August 15, 2018
ROS Transforms (TF) Part 2: Some Useful Tools

Welcome to the next installment in my series on the ROS transform system (ROS tf). In my previous article I explained how BLUEsat’s Rovers all run on the Robotics Operating System (ROS), and what the ROS tf system was all about. In this article I will introduce a number of useful tools and packages that allow us to take advantage of ROS transforms, with very little code involved.

First we’ll look at the Robot State Publisher – a simple tool for publishing basic transforms of robots joints using a model of your robot. Then I will demonstrate visualising TF trees in RQT, a useful way to identify problems with your transform system. Finally I will explain how to visualise the movement of your robot using RViz.

Using Robot State Publisher

The standard ROS packages include a number of ways to to publish transforms with little or no code.  One of the most useful of these is the robot state publisher, which takes in a URDF file modelling your robot, and outputs static transforms for fixed joints. It also listens for joint messages to publish the position of other joints. Creating a URDF file is outside the scope of this article, but I recommend the SolidWorks to URDF converter, although it is no longer maintained.

The robot state publisher package is effective because it abstracts away a lot of the work you would otherwise need to do. Developers only need to publish message describing an angular rotation, velocity or extension of a joint (depending on the type – more later). There’s even a UI you can use for testing provided by the joint state publisher ROS package.

Starting the publisher is reasonably simple. First you need to define the location of your urdf file. If you are using a ROS launch file then you can simply add the following line to your launch file.

<param name="robot_description" command="$(find xacro)/xacro '$(find owr_bluetounge2_tf)/robots/owr_bluetounge2_tf.URDF'" />

Replacing owr_bluetounge2_tf with the the name of the ROS package your urdf file is in and /robots/owr_bluetounge2_tf.URDF with the path to your urdf file within the the package folder. If you want, you can also get rid of the $(find ... ) section completely and just use an absolute path.

Then to run the node itself, add the following line to the file and then run it using the roslaunch command.

<node name="robot_state_publisher" pkg="robot_state_publisher" type="state_publisher" />

A complete file can be found on our GitHub.

By itself this will only publish the “static transforms.” These are the ones not associated with moving joints. To get ROS to publish transforms for joints that move we need to provide it with either an “extension”, “rotation” or “velocity” for the joint. The type of value depends on what type of joint you defined in your urdf. In terms of units ROS standardises measurements in meters, radians, and m/s for distance, rotation and speed respectively.

Now that you have your robot model set up, you probably want to test it. The easiest way to do this is with the “joint_state_publisher”. This provides a simple GUI to publish those topics.

A gui generated by ROS's robot_state_publisher tool that shows a range of sliders used to control ROS transformsYou can use the joint_state_publisher in parallel with the robot_state_publisher to control transforms.

To run the “joint_state_publisher” simply type:

rosrun joint_state_publisher joint_state_publisher _use_gui:=true

This is useful for testing, but for the actual operation of your robot you probably want to automate this. To do this you need to publish one or more “sensor_msgs/joint_states” message on the /joint_states topic describing the states of your joints.

As well as a standard ROS header describing time information, the message contains four arrays. The first is “names” and corresponds to the names of your joints in the urdf file. This defines the order for the values in the other three arrays; “position”, “velocity”, “effort”. To preserve ordering, you need to define each named joint in all three other arrays, but the joint state publisher will only consider position or velocity depending on the type of joint.

Visualising TF Trees in RQT

Once you have your transform tree up and running, you probably want to check that it is working as expected – this is where RQT comes in. If you haven’t encountered RQT before, I recommend you take a look at our previous tutorial on debugging ROS systems. As I mentioned in that article, RQT is basically a Swiss army knife full of handy ROS tools. You start it by typing rqt in the terminal, with roscore running.

In this case the plugin we are looking for is simply called the “TF Tree” tool. You can find it in the “Plugins” menu under “Visualisation”. It allows you to see the connections in your TF tree, when they last updated, and most importantly, any gaps in the tree.

The image below is a great example of this. We can see that there are several disjoint trees. This is a good indication that something is wrong with our ROS system. In order for us to be able to transform between all of the robot’s co-ordinate systems we need to be able to transform freely.

