updated with a comment from Andy Milluzzi
LEGO®s can do amazing things when you add a few LEGO® Technics pieces and Mindstorms NXT controllers. Especially if you’re anything like Andy Milluzzi, who grew up loving LEGO®s, has pals and knows how to recruit them to his team … and is not afraid of modifying a little firmware to get the job done.
Here is Andy’s team’s creation: a working 1/50th scale model of the Space Shuttle complete with the famed “CANADA”-labeled robotic arm – and powered by several Mindstorms controllers. Andy had the shuttle on display last week at NI Week, the annual conference of National Instruments, developer of the visual programming language LabView. (NI also partnered with LEGO® Education to produce the WeDo software we use in our Lego Robotics).
Interesting note: Andy’s mom declared that he’d grow up to be an engineer, based on his love of LEGO®s from an early age. (And like all kids, he thought she was talking about driving a train) We knew there was a link!
Note: Andy talks about a kickoff meeting in the Netherlands but we’re thinking… seeing as LEGO® headquarters are in Copenhagen, maybe the kickoff meeting was in Denmark? Well, we stand corrected. This just in from Andy:
I am Andy Milluzzi, the person you blogged about recently. The kickoff meeting in The Netherlands was at LEGO World in Zwolle. LEGO is based out of Billund, Denmark. If you have any question, feel free to contact me.
Thanks for keeping us honest, Andy!
If you love Mindstorms, consider one of our Mindstorms birthday parties! We can even provide a (non-edible) Mindstorms cake. Really. One of our Mindstorms instructors is working on building one right now…