July 22, 2016
5th ROS Meetup in Korea!

13615105_1132711223418255_6198262516585355074_n.jpg

Here's another piece of good news, the ROS community keeps spreading in Asia. Particularly in South Korea where ROSCon 2016 will happen. According to Yoonseok Pyo:

The 5th ROS Korea users seminar & meetup event was held on 16-17 July 2016 at Seoul National University, Korea. The ROS Meetup is designed for beginners of ROS. So we have a time that how to use the ROS such as SLAM and navigation using mobile robot, manipulation using manipulator and MoveIt!.

The first day, we learned the concepts of ROS and basic programming using ROS. The second day, we had a time that how to use the SLAM, Navigation and 'MoveIt!' using mobile robot and manipulator. We had an exciting time over the two days with ROS. https://github.com/robotpilot/ros-seminar

The schedule of the event:

[The first day 8 hours]

  • 01 Introduction to Robot Operating System (ROS)
  • 02 Hello World
  • 03 ROS Basic programming
  • 04 Various development tools of ROS (Command line tools, RViz, RQT)

[The second day 8 hours]

  • 05 Analysis of 8 years
  • 06 SLAM and navigation for mobile robot
  • 07 robot arm modeling and How to use the MoveIt!
  • 08 Three key features of ROS 2.0

For the past year, we have been an effort to expand the ROS in Korea and Japan. We love ROS, and we think that ROS is the future of robotics and will open the market in the service robotics area!

by Víctor Mayoral Vilches on July 22, 2016 01:01 PM

First ROS-Industrial Asia Pacific Workshop 2016

Submitted by: Nicholas Yeo, Technical Director, Advanced Remanufacturing and Technology Center, Singapore

We just conducted our first ROS-Industrial Asia Pacific Workshop to a sell-out crowd. ROS enthusiasts from academia, research institutes, and industry participated in the event. We hosted a 2-day event on 14-15 Jul 2016 at the Advanced Remanufacturing and Technology Centre and Nanyang Technological University.

Along with exciting presentations and demonstrations of ROS-I, speakers from the local and international region discussed ROS-I and related topics.

With this, we are announcing the launch of a ROS-Industrial Consortium for the Asia Pacific region. ROS-Industrial Consortium Asia Pacific (RIC Asia Pacific) joins similar organization in Europe and the Americas to expand the outreach of ROS-I. We hope this will be one of the many events and opportunities that RIC Asia Pacific can bring to industrial communities in Asia to support future use of ROS-I in robotic applications.

MOU Signing ceremony represented (from left): Prof Chen I-Ming (NTU-MAE), Paul Hvass (SWRI),  Dr. DavidLow (CEO, ARTC)

MOU Signing ceremony represented (from left): Prof Chen I-Ming (NTU-MAE), Paul Hvass (SWRI),  Dr. DavidLow (CEO, ARTC)

ROS-I Consortium Managers (from left) -Mirko Bordignon (Fraunhofer IPA), Nicholas Yeo (ARTC), Paul Hvass (SwRI)

ROS-I Consortium Managers (from left) -Mirko Bordignon (Fraunhofer IPA), Nicholas Yeo (ARTC), Paul Hvass (SwRI)

by Paul Hvass on July 22, 2016 11:30 AM

July 14, 2016
Qt Creator IDE Plug-in for ROS

From Paul Hvass @ROS-Industrial

The ROS Qt Creator Plug-in is developed specifically for ROS to increase a developers' efficiency by simplifying tasks and creating a centralized location for ROS tools. Since it is built on top of the Qt Creator platform, users have access to all of its existing features like: syntax highlighting, editors (C++ , Python, etc.), code completion, version control (Git, Subversion, etc.), debuggers (GDB, CDB, LLDB, etc.), and much more

The ROS Qt Creator Plug-in provides the following capabilities:

  • Import/Create Catkin Workspaces
  • Create Catkin Packages
  • Custom Build and Run Configuration

    • catkin_make (Debug, Release, Release with Debug Info, Minimum Size Release)
    • roslaunch
    • rosrun
    • sourcing workspace
      Note: The Qt Creator Plug-in supports multiple configurations to enable quick switching between configurations, and everything is saved
  • Integrated Tabbed Terminal

  • Templates
    • Industrial Robot Support Package
    • Basic Launch File
    • Basic URDF File
    • Basic Node File
      Note: Users may create custom templates.

