Brickengineer announces MATLAB packages for the LEGO NXT Robotics system:
There are now several MATLAB packages for robotics, and specifically for the NXT. One paradigm is to run the code on a PC and have it communicate direct commands to the NXT Brick via Bluetooth or USB. I have found this paradigm to be a bit dangerous since in the event of a MATLAB crash or a miscommunication, the NXT Brick will continue with its last command until ordered to stop. This has the potential to destroy your robot. The paradigm that I prefer to use is to write several programs that run on the brick. These programs take commands from files on the brick that can be uploaded rapidly from the PC. The MATLAB code then is in charge of sending the command files and starting and stopping programs. In the event of a MATLAB crash or communication failure, the software running on the NXT Brick can be designed to terminate gracefully.
Here are the MATLAB packages that I know of. The first two are specifically geared toward the NXT; whereas the last is a general robotics package.
* LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT Toolkit for MATLAB and Simulink
* Robotics Toolbox for MATLAB (Release 7.1) (P.I. Corke)
* RWTH Mindstorms NXT Toolbox for Matlab
The University at Albany (SUNY) has highlighted Knuth’s research in a recent news piece.
UAlbany Professor Kevin Knuth with a robot built from LEGOs. (Photo Mark Schmidt)
Kevin Knuth has a laboratory in the physics department of the University at Albany that is filled with LEGOs. The bricks are relatively cheap and can be used to rapidly prototype a robot’s body. Knuth’s robots are being programmed to solve such problems as mapping complex terrain.
At UAlbany Day on Saturday, Oct. 25, he will give a demonstration on Robotics and Robotic Exploration in Life Sciences Room 143 at 10:45 a.m.
Building instructions for the robot shown in the UAlbany article can be found on Brickengineer.com
Visit Autonomous Exploration News for information on Knuth’s company Autonomous Exploration Inc.
Visit Robots Everywhere for a general blog on robotics news.
Posted in Exploration, Fun, Intelligent Systems, Internet, Lego, Research, Robotics, Space
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Its fun to build with LEGOs, but Nestor has other plans…
I recently received a comment on my post on controlling NXT robots with Matlab that pointed me to the RWTH – Mindstorms NXT Toolbox for MATLAB®, which is a public domain Matlab package that enables one to interface with and control LEGO mindstorms.
The RWTH – Mindstorms NXT Toolbox for MATLAB® was developed as a student project in the Institute of Imaging and Computer Vision at RWTH Aachen University in Aachen Germany. It provides a Matlab interface with the NXT brick that includes Bluetooth communication, sensor interface and motor interface. It requires a working Matlab license, of course.
The package is very easy to set up. It took me less than ten minutes to successfully test the example programs over Bluetooth.
There are some very nice motor features, such as motor synchronization and speed ramp-up and ramp-down.
I have yet to explore how easy it is to modify or extend the code, but it ought to be a straightforward matter.
The package can be downloaded from
Posted in Computation, Fun, Intelligent Systems, Lego, NXT, Research, Robotics, Software, Technology
Tagged Lego, MATLAB, Mindstorms, NXT, Programming, Robot, Robotics
Posted in Fun, Inventions, Lego, Mathematics, Robotics, Technology
Tagged Jansen, Janssen, Lego, machines, NXT, Robot, Robotics, Theo, walk, walking