The future doesn’t belong to smart gadgets. It belongs to smart kids.

It took a long time for us as a species to evolve a thumb. After that, one thing lead to another, and nowadays we have smart high schoolers that construct robotic hands by themselves — thumbs included.

A technical high school from the city of Sombor has a robotics extracurricular class. Using a pair of EasyPIC boards (among other things), the students developed a glove controlled robot hand.

Here’s how it works. A glove packed with sensors maps the movement of the wearer’s hand. The resulting DC voltage is converted to a PWM signal by a microcontroller from an EasyPIC. The PWM controls the servomotors which manipulate the wires inside the robotic hand, mirroring the movement from the glove. In addition, there’s another, software hand model that also replicates the wearer’s movement from a PC screen.

Impressive stuff. But not only do these guys know their robotics, they also have good taste in sixties sitcoms. The robotic hand is called “The Thing”, paying homage to a detached hand that plays a side character in the TV show the Addams family.

It’s a slightly dated but still classic TV show — and the same could be said about the boards used to power The Thing. It’s not EasyPIC v7, it’s a predecessor.

Our next order of business is to get some new development boards and clicks into their hands (pun inteded), and see what happens from there.

Yours sincerely,

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