July 27, 2016
I just finished running 2- 1 hour sessions per night for 5 nights with 15 kids from China in each of the sessions. I had 6 Edisons as well as 6 of the recommended Legos kits.
You can run over it with a car, but don’t run it off a table too often. I have one with a damaged motor on one side so it won’t drive straight.
Line following really needs a “Poster Size mat, 8 1/2 X 11 really doesn’t work. Won’t read barcodes that small either. I tried electrical tape as a line, this does not work. The vehicle won’t move side to side on top of the tape. I used about 1/4 to 1/2 inch line drawn with black sharpies and this did well. It was fun experimenting with sharp angles and modifications to get around them.
Barcodes: I found the most success by starting the vehicle behind the arrow so it ran across all three parts of the arrow before hitting the barcod. This seemed to get the most consistent results.
Programming: The interface was really fairly easy. The choice of the headphone jack is odd. I could not get my newest PC Laptop to work. It has only one jack which senses whether you have headphones or a microphone plugged in. You definitely need to turn enhancements off as stated in the guides. As to programming,, I found the download to be somewhat intermittent. I could tell when it worked if the sequence was correct, push the button, both lights come on, download, hear beep and lights go back to flashing. If it didn’t happen like this then I new it didn’t take. Its also a bit kluge on the Edison end to get the wire to stay. Maybe a programming base like the guy with the 3 D printer built would help.
Batteries lasted roughly 5 hours.
Remotes: First set I bought (RCA Universal) didn’t work. I bought one of those extra large ones for fun and turns out they work with no codes require, just program them as in the Edison instructions. They were 12 bucks through Amazon (big, fat, rectangular ones). I also found one from Wallmart (their cheapest) and it worked with one of the Sony codes.
Hockey guy was interesting as was the Digger. These take about 1/2 hour to build
The kids had fun, though they were too used to working with NXT Robots at home and high expectations. Each day we got better and better running them. There was a small learning curve, but I was quite satisfied with the end results. The cost is a major plus. I got 6 Edisons plus the Lego kits for the price of the two VEX robots I had before. These little guys really pretty powerful and can be used for a lot of things. For a classroom these are hard to beat. They are ready to go right out of the box. No Assembly required. I will be using them for Robotics merit badge and STEM programs in scouting.
That’s it. I am a happy camper and plan on increasing my “robot army” soon.
August 16, 2016
Just used them with a class-sized group of kids in a library.
Lessons learned – even if you have enough remote controls, you can’t use them all at once – or it creates havoc (two of our Edisons are just spinning in circles now when I try to program them with a barcode).
The kids had fun, but this was a younger group and they needed lots of help. Didn’t help that we tried the remotes first which seems to have ‘messed up’ most of the Edisons. Reprogrammed with a sony remote as suggested, but still have two that will only drive in circles.
I also agree that driving them off the table doesn’t seem to do them any good – I have one that is not driving properly and making a loud noise.
We had success with electrical tape for the line tracking though.
Another group tomorrow- but we are three robots down!
August 24, 2015
Thank you so much for sharing your experiences in the classroom!
Glad to hear your students are enjoying them
The headphone jack was chosen so that Edison can be programmed from both computers and tablets. The EdComm cable uses light to send the program across to Edison, so even if the plug is a little loose the program should transfer without problems.
Unfortunately, remote controls will interfere with each other, if you have enough space, spreading out your Edisons and remote controls should minimize this issue. You can also try having the students stand in such a way that their remote control is only aimed at a single Edison (this may be a little difficult)
If you need any help with Edison, please send us an email via our Contact Form letting us know what’s going on with your Edisons, we are happy to help.
October 13, 2016
Did an informal session with four kids and two robots. Bad idea… need each of them to have one.
Line follower works well with EdMat printed on the less-glossy side of a tarpaulin and should be printed at its actual size (A1 or 2ftx3ft). Electrical tape works well too, just make sure that the robot starts at the white material not on the tape.
Sumo fighting is a big hit as long as the arena size is just right. Too big and it takes a while before someone’s robot gets pushed out. Too small and you have to put them in back so often.