Rocker is the third robot. I called it "Rocker" because he rocked back and forth, and it was one of those nicknames that stuck. It's my favorite. I built the rotary-to-linear pipe legs completely symmetrical. In practice, this means that it doesn't matter if the motors are moving forward or back. BUT! -- because I am actually incapable of building anything perfectly (for myself, I'm good at doing it when I'm getting paid by others) Rocker has a degree of built-in randomness. He moves in a rough arc, but I usually can't tell which way he'll go. I love that. It taught me that while randomness is hard to code, it's not hard to build. I have no way of controlling direction, which might be problematic. But I also don't much care. April 2014 - I've been playing with tiny, super-powerful spotlights for Porcupine and Rocker. They're gorgeous, throwing up dramatic shadows across the dark studio walls.
Porcupine is the 2nd of 4 robots. These first tests were just to make sure the mechanics work, what happens when they tangle and crash? April 2014 - I've been trouble-shooting Porcupine. I'll have to shoot some more video but there's something strange going on with her wheels. She bounces and jerks instead of moving smoothly... I think I will have to change the back wheels and possibly change the back motor and rebuild the motor mount. The small motor-driver chip I bought, the L298, to control the small front motors, stopped working. I replaced it with an extra circuit that I put together (I've learned to build extras). I may eventually have to replace it with a home-made MOSFET h-bridge just because they seem simple and reliable.