Teaching Interests

EBS 289K – Fall 2018 – CRN: 43325

Robotics, Smart Machines and the Internet of Things (IoT)

?? Are You Ready for the Internet of Things (IoT) ??

Illustration by wilgengebroed

It is currently estimated[1] that by the year 2020 there will be in excess of 5 billion smart devices (not counting smartphones) that are connected to the internet and that are used by people in their daily lives (from coffee makers to self-driving cars).

Course Description:  This course will investigate the inter-networking and operation of cyberphysical and smart mobile devices embedded with electronics, sensors, actuators, software and wireless network connectivity that exemplify the makeup of the modern Internet of Things (IoT).

Yoshikazu Tsuno/AFP/Getty Images A model displays a wristband device “Fitbit Flex” and a smartphone.  The Fitbit Flex monitors data through a pedometer, calorie consumption and hours of sleep and transfers the information to a smartphone to maintain the user’s health. YOSHIKAZU TSUNO/AFP/Getty Images

Goals:  The goals of this course are to allow students to gain technical competence in the theory and implementation of smart stationary and mobile devices (such as UGVs) embedded with electronics, sensors, actuators, software and that communicate via wireless network devices that are the fundamental basis of the modern Internet of Things (IoT).


  • Embedded controllers – moving beyond Arduino to multicore embedded controllers
  • Servomechanisms motors & stepper motors- the workhorse of modern mobile machines
  • Dead reckoning navigation – driving blind (literally)
  • Pulse-width modulation – digital control of an analog process
  • Quadrature controllers – tracking speed and direction
  • Autonomous self-driving robots – locomotion and control mechanisms
  • Sensor-based navigation – odometry, ultrasound, laser ranging, machine vision
  • State machines – real-time control of a multitasking robot or smart device
  • Wireless communication – remote sensing and control of connected devices
  • Closed-loop feedback control – controlling a Stirling engine with pulses of light.


[1]  Nordrum, A.  2016.  Popular Internet of Things Forecast of 50 Billion Devices by 2020 is Outdated.  http://spectrum.ieee.org/tech-talk/telecom/internet/popular-internet-of-things-forecast-of-50-billion-devices-by-2020-is-outdated


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