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What's up at Droidbuilder.com?

posted Feb 21, 2015, 12:45 AM by Galen Raben   [ updated Feb 21, 2015, 1:38 AM ]
Feb 21, 2015
The past few months have been a rather bumpy ride for those of us at here Droidbuilder. Apologies to our customers for a lack of responsiveness and long delays waiting for your shipment to arrive. Much of this has been due to the changes in my real-life workschedule and the effects of the Christmas rush and the general lack of time to spend on Droidbuilder business with the work schedule I was stuck with. 

But part of the bumpiness is also a re-thinking about what direction do we want to take Droidbuilder. We started out as a website dedicated to building robots and providing sources for hard-to-find parts. For the past few years we have been specializing in speech products for the robotics hobbyist. I like to think we offer a couple of the best kits out there providing a complete text-to-speech solution for the Arduino compatible market. But rather than spending time and resources containing the costs of creating kits, I would rather be spending the time creating, designing and building complete robotic systems. Some of what is driving my thoughts here are recent changes in the microcontroller market. The Raspberry Pi being one of a number of new micros providing desktop PC capabilities and power in a very small package. This in turn has greatly increased the capabilities and usefulness of any robot projects built around it. Now that the much more powerful Pi 2 is out, and with Windows 10 coming to the Pi soon, things are just really beginning to get interesting!

So the short story is, I would like to get back to what inspired me to create Droidbuilder.com in the first place. Therefore I will be spending more time creating robots and a little less time dealing with the ups and downs of business. This doesn't mean I will be dropping the products we already have available. One of the things that is wrong about my current line of speech products is how "quiet" they are. It can be difficult to hear them over the whine of motors and servos, especially while a robot is moving about and doing tasks. We are looking at ways to make them louder and more practical for real-world usage. Look for some changes in our products to address this soon. 

Our emphasis on this website will become more project-oriented and a little less kit-oriented. As long as people are buying them, we will still offer the kits we have, and we may offer PC boards for some of the projects I will blog about here, perhaps even whole kits if there seems to be a demand for it. Let us know when like something and what you would like to see!