PORTLAND, Ore. -- A new Kickstarter project backed by robotics supplier Roboteq Inc. (Scottsdale, Ariz.) aims to turn the open-source Raspberry Pi single-board computer into the ideal controller for budget-minded roboticists. With a contribution of as little as $75 to the Robot I/O (RIO) project on Kickstarter, you could have your robot under Raspberry Pi control by mid-summer.
Unless you've been off-the-grid for the last year, you already know how the Linux open-source community inspired the Raspberry Pi Foundation to release the specifications, board-layout and other details for the open-source-hardware single-board computer called the Raspberry Pi. Die-hards can build the board themselves, purchase the components--including a Broadcom ARM system on a chip (SoC)--but most developers just buy the $25 Raspberry Pi SBC from element 14.
The Raspberry I/O (RIO) card is a crowd-sourced development project on Kickstarter that will be manufactured by Roboteq as the world most economical robot controller. SOURCE: Roboteq
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Most projects, such as the educational examples for which the Raspberry Pi was originally conceived, are served adequately by the eight general-purpose input/output (I/O) lines of the original, but by adding the RIO board, an additional 21 I/O lines are added, making it a boon to roboticists.
The biggest boost over other I/O boards announced for the Raspberry Pi, however, is the inclusion of an optional sensor module that adds a microelectromechanical system (MEMS) subsystem including an accelerometer, gyroscope and magnetometer plus the sensor-fusion algorithms needed to determining the attitude and heading information to allow robots to navigate autonomously.