Meet Penelope, our tea brewing robot. Penelope brews the perfect cup of tea by monitoring the temperature of the water and steeping the tea bag for the best time suited for that type of tea.
Penelope has two wheels and a motor for each. The Motor Driver attached to The Base controls their speed and direction. A second motor driver powers a solenoid to ring a bell when the tea is done.
The Controller Modulo to acts as Penelope’s brain. We can either reprogram the controller using the Arduino app, or we can control Penelope over USB using Python.
Penelope’s arm raises and lowers the tea bag. It’s powered with a standard servo that connects to an I/O port on the controller. The Controller has 6 I/O ports, which are also great for hooking up simple devices like buttons and switches.
The Temperature Probe, which measures the temperature of the tea, works just like any Modulo, but it doesn’t take up a slot on the base. Instead it just connects to one of the base’s extension ports.
We can also use the extension port to add additional bases. Let's build a control panel for Penelope using a second base, connected to the first with an extension cable.
The control panel has The Joystick to scoot penelope around, one Knob to adjust the tea steeping duration, one Knob to manually raise Penelope’s arm up and down and The Display to show the tea temperature and time remaining.
That’s it for the electronics. Now, we’ll program our robot using the Arduino app.
To make penelope move, we just need to create objects for the joystick and motor driver, get the joystick’s position, and set the motor speed. That’s all there is to it.
Our libraries for Arduino, Spark, and Python give you direct control over each Modulo and make writing code for your project a breeze.
If we later decide to control Penelope using a raspberry pi, we can connect penelope to the raspberry pi with a USB cable and control her using Python. The electronics don’t have to change at all!
Controlling the Penelope’s arm with The Knob, or drawing text and graphics on the display is just as easy. No matter what you’re building, Modulo makes it a snap!