Check out two videos. The first is a short overview of the Qt Creator and its default capabilities. The second video is an overview of the ROS Qt Creator Plug-in developed by Levi Armstrong from Southwest Research Institute. It concludes with an invitation for other to begin using the plug-in for ROS development.


by Shawn Schaerer on July 14, 2016 04:13 PM

July 12, 2016
RIC-EU Annual Newsletter - June 2016

It is with great pleasure that I announce the public availability of the latest edition of the RIC-EU newsletter. Many thanks to all contributors!

by Mirko Bordignon on July 12, 2016 04:08 PM

July 11, 2016
ROS Summer School in China 2016, July 22-28

ros-china-summer-school.png

In 2015, the East China Normal University organized the first ROS summer school in China, Shanghai, providing a quick and in-depth learning opportunity for both ROS beginners and advanced ROS users. Now in 2016 the event is happening and we're happy to present the ROS Summer School in China 2016 sponsored by East China Normal University in Shanghai.

According to the organizers:

Robot companies in China have realized the importance of ROS and began building their robot products using the meta operating system. However, learning the ROS framework and its associated components involves a quite a few multidisciplinary concepts, which not only requires developers to have software programming skills, but also to be familiar with robot hardware and even understanding the background of specific industrial applications.

Below is the outline of the program.

  • Day 1. Academic research talks and tutorials.
  • Day 2. Representatives from industry share their experiences on application development using ROS.
  • Day 3. Some introductory ROS courses for beginners.
  • Day 4. Learning how to integrate ROS with mobile autonomous robots.
  • Day 5. Some advanced topics in ROS.
  • Day 6. The topic in computer vision.
  • Day 7. Lectures in SLAM.

ROS training is something we all should be interested in and it seems to be pretty hot in China recently. The fact that the Robot Operating System gains adepts benefits us all so if you happen to be in Shanghai this July, register for the event and stop by the East China Normal University to learn more about ROS!

by Víctor Mayoral Vilches on July 11, 2016 10:22 PM

The ROS workshop at M-CAIT 2016 - in Hatten Hotel, Malacca, Malaysia on 23rd August 2016

From Mohammad Salameh

mcait_flyer.jpg

ROBOT OPERATING SYSTEM (ROS) WORKSHOP

Recently, ROS (Robot Operating System) has been increasing in popularity around the world and rapidly becoming a de facto standard for writing interoperable and reusable robot software. It provides libraries and tools to help software developers and researchers create robot applications. ROS is being used for many of the world's most exciting and capable robots, such as in industry and entertainment. Besides, developers can learn and gain access freely to the comprehensive developer community and support forum.

The ROS workshop at M-CAIT 2016 will primarily talks participants how to use ROS in their robotics research and development works. Both simulation and with real robot namely Turtlebot will be used to gain some hands-on experience on the ROS. The workshop is designed for beginners and professionals providing basic and intermediate concepts of how the ROS works such as autonomous robot navigation for SLAM, visualization and programming. Thus in this case no previous research or ROS experience is required.

AUDIENCE

Academics, research students and engineers at all levels who wish to learn about Robotics Operating System (ROS). Students and researchers involve in computer vision, controlling system and robotics especially in autonomous navigation, will find this workshop helpful.

WORKSHOP SCHEDULE

  1. Introduction and overview to ROS
  2. Using ROS simulation
  3. Using ROS on Turtlebot for SLAM
  4. Understanding ROS programming framework

WORKSHOP REQUIREMENTS AND MATERIALS

This is a hands-on robotics workshop focusing from the basic to intermediate ROS levels. Participants will get presentation slides, ROS software and its tools.

PRE-REQUISITES

The audience is expected to bring a notebook and 8GB USB flash drive for hands-on experience.

In order to make the most of your time at M-CAIT 2016 ROS workshop, it is necessary to come to the sessions prepared and ready to start. Please download the following software or information:

However, everyone should feel welcome to attend regardless of whether or not they have ROS installed for themselves.

For Registration and payment Click Here

by Tully Foote on July 11, 2016 05:45 AM

July 08, 2016
Automatica 2016 shows that Industry 4.0 and collaborative robots are the next step

PAL Robotics was at the biggest fair in automation and mechatronics in Europe: Automatica 2016. Automatica 2016 confirmed that the future of the industry has undoubtedly collaborative robots in it, and that Industry 4.0 is a revolution which will provide employees with a robotic assistance at their jobs to improve the safety and quality of their work. This is one of the reasons why professional service robots were highlighted at Automatica 2016.

