Fun With Mindstorms®, POCO and the iPhone™ Accelerometer

Here at Applied Informatics, we like to have fun at work. We recently built a Mindstorms vehicle that’s remote controlled by the iPhone’s accelerometer. To add some POCO touch to it, the iPhone does not talk directly to the Mindstorms NXT, but to a Digi ConnectCore 9P running Linux and a POCO-based application. Connected to the Digi board is a Serial-to-Bluetooth™ dongle from Ezurio. We have a small application running on the iPhone that sends accelerometer data to the server process on the Digi board over UDP. The server application then sends command to the Lego NXT over Bluetooth. The Mindstorms vehicle is equipped with sonar, sound and light sensors, and the sensor data is sent back to the POCO application, which has a builtin web server to visualize the data on an Ajax-based web page. The NXT is running nxtOSEK, which allows us to program it in C and even C++. Thanks a lot to the nxtOSEK team for their work. The program running on the NXT is a modified version of the nxtgt sample application that ships with nxtOSEK. See it all in the video. The video was filmed on November 8, 2008 at the “Lange Nacht der Forschung” in Klagenfurt, Austria, where it was a favorite among children of all ages.

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