A visualisation of the BLUEtongue Rover's TF Tree in RQT. Showing several disjointed trees.In this RQT screenshot the the BLUEtongue Rover’s TF Tree is shown as several disconnected graphs. This means that some of the transforms we were expecting are missing.

In the case above this is because the robot state publisher has not received states for all of the joints it is expecting. But other causes may include a node not running or a localisation system that hasn’t collected sufficient sensor data yet.

3D Representations of your Robot in RViz

Finally let’s visualise the transforms we have been working. This is where RViz comes in.

RViz contains method for visualising a range of different transformed data. First let’s see our robot in its transformed state.

The RViz window is split into three columns. From left to right. The first displays information about the data you are visualising, the second displays a 3D scene that will contain the data and the third contains information about the camera.

To add your robot, make sure you have joint state publisher running as described above. Then click “Add” in the left hand column. A list of data types should appear in a new window. Select “Robot Model.” You should get something like the below image.

The BLUEtongue 2.0 Rover visualised on a 3D Plane in ROS's RViz tool.The BLUEtongue 2.0 Rover fully visualised in RViz using the joint state publisher.

Now try moving some of the joints using the joint state publisher. The corresponding part of your robot should move!

Have a play around in RViz and see what else you can visualise.

Thanks for reading this installation of my series on the ROS transform (TF) system. Please, stay tuned for the next instalment where I will cover using these transforms to process data in code!

The post ROS Transforms (TF) Part 2: Some Useful Tools appeared first on BLUEsat UNSW.

by Harry J.E Day on August 15, 2018 07:03 AM

August 14, 2018
Creating web user interface for ROS powered robots with Bootstrap 4

@donowak wrote:

Hi ROS community!

We’ve just published a new article on Medium where we describe how to create a modern-looking web user interface for ROS powered robots thanks to Bootstrap 4 framework and Robot Web Tools.
boots%20ros
Enjoy!

Best,
Dominik

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by @donowak Dominik on August 14, 2018 07:46 PM

August 13, 2018
ROSCon 2017: How ROS cares for Quality -- Yvonne Dittrich (IT University of Copenhagen) Gijs van der Hoorn (Delft University of Technology) Andrzej Wasowski (IT University of Copenhagen)

Looking foward to ROSCon 2018 we're highlighting presentations from last year.

Adam Alami presents an analysis of how the ROS community maintains quality of the code as well as identifying areas to grow.

Video

Abstract

As part of the EU H2020 project ROSIN promoting the usage of ROS for industrial applications, we investigate how the ROS community takes care of quality. The goal is to understand quality problems and to address them. We will report our preliminary findings based on a.) analysis of bug reports in ROS packages and ROS based projects; b.) interviews with both junior and core members of the ROS community; and c.) analysis of the ROS wiki and other available resources.

Slides

View the slides here

by Tully Foote on August 13, 2018 09:59 PM

ROS-I Training London, UK 5 – 9 November 2018

@edwardsgary wrote:

rositraining

See details below for a London edition of the ROS-Industrial training will be hosted by re.je @ UCL, Here East London.

  • Day 1: Introduction to Linux
  • Day 2-4: ROS basic training (introduction, manipulation, navigation)
  • Day 5: Advanced ROS topics (statemachine-based programming tools; build, test, release workflow and tools)

Please visit the ROS-I website for futher information and sign up details:

ROS Industrial Training London

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by @edwardsgary Gary Edwards on August 13, 2018 09:17 PM

Learn about Laser Range Finders with ROS in my Udemy Course

@Anis_Koubaa wrote:

Hi

I am pleased to announce a new major update for course on ROS on Udemy course entitled
ROS for Beginners: Basics, Motion, and OpenCV

I have added a new section on how to work with Laser Range Finders (i.e. laser scanner) with ROS. I have demonstrated examples with two real devices namely the Asus Live Pro RGBD camera, and Hokuyo laser range finder.

The content of the new section includes the following:

  • Background information on laser range finders and their characteristics
  • Overview of main commercially available laser range finder used with ROS
  • How to connect an Asus Live Pro camera with ROS using openni2 drivers and how to convert a depth image into a laser scan topic, and how to visualize it with rviz
  • How to connect a Hokuyo laser range finder using urg_node driver and how to create a static transform to visualize with rviz
  • How to record scan topic data with rosbag, and how to replay and visualize it with rviz
  • How to create a subscriber ROS node to scan topic and process scan message to find max, min and average ranges (Python, (and C++ soon))
  • How to configure the parameters of laser range finder with ROS (coming soon)

I am planning to add a intrusion detection system project using laser scanner with ROS.

