Earth received an ‘alien message’ from Mars last year and public have been invited to decode it

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Zilog – The Next Frontier – Z800 and Z80000, 1985

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Everything You Wanted to Know About 1X’s Latest Video – IEEE Spectrum

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E-Day Robotics Info

At Herff College’s Engineering Day (E-Day). I was handing out a basic flyer about various robotics competitions with links to the organizations websites and also an indication if the competition were in the Memphis / West TN area. Here is the info:

VEX Robotics (main page)

  • VEX 123 (Grades Pre-K+ / Ages 4+)#
  • VEX GO (Grades 3+)#
  • VEX IQ (Grades 6+)*
    • Multiple Competitions held yearly in West TN (Memphis and Jackson)
  • VEX V5 (Grades 9+)*
    • Multiple Competitions held yearly in West TN (Memphis and Jackson)

To find competitions in the area, goto


  • (Grades 5-12 / Ages 10-18)*


  • 5 classes (Scout, Navigator, Ranger Pioneer and Explorer). Each class increases in complexity but is opened to a wide range of grades / Ages)*

US First

  • First Lego League Discover (Ages 4-6)#
  • First Lego League Explore (Grades K-3 / Ages 6-9)*
    • West TN FLL Explore Festival / Expo
  • First Lego League (Grades 4-8 / Ages 9-14)*
    • For WEST TN FLL Championship Information or Memphis FLL
  • First Tech Challenge (Grades 9-12 / Ages 14-18)^
  • First Robotics Competition (Grades 9-12 / Ages 14-18)^

B.E.S.T. [Correction]

  • Best Robotics (Grades Middle – High School)^

# – done in school / community setting
* – robotics program active in West TN
^ – in TN but travel required

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XRP Robot (Part 3)

Today was the University of Memphis – Herff College Engineering Day. Since I was doing a robot info table for the event, I decided to do a very simple demo of the XRP during the day.

I found programming the robot very easy using the online Visual Block Editor and and wrote a program to move the robot forward until it found the black tape then back up, then turn 90 degrees and loop back to going forward. The code looked like:

Here is a video I took (Sorry it is so noisy, I took it during the open house)

I did notice that some times the robot would stop and shimmy back and forth (I am not sure, but it looked to me as if it did not have enough dead-band on the sensor and would get stuck on the turn, so I told it to do a 90 degree turn, it overshot to 91 deg, then overshot the other way 89 degrees and got stuck doing over and over again), but a tap on the robot would get it going again.

Since it was a “Table top demo” I really couldn’t do much else, but considering I never programmed the robot before this (other than test code), I found the programming intuitive and easy to do, and even getting the code to upload and run was easy (compared to other robot’s I have used).

I wish the “User Button” was a little easier to locate, but waiting for the button press allowed me to disconnect the USB cord from the computer before the robot started to move.

I do like the fact that the online programming does not require any major software installs (just a com port driver). I would like to know if that install can be done in most schools without getting IT involved. Many robots for schools have the issue of getting IT to install the software in a timely manor on classroom computers, delaying the kids getting started on a robot project or getting ready for a competition.

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IREX 2023 – Japan’s largest robot exhibition | The latest robots and ama…

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Just like this…

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Makedo Explore Kit

Saw this on facebook and wanted to share this great STEM activity with you. This kit allows kids to make almost anything out of cardboard with special, safe, cutting tools and fasteners. Great for a future engineer!

More info at:

Here are some demo videos:

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How to Watch Today’s Attempted Moon Landing Live

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Intel’s worst Nightmare

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