going to post more project details on Arduino project hub.

CharlieSully
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Feb 15, 2018 11:19 am

Re: An affordable robotic cat runs like Boston Dynamic Dogs?

Fri Feb 16, 2018 10:21 pm

only new to R-Pi but really interested how this works

megamarky
Posts: 42
Joined: Sun Jun 11, 2017 6:43 am

Re: An affordable robotic cat runs like Boston Dynamic Dogs?

Mon Feb 19, 2018 8:05 am

Hello there. Is there a benefit of using Raspberry and Arduino both? Were you concerned of the PWM stability on Raspberry Pi?

I am currently using the PCA9685 board or software PWM signals from Raspberry Pi in the beta version here http://gigabrain.io/Two%20player%20slin ... %20Pi.html

I was thinking about your the battery consumption for the multiple servos and both Arduino and Raspberry Pi and if you need PCA9685 power also.

Your project sound fun and interesting.
GigaBrain.io

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RzLi
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Joined: Tue Feb 13, 2018 6:53 pm

Re: An affordable robotic cat runs like Boston Dynamic Dogs?

Mon Feb 19, 2018 6:44 pm

It's dangerous for powering multiple servos directly on Pi. I power the Arduino, RasPi and PCA9685 separately through voltage regulators, all drawing current from the same battery though.

megamarky wrote:
Mon Feb 19, 2018 8:05 am
Hello there. Is there a benefit of using Raspberry and Arduino both? Were you concerned of the PWM stability on Raspberry Pi?

I am currently using the PCA9685 board or software PWM signals from Raspberry Pi in the beta version here http://gigabrain.io/Two%20player%20slin ... %20Pi.html

I was thinking about your the battery consumption for the multiple servos and both Arduino and Raspberry Pi and if you need PCA9685 power also.

Your project sound fun and interesting.

User avatar
RzLi
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Feb 13, 2018 6:53 pm

Re: An affordable robotic cat runs like Boston Dynamic Dogs?

Wed Feb 21, 2018 2:02 am

Hi there,
I just made a post on Makezine with a demo video. https://makershare.com/projects/opencat
If you are interested in the project and want to have one in hand sooner, please like the video and share. I also love to see your comments to make it better.
Thanks for your support!

Daniel Gessel
Posts: 25
Joined: Sun Dec 03, 2017 1:47 am

Re: An affordable robotic cat runs like Boston Dynamic Dogs?

Wed Feb 21, 2018 7:26 am

Congratulations! This is amazing work!

megamarky
Posts: 42
Joined: Sun Jun 11, 2017 6:43 am

Re: An affordable robotic cat runs like Boston Dynamic Dogs?

Wed Feb 21, 2018 1:43 pm

RzLi wrote:
Mon Feb 19, 2018 6:44 pm
It's dangerous for powering multiple servos directly on Pi. I power the Arduino, RasPi and PCA9685 separately through voltage regulators, all drawing current from the same battery though.
I have done long term testing with 2 servos and it works beautifully. That's because the servos are not under a constant power and there is not much movement. Here's also a comment from Joan about servo control from GPIO
viewtopic.php?f=37&t=46771#p367837

For over 2 servos the power is not enough for handling constant power. You seem to require over 8 servos, have you used two PCA9685 boards?
GigaBrain.io

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RzLi
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Re: An affordable robotic cat runs like Boston Dynamic Dogs?

Wed Feb 21, 2018 1:47 pm

Nope, one pca9685 supports up to 16 servos.

megamarky
Posts: 42
Joined: Sun Jun 11, 2017 6:43 am

Re: An affordable robotic cat runs like Boston Dynamic Dogs?

Wed Feb 21, 2018 3:34 pm

Here was also a post about Software PWM used with multiple servos.
viewtopic.php?f=37&t=47315

If you are interested in controlling with a user interface I have a nice demo coming soon.
GigaBrain.io

jdolecki
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Jan 02, 2018 2:55 pm
Contact: YouTube

Re: An affordable robotic cat runs like Boston Dynamic Dogs?

Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:25 pm

Are the files to print the body parts online?

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RzLi
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Feb 13, 2018 6:53 pm

Re: An affordable robotic cat runs like Boston Dynamic Dogs?

Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:49 pm

Not yet. Though the bill of materials is relatively cheap, it has tens of precise parts and takes one weekend to print. It takes me (with knowledge and confidence in every structure) another day to solder and assemble. I hope to get better industrialization so that I can open source everything and still push the project forward.
jdolecki wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:25 pm
Are the files to print the body parts online?
Last edited by RzLi on Fri Feb 23, 2018 1:11 am, edited 1 time in total.

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rados-dataplicity
Posts: 40
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Location: UK
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Re: An affordable robotic cat runs like Boston Dynamic Dogs?

Thu Feb 22, 2018 3:20 pm

RzLi wrote:
Wed Feb 21, 2018 2:02 am
Hi there,
I just made a post on Makezine with a demo video. https://makershare.com/projects/opencat
If you are interested in the project and want to have one in hand sooner, please like the video and share. I also love to see your comments to make it better.
Thanks for your support!
Haha, love the way your main cat hijacked your electronic one at 2:15 :D
I tinker around with Raspberry Pis daily and make sure that people can easily access theirs remotely.

Community outreach @ dataplicity.com

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