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BauerMECH
08-24-2008, 09:45 PM
I had to take a break from MECH fabricating last week. So instead, I worked on some control and targeting solutions form my bot. Heres the result...

http://forums.trossenrobotics.com/picture.php?albumid=29&pictureid=101
MECH Puppeteer CP (Combat Platform) Software

In regards to Robo-One wrestling and the like, this software would probably not be the best choice (it's not very efficient having to repeditively look back-and-forth between bot and monitor) but I chose the laptop as a form of control over a handheld controller since we're not going to be physically observing our bots in the area - rather through our bot's camera.

I've now got live video feed and successful two way communication (bluetooth serial) between my bot and laptop in one convenient location. There's also a full safety system implemented that will help ensure misfirings from occurring while people are in the vicinity. There's all sorts of support for goodies in this thing... gun firing, rocket launching, and flame throwing to name a few! :happy: There's still a little room for more... so we'll see where that goes.

Adrenalynn
08-25-2008, 12:29 AM
Holy COW! I hate you! That's BEAUTIFUL!!! It looks totally commercial-ready UI.

+Rep +ThreadRate

4mem8
08-25-2008, 02:24 AM
Brilliant, Brilliant, Brilliant, Brilliant. Where can I get it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! OOps I got carried away and did not notice the link, Will this only work with Robonova??

crabfu
08-25-2008, 02:27 AM
Wow that's really sweet Matt... you just need a 5 point harness & helmet now... beautiful!!!

-Crabfu

DresnerRobotics
08-25-2008, 06:39 AM
Holy crap man, I'm blown away. What language did you use to build that?

And when do we get to see your Mech? :D

Alex
08-25-2008, 08:55 AM
What?!? Dude, this is some amazing work! I'm with Ty, what language did you write this in?

scar3cr0w
08-25-2008, 10:17 AM
Rad!....Reminds me of the Gui from "Fallout"....That bunny skull guy looks a little post-apocalyptic as well :veryhappy:

BauerMECH
08-25-2008, 10:29 AM
Brilliant, Brilliant, Brilliant, Brilliant. Where can I get it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! OOps I got carried away and did not notice the link, Will this only work with Robonova??
I think what you found is the first release of MECH Puppeteer (v1.01b) for use w/ the MR-C3024. As far as being able to use it w/ other robots, I canít say. This new version (CP), however, is geared more towards our theme and isnít quite finished yet. This leaves it open for discussion of what could possibly be included (within reason of course as I have somewhat limited programming abilities).

What Iíll probably end up doing is setting up an ini file or something that the operator can use to define the output making it compatible w/ a wider range of bots.



Holy crap man, I'm blown away. What language did you use to build that?

Believe it or not, itís a VB6 app. I spent most of my time in Photoshop drawing controls. All the push-buttons illuminate when theyíre pressed, but I still think my favorites are the launch switches w/ the covers. :wink:


And when do we get to see your Mech? :D
I want to get the turret closer to being finished up before I do any unveiling.
Heís painted with mil-spec CARC green - so those of you thinking of using radar will have some trouble detecting this MECH :rolleyes:.

Hephaistos
08-25-2008, 12:39 PM
Nice work! Very cool application.

4mem8
08-25-2008, 01:58 PM
BauerMech: Thanks for your reply, I look on with interest as you progress with this, Awesome man. Great work.

ScuD
08-25-2008, 03:30 PM
Believe it or not, itís a VB6 app

HA!!!

This gives me back all hope I lost in ever being able to write a decent GUI in any language I have the slightest knowledge of. Thanks! :D


Absolutely awesome stuff btw, amazing piece of work!

sam
08-25-2008, 04:44 PM
looks great! do you have any videos of it working!

It's beautifull! Congratulations. + rep :tongue:

BauerMECH
08-25-2008, 09:46 PM
looks great! do you have any videos of it working!

It's beautifull! Congratulations. + rep :tongue:

Give me a few days and I'll whip something up :happy:

4mem8
08-26-2008, 12:36 AM
That will so so cool BauerMECH Thanks.

A-Bot
08-26-2008, 05:37 AM
Nice work. You definitely get style points for adding mech flavor to the UI. Fun stuff!

BauerMECH
08-29-2008, 08:06 AM
looks great! do you have any videos of it working!

It's beautifull! Congratulations. + rep :tongue:

Alright, the video is real rough and the app still has some work to be done to it, but you'll get the idea.


YouTube - MECH Puppeteer CP DEMO

...strange that it's "es.youtube". I'm in the US.

DresnerRobotics
08-29-2008, 08:16 AM
Very nice. Question for you- do you plan on interfacing with the GUI with more than just the mouse? I can't imagine it will be very easy to pilot a mech clicking buttons. Having proportional control of your aiming will be a big deal too.

BauerMECH
08-29-2008, 09:51 AM
Very nice. Question for you- do you plan on interfacing with the GUI with more than just the mouse? I can't imagine it will be very easy to pilot a mech clicking buttons. Having proportional control of your aiming will be a big deal too.