Also, previously a complete new section on OpenCV was introduced and demonstrated 13 different topics.

Next major update will be presentation of transformations with tf package in ROS.

This course is a shortcut for any new ROS user to learn ROS by demonstration and in efficient way.

You can enroll to the course with a discount on

Thanks
Anis

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by @Anis_Koubaa Anis Koubaa on August 13, 2018 04:35 PM

August 11, 2018
ROSCon 2018 has sold out!

@tfoote wrote:

The date for ROSCon 2018 is drawing near, and the ROSCon Organizing Committee is excited to again have the opportunity to showcase the international ROS community. With the continued growth of ROS users and developers worldwide, ROSCon 2018 is continuing the trend of breaking records: record number of talk proposals, sponsors, and now a record rate of registratration. As was always expected, we have sold out again, even earlier this year, thanks to all of the people eager to join us in Madrid.

Waitlist

We have enabled a waitlist on the registration site so that you can reserve your spot in case a registration happens to become available due to cancellations or other reasons. Be sure to put your name on the waitlist if you haven’t bought a ticket yet, so that if a spot becomes available we can contact you. There will not be any registrations available on site.

Live streaming

We are happy to announce that Tony Robotics will be setting up a live stream of the event available worldwide. If you are interested in bringing the experience of ROSCon to your local ROS community, we encourage you to plan a viewing party in your area! As in the previous years, high quality recordings of the talks and the accompanying slides will be posted online after the conference as well.

If you have any questions you can reach the us by email.

Your ROSCon 2018 Organizing Committee

Thank you again to our Platinum Sponsor, Erle, and to our Gold Sponsors: Amazon, Apple, Clearpath, Eprosima, Fetch Robotics, Google, Locus, Microsoft, ROBOTIS, SICK, Tier IV, Toyota Research Institute, Universal Robots.

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by @tfoote Tully Foote on August 11, 2018 01:05 AM

August 09, 2018
New Packages for Kinetic 2018-08-09

@tfoote wrote:

We’re happy to announce 5 new packages and 59 updated packages for Kinetic.

Thank you to all the maintainers and contributors who have helped make these updates and share them with the community. You’re efforts are greatly appreciated.

Full details are below.

Package Updates for kinetic

Added Packages [5]:

Updated Packages [59]:

Removed Packages [0]:

Thanks to all ROS maintainers who make packages available to the ROS community. The above list of packages was made possible by the work of the following maintainers:

  • Alexander Tiderko
  • Alexander W. Winkler
  • Alireza Hosseini
  • Chad Rockey
  • D. Hood
  • Dirk Thomas
  • Francis Colas
  • Kei Okada
  • Mani Monajjemi
  • Marc Alban
  • Martin Günther
  • Max Schwarz
  • Michael Ferguson
  • Michael Hosmar
  • Mike Hosmar
  • Mike Purvis
  • Paul Bovbel
  • Pierre-Louis Kabaradjian
  • Pilz GmbH and Co. KG
  • Pyo
  • Slamtec ROS Maintainer
  • Yohei Kakiuchi

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by @tfoote Tully Foote on August 09, 2018 08:50 PM

New Packages for Indigo 2018-08-09

@tfoote wrote:

We’re happy to announce the availability of 1 new and 23 updated packages for Indigo.

Full details are below.

Thank you to all the maintainers who have helped make this possible!

Package Updates for indigo

Added Packages [1]:

Updated Packages [23]:

Removed Packages [0]:

Thanks to all ROS maintainers who make packages available to the ROS community. The above list of packages was made possible by the work of the following maintainers:

  • Alexander Tiderko
  • Francis Colas
  • Kei Okada
  • Mani Monajjemi
  • Marc Alban
  • Martin Günther
  • Slamtec ROS Maintainer
  • Yohei Kakiuchi

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by @tfoote Tully Foote on August 09, 2018 08:47 PM

ROSCon 2017: How to accelerate application development using a cloud robotics platform -- Gajamohan Mohanarajah and Dhananjay Sathe (Rapyuta Robotics) Thomas Michael Bohnert (Zurich University of Applied Sciences/ZHAW)

Looking foward to ROSCon 2018 we're highlighting presentations from last year. The ROSCon 2018 registration is currently open. Early registration ends August 11th!

