Back when the WowWee Rovio was first announced we knew it would prove to be a popular platform for modders and robotics fanatics to adapt. The three-wheeled remote WiFi camera-bot has only been available for a few weeks, and already we’re seeing the first hacks come in. Today, it’s the turn of Rudolph at RoboCommunity; a straightforward tweak, perhaps, but a sensible one – adding LED lights to the remote-controlled webcam “head”.
While Rovio does have headlights (which you can remotely switch on and off to save power) they’re mounted in the front bumper. No problem if what you want to look at is at floor-level, but if you’re peering upward into the darkness then they’re less effective. Rudolph’s hack basically fits two bright white LEDs either side of the camera lens, wired in with the original lights so they can be switched on and off at command.
As an aside, in one of the photos below you can see just how much spare space there appears to be inside of Rovio. Plenty of room for lots more mobile equipment, and since Rovio can find its own way back to the recharging station extra power draw isn’t as much a concern as if you were footing the bill for standard AA’s.