Ideally, a touch screen would be pretty nice. Having to switch your eyes back-and-forth from a monitor to combat arena was an issue I have run into before, but Iím not too concerned here as my focus will strictly be contained to the limited dimensions of a screen. To answer your question thoughÖ yes, there will be keyboard and gamepad support along-side the mouse input.
:wink: Remember, itís ultimately going to be dependant on how much practice we get with whatever interface we choose to use.

Adrenalynn
08-29-2008, 10:38 AM
Have you considered a Thrustmaster, like a HOTAS or similar?

srobot
08-29-2008, 03:59 PM
Very nice!

What did you write it in?

Edit - I love the "virtual safety"!

Adrenalynn
08-29-2008, 07:25 PM
This should answer your question:


Believe it or not, itís a VB6 app. I spent most of my time in Photoshop drawing controls.

4mem8
08-29-2008, 08:28 PM
Game pad or Thrustmaster would be cool. I have two CHK aircraft joysticks, One right for flight and one left for power,rudder and weapons, these would be cool also.

Adrenalynn
08-29-2008, 09:07 PM
I have the two stick thrustmaster which should be perfect.

indy007
08-30-2008, 08:04 AM
Have you considered a Thrustmaster, like a HOTAS or similar?

I have a full Thrustmaster COUGAR Hotas setup, with upgraded internals... been toying with a Falcon 4: AF simpit for awhile... but writing custom apps, been having a hell of a time getting all of the features to work. Mainly little annoyances, like a bunch of the hat switches only have 4 button numbers in code. I have no idea how to get the throttle side mouse style inputs to work. There's also a loss of precision. Mouse control has been way more accurate without some target locking :(

Adrenalynn
08-30-2008, 12:06 PM
I worked on a small part of the original Falcon's physics engine ooooh so many years ago. Still my favorite flight sim.

Most hat switches are what amount to digital joysticks - they're just four switches.

Loss of precision is "your fault", if you'll forgive the expression. DirectInput will scale the joystick over the range you give it, even if it's above the joystick's capabilities - it will still give it that precision, but will slow down the response because the stick has to travel further to make up the difference.

The idea looks like (not necessarily these specific values, but it's a place to start):



joystick.Properties.SetRange(
ParameterHow.ById,
myJoystick.ObjectId,
new InputRange(-7000,7000));


"throttle side mouse style inputs" - are you referring to T1, the little trackball? My Cougar HOTAS was stolen, and I have one of the cheaper Thrustmasters now, it doesn't have the trackball. Somewhere I have an FCS/TQS that has the trackball on it. Pointer to which you're referring to?

My cheaper Top Gun Afterburner version has nifty rudder controls on the throttle and the stick itself rotates for rudder control. It has fewer buttons (4 throttle +variable rudder, 5 stick and a high-hat). Seems like a really good input for Mech Wars because all those dials on the Cougar aren't really applicable for much that I can think of.

I also popped the safe cover off mine years ago... Got in the way, and I'm never not ready to fire missles. ;)

ScuD
08-30-2008, 12:39 PM
I also popped the safe cover off mine years ago... Got in the way, and I'm never not ready to fire missles.

See, that's one of those quotes that need to be put in a TRC quote list topic or something :veryhappy:

indy007
08-30-2008, 05:44 PM
I worked on a small part of the original Falcon's physics engine ooooh so many years ago. Still my favorite flight sim.


That rocks. The latest has tons of hardware support and data out. When I have room, I hope to eventually built a motion simpit. Wouldn't be hard to mount some phidgett controlled steppers on a pvc ez-rider frame for at least 2 dof.



Most hat switches are what amount to digital joysticks - they're just four switches.


Yeah I've come to realize that. That's why I just called it an annoyance :) Some show up as 8way, some show up as 4.



Loss of precision is "your fault",


We have different approaches :) I've played mouse based FPS games for 2 decades, done tournaments, played at high competition levels. My body is programmed to be far better at any point & click activity, which is what robotic pewpew is to me, with a plain optical mouse. Acquisition and accuracy is just 10 times faster for me that way. Downside is you can't control 2 weapons independently and simultaneously like that, can only toggle back and forth.



The idea looks like (not necessarily these specific values, but it's a place to start):



joystick.Properties.SetRange(
ParameterHow.ById,
myJoystick.ObjectId,
new InputRange(-7000,7000));
"throttle side mouse style inputs" - are you referring to T1, the little trackball? My Cougar HOTAS was stolen, and I have one of the cheaper Thrustmasters now, it doesn't have the trackball. Somewhere I have an FCS/TQS that has the trackball on it. Pointer to which you're referring to?


There's 2 things on the throttle, one is a little rubber nub with a button next to it. It's supposed to function as a mouse, but shows up as a 4way hat. There's another joystick type pushbutton with a disk shaped top that works the radar mfd cursor in falcon4. It doesn't seem to show up at all except for the pushbutton part of it. I think it's a driver issue, but it's on the backburner for now.




My cheaper Top Gun Afterburner version has nifty rudder controls on the throttle and the stick itself rotates for rudder control. It has fewer buttons (4 throttle +variable rudder, 5 stick and a high-hat).