Gajamohan presents on how Rapyuta has designed their platform Rapyuta.io to help accelerate robotic development.

Video

Abstract

In this presentation, attendees will gain practical knowledge on how to use a cloud robotics Platform-as-a-Service (Paas) to significantly accelerate robot application development. Specifically, attendees will learn step-by-step how a robot application can be developed, remotely deployed, monitored, and debugged using a cloud robotics PaaS. This will be followed by a detailed technical breakdown of the rapyuta.io's internals so attendees may understand the underlying architecture and design. Finally, a case study will compare a commercial robotics application deployment using Amazon's Infrastructure-as-a-Service to one using the rapyuta.io cloud robotics PaaS to show the benefits and limitations of each approach.

Slides

View the slides here

by Tully Foote on August 09, 2018 07:32 PM

Introduction to Robot Operating System Tutorials | FREE YouTube Videos | Robocademy.com

@lentinjoseph wrote:

Hey Everyone

I am sharing some of the recorded videos taken while teaching ROS to robocademy students (mainly Indian students). The course was distributed to more than 100 students; now it is making as public. The course was for absolute beginners and based on Ubuntu 16.04 LTS and ROS Kinetic.

Note: These videos were not edited, these are the live stream sessions on youtube.

Robocademy

Robocademy Facebook

Robocademy Group for queries

Here is the video playlist on youtube

Regards
Lentin Joseph

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by @lentinjoseph Lentin Joseph on August 09, 2018 03:42 PM

Initial release of openai_ros package

@TheConstruct wrote:

We are pleased to announce the initial release of the openai_ros package on Wiki.ROS

The openai_ros package provides a common ground for using OpenAI Gym infrastructure to train robots with Reinforcement Learning algorithms without having to care about the OpenAI part and simplifying the way to change robot, tasks or learning algorithms while keeping the same structure. This allows to easily compare results between roboticists.

Training a robot on a task is reduced to the following steps:

  • select the robot you want to use and pick its openai_ros robot environment (several provided, but you can create your own with a provided template)
  • select the task environment to solve (we provide some tasks, but you can create your own with a provided template)
  • launch the simulation with the Gazebo environment (provided)
  • and then apply the learning algorithm (can be your own implementation or one of baselines from OpenAI).

If you want to change the robot, just change the robot environment and keep the rest. If you want to change the task, just change the task environment and keep the rest. If you want to test different learning algorithms on the same robot and task, just change it and keep the rest!

We provide complete documentation and several video examples on how to do all those steps.

Within the openai_ros package, we provide already made OpenAI-to-Gazebo sim connections to all the ROS robots so roboticists do not have to care about how to connect the OpenAI algorithms to the simulated robots, and just concentrate on the learning.
In this initial release, we provide connectors to the following robots:

  • Cartpole
  • Cube robot
  • Hopper robot
  • ROSbot by Husarion
  • Wam by Barret
  • Parrot drone
  • Sawyer by Rethink robotics
  • Shadow Robot Grasping Sandbox
  • Summit XL by Robotnik
  • Turtlebot2
  • Turtlebot3 by Robotis
  • WAMV water vehicle of the RobotX Challenge

Templates are also provided for the creation of your own robot connector.

The package is open source and has IGPL license. Any contribution will be welcomed.

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by @TheConstruct The Construct on August 09, 2018 10:15 AM

August 08, 2018
New Packages for Lunar 2018-08-08

@marguedas wrote:

We’re happy to announce the availability of 13 new packages and 20 updated packages for ROS Lunar.

As always thank you to all the maintainers who are making these releases as well as all the contributors who have helped contribute to these releases. Full details are below.

