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Logitraxx FPGA-based Robot Kit Launches on Kickstarter
Logitraxx robotic vehicle is an open-source design powered by a Spartan-6 FPGA.
By Judith Pfeffer - Filed Jul 23, 2014

More Consumer and Education stories
Attention DIY robot hobbyists thinking Christmas in July: If the Logitraxx Tracked Robot Kit is sufficiently funded on Kickstarter by the Aug. 24 deadline, it will be made available to its backers in time for the holiday season. At press time, the learning kit had 16 backers and riased nearly $2,500 of its $42,000 goal.

The Logitraxx Tracked Robot Kit is designed for engineers, electronics enthusiasts and other hardware buffs. According to the Kickstarter page, LogicTraxx distinguishes itself at least partially by what it does NOT have: software, operating system, drivers, microprocessor or central processing unit. It’s being offered by Shane A. Lewis, owner since 2002 of SL Interphase in Chandler, Ariz.

LogiTraxx is all about the firmware, circuits, FPGA (Field Programmable Gate Arrays) and the ability to be reprogrammed. Lewis describes it as being more streamlined, efficient and elegant than its competitors, as well as easy-to-use and with expansion capability. It’s powered by lithium battery that can be recharged via USB port.

If a customer wishes, he/she can 3D print a chassis to cover the "guts" of the machine.

Lewis shows his models gussied up like a tank complete with gun turret, presumably due to his interest in the military as is evidenced on his company website. But presumably the chassis could be made to look like any vehicle covering that a MakerBot 3D printer can come up with.

Moreover, in an apparent nod to the world political climate, Lewis notes, "I will ship this product internationally for a $25 fee. However I will not ship to any country currently on the US embargo list nor will I ship to any country currently engaged in a civil war."

According to a news release "Logitraxx is an open source design under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike 4.0 International License. Schematic and board drawing information will be provided at product release as well as sample code blocks driving similar types of sensors already widely popular with software-based systems."

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