The Cougar HOTAS has that, 2 paddles for your left ring and middle fingers to work rudder, but no twisty stick. I don't like the paddles personally, so I added CH pedals. Slidey action with toe brakes. I tried twisty sticks, but I have a habit of curling my wrist, so I'd inadvertantly hit the rudder in a fight, or even worse, fly at full rudder the entire time. Pedals solved that for me.



Seems like a really good input for Mech Wars because all those dials on the Cougar aren't really applicable for much that I can think of.

Rate of fire, digital zoom on cameras, servo rate if you have them loaded up heavily and are scared of inertia destroying them in testing like I was :) ... if it was a battlemech, use it to crouch perhaps? Get behind terrain, pop up to shoot, duck back down.... incrementally adjust your height to get just enough firing clearance for any gap in terrain. Tilt your guns up for indirect fire and use it to fine tune the range. Incrementally adjust the hopup on your barrel. You could center the knob, and set it to lean out left or right to make shots without exposing anything but the gun.

BauerMECH
09-02-2008, 12:30 PM
Rate of fire, digital zoom on cameras, servo rate if you have them loaded up heavily and are scared of inertia destroying them in testing like I was :) ... if it was a battlemech, use it to crouch perhaps? Get behind terrain, pop up to shoot, duck back down.... incrementally adjust your height to get just enough firing clearance for any gap in terrain. Tilt your guns up for indirect fire and use it to fine tune the range. Incrementally adjust the hopup on your barrel. You could center the knob, and set it to lean out left or right to make shots without exposing anything but the gun.

Too true! One can never posess too many buttons. :veryhappy:

Nocturnal
09-02-2008, 11:34 PM
Has anyone seen the Steel Battalion Controller (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Steel_Battalion_controllers.jpg)?

The left joystick only moves left and right, but the hat switch is analog, as are the joysticks and pedals. The gear shift and channel knob are digital.

4mem8
09-03-2008, 01:54 AM
Hey Nocturnal, good to see you here, That's a nice setup, What's the price tag on that?

majortom1001
09-03-2008, 02:39 AM
To Cool
Looks like under $200
Would love to have something like that only a little smaller.

Nocturnal
09-03-2008, 12:00 PM
$65US, plus $90US shipping to Australia. I'm working on adding linux support for it atm, running into a little trouble with the 39 buttons... the current joystick api doesn't have quite enough.

4mem8, I'm like a bad smell... I spread out.

Adrenalynn
09-03-2008, 12:08 PM
API's are made for ammending. :)

Welcome to the TRC, Nocturnal! Feel free to spread out all over - I took off the air filters for you here. :)

milw
09-03-2008, 05:03 PM
heh good buddy Nocturnal, good to hear from you Admiral!

4mem8
09-03-2008, 07:23 PM
Spread as much as you want Mr N, Your knowledge will enlighten us all.

Nocturnal
09-05-2008, 08:13 AM
Thanks for the welcome guys.


API's are made for ammending. :)

Not sure the kernel subsystems maintainers would agree with you, but fortunately I found a few extra buttons hiding behind the mouse buttons, so its all good.

ScuD
09-08-2008, 01:17 PM
I actually had a bid running on the steel batallion controllers on ebay, but then I went to Tunisia for a week's hard earned vacation and apparently lost the bid...

BauerMECH
09-12-2008, 08:14 PM
FIRE!

YouTube - MECH Weapon System 1

Okay, I've been messing around a little with my weapon system. This configuration can ultimately sport 4 individually triggered electronically powered weapons and targeting aids (motor driven, solenoid activated, laser dots, etc.). I could double-up for eight total, but I'd prefer to have some room left over for some sensor feedback. Here, I'm just demonstrating one airsoft cannon firing - triggered by the high/low state of an MR-C3024's A/D port.

DresnerRobotics
09-12-2008, 08:23 PM
Nice Matt!

I see you're teasing us with a slight shot of your Mech. Can't wait to see it in action!

BauerMECH
09-12-2008, 09:36 PM
I see you're teasing us with a slight shot of your Mech. Can't wait to see it in action!

Oh yeah... that's the little one. :wink:

asbrandsson
09-13-2008, 09:02 PM
FIRE!

http://es.youtube.com/watch?v=RRAvWcUKRzA

Okay, I've been messing around a little with my weapon system. This configuration can ultimately sport 4 individually triggered electronically powered weapons and targeting aids (motor driven, solenoid activated, laser dots, etc.). I could double-up for eight total, but I'd prefer to have some room left over for some sensor feedback. Here, I'm just demonstrating one airsoft cannon firing - triggered by the high/low state of an MR-C3024's A/D port.

Hello,

That looks like a lot of fun. It would be cool if you put touch sensors on the robonova to rester hits.

Asbrandsson

DresnerRobotics
09-13-2008, 09:34 PM
Hello,

That looks like a lot of fun. It would be cool if you put touch sensors on the robonova to rester hits.

Asbrandsson

That's sort of the idea ;)