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Thread: Building Software

  1. Building Software

    This may have been answered but I got to go to the bathroom right now...does anyone know of a free software program that you can use to build and construct bots?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    Re: Building Software

    Everything come out all right?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2008
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    Re: Building Software

    We're going to need more information. About what kind of software, not about the other part (although, it seems Upgrayd is intrigued by the other part). There's lots of software involved in creating robots:

    • CAD packages for designing the physical aspects
    • CAM packages for milling/printing the physical aspects
    • programming packages for making your bot do something
    • frameworks for easing the programming load.

    In many of these categories there are open source possibilities.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Whidbey Island, WA
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    Re: Building Software

    I think the key thing here is the free part. Besides google sketch up I'm not sure there is much. Check out and see if they have anything. Also you may be able to get either a student trial, or a free trial of some cad software, but it will probably be fairly limited and or will not allow you to save. Google sketch up is cool, but it's difficult to be accurate with. I use turbocD for Mac. Not the best, and I probably won't have models as awesome as some of those you see on this site, but it's relatively cheap, $100, and does both 2 and 3D. So the other part is, what do you want to make? I have my students go old school, They use pencil and paper when we don't have computer lab time. next year I'm getting 5 computers imy classroom, so that should change a bit.


  5. #5
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    Jun 2010
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    Re: Building Software

    Hi everyone. WooHoo, my first post here.
    I have been using G-Sketchup for a while, & lurking here for nearly as long - 1mm accuracy has been good enough for me. I used the known dimensions of the Bioloid parts with the pictures in the documentation to create reasonable copies of all the parts, & saved them as individual components, then put it all together in Sketchup to make sure I can actually build the design I created. It works pretty well, & you can rotate the components as needed.

    Useful to build a representation of the robot, but not good enough to actually model parts if you want something stamped out (Making a custom bracket etc)

  6. Re: Building Software

    I am ok, thought if I post and go I get a respones when I got back. I forgot about this post until now =). I havnt heard of Google Sketch and going to take a look. I was just looking for a building software in general.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Portland, OR
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    Re: Building Software

    As fergs said, there really isn't some all in one software package for building robots. It comes down to different software packages for different tasks.

    What will help any new roboticist far more than a nice cad program is a solid grasp of programming using the microcontroller of their choice. You want 'building' software, pick up an arduino and try to do 20 things aside from blinking an LED with it. That alone will help you 'build a robot' more than any software package will. Once you've mastered making a microcontroller talk to various servos, take input, talk to a computer, interface to xbees/pc's, etc, try the hidden 21st project of the arduino, blinking the DED (dark emitting diode). That one is a doozy.

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