New Book Available: An Introduction to Ethics in Robotics and AI

Springer published our open access book.

Our new book entitled An Introduction to Ethics in Robotics and AI is now available under the Open Access policy of Springer. You can download the PDF directly or flip through the pages below.

An-Introduction-To-Ethics-In-Robotics-And-AI

 

LEGO Train Automation

How to control four LEGO trains on one track.

The LEGO company offers remote controls to play with your trains. You can control up to four trains with one remote. This works fine as long as each train runs on a dedicated track and you only need to pay attention to one train at a time. LEGO only allows you to control trains. You cannot control track switches, lights or decouplers remotely.

The 4DBrix company is offering advanced train automation and today I would like to share my latest train automation project with you. I ran four trains on one track without any collisions.

This video shows all four trains from the top, including a picture in picture video of one of the trains.

This video is a 360 panoramic video. You can spin the camera and look at all the trains and LEGO sets.

I used 4DBrix’s nControl IDE to program all the trains that were connected to the computer using Bluetooth. nControl uses the Python programming language. One little hick up was the need to flash the firmware of my BLED112 Bluetooth dongle to allow for more than three trains simultaneously.

Problem with flickering pixels on Philips BDM4350UC/75

Problem with flickering pixels on Philips BDM4350UC/75 monitor.

I enjoyed the large 43″ Philips BDM4350UC/75 for two weeks now and the screen size is just wonderful. It is just like to large monitors in one. I discovered to problems, one just a bit annoying and another rather big issue.

The smaller issue is related to the power saving function. When I ran the all black screen saver on my Mac Pro, the screen seems to go into its own sleep mode of which it does barely ever awake. Sometimes I could bring up the OSD and this would bring the screen back to life. I got used to switching the screen off with its own power switch and turn it back on in the morning. This might not be such a bad idea anyway.

The bigger issue is the display of certain colors, or the lack there of. When I want to show light grays, such as RGB 193,187,194 I get vertical lines of flickering pixels. I took a photo of the screen to demonstrate the effect. We visited the dealer and tried the same color/image on their showcase model with the same result. There seems to be an issue with this Philips display. Be aware!

Philips BDM4350UC/75 flickering pixels