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$3,631
pledged of $30,000pledged of $30,000 goal
17
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Sun, March 10 2019 8:09 PM UTC +00:00
Last updated March 10, 2019

Meet singular module robot - PingPong

Build any robot ! Create every motion ! A new paradigm of easy, fun, affordable and super-extensible robot platform

Meet singular module robot - PingPong

Build any robot ! Create every motion ! A new paradigm of easy, fun, affordable and super-extensible robot platform

$3,631
pledged of $30,000pledged of $30,000 goal
17
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Sun, March 10 2019 8:09 PM UTC +00:00
Last updated March 10, 2019

About

BUILD ANY ROBOT !    CREATE EVERY MOTION !

Imagine a robot: flexible, smart, easily made, and affordable all in one! 

Dr. Yim, the creator behind this new sensation, put in a decades worth of research for a robot that would meet the needs of the next generation.

During this time Dr. Yim had developed many robots and likewise education tools that were supplied to thousands of schools. However, Dr. Yim wasn’t satisfied that the robots being made today were either too expensive and complex, or made with limited functions which prompted him in the development of a robot that meets the needs of extensibility and accessibility. And now it is here, presented by Robot Factory, a new paradigm in the robot history- a single module based robot platform named PINGPONG.

Someone may ask, why “PINGPONG”? The developers thought the name perfectly represented the simplicity and the friendliness of the robot as well as its activeness, just like the sport.

We present to you just a couple of many robot models to demonstrate the capabilities of PINGPONG but this is just the beginning!

We also hope you enjoy our PINGPONG song, specially composed by Ms. Cho, our designer from the crew.

1. Cube 

The Cube is the basic module of PINGPONG. Users can make various robot models through the combination of Cubes and link and each Cube includes a stepper motor and a battery with various sensors and can be controlled by smart devices via bluetooth or an IR(infrared) keypad.

pingpong Cube
pingpong Cube

2. Links 

Each PINGPONG model needs specified links to build the body. Model specified links consist of Cube-to-Cube connectors, wheels, modules and decoration parts. PINGPONG also provides general links for PINGPONG and LEGO-extension links for LEGO users.  

pingpong Links
pingpong Links

3. (Option) Charging station and IR keypad 

Each Cube has male(upside)/female(downside) magnetic charging connectors and a magnetic charging cable is included by default on basic PINGPONG Kits. Users can charge the Cube with the cable and adapters for any kind of smart devices is chargeable. With a charging station, users can charge up to 6 Cubes in series simultaneously. PINGPONG can also be controlled by the IR keypad without any smart devices, attaching the IR receiver block to the Cube.

Charging station and IR keypad
Charging station and IR keypad

4. (Option) External block 

PINGPONG has external blocks such as the servo motor block and the IR receiver block. They are used for some robot models. The servo motor block is connected to the Cube with a cable so that each Cube can control one servo motor. 

PINGPONG can be built into any type of robots. However, we present standard robot models to help the users understand how PINGPONG works. Through experience on the basic models, user can create his or her own robot model without limit and control it by using the PINGPONG app’s motion maker mode.

Basic models with 2 Cubes
Basic models with 2 Cubes
Basic models with 3 Cubes
Basic models with 3 Cubes
Basic models with 4 Cubes
Basic models with 4 Cubes
Basic models with 6 Cubes
Basic models with 6 Cubes

G2 Series pingpong models

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G3 Series pingpong models 

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Play with
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G4 Series pingpong models 

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G6 Series pingpong models 

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Play with
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1. Control mode 

Each PINGPONG model is controllable via a smart device or an IR (Infrared) keypad. PINGPONG Robot is downloadable through the Google Play Store. Also, PINGPONG can be controlled by the PINGPONG IR keypad by attaching the IR receiver block on the Cube of the model. 

PINGPONG control with smart device or IR keypad
PINGPONG control with smart device or IR keypad

The following shows simple procedures on both the app control mode and the IR keypad control mode. 

2. App control mode 

First, download the PINGPONG Robot app from Google Play Store and install it. Then, turn on the Cubes that are needed for your chosen robot model. On the app, click the group and the model you want to build, then the app connects the Cubes automatically and updates the firmware if the Cube has an older version of the firmware. Please make sure that the Cubes are within 0.5 meter (1.5 feet) from the smart device at the connection stage. Cubes have low bluetooth power in the beginning so that the smart device does not connect with any other person’s Cubes. After the connection is completed Cube will regain its strong bluetooth power. Finally, you will enter the profile scene of the robot model. You can see 4 icons to control (joystick/button, dance, drawing and motion maker easy/hard). Visibility of 4 icons depends on the robot model and you cannot see “dance” or “drawing” icon on some models. We plan to release the app through iOS in the summer of 2019. As of now the PINGPONG app is compatible with Android devices only.

Group selection -> model selection -> model profile screen
Group selection -> model selection -> model profile screen

2-1 App control mode - Joystick button mode

We released about 40 standard PINGPONG models in driving, crawling and walking categories. For the driving type model, there is a joystick control interface, while other models are controlled by buttons. Each robot model has a unique motion, and the user can control PINGPONG with a smart device just by clicking various icons on the joystick button control mode. Users can play the robot’s motion which is matched with each icon. The following shows an example of icons on the joystick/button mode for PINGPONG control.