Package Updates for lunar

Added Packages [13]:

Updated Packages [20]:

Removed Packages [0]:

Thanks to all ROS maintainers who make packages available to the ROS community. The above list of packages was made possible by the work of the following maintainers:

  • Alexander W. Winkler
  • Chris Lalancette
  • D. Hood
  • Dirk Thomas
  • Felix Ruess
  • Francis Colas
  • Kei Okada
  • Mani Monajjemi
  • Marc Alban
  • Michael Ferguson
  • Sammy Pfeiffer
  • Slamtec ROS Maintainer

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by @marguedas Mikael Arguedas on August 08, 2018 06:49 PM

August 07, 2018
ROS-I Consortium Americas Hosts Training Event in Seattle, Washington

The ROS-Industrial Americas consortium hosted its second training event of 2018 in Seattle on July 17-19, attended by 15 students from companies across various industries. The three-day event, hosted by Levi Armstrong and Michael Ripperger from Southwest Research Institute, featured a basic and advanced track where participants were able to explore ROS-related topics from ROS architecture and communication to motion planning, perception, and code testing.

New to this particular training session was the inclusion of a Python node within the Perception Pipeline to enable the understanding of C++ and Python node interaction. Additional content around RVIZ GUI creation and debugging tools were also featured. To explore these new modules and the rest of the training content, check out the ROS-I training wiki here.

IMG-20180718-WA0003.jpg
IMG-20180718-WA0005.jpg
IMG-20180718-WA0006.jpg

The training event was a combination of lecture and hands-on coding and hardware demos. At the end of the event, students were able to interact with provided UR5 robots and test the code they created on the robots. Overall the training was a great opportunity to learn more about ROS and network with ROS-I Consortium members, or their partners, in the robotics field leveraging ROS in their own applications.

Thank you to our hosts in the Emerald City and to all of our attendees for making this class a great success.

A third ROS training event for this year is currently in the works for the fall, so stay tuned for more details! Also, don't forget, full Consortium members are able to host ROS-I Consortium Americas training events, such as this event in Seattle. As always, do not hesitate to offer feedback relative to how training can be improved to meet your needs. We are always interested in member and community feedback!

by Michael Ripperger on August 07, 2018 04:41 PM

ROSCon 2017: From simulation to the field: Learning to swim with the AQUA robot -- Juan Camilo Gamboa Higuera, David Paul Meger, and Gregory Dudek (McGill University)

Looking foward to ROSCon 2018 we're highlighting presentations from last year. The ROSCon 2018 registration is currently open. Early registration ends August 11th!

Juan Camilo presents the tips tricks and hacks they have developed for using ROS on the underwater robot Aqua.

Video

Abstract

In this session we will share our experience and describe our approach to learning-based control. We do this for underwater (marine) environments where we want to approximate some of the hydrodynamic factors in 6 degrees of freedom. Our work addresses "learning to swim" via the automatic synthesis of swimming controllers for the AQUA platform: a six legged autonomous underwater vehicle. First, we will describe our approaches for simulating the underwater dynamics of the AQUA robot. This description includes our modelling choices and the integration into the Gazebo simulator. Second, we will describe the software interfaces we developed, based on the ROS framework, for testing learning algorithms in the simulation environment. Finally, we will show how ROS facilitated the use of our software on physical robots, and discuss the current research that our software has enabled.

Slides

View the slides here

by Tully Foote on August 07, 2018 01:19 AM

August 03, 2018
Final call: ROS Summer Course 2018 - Online & Certificate

@YUHONG_LIN wrote:

FINAL CALL FOR PARTICIPATION : Intensive ROS Summer Course - Online & Certificate

  • Registration deadline: August 16, 2018

==============================================================
Intensive ROS Summer Online Course

Date: August 20 - September 1, 2018

Duration: 2 Weeks

Apply here: http://www.theconstructsim.com/intensive-ros-summer-online-course/

==============================================================

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

  • Available spots: 30 students

  • Languages: English

  • ROS certification: Provided

COURSE OVERVIEW

Practice-based intensive ROS learning

A completely ROS course that combines theory and practice. We will give you the basic tools and knowledge to understand and create basics ROS related project fast. With comprehensive exercises with diverse simulations, you will get fast into the ROS development world in a more efficient way.