The collaborative robot TIAGo is prepared for working side by side with humans, as a team. The person will analyze, perform and reflect on the activities that require of human intelligence. To complete the industrial process, the person will control the robot, which will assume all the repetitive, dangerous and heavy tasks. TIAGo demonstrated manipulation, navigation and perception skills through different demos that were open to all Automatica 2016 attendees.

TIAGo PAL Robotics Automatica 2016

Optimizing stock in retail stores with StockBot

Robotics is not only helpful for the industrial sector: it opens a broader range of possibilities. PAL Robotics also brought StockBot at Automatica 2016, a robot that saves time and efforts while optimizing stock control in retail industry. StockBot combines autonomous navigation and obstacle avoidance with RFID technology to take daily inventory in stores. The robot took live inventory in the Service Robots demonstration park, where the results could be tracked in a screen showing a map updated in real time with the spatial location of the products.

Thanks for coming and making a great Automatica 2016!

Automatica 2016 broke all records of participation during this edition. More than 45,000 attendees could discover the latest innovations in automation and industry. PAL Robotics’ team wants to thank everyone who came to visit us at Automatica 2016, and hopes they enjoyed interacting with TIAGo and watching StockBot’s performance.

PAL Robotics Automatica 2016 Team

The post Automatica 2016 shows that Industry 4.0 and collaborative robots are the next step appeared first on PAL Robotics Blog.

by Judith Viladomat on July 08, 2016 03:00 PM

ROS Platforms Survey

We are interested in knowing which hardware platforms are the favorite ones to run ROS so we'd like to ask a few minutes of your time to fill the following survey. We'll be sharing the results once it's closed. Thanks for your collaboration!

Click here to take the survey.

by Tully Foote on July 08, 2016 12:00 AM

July 07, 2016
Tend.ai: World's first robotic controlled 3D printing solution

From Mark Siliman

Robotic startup Tend.ai, which just came out of stealth mode today successfully built the world's first fully automated 3D printing system controlled by cloud robots.

One robot fully automates ten 3D printers in the video. The prints are boxed and pushed down a conveyor belt. Any 3D printer can be used, and Tend.ai's artificial intelligence "reads" (OCR) the printers' displays as well as pushes the buttons just like a human would.

Tend.ai allows you to train, control and monitor most collaborative robots from any device (e.g. your mobile phone) without any technical expertise. Tend.ai automatically monitors the state of all machines and optimally executes them.

Tend.ai utilizes ROS in the cloud to control, train and monitor suites of robots from any device. Thanks to cloud computing, standard webcams (< $100) can be used for the vision system.

Tend.ai can tend most machines without any modification or networking.

by Tully Foote on July 07, 2016 06:46 PM

ROSCon 2016 Registration open; proposal deadline extended

We're happy to announce that registration for ROSCon is now open! Register here: https://events.osrfoundation.org/roscon-2016-registration

We're looking forward to a great event in Seoul. We have updated the website with more information about the venue, including childcare options:

http://roscon.ros.org/2016/#location

Questions or requests can be sent to the organizing committee:

roscon-2016-oc@osrfoundation.org.

In response to multiple requests for extra time to submit ROSCon proposals, we will keep the submission period open over the weekend until midnight California time (UTC-7) on Monday July 11th. Be sure to submit your proposal(s) before the deadline:

http://roscon.ros.org/review/

As a reminder, ROSCon is happening in Seoul immediately prior to IROS, which will be held in nearby Daejeon.

We can't put on ROSCon without the support of our generous sponsors, who now include ROBOTIS:

http://roscon.ros.org/2016/#sponsors

We'd like to especially thank our Platinum and Gold Sponsors: Fetch Robotics, Clearpath, Intel, ROBOTIS, ROS-Industrial Consortium / Southwest Research Institute, and Yujin Robot.

by Tully Foote on July 07, 2016 02:13 AM

July 04, 2016
Team Delft's ROS-I powered entry wins the APC 2016

We are happy to announce that Team Delft, a team of scientists and engineers from the TU Delft Robotics Institute and Delft Robotics, won the 2016 edition of the Amazon Picking Challenge which has just been held in Leipzig, Germany. The challenge, which you can read about here, aims to automate the "first and last miles of logistics". The task challenged robots to pick objects from containers and put them on shelves (the "stow task") and to pick objects from stocked shelves and put them into containers (the "pick task"). The variety of the objects and the unstructured environment still make this a considerably difficult task.

