Posted on Saturday 4 March 2006


OK, so I rarely pass up a good thrift shop on the theory that there might be some piece of outdated technology that I could look at and hack or break down to use in a future Pcomp project. So it is that I found myself decending the stairs of a church on 31st street to take a look at what might be there…

What I found for a dollar was the “Robosweep”, a sort of Roomba for the “As seen on TV” set of shoppers. After a google when I got home I discovered that the thing sells for $29.95. I put some new batteries in it and turned it one to see what it could do. I was not disappointed for the results based on my purchase price, but would have screamed bloody murder if I had paid 30 bucks!

What it amounts to is a glorified swifter with some sort of motorized locomotion. It does navigate around but can get into a tight spot and get stuck. I do own a Roomba and like it so the comparison is interesting for me. Also this Robosweep thing weighs less than a can of soda, so I was wondering what was under the hood? So I took off the top of this device (to horseshoe crab shaped shell) and was left with what is pictured below:

As you can see there is nothing to this thing… so where are the chips? the electronics? I have reading a bit about Mark Tilden’s BEAM robotics and wondered if this Robosweep works the same way. Stay tuned for more on this later.

Update: Found a link to someone who explains how this works, not what I had thought*

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