Button control mode screen - depends on robot model
Button control mode screen - depends on robot model
Joystick control mode - depends on robot model
Joystick control mode - depends on robot model
PINGPONG icons for various activity
PINGPONG icons for various activity

2-2 App control mode - "Dance" and "Drawing" mode

PINGPONG models which have two wheels, i.e. the driving type models, can dance along the music included in the PINGPONG app. Just play the music and watch it dance! The driving type models of PINGPONG are available in the drawing motion also. They can perform the default motion such as the circle, triangle, rectangle, heart and star. Some models can move to the motion that the user draws on the screen. Users can also make motions using the motion maker/easy mode of the app.

Drawing mode screen
Drawing mode screen

2-3 App control mode -  Motion maker / easy mode 

All of the PINGPONG models may carry out a scheduled motion with the motion maker on the app. In the motion maker’s easy mode, users can see all action icons for the selected model. Users can insert or delete the icons in the timeline editor to plan the motion. After all editing is finished, touch of the play button will move the robot according to the scheduled data. With the help of motion maker, users can use their creativity in motion ideas with PINGPONG.

Motion maker easy mode - depends on robot model
Motion maker easy mode - depends on robot model

2-4 App control mode -  Motion maker / hard mode 

The hard mode takes us deeper in to the works of PINGPONG. In this mode, users can control each Cube’s angle independently step by step, just as the animation user can set the angle of each Cube for a stage in real time by controlling each Cube’s angle button on the app. Eventually the user can make sequences of motions. By playing the scheduled motions, the user can make his or her own motion for the robot model. Besides that, the user can make his or her own robot model with the 3D printer and immediately test the new robot model in the motion maker’s hard mode.

Motion maker hard mode - depends on robot model
Motion maker hard mode - depends on robot model

3. IR keypad control mode 

For someone who is not familiar with the smart device, PINGPONG offers the IR keypad. Just by attaching an IR receiver block to one Cube of the robot model, users can control PINGPONG with the IR keypad. With the keypad, users can insert the model number and the motion number, and PINGPONG will obey the command.

For example, if the user wants to make an omni-bot with 4 Cubes, push the omni bot ID number ‘404’ (robot ID tables is included in the manual) and press 'M' then the 4 Cubes are assigned to the omni-bot. At this time user should attach the IR receiver block to one of the 4 Cubes to make it a leader of the group.

<IR remote controller movie clip>

4. Maker application 

 PINGPONG offers standard models, but users can build their own robot model using the 3D printer. We release 3D data for the 5 link holes and 1 motor hole of Cube. We also give data for several standard links for Cubes, so that anyone can create a new PINGPONG model without limitation. And the new model can be tested by the motion maker’s hard mode in the PINGPONG app. Someday, we will release the protocol for Cube so that users can interface the Cube with any other software written by C/python/java/apps. 

Create your own model with 3D printer
Create your own model with 3D printer

5. Software coding education

PINGPONG is also designed to be used for software education. We will provide offline Scratch compatible software. Entry or Blockly interface for PINGPONG will be released at the summer 2019. Users can control every Cubes or robots by programming with Scratch or Entry. It will be very helpful for education because PINGPONG has unlimited variations on the model and they can create any motions and algorithms without limitation. The students will meet various robot model coding experiences they have never met before. Sample workshop contents for each language will be provided to the users also.

Available to various coding education
Available to various coding education

6. Easy model assembly

Each Cube has battery, motor, BLE5.0 CPU and sensors. Because every Cube has same shape and firmware, we developed an easy and intuitive assembly method for PINGPONG. For example, when making a robot model with 4 Cubes, just prepare 4 Cubes and turn on the Cubes. Select the robot model on the PINGPONG Robot app or insert the model number by the PINGPONG keypad. Then, each cube will have one of the color among R/G/B/C. Also, 5 faces on the Cube have each of the icons - rectangle, triangle, circle, star and heart, on each surface. The user is also able to assemble the model through the assembly guide by checking the LED’s color and icons on the Cube.

For example, select the omni-bot model on the ‘PINGPONG Robot’ app. Then the 4 Cubes are assigned to the omni-bot group. One of the 4 Cubes becomes a leader automatically and the others will be its group members. 

Model selection screen - example for omni bot
Model selection screen - example for omni bot
Colors (R/G/B/C) are assigned to Cubes - example for omni bot
Colors (R/G/B/C) are assigned to Cubes - example for omni bot

Finally, the leader Cube assigns R/G/B/C colors to each Cube including itself. Then, assemble the selected robot by following the assembly guide, checking the five icons and colors on the Cube.

5 kinds of icons on Cube face: rectangle, circle, star, heart, triangle
5 kinds of icons on Cube face: rectangle, circle, star, heart, triangle
Assembly guide example for omni-bot model
Assembly guide example for omni-bot model

7. Convenient charging materials 

Cubes can be charged in serial by magnetic charging connectors. In serial charging mode, the charging time depends on the number of Cubes and the current limit of the AC adapter. The standard PINGPONG AC adapter powers 3A/5V, and it will take an hour to be fully charging for 6 Cubes in serial.

