Today's the day...
...when I expect the AMAZING KickStarter community to push TJ* to 1000% funded! I'm completely floored by the support, and filled to the brim with gratitude.
How much gratitude is that, you ask? Well, as of right now, I want to thank 221 fantastic Kickstarter backers and 37 rockin' Kickstarter staff members. The backers have supported my project and helped bring TJ* into the world, and the staff have been kind enough to feature TJ* not only as in the 'Projects we Love' email newsletter, but also on the home page as Project of the Day!
I don't have new prototypes to show because the Stanford shop is closed for spring break, but I would like to update everyone on my recent progress:
- I've discovered Tyvek! It's a waterproof, practically tear-proof fabric that comes in sheets of plastic fibers. It's the perfect material for TJ*s skin: It bends to my will (by holding creases) and cowers under the blade of my X-acto knife (it's easy to cut). Plus, it's available in lots of different colors. With Tyvek, anyone who gets a skin for their TJ* will certainly get their $30 worth!
- I'm making progress on the software! I've downloaded and begun to develop using a lovely little Arduino library called FSM. It allows Arduino coders like me and you (well, some of you) to build Finite State Machines into their code. What that means, in humanspeak, is: we can easily program TJ* to have different modes with different behaviors and clear switches between those modes. In a word: versatility.
- I've started a website for TJ*! The working prototype is up at http://tjrobot.weebly.com and it features updated CAD renders, a future price list for TJ* (don't worry, KickStarter backers will get the best deal and all their rewards before I start selling retail), and the beginning of TJ*s origin story. I'll continue that story as a KickStarter backers-only upate later this week. Let me know what you think of the site!
It goes without saying, but I've got to acknowledge the fact that the TJ* project has grown way beyond my expectations. I was nervous at first, but now I'm thrilled with every new backer - each one of you is a part of the growing community of TJ*s friends, operators and programmers.
So, with that in mind, please share TJ*s page with anyone you know who might be interested - friends, family, colleagues, your Roomba, your Roomba's friends and colleages, and so on. The bigger our community gets, the more great stuff we'll do!
Finally, now that you've stuck with me for this whole post, here's your reward. I HAVE to share the following two pieces of media with anyone interested in TJ*:
- This RadioLab short telling an INCREDIBLE story about a medieval automaton
- This TED Talk featuring the AMAZING puppeteers from Broadway's War Horse!
Enjoy, and Happy Wednesday!
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Pledge $5 or moreYou selected
FRIEND OF TJ* -- Thanks for your support! You’ve helped bring TJ* to life, and he’s a loyal guy. I'll send you a link to a thank you web page, where live, working TJ* will thank you for your support and you’ll be listed as a backer!Estimated delivery:
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TJ* KNOWS YOUR NAME -- I’ll shoot a video of TJ* personally thanking you by name and put it on TJ*s web page (or email it to you directly, if you prefer).Estimated delivery:
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ASSOCIATE PRODUCER CREDIT -- You’ve got stories to tell. TJ* and I will shoot an up-to-1 minute video with your script and your storyboard (up to 4 shots)! For an extra $5 we can afford to hire two TJ* actors (in different colors). Start writing your IMDB bio!Estimated delivery:
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1 backer All gone!
YOU LIGHT UP TJ*S LIFE -- Add this to any TJ* kit order for light-up controllable LED eyes! Your choice of color, selectable by survey.Estimated delivery:
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1 backer All gone!
DRESS TJ* UP IN YOUR LOVE -- Add this to any TJ* kit order for a hand-made paper skin! Your choice of colors for head, jaw, and accessories, selectable by survey.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $50 or moreYou selected
A TJ* KIT - FOR ELECTRONICS MAKERS -- This option is for people who already have an Arduino. I’ll send you a fully-fabricated TJ* with the 3 drive servos installed. You'll have full access to a ‘How to set up TJ* with Arduino’ guide. Add $10 for plastic instead of MDF, and $10 more for international shipping.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $90 or moreYou selected
CONVERSATION KIT - FOR ELECTRONICS MAKERS -- Prevent TJ* from getting lonely and save a buck or two! Order 2 of the above TJ* units. Add $18 for plastic instead of MDF, and $20 for international shipping.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $120 or moreYou selected
A COMPLETE TJ* KIT -- I’ll send you a working TJ* with 3 drive servos installed and a controller including an Arduino Uno and all the electronics to run him. All you need to add is a power source, which you probably have lying around the house already. TJ* will work virtually out of the box! Add $10 for plastic instead of MDF, and $10 more for international shipping.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $200 or moreYou selected
COMPLETE TJ* CONVERSATION KIT -- Prevent TJ* from getting lonely and save a buck or two! Order 2 of the above TJ* units. Add $18 for plastic instead of MDF, and $20 for international shipping.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $256 or moreYou selected
EMOTIVE TJ* + A COMPLETE TJ* KIT -- I’ll ship you everything in a “Complete TJ* Kit” and, when I develop TJ*s next two degrees of freedom (brow raise/lower and mouth smile/frown), I’ll send you a “Brainless” Emotive TJ* and any extra electronics you need to run Emotive TJ* on the Arduino from the Complete kit.Estimated delivery:
- (29 days)