Repurpose Your Robot

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As of 3/26/2014, we have discontinued sales and email support of the Brainlink controller. We will continue maintaining this site indefinitely. Brainlink can still be purchased at Surplus Shed.
Brainlink is a controller that allows you to create rich programs for toy robots and home automation. Programs run on computers or android phones linked to the Brainlink via Bluetooth. Brainlink then controls the robot or device using infrared signals, mimicking the signals of a device's remote control. Auxiliary connectors allow you to add new sensors and actuators to your robot or device. 


  • Capture and clone most IR remotes from robots, TVs, cable boxes, DVD players, etc.
  • Pre-created libraries for Java, Android-Java, and (coming soon) Processing 
  • Compatible with Windows, Mac, Linux, Android
  • Over a dozen example Android apps and computer programs
  • Auxiliary connectors feature 10 Digital I/O, 6 analog inputs, 2 PWM out, 2 DAC out, 1 additional TTL serial port
  • Bluetooth range of 30 feet
  • Built-in rechargeable battery
  • On-board light and accelerometer sensors
  • On-board buzzer and full-color LED
  • Open source and customizable firmware

What can you do with Brainlink?

Brainlink's capabilities open up hundreds of potential projects. Here's a small subset:

  • Create an Android App that uses object recognition and voice analysis to find you a beer - you'll probably need to place your phone on the robot to make this work well.
  • Use voice commands to control your TV.
  • Create a toy robot with a personality that changes over time based on how you interact with.
  • Use a toy robot as a base to add light, distance, vision, sound, and other sensors to. 
  • Make a TV-Off App.

Who's it for?

Though it's possible to use the pre-made apps to use Brainlink, to, for example, control most toy robots from an Android phone, we think that those who will fully enjoy Brainlink are hackers with an intermediate level of programming experience (if you've taken one high school or college CS class, you should have no trouble with it).