October 2006

Monthly Archive

View from my living room

Posted by on 21 Oct 2006 | Tagged as: General

It’s been raining a lot here, and with all the house stuff, and it being
fall now, Betsie hasn’t been out much.

She is out now though! I wired out one of the trees and fixed the wire
where the utility people messed it up (they dug up the yard to run new
cable tv cables). Someone in a big green SUV is sitting in the middle
of the street watching her mow… at least, I think that’s what they’re

Rain Storms

Posted by on 11 Oct 2006 | Tagged as: General

It started raining here in Charlottesville and didn’t stop for 2 days. Many inches of water fell, maybe a record for this time of year. The creek that runs behind our house looked high enough to navigate, even 2 days later. Water was pouring out of the downspouts in rivers (except the back one, it must be clogged).

How did Betsie handle this? No major problems. The temporary cover I had set up for her charger and transmitter got flooded, but once dried out everything worked fine. I’m working on a better location for them, but she’s back to mowing away on the front lawn.

I set up wiring on the side lawn, but since we didn’t want too many wires crossing the driveway, this is a manual mow area, I have to carry her over there and start her. The area is so small though that I think it would be a waste of time to mow it automatically as a zone.

The back yard is mostly mud right now. Hopefully we can add some drainage, top soil, and more grass next year.

One thing that has been interesting… everyone compares Betsie to the Roomba. This is probably good news for iRobot if they ever do come out with a lawn mower… but for now, it makes the robot concept easier to grasp.

Safety, Strangers, and Company Concern

Posted by on 11 Oct 2006 | Tagged as: General

A conversation at the breakfast table this morning:
Me: Maybe Betsie should have a big flashing light on top that is lit when she’s On.
D: No, she should just run away from people she doesn’t recognize, so when she sees your dad coming she can just run away!

My dad’s leg is fine. A 1-inch gash on his shin, but he didn’t need stitches or anything that bad. It was definitely a case of human error/stupidity, and being unfamiliar with the operation of a tool.

Admittedly, I don’t always press the stop button before picking Betsie up, but I always carry her with the blade facing away from my body. She shuts off when lifted. Dad says he picked her up and started walking in one motion. The blade motor shut off after hitting his leg.

I received email from two people at Koyodo America, KA Home Robotics, concerned about my dad’s accident. They said he is the first injury they’ve come across in the US with a lawnbott, and are hoping to learn from it. A great attitude for a company!

“Fans” of this blog can always post a comment, or use the email address (just added) on the User Info page.

Don’t Pick Up A Running Lawnmower… even if she’s cute.

Posted by on 05 Oct 2006 | Tagged as: General

This is my dad’s shin. It’s all bandaged up because Betsie bit him.
He’s not very good around gadgets. He saw her out mowing, it was dewy,
it was starting to drizzle and he decided she should be put back in her
“dog house.” He didn’t know she had a wet grass sensor, a rain sensor.

Anyway, just because a lawnbott shuts off when you lift it up, don’t
think you can’t get hit by the blade. Always STOP the lawnbott first.
Or at the Very Least, pick her up with the blades facing Away from your

All moved in

Posted by on 04 Oct 2006 | Tagged as: General

Betsie is doing great now. My parents are visiting our new house, and mom has the flu or something, so my dad went out meeting the neighbors. He borrowed one’s lawn mower and cut down the last of the tall grass out front. Still didn’t get it as short as Betsie likes, but she’s working on it. 48% last night.

Need to get the cam working!

Craving4Green made free by Seven Jeans
Betsie Lawnbott