Thursday November 5th, 2009
Warning: Nerd Alert
[Blogs about classes: Part 1 of 5]

I am a Physics major. Although I don’t consider myself a nerd, this blog is about what we are doing right now in our electronics class. And it’s pretty nerdy (but fun).

In electronics, we are learning about robots. We are using bread boards to hook up LEDs, motorized wheels, motorized rangefinders, and LCD character displays. This is all hooked up (with a nasty massive schematic) to a microcontroller. This may sound sweet, but that’s not even the coolest part of the project.

The really neat thing is how we use the robots. We are writing computer code in C, and then compiling it and putting that code on the microcontroller. This means that we can program the robot to do any number of things based on the code we write. We have gotten our robot to play follow the leader, avoid objects in the way, bliink the LED, and interact with it using the LCD display.

This is yet another cool part about Goshen College. Even though it’s a small liberal arts school, we have lots of opportunities similar to the big universities. This is an electronics class with 13 students in it, yet we get to work with robots and program computer code that controls them. If this sounds like something interesting to you, come check it out! You can sit in on an electronics class during your campus visit.

Stay tuned for more updates about what a real live college student is doing in his classes!

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