Calibrating the system
Calibrating the system Picking the dumbbell
Picking the dumbbell

More information is available on RoboValley's announcement of the victory. Stay tuned for more in-depth posts going over the technical details of this ROS-Industrial success story!

by Mirko Bordignon on July 04, 2016 06:07 PM

July 01, 2016
Easy Teaching Operation for NEXTAGE Open by MoveIt! Joystick
(From TORK blog)

One of good news about ROS community is that the maintenance of MoveIt! got revitalized where TORK is contributing to as well. In 2016 there has already been three binary update releases so far. No more building from source if you were forced to!
We’ve mentioned about MoveIt! a few times recently ([1][2]), so do we today again. With the version 0.7.2 (on ROS Indigo), you can operate robot arms by joystick via MoveIt!



Running the feature is as simple as joystick. On RViz on the host where the joystick is plugged, check “Planning” tab –> “AllowExternalExecution” (see the image below).
Then run a launch file, either the one in your XXXX_moveit_config package if there’s already the aforementioned launch file, or simply make a launch file with the following:

<!-- https://github.com/ros-planning/moveit_setup_assistant/pull/90 -->
<launch>
<arg name="dev" default="/dev/input/js0" />

<!-- Launch joy node -->
<node pkg="joy" type="joy_node" name="joy">
<param name="dev" value="$(arg dev)" /> <!-- Customize this to match the location your joystick is plugged in on-->
<param name="deadzone" value="0.2" />
<param name="autorepeat_rate" value="40" />
<param name="coalesce_interval" value="0.025" />
</node>

<!-- Launch python interface -->
<node pkg="moveit_ros_visualization" type="moveit_joy.py" output="screen" name="moveit_joy"/>
</launch>
 
For the detail follow the usage page.
To run on NEXTAGE Open, make sure MoveIt! is running then run a single command below (modify jsX). You can also refer to wiki for joystick usage for NEXTAGE Open.

roslaunch nextage_moveit_config joystick_control.launch dev:=/dev/input/js1


(At the top window, the human operator plans the movement on RViz visualizer. Once the plan looks good then operator executes the plan so that the simulated robot in the bottom window conducts the movement. This is a screen capture so joystick isn't invisible, but yes, all the robot's movement is commanded from a Sony PS3 joystick.)

by Isaac Saito (noreply@blogger.com) on July 01, 2016 11:25 PM

Michael Ferguson (Fetch Robotics): Accelerating Your Robotics Startup with ROS

From OSRF

Michael Ferguson spent a year as a software engineer at Willow Garage, helping rewrite the ROS calibration system, among other projects. In 2013, he co-founded Unbounded Robotics, and is currently the CTO of Fetch Robotics. At Fetch, Michael is one of the primary people responsible for making sure that Fetch's robots reliably fetch things. Mike's ROSCon talk is about how to effectively use ROS as an integral part of your robotics business, including best practices, potential issues to avoid, and how you should handle open source and intellectual property.

Because of how ROS works, much of your software development (commercial or otherwise) is dependent on many external packages. These packages are constantly being changed for the better -- and sometimes for the worse -- at unpredictable intervals that are completely out of your control. Using continuous integration, consisting of systems that can handle automated builds, testing, and deployment, can help you catch new problems as early as possible. Michael also shares that a useful way to avoid new problems is to not immediately switch over to new software as soon as they are available: instead, stick with long-term support releases, such as Ubuntu 14.04 and ROS Indigo.

While the foundation of ROS is built on open source, using ROS doesn't mean that all of the software magic that you create for your robotics company has to be given away for free. ROS supports many different kinds of licenses, some of which your lawyers will be more happy with than others, but there are enough options with enough flexibility that it doesn't have to be an issue. Using Fetch Robotics as an example, Mike discusses what components of ROS his company uses in their commercial products, including ROS Navigation and MoveIt. With these established packages as a base, Fetch was able to quickly put together operational demos, and then iterate on an operating platform by developing custom plugins optimized for their specific use cases.

When considering how to use ROS as part of your company, it's important to look closely at the packages you decide to incorporate, to make sure that they have a friendly license, good documentation, recent updates, built-in tests, and a standardized interface. Keeping track of all of this will make your startup life easier in the long run. As long as you're careful, relying on ROS can make your company more agile, more productive, and ready to make a whole bunch of money off of the future of robotics.

Next up: Ryan Gariepy (Clearpath Robotics)

by Tully Foote on July 01, 2016 08:47 PM

RIC-Americas Meeting Recap (Part 2)

This post features Part 2 of our March RIC-Americas Meeting Recap. Click here to read Part 1, which is about the demonstration day.

