Created Sun, 02 Oct 2011 14:18:19 +0000 by Bob
Sun, 02 Oct 2011 14:18:19 +0000
I've recently completed the initial phase of a project to control a radio controlled car over the internet. Here it is in its current form:
[attachment=1]RC Car - 1.JPG[/attachment]
I used an Arduino ChipKIT Max32 as an interface between a PC running Windows 7 and the car's R/C controller. The ChipKIT receives commands to move and steer the car through its USB serial port, translates the commands to signals to drive the car, and forwards them to the car's R/C controller via the ChipKIT's digital I/O pins.
To reduce the speed of the car, I power its motor with 4.5 volts, instead of the 9 volts the car's circuitry normally supplies. To do this, I built a circuit (white rectangle on top of the car in the image below) to follow the polarity of the 9 volts from the car (which swaps the polarity to reverse the direction of the car), and switches the polarity of the 4.5 volts, supplied by the batteries mounted on the rear of the car. (Originally I tried using a commercial motor controller board to do that job, but the polarity reversals gave it indigestion and burned it out. MOSFETs worked but not very well.)
[attachment=0]RC Car - 2.JPG[/attachment]
I wrote a couple of C++ apps (a "server" and a "client) to allow connection from the internet to my PC. The client app, which runs on a remote PC, has a simple GUI interface that allows intuitive driving of the car.
To view the car's path, I mounted a wireless internally (or externally via the 4.5 volt batteries) powered USB webcam on the front of the car. I use the commercially available iCamSource and iCam apps to view the webcam image over the internet.
The car is not pretty, but it works. I'll post more details if people are interested.
Mon, 03 Oct 2011 04:58:41 +0000
I'd be interested in hearing more about iCamSource and it's use. I'd like to use it with my Surveyor camera.
Mon, 03 Oct 2011 12:58:37 +0000
[quote="KM6VV"]I'd be interested in hearing more about iCamSource and it's use. I'd like to use it with my Surveyor camera.
Alan, iCamSource and iCam are a pair of apps sold by SKJM, LLC that stream video and audio from webcams on a PC or Mac to an Apple iPhone iPad or iPod touch, or an Android phone. iCamSource is free and can be downloaded from SKJM's website. iCam costs $4.99 (If I remember correctly) and can be purchased from Apple's or Android's app store. It's very easy to set up and use.
Mon, 03 Oct 2011 19:53:51 +0000
so it works with webcams ON a PC, not with IP (WiFi) cameras?
Thanks for the reply.
Mon, 03 Oct 2011 22:44:23 +0000
Hi Bob, so it works with webcams ON a PC, not with IP (WiFi) cameras? Thanks for the reply. Alan KM6VV
Alan, I tried to include a link to the skjm website in my first reply, but the bot that accepts posts rejected it because it thought it might be spam. Anyway, getting to skjm's website probably takes only one guess! Here's a quote from their iCam Help FAQ:
"Q : What types of cameras does the iCamSource support? A : The iCamSource currently supports any Built-In, FireWire or USB webcam supported by Windows XP/Vista or OS X 10.4 (Tiger) and later. It also supports FireWire-connected DV cameras on OS X 10.5 (Leopard) and later. Video-only support is also available for most MJPEG/JPEG-compatible WiFi and Ethernet network IP webcams. MPEG-4 and h.264 devices are not supported."
I hope that helps.
Wed, 05 Oct 2011 04:26:50 +0000
Thanks, that helps.
"WiFi and Ethernet network IP webcams", so that sounds like it would work!