2019 General Helpful and Reference Info and Notes

General Helpful and Reference Info

  • To set up a new ESP8266 for use with your robot:
    • As of 2019, Amazing Robots are programmed using MicroPython. Boards for class will be distributed prepared with all necessary firmware, software and settings.
      • If you would like more information about setting up MicroPython on an ESP8266 and about the Amazing Robot MicroPython applications, please contact me using the form on the Welcome page!
  • WiFi:
    • The ESP8266 we use in class will automatically attempt to connect to the AmazingRobots.net wireless network.
    • When you take your bot home, you’ll have to tell it about your home network in order for it to be able to connect to the internet:
      • First, from any AmazingRobots.net page, click WebREPL from the menu across the top:
      • This will open the “WebREPL” webpage. Leave the WebREPL tab open when you come back to this page!
      • Then, power on your Ambot, and within 2 seconds press and hold the “FLASH” button on the ESP8266 (to the right of the USB power) for a few seconds.
        • If this has worked right, the blue light will stay ON on the ESP8266, and within a few seconds a new temporary WiFi network, named the same as your bot, will become visible to your computer:
        • If the blue light goes off or the new WiFi network doesn’t appear– just press the reset button (labelled “RST”) on the ESP8266, then press and hold FLASH for a few seconds..
      • Connect your computer to the new WiFi network. (This process is different depending on what kind of computer you are using, but would be the same as connecting to any other new WiFi network!)
        • The default password for the new network is ambots!!!
        • It is normal for there to be warnings about this temporary network.
      • On the WebREPL page, click the Connect button.
      • A login screen should appear. The default WebREPL password is also ambots!!!. Type the password and press <return> (or <enter> depending on your keyboard!).
      • At the “>>>” prompt, type import addwifi
      • Type “a” and press <return> to add a new network
      • Type the name of your home network, press <return>, then type the wireless access key for your home network, and again press <return>
      • Type “e” and press <return> to exit the “addwifi” program
      • Power off your Ambot, then power it back on. If everything has gone correctly– your bot will join your home network and you should be able to use SNAP! to control your bot at home!
    • Please contact me (from the Welcome page) if you need help or more details!
  • ESP8266 info
    • Comparison of ES8266 DevBoard versions
    • ESP8266 (ESP-12E) DevBoard diagram:
    • Motor Shield manual
    • MotorShield diagram:

      • Below the blue headers are markings: A-/A+, B-/B+, VM/GND, VIN/GND.
        • A-/A+ are for one motor
        • B-/B+ are for the other motor
        • VM/GND would be for a power source dedicated to motors
        • VIN/GND would be for a power source dedicated to the brain.
        • Remember to jumper using only one of these power connections.
        • Remember to un-jumper if using a separate power supply for the motors.
    •  Power:
      • The ESP8266 requires at least 3.3v but not more than 9v.
      • The motors requires at least 4.5v but could handle up to 12v.
      • It is possible to have different power sources for the motors and the brain.
        • You could have a 3.3v battery source for the brain and a different, higher-voltage power source for the motors.
        • If using different power source, place the jumper beside the power switch over “VM” and “NC” (or, use no jumper).
      • It is also possible to use the same power source for the motors and the brain, as long as that power source is between 4.5v and 9v. (The motor controller will automatically provide only 3.3v to the ESP8266!)
        • If using the same power source, place a jumper on the motor controller beside the power switch to connect the pins “VIN” and “VM”.
    • ESP8266 to NodeMCU and Arduino to ESP8266 Pin mapping:
        • ESP8266 to NodeMCU pin mappings (from this page):
      NodeMCU ESP8266 GPIO Functions
      D1 GPIO5 I2C-SCL or CLK
      D2 GPIO4 I2C-SDA
      D3 GPIO0 SPI-RES or RST
      D4 GPIO2 SPI-DC
      D5 GPIO14 SPI-SCL or CLK
      D6 GPIO12 SPI-MISO
      D7 GPIO13 SPI-SDA or MOSI
      D8 GPIO15 SPI-CS or SS
      D9 GPIO3 Serial RX0
      D10 GPIO1 Serial TX0
      D11 GPIO9
      D12 GPIO10