In March, more than 50 attendees from 32 organizations attended the RIC-Americas annual meeting. During the meeting, we learned about progress during the past year, and heard from speakers including Morgan Quigley (OSRF), RIC-EU Program Manager Bordignon (Fraunhofer IPA), Nicholas Yeo Chang Yee (ARTC), and Erik Nieves (fmr. Yaskawa and now PlusOne Robotics).

Attendees of the RIC-Americas Meeting.

Attendees of the RIC-Americas Meeting.

Quigley provided an update on the progress of ROS 2.0 and presented the latest data on the performance of the real time capabilities, which includes improved performance of micro second level dither, even with some network congestion.

Bordignon inspired the audience with his presentation of the philosophy and progress of ROS software usage for industrial robotics in Europe, including a number of deployed or productized applications.

Yee shared a look into the modern and flourishing R&D capabilities for remanufacturing at ARTC, which is part of A*STAR in Singapore, and presented ARTC’s vision to launch RIC-Asia Pacific.

Nieves kept us guessing with a riveting story of his personal journey to embrace ROS as a representative of a major robot OEM, and then his venture into the world of supervised autonomy with his startup company PlusOne Robotics.

The attendees broke into four groups for roadmapping activities in a round robin fashion on four topics: motion planning, ease of use, hardware interfaces/interoperability, and ROS core. Five upcoming Focused Technical Projects (FTP):

  • Robotic Blending Milestone 4: Closing the Loop
  • Scan-N-Plan for X: A generalized framework for CAD-free
    high mix part processing
  • CAD-to-ROS Milestone 4: Calibration GUI
  • 6 DOF Slicer Milestone 2
  • NIST Agile Robotics for Industrial Automation Competition
    (ARIAC)

The meeting generated momentum for the coming international expansion. Thanks to our members for your support and collaboration, and a special thanks to the emerging RIC-Asia Pacific for joining us.

Permalink

by Paul Hvass on July 01, 2016 06:20 PM

June 28, 2016
ROSCon 2016: Proposal deadline July 8th and venue information

With just over 3 months to go before ROSCon 2016, we have some important announcements:

We can't put on ROSCon without the support of our generous sponsors, who now include Clearpath Robotics, Southwest Research Institute, GaiTech, and ARM! http://roscon.ros.org/2016/#sponsors

We'd like to especially thank our Platinum and Gold Sponsors: Fetch Robotics, Clearpath Robotics, Intel, Southwest Research Institute, and Yujin Robot.

by Tully Foote on June 28, 2016 10:32 PM

June 24, 2016
Investigating unexplored region while making a map (frontier_exploration with Turtlebot)
(From TORK blog)

When making a map using ROS, you’re likely tele-operating your robot for every single move via keyboard or joystick at best. But I know a demand exists for “planning” in advance a region that robot explores to make a map.

That’s where a package called frontier_exploration gets useful; it provides ROS actionlib interface, through which users can send the location to explore. We just made a sample using Turtlebot to show how to integrate frontier_exploration package into your own robot. Resulted package can be seen at turtlebot_samples. As the following movie (It’s long! You’re warned…) shows, you can run by a single command Gazebo simulator, spawn Turtlebot on a sample map and send a command for the exploration.



You set the region to be visited by drawing a polygon on RViz, then after clicking a point within the polygon robot will move. Once it starts moving user isn’t sending anything (robot moves autonomously to the given goal along the computed path).

Shorter video is also available (it’s not Turtlebot. Video was taken by the original developer of the frontier_exploration package)




In these videos the robot is commanded manually on RViz window. You can also send commands programmatically using its API.

So far we confirmed that frontier_exploration can be applied to the robots with gmapping and move_base (incorporating with other navigation packages may be as simple?).

by Isaac Saito (noreply@blogger.com) on June 24, 2016 06:53 PM

Moritz Tenorth (Magazino): Maru and Toru -- Item-Specific Logistics Solutions Based on ROS

From OSRF

It's not sexy, but the next big thing for robots is starting to look like warehouse logistics. The potential market is huge, and a number of startups are developing mobile platforms to automate dull and tedious order fulfillment tasks. Transporting products is just one problem worth solving: picking those products off of shelves is another. Magazino is a German startup that's developing a robot called Toru that can grasp individual objects off of warehouse shelves, a particularly tricky task that Magazino is tackling with ROS.

