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I should have mentioned that there's been sightings at local BestBuys, and they're showing in-stock on their website. Too damn bad I still can't get them in Canada!
I bid on one on ebay last week but wmoyer got it I think for about $60 or so. Moral of the story: check ebay for robosapien too.
Being in Canada too, buy-cybie.com is my only source so I've placed an order for a twin-pack.
I was walking through a best buy last week with my wife and children looking for a laser printer, when my daughter exclaimed "Daddy LOOK!"; and there it was. I quickly grabbed a couple and headed for the check out lane. I totally forgot that I was looking for a printer. :)
The original idea was to dissemble them and add a better processor and sensors and the like, however……
I haven't actually taken one apart yet, however, this is what I've found:
1)It would appear that the motors are not using any types of encoder, the mechanical design is so well done that he has a natural tendency to stay in certain positions.
2)It would also appear that the extra long battery life is achieved from pulsing the motors, so when he raises his arm, the motor is pulsed on for a certain amount of time, the arm then moves into one of those naturally stable positions and remains in position. The motor then turns off, you are easily able to touch his arm and move it freely.
3)The gripper action is achieved from a rotation of the wrist joint that also opens and closes the grippers. This is a nice way of achieving the gripper action, however, it makes the grippers of little or no use as the arm moves as the gripper is opening or closing.
4)The walking action is achieved by a shuffling motion, stability is achieved by having the batteries in the feet for ballast and large foot print pattern. Turning takes some time and he tends to have trouble on carpet when the batteries are beginning to run low.
5)The remote has very good range, even outside in sunlight. I was with my wife down by the pool area and hid the robot in the bushes by the side walk and waited for people walking their dogs to pass by, from across the sidewalk, I could make him walk out of the bushes and attack the neighbors dogs. Lots of fun!
6)Sound and built in moves: this has to be the best part of the robot, he burps, farts and whistles at the girl robots, when you issue the "go to sleep" command he spanks his monkey and yells out "RoseBud" then falls asleep. The guy who developed the software for this thing is one sick puppy; he is definitely one of us.
Overall I don't see a lot of use for this robot as a modifiable project, the range of motion is too limited not to mention if you started messing around with the motor control you would probably end up with a much shorter battery life. All that aside, he's far too cool to dissemble, It's a great conversation piece, enjoyable, and my children love to play with him. It's a definite must BUY! And well worth the $99 dollars. Go get yours NOW!
Has anybody actually bought and played with one of these things yet? If so, what do you think?
Yes Robosapien is everything he is cracked up to be. I've owned the little guy since the first of May. He is an amazing piece of engineering for the money. You can get him first at Best Buy stores in the US.
Although the imagaery of spanking his monkey is a good one, I actually believe his death scene is from the final act of Citizen Kane. Where Orson Wells murmurs "rosebud", as his arm flips to the side and his hand releases the crystal snow globe. In any case still a great shut down act!
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