The Art Of Motion Control

Mindfest 2004 -- Fort Worth Museum of Science and History

I was invited to participate in the fourth annual "Mindfest" -- a wonderful get together of creative science educators from across the country. I shipped and brought lots of equipment: Sisyphus IV, the Ribbon Dancers prototype, two Shimmibots, a couple Eggbots, and something new-- four "Discobots."

The Discobots were an experiment. The goal: to discover interesting motions from playing with a very simple program (turn some distance left, then turn the same amount right, repeat forever) and varying just two parameters, speed and size of the turn. I met with the "Design-it" group (eight 7th-8th graders), who learned to control the dancers, and experimented with creating different configurations. We had a great time playing with these things, all the while disco tunes playing in the background.

(3.9M wmv video clip)