Okay, okay, time to get serious. What can I do with the LIDAR data?
Autonomous Car. That's popular these days.
With it's capabilities, the LIDAR I bought works best indoors. I will make an indoor rover. It wont necessarily do anything except roam the apartment but it should be fun to make and keep me busy at nights...
The idea is that a rover type bot will have a LIDAR scanner on top of it. It will use the data from the LIDAR to capture a scan of the room and then move to the furthest available distance which should be a wall or open area the scan couldn't reach. When it meets resistance, it should make a new scan and go towards the next furthest distance/wall. Something like that...still a work in progress.
Here's the stuff I'll use:
Next I need something to drive the motors. I've made my own motor controller in the past so I'm just gonna use this controller from Adafruit. It's meant for Arduino based C++ libraries but I can make the board work using C just like I did the SD card. It will just take time. It's nice and small and with individual h-bridges, it's spec to do the right job.
For power I'll use a 5-volt rechargable battery pack. 5000mAh.
I also bought a new type of IMU that will supposedly spit out Euler angles and acceleration rather than just raw 9-axis measurements. The BNO055. It makes my Senior Design Data Analysis look trivial, but that's what 6 years of improvements will get you. I know how complicated it can be to try and extract linear acceleration for a single vector using raw sensor data [accelerometer, gyroscope, magnetometer]. This thing does it for you.