Dear FLL Coaches,
You and your transportation-immersed teams might find this pretty
interesting. A 19-year-old guy has invented a motorcycle called the
Uno, which uses only one wheel (actually, a pair of side-by-side
wheels) and operates like an electric-powered unicycle.
The Uno uses active balancing and rider detection, accelerometers,
and feedback--similar to a Segway scooter--to remain upright and
move. It's a very cool concept, and the prototype looks very cool as
well. The young inventor has won several awards, started a company,
received venture capital funding, and is developing the bike.
The web site, http://www.the-uno.com/, contains pictures and links to
several magazine article and awards. The site includes a video of the
19-year-old inventor presenting the idea to the Dragons--a panel of
venture capitalists--hoping that they'll invest in his company so he
can develop the bike; that video includes footage of him riding the
On a related topic, several people have built miniature Segway
scooters with the NXT kit, using either a light, ultrasonic or
accelerometer sensor as the feedback input. Building and programming
a self-balancing robot is a neat project for more advanced NXTists.
For those wanting a further challenge, the robot can be controlled
from afar using Bluetooth, with a laptop, cell phone or another NXT
brick as the controller. There are examples posted to
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