Users can connect the charging cable to the computer USB port or any 5V adapter, available at home for smart devices.

A magnetic USB cable of PINGPONG for one ~ several Cubes charging
A magnetic USB cable of PINGPONG for one ~ several Cubes charging

When users want to charge many Cubes, the PINGPONG charging station and the adapter is a good choice for convenience. It charges up to 6 Cubes and we have a plan to develop the Cubes that can be used as mood-light or alarm-device in charging status.

PINGPONG charging station and adaptor
PINGPONG charging station and adaptor

PingPong is a new paradigm on modular robot with singular module based platform. Because each Cube has BLE5.0 CPU, battery, motor and sensors, with combination of Cubes and links, the user is able to build any robot model they want, within several minutes. However, each Cube should take a role as its position and have synchronized movement with other Cubes on the specified robot model.

In other words, each Cubes should do its required synchronized role-playing motion in the selected model while the model is driving, crawling or walking.  

Our team has overcome many obstacles like synchronization, grouping, and charging issues to create this unique robot platform that has driving, walking, and crawling motions with just a single module. We also worked to improve the velocity and the absolute angle motor control technology and worked to make older BLE versions of smart devices compatible, fixing any group assembly problems and controllability with smart devices and the IR remote controller.

In addition, we achieved the technology of controlling hundreds of Cubes with a single smart device, by successive Bluetooth networking technology. As a result, we present PINGPONG, a new robot platform like no other.

1. Cube’s & Links history

We hope for PINGPONG to have a position like Arduino or LEGO in the field of robot playing, robot education, and robot making. PINGPONG meets the needs of any users from child to adult whether it be a toy or an education tool or simply a hobby. To make a powerful singular module robot, three hundreds of Cubes were tested with 3D printers in developing PINGPONG and we have finished test production from mold for Cubes and links. Because we have developed about 40 standard models, there needed to be hundreds of different kinds of links (connector, wheels, mechanism modules etc.) So we tried thousands of links from the 3D printer to come up with PINGPONG basic models. The following shows the history of Cubes and links.

History of old Cubes
History of old Cubes
History of old Links
History of old Links
Final version of Cubes
Final version of Cubes
Final version of links example
Final version of links example

 2. 1st working sample - 3D printed PINGPONG model

After finishing the Cubes and links, we used 3D printers for the PINGPONG models to test the motion of each robot model. These are the engineering working models of PINGPONG made by the 3D printer.

1st working samples made by 3D printer
1st working samples made by 3D printer
The first design examples
The first design examples
The final design images
The final design images

We assure every user of the PINPONG’s simplicity in its vast extensibility. With the 3D data of Cube, users can make their own robot model and easily test the robot with the PINGPONG app. Trying the standard models first is recommended to help the user become familiarized with PINGPONG. Please support us in our project to reach the users of PINGPONG, a new paradigm in the history of robots. With the help of supporters, we hope to extend our project and create display-oriented Cubes, Al Cube and Sensory Cubes for singular module robot technology applications.

Risks and challenges

We will do our best to finish the delivery Jun. 2019

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    PingPong Supporter

    Thank you for supporting us,
    You will receive all updates of PingPong
    This support will leave a innovative robot platform to next generations.

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    Pledge $95 or more About $95

    PingPong module kit

    2 Cubes (List price: $136 for 2 Cubes), USB charging cable
    Includes: 2 Cube in each box, 1 USB cable and manual

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    Pledge $110 or more About $110

    PingPong G2 Basic Set

    2 Cubes (List price: $136 for 2 Cubes)
    1 G2 Basic assembly kit (List price: $37)
    Includes: 2 Cubes, G2 Basic (G2-robot three models assembly kit)

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    Pledge $155 or more About $155

    PingPong G3 Basic Set

    3 Cubes (List price: $204 for 3 Cubes)
    1 G3 Basic assembly kit (List price: $37)
    Includes: 3 Cubes, G3 Basic (G3-robot three models assembly kit)

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    Pledge $210 or more About $210

    PingPong G4 Basic Set

    4 Cubes (List price: $272 for 4 Cubes)
    1 G4 Basic assembly kit (List price: $47 )
    Includes: 4 Cubes, G4 Basic (G4-robot four models assembly kit)

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    Pledge $290 or more About $290

    PingPong G6 Basic Set

    6 Cubes (List price: $408 for 6 Cubes)
    1 G6 Basic assembly kit (List price: $37)
    Includes: 6 Cubes, G6 Basic (G6-robot three models assembly kit)

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    Pledge $360 or more About $360

    PingPong All Basic Set

    6 Cubes (List price: $408 for 6 Cubes)
    G2/G3/G4/G6 Basic assembly kit (List price: $157)
    Includes: 6 Cubes, G2/G3/G4/G6 Basic assembly kits (13 models)

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Funding period

- (47 days)