I recently replayed the excellent Portal 2 by Valve. One of my favorite things in the game are the automatic robotic sentry turrets. The contrast of their cutesy voices with the fact that they fire machine guns at you on sight makes them a core part of the gallows humor present in the Portal series of games. As I played through the game, I realized that a lot of the voice cues trigger on events that are similar to another robot closer to home - the iRobot Roomba robotic vacuum cleaner. I decided I had to find a way to combine these two things!
Recently, I've been itching for a fun hardware project to work on. Part of that spark came when I was looking through some of my old college projects, in particular the Track Independent Train Mapping and Identification project that was the focus of the Embedded System Design course I took at Virginia Tech.