Moritz Tenorth is Head of Software Development at Magazino. In his ROSCon talk, Moritz describes Magazino's Toru as "a mobile pick and place robot that works together with humans in a shared environment," which is exactly what you'd want in an e-commerce warehouse. The reason that picking is a hard problem, as Moritz explains, is perception coupled with dynamic environments and high uncertainty: if you want a robot that can pick a wide range of objects, it needs to be able to flexibly understand and react to its environment; something that robots are notoriously bad at. ROS is particularly well suited to this, since it's easy to intelligently integrate as much sensing as you need into your platform.

Magazino's experience building and deploying their robots has given them a unique perspective on warehouse commercialization with ROS. For example, databases and persistent storage are crucial (as opposed to a focus on runtime), and real-time control turns out to be less important than being able to quickly and easily develop planning algorithms and reducing system complexity. Software components in the ROS ecosystem can vary wildly in quality and upkeep, although ROS-Industrial is working hard to develop code quality metrics. Magazino is also working on remote support and analysis tools, and trying to determine how much communication is required in a multi-robot system, which native ROS isn't very good at.

Even with those (few) constructive criticisms in mind, Magazino says that ROS is a fantastic way to quickly iterate on both software and hardware in parallel, especially when combined with 3D printed prototypes for testing. Most importantly, Magazino feels comfortable with ROS: it has a familiar workflow, versatile build system, flexible development architecture, robust community that makes hiring a cinch, and it's still (somehow) easy to use.

Next up: Michael Ferguson (Fetch Robotics)

by Tully Foote on June 24, 2016 05:55 PM

June 23, 2016
A full house for project "Spark", a spotlight ROS promotion activity in China

From NXROBO and ExBot Robotics Lab:

"Spark" is a series of ROS courses co-organized by NXROBO and Exbot Robotics Lab in order to promote the ROS and robotics in China.

The first "Spark-8" course had 8 basic lessons to help fresh-hands learn ROS step by step, while the complete "Spark-20" course had 20 lessons, from basic ROS programming skills to advanced applications such as simulation, SLAM, navigation and so on.

After months of preparation, the project started on the 5th of March, at the Open Source Maker Space in Shenzhen, China. A second session of the project was kicked off on May 21st, at ShenZhen University. Future sessions are expected to be hold in Beijing, Shanghai, Xian, Wuhan.

project-spark-capture-1.png

"Practical and effective" was the main topic of the project. NXROBO and Exbot tried to emphasize the combination of the theory and the practice in a learning-by-doing approach: They took a concrete robot as the model, simulated a real R&D scene, provided first-hand experience of the robotics R&D process, solved the practical problems effectively which ROS amateurs confront. The other distinguishing feature of the Spark Robot Club was a technology exchange platform which gathered top talents of ROS users with practical experience.

The "Spark" initiative became a hot topic in the chinese robotics industry once launched which was beyond expectation. More than 300 people joined the "Spark Robot Club" and the number still keep increasing, from newbies to a savvy specialists. There are members who even came to participate in the event from distant regions in China, including Beijing, Ningbo, Hunan or Guangzhou.

Dr. Tin-Lun Lam (CEO of NXROBO) acted as the tutor of the first course. He has more than ten years of R&D experience in the field of robotics and his exhaustive R&D projects including telepresence robot, tree-climbing robot, four-wheel independent steering and driving vehicle, unmanned sea surface vehicle, 6-axis industrial robotic arm and rescue robot.

project-spark-capture-2.png

In the workshop, Dr. Lam gave an introduction of ROS, its background and development, the design idea and the core concepts. On the other side, Dr. Lam demonstrated the communication mechanism of ROS by accomplish practical operations, gave an in-depth explanation of the basic topic/service of ROS communication layer model and a navigation application on a real robot. In the after-course exchange, Dr. Lam shared his experiences and ideas with the trainees and specialists.

project-spark-capture-3.png

On May 21st, the second open course was held in the auditorium of science building at the University of Shenzhen. Generally, the situation of the robotics education in chinese colleges is fairly harsh and the course materials are rarely updated. Furthermore, courses do not generally involve real robots to assist in the teaching/learning process therefore, NXROBO and ExBot put months into coming up with a ROS training that addressed all these issues.

While highlighting the theoretical aspects, they emphasized the concrete object demonstration to solve the practical problems of the ROS amateurs.

project-spark-capture-4.png

More open courses will be held by NXROBO and ExBot in different regions separately. NXROBO is looking for those who would like to devote themselves to the robot industry to act as tutors, help ROS gain ground among chinese robot amateurs and ultimately promote the development of robot technology.

