MCP robot

Prolite LED Sign Documentation


1. Introduction

The sign is meant to be used as an output device by the MCP. It is useful for debugging, displaying the robot's current state, or printing out status messages from various subsystems.

2. Overview

The server will take a UDP message and display it on the LED sign. The sign requires 12 volts and a serial connection.

3. Main Discussion

The sign can display 13 characters at a time. It can be supplied with a 12 volt power source and seems to be bugging. Sometimes on power-on, just a few leds will light up and nothing else will happen. In this case, just power cycle it.

The computer communicates with the sign via the serial port. Information about the communication protocol can be found here along with other information about the sign:

The server is very simple. It uses the udpserver library to handle communications. A regular expression parser checks any incoming message for validity, and will then reformat the message into Prolite's protocol before writing it out to the serial port.

4. Interface

A udp server exists at port 9000 (at present). A string message should be sent to port 9000 via udp in the following format:

Code listing 4.1

print: Just a normal message.

Code listing 4.2

error: Something bad happened!

Any message prefixed with "print: " will be displayed in green. Any message prefixed with "error: " will be displayed in red. All other messages will be ignored.

5. Appendix


6. To-Do List

It would be nice to add some more commands for different colors and perhaps other features, such as date/time, stopwatch, countdown, etc.

Updated 2005-05-19
Kareem Abu-Zahra

Summary:  Documentation on how the Prolite LED Sign is integrated into the MCP.
Developed by students of the Engaging Computing Group in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Massachusetts Lowell