Hi all. New to this forum and robotics as well, except for the past two months. During that timeframe, I haven't been able to put down an idea...
I'm picturing a small mobile rover that is not entirely autonomous, but rather, can take commands from a user over the internet. So there's me, lying on the beach in...well, South Jersey...and guiding this little bot around a course that's set up in my basement in...well, again, South Jersey. But for that matter, it could be halfway across the planet.
I've seen this done numerous times across the internets, mostly hacks of RC cars, affixed with an Arduino, a wi-fi adapter, a webcam, and an external battery. I'm aware that latency is likely to be a big issue, but have some ideas for how to mitigate that. I'm at the stage where I'm investigating which mobile platform would be ideal for this.
I'll go ahead and tell you the grand ambition for this project. Picture that same scene in my basement (a course; a maze; obstacles, or what have you), but now picture a SWARM of such bots, each controlled by different users (players?) that are remotely patched in to control the bots. This, I realize, takes the effort up an order of magnitude and adds plenty of additional challenges. But it still starts with achieving that first prototype.
A few of the platforms I'm considering include those from DFRobot, Sainsmart and Linksprite - each are 4WD (I could be wrong, but I presume the video transmitted from a 4WD would be steadier than a 2WD platform). I'm planning on acquiring all the components, and then farming out the programming on something like Elance. In the meantime, I'm trying to collect as much info as I can.
Anyone have any thoughts? Cautions? Advice that will keep me on track with this? Thanks, all!