More information about "Spark" and organizers:

by Víctor Mayoral Vilches on June 23, 2016 08:01 AM

June 22, 2016
Shadow Robot - looking for a new Software Engineer

Job description The role of software engineers at Shadow Robot Ltd is to advance robotic systems, by implementing new solutions and algorithms, in order to realize complex tasks with a complex robots. Think about all the knowledge and skills a human requires to lift a simple glass of water, and try to imagine how you'd implement that with a highly sophisticated robotic system.

Should you join our team your job would center on solving real world problems using robotics. We work on highly challenging and stimulating problems to deliver new solutions using advanced robotic systems. The job is quite versatile, ranging from driver development, to more high level cognition. Being part of a team of highly skilled individuals, we always strive to make you work on what you're best at.

Overall your goal will be making our robotic systems more reliable and easier to use for our customers.

Company We're a small central London based company formed in 1987 with a well established reputation for developing top end robotic systems. Our core product is our robotic Hand, but we're also involved in a list of Robotics based projects for research, nuclear, MOD, space and other applications.

We're a close knit team, all passionate about robotics and will be happy to share our knowledge in different domains, ranging from electronics to manufacturing.

Shadow's mission is to use robotics technology to solve real-world problems.

Skills:

Must have:

  • highly proficient in C++ or python
  • good knowledge of programming under Linux

Nice to have:

  • previous experience or keen interest in robotics
  • previous experience using ROS

Experience:

  • minimum 2 years programming experience.

Contact toni@shadowrobot.com www.shadowrobot.com

by Ugo Cupcic on June 22, 2016 08:06 PM

Middlesex University intro to ROS summer school

From Nick Weldin

Middlesex University is running a one week Intro to ROS summer school 4 - 8 July in London, UK.

This is a practical introductory course in ROS, we will cover what ROS is, the way it works, and how you use it to control robots. We will start with the basic command line tools to get ROS running, and checking whats going on.

You will will learn how to use turtlebots to make maps and autonomously navigate around them. We will look at the basics of the Baxter Robot and how what you have learnt about ROS with one robot can be immediately applied to a very different robot.

We will cover the basics about writing code to work with ROS, and look at using simulation so you can carry on working on things once the course is finished and you may not have immediate access to a robot.

More details are available at http://www.mdx.ac.uk/courses/summer-school/courses/introduction-to-robot-operating-system

by Tully Foote on June 22, 2016 06:24 AM

June 20, 2016
Invitation to the ROS-Industrial Asia Pacific Workshop
Click the image to download the PDF document

Click the image to download the PDF document

by Paul Hvass on June 20, 2016 04:24 PM

June 17, 2016
Tom Moore: Working with the Robot Localization Package

From OSRF

Clearpath Robotics is best known for building yellow and black robots that are the research platforms you'd build for yourself; that is, if it wasn't much easier to just get them from Clearpath Robotics. All of their robots run ROS, and Clearpath has been heavily involved in the ROS community for years. Now with Locus Robotics, Tom Moore spent seven months as an autonomy developer at Clearpath. He is the author and maintainer of the robot_localization ROS package, and gave a presentation about it at ROSCon 2015.

robotlocalization is a general purpose state estimation package that's used to give you (and your robot) an accurate sense of where it is and what it's doing, based on input from as many sensors as you want. The more sensors that you're able to use for a state estimate, the better that estimate is going to be, especially if you're dealing with real-worldish things like unreliable GPS or hardware that flakes out on you from time to time. robotlocalization has been specifically designed to be able to handle cases like these, in an easy to use and highly customizable way. It has state estimation in 3D space, gives you per-sensor message control, allows for an unlimited number of sensors (just in case you have 42 IMUs and nothing better to do), and more.

Tom's ROSCon talk takes us through some typical use cases for robot_localization, describes where the package fits in with the ROS navigation stack, explains how to prepare your sensor data, and how to configure estimation nodes for localization. The talk ends with a live(ish) demo, followed by a quick tutorial on how to convert data from your GPS into your robot's world frame.

The robot_localization package is up to date and very well documented, and you can learn more about it on the ROS Wiki.

