The first phase of the control station that you are looking at here includes a Joystick for human control that directly moves the Camera Pan & Tilt assembly. The ControlStation is designed to allow the addition of wireless connectivity and an easily interchangeable set of input devices (Joystick, Gyro Displays or Computer Algorithms and so on). Output devices include motor controllers, cameras, displays and cloud storage for example.

Project Requirements

Following are the high level requirements, or goals for this project.

  • Provide a joystick control for robot
  • Provide Pan tilt Servo Control for Camera Stand
  • Split micro controllers between Input and Output
  • Wired i2c
  • Wired serial / uart
  • Wireless
  • 802.11

Requirements 1-2 are complete, Requirement 3 is a Work In Progress (WIP) where the micro controllers have been split and are now communicating via I2C, remaining work to complete the serial code and the code to activate the receiver.

High Level Diagram

Bill Of Materials

  • 3-5v Thumbstick Joystick
  • 2 sg109 Hobby Servos
  • Pan and Tilt Assembly
  • Arduino nano

Source Code

Following is an important snippet from the source code:

TODO: add GIST

Conclusion

This was a fun little project to rip out. There is nothing more exciting for me, than to write some software that causes hardware to come alive. As you will see in the soon coming video, each joystick movement translates into the same ration of motion by the Servos. This causes the mounted camera to move rather erratically.

Another issue: to park the camera in a set location currently requires one to hold the joystick in a particular situation. This is the result of rather naive programming. An upcoming version of the software will use a more intelligent algorithm, and perhaps some appropriate control software.

Until then we will mark this as a new requirement.

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