Posts Tagged robots

The Robot that Played the Violin

For Professor Rogers’ Introductory Robotics and Mechatronics (ME 84) class, students were required to design a robot to play a musical instrument.

Upon hearing their assignment, Emmanuel Runes, E13, Alexander Metzger, E13, Brad Nakanishi, E13, Bronson Wongkew, E14, and Nate Goldsberry, E13, decided to challenge themselves and take on the violin. Why is the violin a challenge, you ask? “Basically, the difficulty is not only being able to hit the various strings for pitch difference, which by itself can be a difficult problem, but the hardest issue is the bowing motion: you need to apply the correct amount of force and correct amount of speed for bowing because too slow or fast causes squeaking from the violin and negatively affects the sound,” explains Metzeger.

After more than 130 hours working on the project, the group debuted their masterpiece at a special Robot Concer in Distler Performance Hall on December 6. Check out the fruits of their labor in the video below!

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The Robo-Sundae Creator

Does the effort of adding chocolate sauce, sprinkles and whipped cream to your ice cream ever feel like too much? Well fret no more. Summer interns Jess Scolnic and Tucker Stone at the Tufts University Center for Engineering, Education and Outreach (CEEO) have invented a Robo-Sundae Creator. Using Bluetooth wireless connection, the machine takes a bowl of ice cream down the line, adding toppings along the way.

Scolnic writes:

We’ve spent most of the day making sundaes for everyone!  These run throughs have led us to make many small adjustments to the Robo-Sundae Creator.  We ran into a small problem when one customer wanted no cherries.  Our program, however, didn’t recognize that correctly and gave him…infinity cherries.

They’ve blogged the whole process so you can catch up on all the challenges they faced and the innovative solutions they devised.

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Fighting Fire With Robots


On Apr. 9-10, the Tufts Robotics Club participated in the 15th annual Trinity College Firefighting Robot Competition in Hartford, Conn.

This year, they entered The Precipitating Pachyderm v2.0 (an improved version of the firefighting robot built hurriedly for last year’s competition) and a new bot, Jumbo Shrimp v1.0.

The team placed first the “Olympiad” written exam portion of the competition and performed well in the firefighting component.

Watch a practice run video of The Precipitating Pachyderm from the 2010 competition.

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