Next up: Moritz Tenorth, Ulrich Klank, & Nikolas Engelhard (Magazino GmbH)

by Tully Foote on June 17, 2016 07:51 PM

The AutoRally Platform

From Brian Goldfain at Georgia Tech

We're the AutoRally team from Georgia Tech and we're pushing autonomous driving to the extreme with our AutoRally robot. Our robot reaches speeds of 20mph driving fully autonomously using only onboard sensing and computing at our test track, often powersliding around turns. We built this ROS compatible robot in-house as a high performance testbed for control and perception research because there was nothing like it commercially available. The platform is designed to be safe, robust, and accessible for testing aggressive autonomous driving. autorally_platform_gallery.jpg autorally_platform_twowheels.jpg We initially chose to use ROS as our middle layer for the same reason so many other use ROS: so we didn't have to start from scratch. The node structure, messaging, existing sensor drivers, and visualization tools helped us get our system up and running quickly and focus on pushing the limits of autonomous driving. As the project grew, we found new students with ROS experience gained from tinkering, clubs, or classes. Instead of spending months familiarizing themselves with custom software, they arrive with an understanding of core concepts and vocabulary required to immediately contribute to the project.

We want other ROS users to play with our code, build their own AutoRally platforms, then come race against our robots. Check out the AutoRally platform details here: http://autorally.github.io and a video of recent research on the platform presented at ICRA2016 titled "Aggressive Driving with Model Predictive Path Integral Control":

skip to the 2 minute mark if you just want to see the the results.

All of out our core code, a Gazebo world, and build instructions are available on GitHub: [https://github.com/AutoRally/autorally](https://github.com/AutoRally/autorally)

by Shawn Schaerer on June 17, 2016 07:46 PM

Automatica 2016 highlights Professional Service Robotics as a key for the future

Automatica 2016, the biggest European fair in automation and industrial production, is about to begin in Munich (Germany). The latest innovations in industrial and service robotics will be gathered in Messe Munchen from the 21st to 24th of June. Automatica is expecting more than 30,000 visitors from all branches of industry that look for the very latest developments to optimize industrial processes and greater efficiency. PAL Robotics is exhibiting at the fair with solutions in manipulation – TIAGo – a mobile manipulator,  and the inventory-taking – StockBot – developed in the last year. Find PAL Robotics at Hall B4/Stand 520 & the Service Robots Demo Park!

Robots for the future industry and service sectors

Professional Service Robotics is the highlight of this year´s Automatica edition. Its dedicated exhibition area will be in Hall B4, which has also a Demonstration Park where attendees will be able to directly interact with the robots. StockBot and TIAGo robots have applications that have a direct effect in optimization at both industrial and service levels.

Interact with TIAGo at Automatica 2016 Demo Park

TIAGo is ready to attend Automatica 2016!

TIAGo is ready to attend Automatica 2016!

The mobile manipulator TIAGo is one example of professional service robotics: a versatile robot designed to be a companion for people in different environments. The platform can be customized easily to make it suitable for domestic and industrial environments. Its 7-DoF arm and the lifting torso provide the “Take It And Go!” robot with a large manipulation workspace. Moreover, autonomous and/or teleoperated navigation is possible thanks to the PMB-2 mobile base, which the torso is built on.

The combination of these abilities opens a wide range of possible tasks that the robot can perform. The Automatica Service Robots Demo Park is an opportunity for visitors to experience TIAGo themselves. PAL Robotics’ mobile manipulator will be open to Automatica attendees, who will be able to control it using a leap-motion camera. A Whole-Body Control will be demonstrated by an application in which TIAGo moves all its body in order to keep pointing at a marker. Pick&place tasks and smart interaction skills will also be performed by this buddy at the Munich fair.

Live inventory-taking by StockBot

StockBot robot will take live inventory at Automatica

StockBot robot will take live inventory at Automatica

An area simulating a department store will be installed at the Service Robots Demo Park, in which StockBot will show its abilities on taking inventory autonomously. Visitors will be able to see the 3-D map that the robot does daily in real time, showing not only a product list, but also every item’s location in store. Autonomous navigation and StockBot’s adaptability to any change of the store will be also demonstrated.

Retail industry can save efforts and time, optimize stock and benefit from big data opportunities – everything at the same time – with StockBot. Employees can forget about such repetitive task and focus on providing a good service to clients. An accurate inventory that is daily updated increases trust in stock reasonably. What’s more, retailers can freely change the store distribution; StockBot will autonomously change its map without having to do a second set-up. Another example of professional service robotics that can transform our reallity to a more comfortable workplace.

Do you want to visit us Automatica 2016?

Send us an e-mail at marketing@pal-robotics.com and we will send you a free one-day-pass to Automatica 2016!

The post Automatica 2016 highlights Professional Service Robotics as a key for the future appeared first on PAL Robotics Blog.

by Judith Viladomat on June 17, 2016 01:37 PM

June 14, 2016
ROS-I Community Web Meeting June 2016

by Paul Hvass on June 14, 2016 09:48 PM


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