Here is how I build a line following robot, that was a part of my robotics self study. A line following robot is a simple robot that can follow a line, and it’s a good way to get started if you want to start learning about robots. There is no soldering required and you can plug in all the parts.
Step 1: Buy a Line following robot kit
My line following robot was build with the following kit: The SparkFun Redbot basic kit. The kit that I used is retired now, so you have to use their new kit. All the part are pretty much the same, it’s only the look and colors that have changed a bit.
Link to SparkFun Redbot basic kit: https://www.sparkfun.com/products/13166
Step 2: Build the Line following robot with a assembly guide
I used an assembly guide when I builded my line following robot. It took me 15-20 minutes and it was pretty easy. You can check this video guide, if you want to see how the robot is build.
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Step 3: Program your Line following robot
The programming part of the robot is done by using the Arduino IDE. It’s open-source software that you can use for free to program your line following robot with. When you have downloaded the Arduino IDE – then download the “Redbot Arduino Library” under documents on the SparkFun Redbot basic kit page. Then plug the robot to computer with the mini-USB and then you are pretty much good to go. You can find more detailed guides about all of this on sparkFun website.
Want to learn more about robots?
There are a lot of good online computer science courses that you can take, if you want to learn more about computers and programming in general. The programming part becomes so much easier if you have some sort of computer science education, especially if you want to program more advanced robots. Some knowledge about artificial intelligence could also be helpful later on.