SOR Community Project Overview
Fredrik Andersson started a thread in the forums about a community project. The first post can be found here. The idea evolved into the possibility of creating an entire hobby robotics standard. The purpose behind this standard would be to design code and schematics that would stick to a standard for easy use and allow people easier access to more advanced robotics faster and easier. The standard specifies that the boards will all have the same physical size and use the same communication protocol. This allows end users to purchase or build modules that can be linked together in any combination needed.
The basis of this standard is to build upon the concept of the $50 robot. This robot's purpose is to fill the gab between store bought kits and board level design and programming. The standard will allow modules to be built that will further fill this gap and for more creativity to be spent on the design of the overall robot and less time spent working out the kinks in programing and board design.
The standard is not meant to be cheaper then designing it yourself. Optimizing a schematic and utilizing a single microcontroller will always be the cheapest method. However this can be complex and makes every robot different. The standard allows the designer freedom to work on the overall functionality of the robot instead of the ins and outs of how it talks to each of the sensors and equipment. The standard is designed to be versatile and simple. This is a community project and it is open to discussion on the forums. Everyone is encouraged to design and program their own modules.