  • Learn ROS by programming robots:

You will learn ROS by executing code and using diverse robot simulations in a visual and efficient way

  • Apply to ROS-Projects:

You will develop to projects where you will apply what you have learned in each unit

  • Exam & ROS Certification:

You will perform 2 exams to test the knowledge that you have acquired along the week. Only those students that get 8 points out of 10 will get the certification issued by The Construct

COURSES SCHEDULE

Week 1

  • Monday

    • Unit 1: How ROS Basic Structure works

    • Start Unit 2: ROS Topics - Work on Project -1 Section 1

  • Tuesday

    • Finish Unit 2: ROS Topics

    • Unit 5: ROS Debugging Tools

    • Fish Project -1 Section 1

  • Wednesday

    • Start Unit 3: ROS Services

    • Fish Project -1 Section 2

  • Thursday

    • Finish Unit 3: ROS Services

    • Start Unit 4: ROS Actions

    • Fish Project -1 Section 3

  • Friday

    • Finish Unit 4: ROS Actions

    • Fish Project -1 Section 4

  • Saturday

    • Exam 1

Week 2

  • Monday

    • Unit 6: Mapping

    • Unit 7: Localization

    • Unit 8: Path Planning

    • Work on Project -2 Section 1

  • Tuesday

    • Unit 9: Face recognition

    • Unit 10: People detection

    • Work on Project -2 Section 2

  • Wednesday

    • Unit 11: ROS Control 1

    • Unit 12: ROS Control 2

    • Unit 13: ROS Control 3

    • Work on Project -2 Section 3

  • Thursday

    • Unit 14: ROS Industrial 1

    • Unit 15: ROS Industria 2

    • Unit 16: ROS Industria 3

    • Work on Project -2 Section 4

  • Friday

    • Unit 17: OpenAI ROS 1

    • Unit 18: OpenAI ROS 2

    • Unit 19: OpenAI ROS 3

    • Work on Project -2 Section 5

  • Saturday

    • Exam 2

ROBOT SIMULATION USED IN THE COURSE:

  • Husky

  • BB-8

  • WAM ARM

  • Parrot AR.Drone

  • Sphero

  • Turtlebot 2

  • Jibo

  • Mira robot

  • Fetch

  • UR5

REQUIREMENT

  • FULL DAY DEDICATION

  • Basic knowledge of Linux shell

  • Basic knowledge of Python programming

  • A laptop ( can have any operating system)

  • NO PRIOR KNOWLEDGE OF ROS REQUIRED

ORGANIZERS

The Construct http://www.theconstructsim.com/

An online integrated platform for learning and developing ROS-based Robots.

You can contact us with questions and doubts here: info@theconstructsim.com

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by @YUHONG_LIN on August 03, 2018 02:36 PM

July 31, 2018
ROSCon 2017: Space Robotics Challenge backstage: A glimpse at the challenges of running the competition -- Ian Chen and Louise Poubel (Open Robotics)

Looking foward to ROSCon 2018 we're highlighting presentations from last year. The ROSCon 2018 registration is currently open. Early registration ends August 11th!

Ian and Louise continued talking about simulation however it moved from terrestrial to a martian setting. And if you didn't notice the entire presentation was done inside of gazebo.

Video

Abstract

Over the past year, hundreds of teams competed in the qualifications for the NASA Space Robotics Challenge, and the top 20 teams competed in the final cloud­based competition. This talk will go over the software and infrastructure used to host the Space Robotics Challenge, which includes the use of ROS, Gazebo and CloudSim. We will also describe some of the technical challenges faced during the competition, including simulation modeling, performance tuning, and cloud deployment.

Slides

View the slides here

by Tully Foote on July 31, 2018 12:51 PM

July 30, 2018
Release of ifopt v2.0 - Interface to NLP solvers (Ipopt, Snopt)

@awinkler wrote:

Dear ROS community,

We’re happy to announce the release of version 2.0 of ifopt.

http://wiki.ros.org/ifopt is a modern, light-weight, Eigen-based C++ interface to Nonlinear Programming solvers, such as Ipopt and Snopt to solve problems like this:

It combines the advantages of Eigen and Ipopt:

  • Solver independent formulation of variables and constraints with Eigen (highly efficient)
  • Automatic index management by formulation of variable- and constraint-sets
  • Integration: pure cmake find_package(ifopt) or catkin / ROS
  • light-weight (~2k lines of code) makes it easy to use and extend

For more information, visit https://github.com/ethz-adrl/ifopt.

