We know this looks like a plastic trashcan full of junk electronics, but it’s actually the inside of WowWee’s Rovio robot webcam just after he’s been given a remote-control mod. Obviously blind to the dangers of granting your robot power over high-voltage appliances, RoboCommunity member Thel has hacked together a system whereby he can switch devices on and off at the mains using Rovio.
The mod uses a basic wireless remote and receiver together with a relay, and is linked in with the Rovio’s integrated “headlights”. This cluster of LEDs around the webcam assembly can be remotely switched on and off through the web interface (or programmed to come on and off), and as such there’s no tinkering with the core Rovio software itself.
Instead, turning the lights on and off briefly triggers the remote socket, and doing it again shuts it down. So far Thel has granted his Rovio control over a humble lamp, but it’s probably not long before the roving webcam-bot demands access to first environmental controls and then life support. Then we’re doomed.