Ryan Fillman's "Marker Board Plus"
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Marker Board Plus

The Marker Board Plus+ is a type of erasable plotter which can write, draw, and erase.  It works with two stepper motors that control the x-axis and the y-axis movements and two solenoids that control the z-axis movement of the marker and the eraser.  These motors and solenoids are interfaced to the computer so that a program, using Pascal, can control the movements.  The program itself consists of three separate parts.
The main section of the program is devoted to the ability to type the user’s sentence on the white marker board.  In this section, the user types a sentence and then has the option of cursive or print.  The program then controls the robot and performs the specified task.
The second section of the program consisis of predefined artwork and drawings that the user can choose.  Currently, these drawings will consist of The Simpsons and a number of drawings to represent programs that have been created in the past and ones that will be created before the end of the year.
The third section of the program consists of predefined mazes which will give the user a third thing to do with the plotter.  Once the maze is drawn out, the user will be able to interact with the computer and control which way to move next.  There is no backtracking, so if the user follows the wrong path, they  have to start back at the beginning.


The physical aspect of the project was created with old printer mechanisms and stepper motors extracted from unwanted printers.  The rest of the project was built from scratch with the use of wood and metals keeping in mind that aesthetics is the key.  The construction time period was about sixty hours split over five months.  This included removing the mechanisms from the printers all the way to the beginning of the bread boarding.  The current objectives of the project are to complete the software aspect of the project and finalize the program flawlessly with repeatability and accuracy.