Webinars

Webinars are in-depth how-to videos on building and programming Dexter.
They are presented every Tuesday (software) and Thursday (hardware) at 5PM PST (8PM EST).
Browse https://zoom.us/j/819813474 to attend a webinar.
Assembling the Dexter Kit
These tutorials show you the step-by-step process for turning a Dexter Kit into a working robot. Each "build" webinar shows how to put together a Dexter sub-assembly.
Base Build
Recorded August 16, 2017.
Pivot Build
Recorded: August 24, 2017.
Arm Body Build
Recorded:August 31, 2017.
End Arm Hub Build
Recorded: September 7, 2017.
External Gear
Recorded: September 14, 2017.
The first glue stages to the External Gear assembly. We will be adding video to show attaching the External Gear to the Arm Body Assembly
Differential Build, Part 1.
Recorded: October 12, 2017.
Differential Build, Part 2
Recorded: October 12, 2017.
Programming in Dexter Development Environment
The high level control that most robot operators will need is constructed using Dexter Development Environment. DDE is a JavaScript based IDE with numerous extensions to help direct Dexter.
Intro to DDE
Recorded: August 15, 2017
Dexter Development Environment has an extensive help system. This Webinar describes the numerous facits of that help system so that you can teach yourself how to program in DDE.
Making Jobs
Recorded: August 29, 2017
A Job is the primary way to describe a process for building something. This webinar covers basic job building and running.
Human Instructions
Recorded: September 5, 2017
The core of a Job is its do_list of instructions. Some instructions are not meant to be carried out by a machine but rather its human operator. By packing these instructions just like machine instructions, we can more easily build processes where humans and machines cooperate to build something. This webinar tells you how to include such human instructions into a Job.
How to Think Like a Computer
Recorded:September 12, 2017
Central to constructing working code is understanding how the computer interprets your code. eval is the function in JavaScript that accepts a string of source code and "runs" it. By running "eval" in your head as you are reading code, you can know what the computer will do woth it. This is the core technique of understanding and debugging JavaScript source code. The best way to know what eval does is to know how to write eval. This webinar helps you understand how eval works by incrementally defining it in JavaScript.
Making Music
Recorded: October 2, 2017
DDE can send and receive MIDI events. To facilitate the sending of events, DDE has the Note class and a higher level Phrase class that have a number of "phrase processors" useful for constructing higher level scores based on combining Notes and Phrases into songs. DDE can also accept input from MIDI devices to control other processes.
show_window (and friends)
Recorded: October 10, 2017
DDE has a window system for helping you to construction Graphical User Interfaces (GUIs). This helps you connect presentation of the user interface and the values input by a user to other functions. The primary method to assist this is show_window. The show_window can be used outside of a Job. Human.show_window can be used within a Job like the other human instructions.
Debugging
Recorded: October 17, 2017
Debugging is time consuming, complex and necessary to get working programs. This webinar covers a multitude of techniques to get your programs (and Jobs) working.
Advanced Jobs
Recorded: October 26, 2017
Prerequisite: Webinar: Making Jobs.
Covers the different kinds of instructions you can put on a do_list:
  • Regular Instructions
  • Function definition
  • Arrays of instructions
  • Human.enter_number (See Webinar: Human Instructions for depth)
  • Generators
  • Robot.sync_point
  • Robot.send_to_job
  • Robot.suspend
  • Robot.go_to
Covers Job initialization parameters:
  • initial_instruction
  • user_data
  • when_stopped
Reliability via Testing
Recorded: October 31, 2017
Prerequisite: Knowing JavaScript syntax.
Starts with a discussion of managing more complex programs and their bugs.
Covers the details of using Dexter Development Environment's TestSuite system to help your code stay working.
Machine Vision with OpenCV
Recorded: Nov 7, 2017
Prerequisite: A bit of HTML and JavaScript.
DDE's use of opencv.js is presented through the examples on DDE's Insert menu/Machine Vision including:
  • color to black and white transformation
  • blur an image
  • blob detection for identifying objects
  • webcam interface