Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 12

Thread: autnomous robot help

  1. autnomous robot help

    Hey guys,

    I was wondering if any of you had built an autonomous mech warfare bot. The reason I ask is for camera. Mech warfare recommends IP cmas over 2.4 GHz cams. However, In order to do image processing I was planning on using my laptop with OpenCV or Programmer. From this I would then send the commands back to the bot using Xbee's. However, I have yet to find a solid solution for getting the IP video feed to be compatible with OpenCV or Programmmer. Have any of you found a solution for this or found a 2.4GHz camera that will not disqualify you? Thanks.
    Last edited by mblackwolf; 10-12-2011 at 01:26 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    ಠ_ಠ
    Posts
    2,317
    Images
    27
    Rep Power
    285

    Re: autnomous robot help

    The Mech Warfare recommendation of using wireless IP cams is mostly for human controlled bots. If the laptop or embedded computer is not on the bot itself, it does not seem to me to be very autonomous. If I remember correctly, an older revision of Giger used a Gumstix for streaming a USB webcam to a laptop over wifi and the newest version uses a mini-ITX Atom board like the DARwIn-OP (streaming to humans and/or on-board processing for autonomy). A lot of USB webcams are pretty good at following the UVC specification and are thus compatible with the Video4Linux2 drivers which make it pretty easy to grab raw frames for processing. The DARwIn-OP uses a Logitech USB webcam that works quite well and their framework includes numerous helpful code examples for grabbing frames, streaming them, and even some algorithms for autonomous behavior. There are also low resolution cameras like the CMUCam2/3 and HaViMo2 that do all of the processing onboard, and you can use a low power controller (like an arbotiX, CM-5/510/700, or any other you want) to get the results and control the bots behavior.
    Last edited by tician; 10-12-2011 at 06:33 PM.
    Please pardon the pedantry... and the profanity... and the convoluted speech pattern...
    "You have failed me, Brain!"
    [git][mech][hack]
    gives free advice only on public threads

  3. Re: autnomous robot help

    Thanks. I eventually plan on doing on board processing. I am rather new to programming though other than the C++ class at took in college. I am good with labview and matlab so I know how to achieve tracking etc... now I am just trying to convert it to different languages. I have found openCV to be helpful with its commands and programmer has a openCV library. I am just new to microcontrollers so I am not good enough yet to code something like an arm that has the memory for onboard processing where as my arduino board doesn't there is so much info out there for programming MC's and no textbook like source I have found.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    ಠ_ಠ
    Posts
    2,317
    Images
    27
    Rep Power
    285

    Re: autnomous robot help

    There are x86 based Single Board Computers (SBCs) and Computer on Modules (COMs) available from various sources, so you don't necessarily have to try to figure out an ARM based system if you do not want. The Fit-PC2 is a rather popular choice, though maybe a bit expensive. The DARwIn-OP uses a lower power version of just the board (no metal case) with 1GB RAM and 4GB of FLASH memory soldered on it. Another example of the Fit-PC2 in use is this (for some strange reason, I can't help but grin when I see that image of Issy).

    There is an ARM (Cortex-M3) board under development by the Arduino folks, though I don't know if it would be very suitable for image processing. Then again, the HaViMo2 (low resolution system) uses just a camera sensor controller chip and an ATmega168 (same chip as used on many versions of the Arduino).
    Please pardon the pedantry... and the profanity... and the convoluted speech pattern...
    "You have failed me, Brain!"
    [git][mech][hack]
    gives free advice only on public threads

  5. Re: autnomous robot help

    Thanks for the help! I have seen single boards used but the ones you pointed out are great. a lot of the ones I have seen/ use at work are linux based. I really dont have much experience in linux and my colleagues typically handle it. One last thing about things like the Fit-PC2. Do you have to manually start the onboard code with the robot running. (i.e. open the programmer/C++ code and run it) or is there a way to configure it similar to microcontrollers where it will autorun the code upon start up.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    ಠ_ಠ
    Posts
    2,317
    Images
    27
    Rep Power
    285

    Re: autnomous robot help

    Linux really is not that difficult to get into. I do not often use the console except when I am compiling code for a project, and not much (if any) more often than I would if I were developing on a windows machine. The only console program I consistently use is aptitude, and that is purely because I like the interface more than the Synaptic package manager's GUI.

    Starting onboard code is simple enough to do with startup/autorun scripts within the operating system of your choice. Or you can control it over the onboard wifi, or bluetooth, or XBee, or a USB keyboard and a monitor, or anything else you can think of.

    As an example, our DARwIn-OP (running ubuntu linux mostly in headless mode - no monitor/keyboard/mouse) actually has to auto-connect/auto-login to a local infrastructure network (bypassing a javascript login web page using cURL to send the http POST sequence slightly customized for each user) and announce its DHCP assigned IP address using espeak (the wifi systems block smtp, among others) so that we can connect using SSH via wifi. From there we can use any wifi enabled device with ssh or other remote access program (even ultraVNC works decently over wifi) to send/receive/move/modify files and run programs.
    Please pardon the pedantry... and the profanity... and the convoluted speech pattern...
    "You have failed me, Brain!"
    [git][mech][hack]
    gives free advice only on public threads

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    3,198
    Images
    952
    Rep Power
    149

    Re: autnomous robot help

    My suggestion is to get a fully assembled, fully tested mech that can walk for 15 minutes straight under it's own power. Get yours guns fully mounted and tested. Get a wireless camera feed working and remotely pilot the robot around your house while practicing your aiming and piloting. Do this until your robot breaks. Analyze why it broke, do your best to fix it. Repeat until you're satisfied with the reliability of the robot.

    Then *start* thinking about adding autonomy. This will require a ton of research if you're new to programming. Honestly, I wouldn't even think of autonomy for a second until the above is completed, it's a waste of time.

  8. Re: autnomous robot help

    The reason I am thinking of autonomy is due to the fact as I have done a ton of tracking systems in my profession. The problem being most of them are done through simplier programs such as labview/matlab. I have used openCV which is a C++ library with similiar tools as matlab. I have algoriths written and running on my computer that can process and track images through a USB camera. From this it would simply be changing my code to turn turrets/give gait commands rather than move the actuators/motors I was using in previous systems. The autnomoy isn't of large concern as I have a lot of the processing work done. I was just concerned with the camera as I have yet to be able to port in IP camera data to the programs. I have used some 2.4GHz cams by taking the recievers video feed cables and using a videp-USB dongle to get it into the program.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    547
    Images
    107
    Rep Power
    50

    Re: autnomous robot help

    The point Tyberius was making is to get your platform debugged first. Otherwise you'll constantly have to fix unrelated problems while you'd rather be working on the autonomous stuff.

  10. Re: autnomous robot help

    Thanks for clarifying.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •