My definition is a very simple mouse which can
achieve a time, albeit a slow one, under competition conditions. My
mouse uses a PIC12F615. This device has 5 I/O pins and 1 input only pin.
1K words of flash programme memory and 64 bytes of RAM. The dynamic code has
been tried on a small 4x3 maze and performs well but is yet to be tried on a
full size maze. On a simulator, the navigation / maze solving code currently
achieves a time with about 80% of mazes. By this I mean it finds it's way to
the centre, knows how it got there, and is able to return to the start
cell by an optimised route and finally sprints back to the centre using the
same route, all in under the 10 minutes allowed by the rules. It is surprising
how often it's chosen route is that which would be found by flooding. When
dynamics are taken into account the it's optimised route is
occasionally the better.
I like the idea of a competition for minimal maze
solving mice since the costs in both time and money are minimal but the
intellectual challenge is worthwhile. Compared with a serious mouse it
is rather like doing the Times crossword over morning coffee as
opposed to designing the software to fly the Eurofighter. I
demonstrated an early version of the navigation / maze solving code at Minos a
few years ago but since no one else seemed interested in a competition for
minimal mice, mine spends most of it's time gathering dust. The original
target device was the PIC12C672 but since this is going slowly obsolete and
making the mouse work with all of 128 bytes of RAM was no longer a challenge,
I updated to the PIC12F615 when I last blew the dust off.
The idea for the competition was a timed run with
the time modified by a handicap dependant on the complexity of the hardware.
So a mouse using a PIC10F2XX to produce a very slow time will beat something
travelling at supersonic speeds with a Pentium. But do not ask me to think up
a handicap system, my last effort was not well received.
Any thoughts on a minimal maze solving mouse
PS I had partaken of a certain amount of alcohol before replying to the
emails re TIC and TID and apologise profusely for a rather feeble addition to
the debate. ( Should have been Tid and Tego.)
PPS Microchip have supported micromouse in the past, they might support a
"one make series" based on one of their devices such as the
PIC12F615, this could go international, but Duncan would not