Best!
Alex @ www.awinkler.me

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by @awinkler Alexander W Winkler on July 30, 2018 04:03 PM

Release of towr v1.4 - Trajectory Optimization Library for Walking Robots

@awinkler wrote:

Dear ROS community,

We are excited to announce that towr v1.4 has been released!

http://wiki.ros.org/towr is a light-weight and extensible C++ library for trajectory optimization for legged robots. A base-set of variables, costs and constraints that can be combined and extended to formulate trajectory optimization problems for legged systems. These implementations have been used to generate a variety of motions such as monoped hopping, biped walking, or a complete quadruped trotting cycle, while optimizing over the gait and step durations in less than 100ms (paper).

The thoroughly improved version v1.4 can now easily switch between different robots using the GUI, visualize any type of terrain with terrain patches, directly plot the produced motions using rqt_bag and more. We also improved the efficiency of the underlying Eigen-based NLP wrapper ifopt (video below not sped up!).

Try it out:
sudo apt-get install ros-kinetic-towr_ros

For more information, visit https://github.com/ethz-adrl/towr.

Enjoy!
Alex @ www.awinkler.me

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by @awinkler Alexander W Winkler on July 30, 2018 04:03 PM

Hackathon Call-up

@Hankathon wrote:

Design Workshop Based on Autodesk Generative Design
Hi All. There is a design workshop/hackathon in mid-August in Guiyang China. It gathers designers and design engineers to collaboratively design next-generation self-driving car through generative design approach and then manufacture the design out in digital fabrication way. Free meals and accommodation, also flights reimbursement. It’s a great event for creative designers skilled in digital design and fabrication stuff. Anyone interested to join?
Details as below:

PIX Generative Hackathon
-Design for Additive Manufacturing
Envisioning a future where car designs are created by innovative designers in a way that hasn’t been thought before.

WHAT: Design self-driving cars which can meet the additive manufacturing capacities by using generative design approach.
WHO: Designers and design engineers. Industrial designer, parametric designer, mechanical design engineer, architect, interdisciplinary designer (Free accommodation and meals will be provided, also reimbursement for flights)
WHY: PIX Generative Hackathon aims to reimagine how cars are made and explore new automobile manufacturing paradigm with creative digital design approaches and new digital manufacturing processes, further driving innovation in the automobile industry and lighting a beacon for next-generation manufacturing.
HOW: Design collaboration, fabrication workshop, social parties, keynote speech, mentor communication and local exploration
WHEN: August 18-22, 2018
WHERE: PIX Factory, Guiyang, Guizhou, China

More info on the website: https://www.pixmoving.com/pix-generative-hackathon

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by @Hankathon Yusi XU on July 30, 2018 04:02 PM

July 29, 2018
ROSCon 2018 Program Published

@tfoote wrote:

The ROSCon Organizing Committee is happy to announce the ROSCon 2018 Program has been published on the main ROSCon website: https://roscon.ros.org/2018

We’re looking forward to seeing these talks in September.

If you haven’t registered already, there’s just 2 weeks before the early registration deadline.

Registration site can be found here. Get your tickets before the price goes up!

See you in Madrid!

Thank you again to our Platinum Sponsor, Erle, and to all of our Gold Sponsors: Amazon, Apple, Clearpath, Eprosima, Fetch Robotics, Google, Locus, Microsoft, ROBOTIS, SICK, Tier IV, Toyota Research Institute, Universal Robots.

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by @tfoote Tully Foote on July 29, 2018 01:36 AM

July 28, 2018
Converting raw Lidar data to something more useful

@pitosalas wrote:

I have a small robot (turtlebot3) with a Lidar. For aa demonstration I would like to process the data coming from the lira in the following way:

  1. Pay attention only to a range of angles (e.g. -15 degrees to +15 degrees)
  2. Filter it into
    a) distance to obstacle
    b) rate of change of a)
    c) rate of change of b)

I am assuming that this is elementary and there are nodes/libraries in ROS that do just this. I am not asking for code but pointers to where to look and what to read. Thanks for your help!

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by @pitosalas Pito Salas on July 28, 2018 11:17 AM

July 27, 2018
ROS training in Delft, Netherlands (September 26-27)

@Martin wrote:

I am pleased to announce the second ROS training in Delft, the Netherlands. This course is part of the educational activities of the EU project ROSIN. In this 2-day training participants with none to basic knowledge of ROS will learn the skills and competences to configure and use ROS-based software solutions.

