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ARA is an Affordable Robot Assistant which will assist disadvantaged individuals with the everyday struggles they face in the confines of their home.
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README.md

README.md

ARA is an an Affordable Robot Assistant which will assist disadvantaged individuals with the everyday struggles they face in the confines of their home. View the abstract to discover more about why ARA was developed.

Software Features

  • Object-oriented design
    • ARA class controls the functions of the robot.
  • Emergency texts
    • ARA can act as an alert system and send texts to emergency contacts.
  • Simple code
    • Clearly defined functions and supplemental comments
  • Simple operation
    • Download the git repo, change a few variables (if necessary) and run the file.

Hardware Features

  • DualShock 4 (DS4) Controller/Keyboard Operated
    • Control ARA with a controller, keyboard or both!
  • Raspberry Pi 3
    • All motors are connected/operated by a Raspberry Pi 3 that lives on ARA
  • HD Camera
    • Streams video for easy navigation in any environment
    • Could be used as an alarm when movement is detected in your environment (future-work)
  • Arm and Claw
    • Move ARA's arm and claw to grab items in your environment
  • Stainless Steel
    • ARA's body is built of steel for durability
  • Continuous track
    • Makes it easy for ARA to traverse through any environment regardless of its obstacles.

Requirements

Applications

  • Install Wireshark for packet sniffing
  • Install DS4Windows for controlling ARA with a DS4 controller (Windows users only)
    • For connecting a DS4 controller to Mac, follow this guide.

Python Modules

  • Install pygame which is used by the script to map keyboard input to an ARA command. Try the following code in your terminal: pip3 install --trusted-host files.pythonhosted.org --trusted-host pypi.org --trusted-host pypi.python.org pygame. This command should work on both Windows and Mac.
    • If you're having problems installing pygame on Mac, try following this guide.

Controls

Keyboard Controls

  • w: moves ARA forward 12 inches at a time
  • s: moves ARA backward 12 inches at a time
  • a: turns ARA left 90 degrees and moves her forward 6 inches
  • d: turns ARA right 90 degrees and moves her forward 6 inches
  • q: open ARA's claw
  • e: close ARA's claw
  • z: rotate ARA's claw clockwise
  • x: rotate ARA's claw counterclockwise
  • i: move arm mid to highest position
  • k: move arm mid to middle position
  • ,: move arm mid to lowest position
  • u: move arm base to highest position
  • j: move arm base to middle position
  • m: move arm base to lowest position
  • l: pan camera left
  • ;: pan camera mid
  • ': pan camera right
  • o: tilt camera down
  • p: tilt camera mid
  • [: tilt camera up
  • spacebar: starts ARA's camera stream
  • 1: sends text message to user
  • c: prints these controls
  • esc: exits the program

DualShock 4 Controller:

  • R2: moves ARA forward 12 inches at a time
  • L2: moves ARA backward 12 inches at a time
  • L1: turns ARA left 90 degrees and moves her forward 6 inches
  • R1: turns ARA right 90 degrees and moves her forward 6 inches
  • circle: open ARA's claw
  • cross: close ARA's claw
  • square: rotate ARA's claw clockwise
  • triangle: rotate ARA's claw counterclockwise
  • LS Up: move arm mid to highest position
  • L3: move arm mid to middle position
  • LS Down: move arm mid to lowest position
  • RS Up: move arm base to highest position
  • R3: move arm base to middle position
  • RS Down: move arm base to lowest position
  • Tilt Left: pan camera left
  • Tilt Up: pan camera mid
  • Tilt Right: pan camera right
  • Tilt Down: tilt camera mid
  • Down: tilt camera down
  • Up: tilt camera up
  • PS Button: opens ARA's camera stream
  • Share button: sends text message to user
  • options: prints these controls

Funder Acknowledgment

The research and development required to launch ARA was supported by the Department of Computer and Information Sciences at Delaware State University.

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