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    Your Name: Vidya Mohanan

    Where you live: Kerala, India

    Did you attend university? Saintgits College of Engineering, MCA

    Current Job: Software developer

    What are your favorite electronics projects from element14 presents or youtube (they can be your projects or someone else's) - please provide links:

    I like to watch, understand, and try projects based on robotics, embedded systems, and IoT.

    One of the recent project from element14 presents which caught my attention is: Episode 438: Smartphone Controlled DIY Rover Using Websockets


    Tell us about your project:



    First of all. I would like to quote my audition tape here: Audition Tape for #badass Women Makers and Engineers Contest

    After graduating and taking up a job, It has been a long time since I did an electronics-based project. So upon knowing about this awesome contest, I immediately made up my mind to get back into the world of electronics enthusiasts. We did a project based on Arduino Nano during our graduation period. It was a simple gesture controlled robot that will move a robot platform based on the hand and head gesture inputs from the user. The whole idea was to implement it wirelessly so that it can be controlled without the hassle of disturbing and messy wires. Even though we completed the basic project requirements, due to time and resource constraints, we were not able to succeed in realizing the wireless transmission part which we all looked forward to. This is still lurking in my mind which gave me the motivation to redesign the whole project from scratch and complete the whole project wirelessly without complex circuitry or hassle. This is developed as a simple lifehack which anyone with a basic understanding of hardware and software interfacing would be able to achieve. This lifehack and its upgrades can be implemented for a lot of applications such as industrial machine manipulation, teleoperated robots, bomb disposal units, precision robotics, etc. This project is just the tip of an iceberg to open a world with a lot of possibilities.


    Introduction & Brief Overview:

    The project is titled "A simple Gesture Controlled Robot" and it uses readily available day to day hobby utilities such as an RC toy car, a smartphone, a Raspberry Pi Zero, a MotorHAT, and a battery power source.

    Let me give a simple graphic to understand the basic layout of the whole system.


    The main parts of this system are the Robot and the Smartphone. There is a 2-way wireless communication between the robot and the smartphone.


    The Robot boasts the following features:

    • Remote video streaming server
    • MQTT based message pipeline
    • MQTT broker hosting
    • DC Motor interfacing


    The Smartphone contributes to the following:

    • Onboard sensor access for gesture recognition
    • Remote video streaming
    • MQTT based message pipeline


    Your Project video: