NXT legos mindstorm robots

Last week I finally got a hold of the new Lego Mindstorms NXT after months of waiting.


Practically as soon as I got in the door, I dove right into the packaging.


I was actually quite stunned at the number and complexity of the parts that came with the system.


I’m a Mindstorms newbie, and I’m not afraid to admit it.


Never really being that big into the whole “robotics” scene, and seeing as how my amount of Lego


playtime dropping exponentially since the age of about 9 or 10.


when I first heard about NXT lego Mindstorms after months of waiting.

a few years back, it didn’t immediately pique my interest.


That all changed when I heard how Lego had really embraced the community that had formed around


the first few creations.


Multitudes of robotic creations had been brought to life by “fans” and many had even gone so far as


to modify the components so that they could do even more than originally thought possible.



Besides thinking that I’d potentially flunk out of robot-school once I tried to build my own,


I also had a few problems actually programming my


once I had completed them.


Next, one of the innovations that NXT lego mindstorms has over the original is the use of either USB or Bluetooth to


communicate back to the PC.


The USB worked flawlessly, but, although the process for pairing Bluetooth devices is usually


quite a trivial and painless one in most other cases, to get the NXT and my PC up and running took a little


coaxing, and maybe just a smattering of “encouraging” words.


In the end I did get it to work, but it seems needlessly complicated


.So, did those robo-fan-boys do Lego a favour in helping them design the NXT lego mindstorms?





But, if you’re not highly inclined to tinker and work out problems and designs for hours on end


, you may feel left a little high and dry as I was once you run out of demo models to build and program.


The demo programs worked easily enough, but when I began plunking commands together myself


I ran into a few speed bumps.


First, you apparently need a degree to use the application. Yes, there are help dialogues to guide you


through the process, but I was overwhelmed at the sheer possibilities that were available in the application.


Heck, why on earth would I want my Alpha Rex Robot robot to start doing mathematical equations instead of walking


around in awkward 360 degree circles (as that’s what I obviously excelled at telling it to do)?