Go Back to handibot.com
sign up or log-in


Quick Bit App

Posted by rasbldrs 
Re: Quick Bit App
April 08, 2018 10:39AM
Thanks for providing more background to understand the macro programming tricks for the Handibot. I’m curious about your last statement: “until the PB command is available.”
I have been trying to understand how the macros are programmed and the OpenSBP Command language and in macro_2.sbp for the Handibot2 platform, I found a “PZ “ command (PZ, &reapproach, &ZZeroSearchSpeedSlow, $ZZeroInput) of which I have not been able to find any reference to.
I reviewed both the ShopBot Control Software Quick Reference Guide and the Command Reference for the ShopBot Control Software and OpenSBP ® Language (SBG00253150707CommandRefV3.doc) and found no “PZ” (nor “PX”,”PY”, “PB”) commands.
It will be great if you provide a lead to were is this P command documented?
Thanks in advance and best regards
Re: Quick Bit App
April 08, 2018 01:37PM

PZ is short for Probe-Z it was a command introduced in the 1.6.0 release of FabMo. The syntax is P(axis), distance to probe, speed to move at, input to look for

Unfortunately at the same time that this new command was introduced--the older command "ON INPUT" was eliminated. On input was a very useful logical command in SB3 which allowed you to execute any bit of code after a certain input achieved a certain status.

"ON INPUT (1,1) GOTO Finish
MZ, -5

means, run the following code until input #1 is closed (in other words: is set to "1"), then GOTO the "Finish" subroutine. You can also use ON INPUT (1,0) meaning that you'll be checking for when input #1 opens. A lot of creative stuff can be done this way.

The probing routines do not yet allow checking for a switch opening (unless you change the status of the switch to "active high" in config)--and it only appears to work in the X Y and Z axes.

After a lot of discussion with our software group, we've decided to reintroduce the ON INPUT command in the upcoming 1.7.0 release. The main argument from me was that the original quick-bit app relied on this ON INPUT command to function--and when it unexpectedly stops working, it can be pretty shocking--and there is no harm in having both routines available.

If you're curious to try the On Input command, you can go back to the 1.4.2 release--but of course, this release does not have the Probe commands active...so none of the new macros will work...
Re: Quick Bit App
April 08, 2018 07:31PM
Thanks for the thorough response Brian. It’s good to know that the FabMO SW is continually being developed, even at the cost of some mistakes that may cause some upsets. I appreciate your response and availability to inform the community.
For me there is no way back though, so I will wait for the 1.7.0 release to try the “ON INPUT” command.
Re: Quick Bit App
April 09, 2018 10:20AM
Oh there is definitely a lot more development to be done on the FabMo software. ShopBot has two developers that work on the project. They're trying to pull together all of the features necessary for a launch on the larger ShopBot tools (things like automatic tool changing, multiple spindle support...more industrial stuff). I try to just keep pestering them for features that I think would be helpful for my handibot customers. They're working very hard on it--and there have been some missteps for sure--but I think that we're making progress.

Trying out so much new technology on the Handibot V2 has been more challenging than anyone expected. We've been a bit let down by our choice of chip for the FabMo controller--the Intel Edison. Widespread adoption of the Edison never really materialized in the way that it has for other platforms like the raspberry pi or the beagle bone (other chips that we were considering). In fact, Intel has discontinued the Edison and we've only managed to continue production by buying up large quantities of their remaining inventory ahead of time.

The wifi has been the biggest issue--even with an antenna, the broadcast strength of the Edison is lacking. This becomes really obvious when you run the tool direct through a router (using an ethernet connection). I've got a couple of mini wifi routers that I've tried out--and when the signal is managed by the superior hardware of the routers, connections become much more reliable. There is the option of a hard connection to the tool over ethernet--but that kind of fails at the initial goal of a wireless tool.

My goal is to remind everyone working on the project that these are real tools out in the real world and people are relying on them. I'll continue to do everything I can to support them and will keep everyone informed about new features and performance improvements that become available.
Re: Quick Bit App
April 09, 2018 03:07PM
Thanks for sharing Shopbot plans and your reflections. I think the Handibot Community of users should be a useful way to test concepts to be tryied in a more fail tolerant environment than the Industrial one.
I think there are terrific contributors in this community and I’m sure Shopbot can get benefits form the insights, questions, requirements and developments of Handibot users. If the community were more active the feedback would greatly improve.
I can’t agree more that the Edison is not the way of the future and I would suggest that you turn to a platform like the Raspberry Pi which apart from the technical advantages, has a huge user base and an a worldwide extended community of users developing, trying and testing the most incredible applications. Although probably the Ethernet thing is not an issue for the Industrial machines, I think the RPi offers the best of both worlds (WiFi and Ethernet) in a simple and inexpensive platform. But I guess this is a subject for another topic.
Sorry, only registered users may post in this forum.