Controlling a mobile robot with a personal digital assistant

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2 Scopus citations


Penn State Abington has been exploring the application of personal digital assistant (PDA) technology to the control of autonomous mobile robots. The PDA is an inexpensive, handheld computer that supports a wide range of mobile software applications, and features serial and infrared communication capabilities. Undergraduate students have participated in an applied research effort to develop PDA-controlled autonomous robots for several robot design competitions. One of the innovative aspects of the handheld-based robot is that the technology allows students to enter and modify software directly on the handheld computer. This feature is particularly useful in environments where conventional desktop and laptop computers are not conveniently available. This paper will describe the architecture of the robots and discuss the educational benefits of the handheld approach to mobile robot control.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9-13
Number of pages5
JournalComputers in Education Journal
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2002

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Computer Science
  • Education


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