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The Hidden Advantages of Spike Prime over Robot Inventor

Did you know, the programming possibilities of the Spike Prime and Robot Inventor app are different? That’s right, as of right now, you actually get more functionality in the Spike Prime app. For instance, in the Robot Inventor app, the only gyroscope reading you’re able to get is the angle, and you don’t have a block for the angular velocity. The angle is calculated by integrating the angular velocity, so the robot is using a hidden angular velocity value that you’re unable to access in the robot inventor app.

This is where the Spike Prime app is a saving grace! The app has a block for the angular velocity in degrees per second! This is extremely useful for things like self balancing Segway robots, since you need to combine both the angular velocity and the angle into the PID controller. The hub’s angles are factory calibrated, and cannot be user reset. The hub has a problem in which degree count won’t go beyond 180 degrees, and will instead start counting from -180 degrees. When your hub is positioned between angle 180 and -180, it can be very frustrating, since negative numbers flip your code completely upside down. There’s a very easy solution to this, just get the angle from the angular velocity with the following code:

The Spike Prime app also has a very useful Raw Color block, which essentially gives you an accurate value of 0 – 255 for either red, green, or blue. This opens up a plethora of possibilities, since now the color sensor is able to detect much more colors than just eight.

You also get the acceleration block, gesture block, orientation block, and the set orientation block, which have a bunch of fun applications! Since the Spike Prime and the Robot inventor 51515 hubs are completely identical to each other with the exception of the color, both can be used with either programming app.

However, you need to update your hub’s firmware for the respective app, which is very easy. After plugging in the hub to your computer, both apps will give a firmware update window, and all you need to do is start the update. You need to activate “more sensors” in the spike prime app in order to gain access to these blocks.

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