Seek N' Sneak - Your robust robotic pet. project video thumbnail
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€4,973 pledged of €10,000 goal
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€4,973 pledged of €10,000 goal
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About

Seek N’ Sneak is an Arduino powered self-controlled robot which is able to run around, find objects, grab them, relocate them and do many other useful and funny things.

- Motivation.

Why did we develop this robot? There is a very short answer: kids! They need 10 to 30 minutes (depending on their temper) to scatter literally all the toys they have over their rooms, so initially we were looking for some way to automate a tedious process of daily toys collection. We solved this problem, but we realized that there are many other cool applications for this robot. We found that our robot can be smart, fast, strong, fearless and funny, just like a badger, and we named it Seek N’ Sneak.

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- Seek N’ Sneak robot at a glance.

The two driving wheels of this robot are powered by independently controlled motors and equipped with 128-steps-per-revolution encoders allowing for precise control of the angular position of the wheel, as well as its velocity and acceleration.

An independent 2D orientation of the rover is provided by two side mounted IR proximity meters. Objects are detected by the third centered IR proximity meter. The three IR sensors can be replaced by one PING)))™ Ultrasonic Distance Sensor.

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The arm is run by 3 super-strong servo-motors, so it is fast and powerful enough to push up about 3 pounds, or even lift the robot itself, or throw objects.

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Seek N’ Sneak is an Arduino Mega 2560 powered robot. The robot software is completely open sourced, so you can either use the original software which has already been developed for you, or you can modify it as you please to meet your demands. You can then use commands like LOOK FOR AN OBJECT, GRAB or THROW instead of writing low-level code to control the sensors, motors and servos directly or develop your own way of thinking for the robot from scratch using the Arduino integrated development environment.

Though Seek N’ Sneak was designed as a fully autonomous, upgradable robot. There is plenty of space inside the body of the robot to extend Arduino board with extra sensors or with Wi-Fi or Bluetooth shields to establish communication with a computer or remote control.

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Seek N’ Sneak’s body and arm parts, depending on the kit you choose, are made of either 5mm laser cut black acrylic glass, 3mm laser cut galvanized aluminum or 2mm milled carbon-fiber composite.

8.4 - 9.6V accumulator (not included*) is used as the only power supply.

- What can Seek N’ Sneak robot do?

The most impressive thing is that the robot runs as a fully independent unit:  

- it can find and collect objects on the ground, 

- chase and attack other robots 

- you can make it organize your living space, placing things back in place whenever they are found where they should not be. 

 You are only limited by your imagination.

- What Seek N’ Sneak robot can't do?

- it can't fly... yet,  

- it has no any "+18" application, at least we did not try, 

- we did not integrate the Three Laws of Robotics in the robot's brain yet, so be careful :). 

-Can you use it?

YES, if you have a very basic knowledge in electronics and programming OR if you are able to accurately follow simple instructions. Seek N’ Sneak robot is provided as a kit, so you will need some basic tools including wrenches, screwdrivers, diagonal cutter and soldering set. For young technicians supervision is recommended.
The Seek N’ Sneak robot can also be a great gift to get your child interested in robotics. Since the databank of free softw­­­­are will be continuously replenished, people with no programming background can also enjoy the fun of robotics. 
No matter if you are an experienced programmer, a robotics fan, or a school teacher trying to interest kids in robotics, the Seek N’ Sneak is a great way to learn about mechanics, electronics and programming… All in one!

-What does SN’S kit include?

The standard Seek N’ Sneak kit contains everything* you need to complete the assembly of the robot including 
- laser cut body parts, 
- DC motors with encoders,
- dual motor shieldand wheels, 
- arm powering servos, 
- IR proximity meters, 
- an Arduino Mega 2560** or analog control board, 
- screws, nuts and spacers, flanged bearing wheels, wires, connectors, breadboard and other minor parts.
 
