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Overview

The LEGO® MINDSTORMS® NXT set includes a variety of powerful electronic parts (motors, sensors, and the programmable NXT microcomputer) and lots of building elements. With these parts you can create thousands of unique, intelligent robots. The Unofficial LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT Inventor's Guide helps you to harness the capabilities of the NXT set and effectively plan, build, and program your own NXT robots.

The first part of the book contains a brief introduction to the NXT set. You'll then examine the pieces in the NXT set and the roles they play in construction. Next, you'll learn practical building techniques, like how to build sturdy structures and work with gears. Then it's time to learn how to program with the official NXT-G programming language (and learn a bit about several unofficial programming languages). You'll also learn what author David J. Perdue calls the MINDSTORMS method: a strategy for creating your own robots. Finally, you'll follow step-by-step instructions for building, programming, and testing six sample robots (all of which can be built using only the parts found in one NXT set). These six robots include:

Zippy-Bot, a two-wheeled vehicle with a ball caster

Bumper-Bot, a version of Zippy-Bot that explores your room and avoids objects

Claw-Bot, a version of Zippy-Bot that searches for objects and pushes them away with its claw

Tag-Bot, a four-wheeled steering vehicle that dashes around while you try to "tag" it with a flashlight

Guard-Bot, a six-legged walking robot that launches a ball at intruders

Golf-Bot, a stationary robot that finds a target and then hits a ball into the target

You'll also find an NXT-G Quick Reference, which provides information on the 30 types of standard programming blocks, and the LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT Piece Library, which features detailed information and images of the more than 80 types of LEGO pieces in the NXT set.

So go ahead. Grab your NXT set, fire up your creative mind, and see what you can invent with The Unofficial LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT Inventor's Guide.

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