Re: [mowbot] Goals

robin nospam at
Tue, 24 Sep 1996 19:19:04 +0100

Monta Elkins <Monta nospam at> wrote:
> > * no need to explicitly define boundaries
> hmmmm. great goal; not sure it's easily attainable. :(
Agreed. So we had better add a new requirement as a get-out clause:
* support for defining explicit boundaries
That way, the design must be capable of working reasonably without
any set-up, but must obey extra boundary definitions if such exist.
This choice can be switched, not automatic.

> > * can be built by hobbyist from off-the-shelf parts in a few days
> few weeks?
Compromise on ``a week''? That seems quite generous, as we'll have done
all the hard work so all our hobbyist has to do is a bit of soldering
and some assembly:-)

> > * environmentaly safe
> huhh? I mean it's designed to kill the little grassies who
> have done nothing to no one. Destruction of the environment
> is its goal.
Ron Woodward offered this as a goal. Care to defend it Ron?

I guess he means no CFCs in the anti-weed blowtorch or radioactive
leaks from the mobile nuclear power plant:-)

> > * must cut 4000m^2 (~1 acre) in 260000s (~3 days)
> I'd say this is a little much.
> Yard size is open to debate (though I think a little smaller)
> But I think mowing it once a week is sufficient (7 days)

The area is already too small for Ray (who has 2 acres), and I figured
the time from my cutting length limit and estimated growth rate.

> > * looks cute and has a winning personality. ;-)
> Absolutely
Are other parts of the world afflicted with garden gnomes? Round here,
they seem to pop up like suburban weeds. I had this wild fancy that
the Mowbot could be disguised as a gnome, but to play the part properly
it would be designed so that it never moves while being observed.
Then neighbours, while secretly sneering at the tackiness of us having
a gnome would gradually get puzzled by the lack of lawnmowing, and maybe
the observant ones would notice the gnome in a different place every day,
and start to wonder...


Copyright (C) 1996 R.M.O'Leary <robin nospam at>  All rights reserved.