Where: RoboHouse, Delft, the Netherlands
When: September 26 and 27
What: Introduction into ROS

For more information and registration visit our website.

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by @Martin on July 27, 2018 06:08 PM

Announcing official ROS support for the Pilz light weight arm

@pilz wrote:

We are excited to annouce the ROS kinetic support for our Pilz Robot (PRBT).

This year in june at Automatica 2018 we presented our 6-DOF manipulator to the public. It’s our pleasure to provide you our first ROS packages with the latest kinetic release.

For now these packages consist of:

Support for melodic and more coming soon!

To get the latest update follow out Github repository.

If you have any questions feel free to contact us directly via ros@pilz.de.




Your PILZ robotics team :man_technologist::woman_technologist::man_in_tuxedo::woman_mechanic::man_scientist: :robot:

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by @pilz PILZ GmbH &amp; Co. KG on July 27, 2018 06:08 PM

New packages for Melodic 2018-07-27

@clalancette wrote:

We’re happy to announce the next update for ROS Melodic. We have 80 new packages as well as 29 updated packages.

As always, thanks to all of the maintainers and contributors who help make these updates possible!

Full details are below.

Package Updates for melodic

Added Packages [80]:

Updated Packages [29]:

Removed Packages [0]:

Thanks to all ROS maintainers who make packages available to the ROS community. The above list of packages was made possible by the work of the following maintainers:

  • Alexander Tiderko
  • Alexander W. Winkler
  • Andy Zelenak
  • Benjamin Binder
  • Chris Lalancette
  • Davide Faconti
  • Denis Dillenberger
  • Francis Colas
  • George Todoran
  • Jose-Luis Blanco-Claraco
  • Kei Okada
  • Ken Tossell
  • Kevin Hallenbeck
  • Marc Alban
  • Markus Bader
  • Mathias Lüdtke
  • Michael Ferguson
  • Micho Radovnikovich
  • P. J. Reed
  • Pyo
  • Ralph Lange
  • Ralph Lange (CR/AEE1)
  • Raphael Hauk
  • Russell Toris
  • Sammy Pfeiffer
  • Thomas Le Mézo
  • Vladimir Ermakov
  • Vladimir Ivan
  • dfaconti

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by @clalancette Chris on July 27, 2018 01:05 PM

July 26, 2018
New Packages for Kinetic 2018-07-26

@tfoote wrote:

We’re happy to announce 35 new packages and 171 updated packages for Kinetic Kame. The full details are below.

Thank you to the contributors and maintainers who have helped make these packages available to the community.

Package Updates for kinetic

Added Packages [35]:

Updated Packages [171]:

Removed Packages [0]:

Thanks to all ROS maintainers who make packages available to the ROS community. The above list of packages was made possible by the work of the following maintainers:

  • Alexander Bubeck
  • Alexander Tiderko
  • Alexander W. Winkler
  • Andreas ten Pas
  • Andy Zelenak
  • Angel Soriano
  • Atsushi Watanabe
  • AutonomouStuff Software Development Team
  • Benjamin Binder
  • Benjamin Maidel
  • Brenden Gibbons
  • Bruno Brito
  • Chris Lalancette
  • Davide Faconti
  • Dirk Thomas
  • Felipe Garcia Lopez
  • Felix Messmer
  • Felix Ruess
  • Felix Zeltner
  • Florian Weisshardt
  • Francis Colas
  • George Todoran
  • Isaac I. Y. Saito
  • Jack Kilian
  • Jannik Abbenseth
  • Jose Luis Blanco Claraco
  • Jose-Luis Blanco-Claraco
  • Joshua Hampp
  • Kei Okada
  • Koji Terada
  • Markus Bader
  • Martin Günther
  • Matthias Gruhler
  • Michael Ferguson
  • P. J. Reed
  • Pilz GmbH and Co. KG
  • Pyo
  • ROS Orphaned Package Maintainers
  • Raphael Hauk
  • Richard Bormann
  • Ron Tajima
  • Sammy Pfeiffer
  • Thomas Le Mézo
  • Tully Foote
  • Vincent Rabaud
  • Vladimir Ermakov
  • Vladimir Ivan
  • William Woodall
  • Yohei Kakiuchi
  • Yuki Furuta
  • nick fragale

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by @tfoote Tully Foote on July 26, 2018 09:46 PM


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