Cloud Robotics Hackathon 2013: Done!

So today is the day of the deadline and everything has actually come together quite nicely.

@tobypinder and I have been working on this separately since friday, using only the Internet to communicate (in the spirit of the Hackathon and all that). He did a great job with the web front end allowing us to carry out a test run with the robot transmitting live data this afternoon. There were a few hiccups with turn angles and things, but once they were ironed out, the results relatively good!

The room

It was actually quite hard to find a room in my house where the robot could get the GPRS signal required for connection to telemetry. Eventually I had to settle for a small room at the front of the house, with the GSM antenna on the windowsill.

So, this is a rough plan of the area (drawn by hand in ms paint, no time for CAD or anything fancy like that!)


The results

And this is what the robot saw:

Note the working graphs, pulled using the API from the Telemetron MyRobots page. We also set up alerts to give the robot a bit of personality (it gets a bit nervous when it’s too close to things).

Now, the output is by no means perfect, but we’re both chuffed to bits with it given the timeframe!

I will link the submission video on here as soon as Toby has finished compiling it!

Project summary

This is what we’ve achieved this week:

  • Converted a path-following table competition robot into an autonomous rover
  • Interfaced the robot with an automotive CAN-bus telemetry device
  • Written a web front-end to pull the robot data from the telemetry database, and interface with
  • Used the data from the database to generate a rough map of the surroundings (the M in SLAM)

Scope for further development

  • Using multiple robots in the same environment to contribute to a larger map
  • Using geo-location to locate the map in the real world
  • Comparing the map drawn with a known map to work out the robot’s location in the real world (the SLA in SLAM)

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