You will be provided with a full step-by-step tutorial explaining how to assemble your Seek N’ Sneak robot. Moreover, you will get the intermediate programming sketches that will help you to properly connect and test all the electronic parts one by one.  
 

* Accumulator is not included; see recommended type of accumulator here (9.6V) or here (8.4V).   

** You can replace it with Arduino UNO as it has exactly as many pins as needed. However we strongly recommend Mega 2560 board because it gives you a lot of room for experiments with additional drives, sensors, screens, pushbuttons or LEDs.

-Seek N’ Sneak evolution.

We made a lot of modifications, but most of them were made on paper. In the end there was only one predecessor which successfully solved the problems of self-orientation and finding objects. It looked like this:

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- Why does the project need your support? 

We want to share the design and our experience building the Seek N’ Sneak robot with developers all around the world. So after the KickStarter campaign, the Seek N’ Sneak robot in its entirety will be released to the public! 
Our aim is a community of robotic fans - we count on your participation as a developer. With your help we will be able to establish a network of all Seek N’ Sneak robot developers. You will be able to share and borrow ready-to-use code and find support from other robot builders. At the same time we will be continuously working on new features for existing robot and develop new robots to meet your expectations. Just imagine how much we can do, working together on this project. 
The next version of the robot will be equipped with accelerometers for precise positioning of the robot. We will also add a CMOS-camera and BlueTooth or WiFi shields for interactive outboard optical object recognition. We are also considering using the Raspberry Pi portable computer in the next generation of the Seek N’ Sneak robot. 
However, all of this can only be done with your support… 
With your funding we can make the Seek N’ Sneak robot even better, more affordable and easily accessible to everyone. 

- How else can You help? 

Share the news about our campaign on social media (Instagram, Facebook, Google+, Twitter, etc.). Our website is http://seeknsneak.com. We have the easy-to-share photos and videos there. Feel free to copy and spread them. Order the Seek N’ Sneak T-Shirt (black or white) now and tell about our project off-line (we will try to deliver it before the official end of the campaign). 
 

 - Timeline 

- August/2014 Purchase electronic components, laser cutting of mechanical parts. 
- September/2014 Package and start shipping reward kits. 

- Acknowledgements

- Sergey Cherednichenko for technical consulting, 
- Aspro company for carbon-fiber composite parts set, 

- Alex Stolpovsky for providing various tools and parts.

Risks and challenges

We have 3 working prototypes of the Seek N’ Sneak robot and all tests of the robot have been successfully completed. The next task mainly focuses on finding suppliers and packing service.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge €10 or more About $11

    Great thanks and welcome to the Community!

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge €50 or more About $56

    Fascinating Seek N' Sneak T-Shirt.

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    1 backer
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge €80 or more About $89

    Set of all mechanical parts made of acrylic glass needed to build your robot with the list of all other parts. Of course, you will also be provided with a full step-by-step tutorial and software. Use this option if you have all other or most of parts, such as the board, sensors, motors with encoders, servos and accompanying electronic and mechanical parts.

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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge €95 or more About $106

    Set of all mechanical parts made of aluminium needed to build your robot with the list of all other parts. Of course, you will also be provided with a full step-by-step tutorial and software. Use this option if you have all other or most of parts, such as the board, sensors, motors with encoders, servos and accompanying electronic and mechanical parts.

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge €240 or more About $268

    Early bird kit (only 10 available).Complete Seek N’ Sneak robot kit (acrylic glass), contains everything you need to complete the assembly of the robot.

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge €280 or more About $313

    Complete Seek N’ Sneak robot kit (acrylic glass), contains everything you need to complete the assembly of the robot.

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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge €315 or more About $352

    Complete Seek N’ Sneak robot kit (anodized aluminum), contains everything you need to complete the assembly of the robot.

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    3 backers
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge €800 or more About $893

    Complete Seek N’ Sneak robot kit (carbon-fiber composite), contains everything you need to complete the assembly of the robot.

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Funding period

- (45 days)