When it comes to brilliantly awesome DIY projects, building a real-life version of xkcd’s robot hamster rates pretty highly in our book. That’s just what Stuart Donnan and Jacob Nieman of Georgia Tech have done with their Project 413, however, taking an eBox nettop, giving it omni-directional wheels and mounting it inside a ferret ball (hamsters are pretty small).
Video demo after the cut
Unlike the xkcd version, theirs doesn’t have an external camera – they didn’t have time to properly implement it – and it’s not autonomous. Instead it’s controlled remotely via a host PC, with the operator using a Wiimote to direct the ‘bot.
Since the wireless link used is WiFi, the robot can be controlled over the internet rather than demanding the user is physically nearby, so you could realistically use it as a Rovio alternative. If you’re tempted to make your own, Donnan and Neiman have helpfully published the schematics and software code on their project page.
[via Hack A Day]