There is plenty of off-piste action in the world of LEGO, after building your three bog standard instruction led creations the sets offer plenty more beside as is well illustrated here with one NXT’er managing a working sundial, accurate to within about fifteen minutes.
Using a combination of compass and light sensors together with three motors and about 270 other LEGO bits one Jim Kelly has managed this quite baffling build, we reckon he should put this project to paper and send off to the LEGO head honchos and secure himself a slot in their development lab.
When the machine is switched on the robotic sundial’s light sensor (black arm at the rear) conducts a sweep and sends the magnetic heading of where the most light was captured back to the attached PDA via Bluetooth.
The PDA then calculates what time it is, sends it back to the NXT module and then the adjustments are made to the clock face, highly convoluted yes, and rubbish when there’s cloud cover.
If you fancy busting up your NXT and having a bash then get yourself over to the Mindstorms blog.