This curious bot, RoBird, is based on an Adventure Bot by Dagu (on sale via The Adventure Bot came fully assembled with curious behaviour code on an Atmega 168 chip. It’s Arduino compatible so I could get straight into modifying the code – not that I needed to change much!

The out of the box behaviour is very satisfyingly interactive. The Bot seeks a distraction (while avoiding obstacles) and if something within the compound IR sensor eye range is detected, the bot behaviour moves into follow mode. First the head, then the body. If an object is too close, the bot moves away.

I removed the case and built a new body, which I covered in jewels and feathers. This little robot attracted many people’s attention at Maker Faire. Everyone tried to touch or play with it (particularly children and women). I am going to build a couple of new body types and see what appeals most to whom.

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