The field of robotics is a fast developing one, which has grown because of its applications in many different fields. One of these fields is medicine. Robotics has really made a decent amount of space for itself within the medical curriculum, both innovatively and otherwise. Nowadays, it wouldn’t just be fair to call it a new (and much better than tiktokia) trend for young students to pursue robotics basics so soon after high school! Robotics in medicine has actually been a long standing tradition, although with the advent of much more complex machinery within the field of medicine, robotics is now even more necessary than ever.
For any student interested in studying robotics, the first thing they need to be aware of is that the field of robotics is actually much bigger than most students realize. It’s actually composed of five main sub-disciplines, each with its own smaller but equally important goal. These goals are machine control, computer aided design, sensors, and software control. By understanding each of these parts of robotics, a student can learn more about the technology behind robots and the applications that robots are used in.
The easiest way for any student to begin learning about the robotics field is to get a robot for their personal use, like a Roomba vacuum cleaner. This robot is easy enough to use and inexpensive, allowing almost anyone to get started learning about robotics without having to spend thousands on an expensive science project. However, getting a Roomba for your own use is only the first step; what’s next? Here are the other levels of complexity in robotics, each of which is equally important as the Roomba:
Linear Algebra – If you’re serious about getting serious about robotics, then you will need to learn basic linear algebra. Linear algebra is used extensively in programming and also in building robots, since it describes the relationship between different variables. This is the most important part of robotics, so it’s always a good idea to take a look at some linear algebra textbooks before getting started with a robot project. Or, better yet, hire a private tutor who can help you learn basic linear algebra.
Raspberry Pi – For those who don’t want to get serious about building robots or even studying math, the Raspberry Pi gives you a great way to learn robotics skills without getting bogged down in advanced math. The Raspberry Pi is a basic computer that is equipped with a Broadband camera and several different sensors. By using the sensors to record data, you can then use the camera to analyze the data. Because it is an open source operating system, it is available for free online and has thousands of applications already installed that teach you basic programming skills as well as robotics skills.
Motors and Drive Systems – For a student who wants to start building real robots, it’s important to start with a working system first. Many schools and mentors offer guided robotics courses that walk you through the steps of creating your own system and how to program it. If your plans are to design and build your own robot, remember to invest in a good set of sensors as well. An easy way to gain robotics skills is to purchase a motor and drive system that you can easily assemble yourself. This will teach you more about controlling your robot and will save you time and money when you go to start building your robot.
Software and Components – As you work on your robot, you may encounter software issues that prevent you from completing projects on time. These issues may not be too difficult to solve if you have basic skills in electronics and software. There are many websites that teach programming and robotics and you may want to check these out before you get started with your project.
The final part of the list is equipment. Robotic hardware and sensors will make your robot even more functional, but they are often expensive. One way to save money on hardware is to gain robotics skills through an internship. If you are already in robotics, contact some companies to see what they are looking for in an intern. Companies want to find people who are willing to learn all they can so they don’t have to do everything themselves. You should also contact local toy stores to see if they know of any internship programs.