I wanted to take a moment to thank all of the contributors here for inspiring me to pick up an old hobby and begin to port my "innner nerd" to the next generation.
I have been interested in and worked toword building homemade ROVs since '97. Strong flurrys of activity were followed by long periods of inactivity but as we all have experienced - life gets in the way. I started with hard wired solutions, migrated to Basic Stamps, and then to PIC microcontrollers but the proliferation of open source development programs via the web have really changed the landscape since I've spent much time on this puzzle. Being a mechanical guy I've had to work a little harder at this aspect than some others.
Recently I poured over more PDFs and e-Books (I was R-ingTFM) than I care to share with you and decided to pursue an Raspberry Pi based solution. I am proud to say that through the use of Node.js with Express, Socket.io & SerialPort add-ons (server) and Arduino based boards (Alamode & Uno R3) I've been able to turn on LEDs and actuate servos from any web browser. I've also used MJPG-Server to stream from a USB webCAM. This is fun.
Here's where the thanks are given - it was extremely cool to see the light come on for each of my kids when they saw this working. I can't think of a better use of time than inspiring them to begin to understand the possiblities of current technologies and give reasons to lift their noses out of Minecraft. Heh. Thanks for the inspiration and hopefully the beginning of a love for technology for 6 budding nerds (Brady Bunch) between the ages of 7 and 13.
John L Keahey, PE