/r/robotics

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How to get started in robotics

See the Wiki for frequently asked questions, career advice, resources, and previous AMAs

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For any question, please post on our sister subreddit /r/AskRobotics.


This subreddit is a place for

  • News, research articles & discussion about developments in Robotics (NOT wild far fetched speculation).
  • Showcasing your robot From seasoned roboticists to hobbyists

Questions

  • Questions about your robotics projects (Try our sister subreddit, /r/AskRobotics!)
  • AMAs Are you a professional roboticist? Do you have a really impressive robot to talk about? An expert in your field? Why not message the mods to host an AMA?

Related subreddits

/r/robotics

230,252 Subscribers

3

ROS2 Tutorials: Comprehensive playlist!

If you are a begineer or intermediate level in robotics or need to acquire better understand of ROS2, want to learn how to use read and imlement the ROS2 documentation and build your robotics skills, then this playlist is for you.

In this ROS2 comprehensive tutorials, we cover everything from the basics of ROS2 such as nodes, publisher, subscriber, etc to advanced topics like tf2 library, services, dynamic shape creation, RViz2, etc.

Whether you're just starting out or already have some experience, our videos are designed to support your learning journey and make your robotic projects interesting.

ROS2 Tutorials Playlist link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bDmjX1bXVk0&list=PL8MgID9MCju0GMQDTWzYmfiU3wY_Zdjl5

0 Comments
2024/04/20
13:04 UTC

1

Pi or IDE based projects?

So I‘m having a bachelors in mechanical engineering and I am currently pursuing my masters in Mechatronics, focussing on Robotics. While I really enjoy my masters, I am still lacking a lot of practical knowledge when it comes to robotics, especially in the CS part of it. For that reason I started as a working student in a robotics company. However, due to unlucky circumstances and despite of open communication I found myself being „the mechanical guy“ after 6 months, not even working on the robots.

So since I now finally got more free time during my studies, I wanted to find some robotics projects to do at home. This way I am hoping to teach myself what I cannot in university or at my job. I am mostly interested mobile (legged) robots, especially in kinematics, dynamics, path planning, controls and image processing. While I have theoretical knowledge in those fields through university, I wanna gain more hands on experience in translating this knowledge into code.

However, I am not sure now whether to go either with arduino (or esp etc.) based microcontrollers or with a Pi. Since I am tight on budget (200$) it seems like I will find more fun and more complex (on the mechatronics side) projects for arduino. Career wise I feel like it would be more useful to learn ROS with a Raspberry Pi though. However, since I got no experience with Linux or ROS so far, I guess the start will be much tougher and it will be harder to keep on going.

I would just like to hear some opinions on this topic of more experienced engineers. Maybe you even got suggestions for cool projects that fit my description? Thanks a lot!

1 Comment
2024/04/20
12:59 UTC

2

Question about humanoids in industry

Hi all, sorry for the long post, btw This is not a critique or rant of the current state of development in the field of humanoid robots but rather a search for interesting points of view that I might been missing. So, I would like to know your opinion regarding the role of humanoid robots in factories and production plants (mostly interested im that field) . I am a robotics engineer with several years of experience but never worked with humanoids, bipedals, or highly complex end effectors i.e.grippers >3 fingers. My first point is why bipedalism? Most of the companies trying to build such robots claim their main client will industry, but factories and production plants are standardized with flat unobstructed surfaces so a wheeled robot is not only cheaper (initial cost, maintenance, repairs) but also probably enough for most applications, so, wherever factories use agvs and amrs there won't be a need for bipedalism and where wheels might not work a quadruped might be more stable, less complex and cheaper? . Second, why even in a humanoid shape(i.e. Torso, head, face)? If the objective is flexibility and dexterity in assembly processes other configurations achieve those goals and are less complex (and cheaper e2e). And finally why such complex end effectors? Do we even have the ability (software) to use that hardware to its full potential let's say in the assembly process of delicate or small parts that require fine-grain movements? Years ago my company wanted to Buy a shadow hand (or similar) and we were discouraged not so much by the price (upwards of 70k per hand) but by their limitations and fragility, and we ended up solving our use case with 2 simple robotiq grippers. So, is there something I am missing? Are these companies not only aiming to build products for standardized production plants but also a more generalized robot that could operate in different kinds of dynamic instructed environments? But we all know that industry not only benefits the most but mostly always purchases highly specialized solutions with a high cost-benefit ratio? Are humanoids really the ultimate configuration for generalist robots? I know there's a discussion to have regarding a humanoid shape enabling a smoother more natural human-robot interaction, but I must say I don't care if my car assembly line is operated or my house is cleaned by something that looks like Atlas or by a stick with two arms attached on top of a mobility base, especially if the latter is way cheaper.

2 Comments
2024/04/20
11:42 UTC

4

Best 3D printer filament for rc control arms? Nylon?

Hey guys just made a rc car out of petg, carbon petg and tpu, I keep strapping my hubs and sometimes a control arm from the force of the car acceleration. I was going to redesign them but was wondering what you guys with more experience recommend I use. I used carbon petg for the hubs and control arms but It’s too rigid. What do you guys think would be best nylon? If so what type? Cheers

6 Comments
2024/04/20
08:18 UTC

1

Help with integration of python with novapi board.

I am currently working with novapi to build a moveable robot - (lets not go into the functionalty just yet). I have the code but its in "blocks" in mbuild. I want to use python as it's a lot more flexible and easier to debug and whatnot. But i cant seem to find a way to do it. There is a python editor in mbuild but it doesnt seem to work as expected. I have got only one resource -micropython-api-doc/docs/novapi at master · Makeblock-official/micropython-api-doc · GitHub . I cant follow the instruction here and make it work with python. Any one knowledgeable or experienced enough to help? Any help will be highly appreciated.

0 Comments
2024/04/20
07:12 UTC

2

Where to resume/start again?

So I'm from a Mechanical Engg background, and will be beginning my MS in Robotics program this Fall.. I want to brush up and develop new skills in programming, especially C++ and Python, that will be relevant in the field of Robotics and AI.

Can y'all suggest some online free or paid courses that are worth doing for this purpose?

1 Comment
2024/04/20
05:50 UTC

4

SERL: A Software Suite for Sample-Efficient Robotic Reinforcement Learning

Paper: https://arxiv.org/abs/2401.16013

SERL Code: https://github.com/rail-berkeley/serl

Robot Controller Code: https://github.com/rail-berkeley/serl_franka_controllers

Project page: https://serl-robot.github.io/

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Um4CjBmHdcw

Abstract:

In recent years, significant progress has been made in the field of robotic reinforcement learning (RL), enabling methods that handle complex image observations, train in the real world, and incorporate auxiliary data, such as demonstrations and prior experience. However, despite these advances, robotic RL remains hard to use. It is acknowledged among practitioners that the particular implementation details of these algorithms are often just as important (if not more so) for performance as the choice of algorithm. We posit that a significant challenge to widespread adoption of robotic RL, as well as further development of robotic RL methods, is the comparative inaccessibility of such methods. To address this challenge, we developed a carefully implemented library containing a sample efficient off-policy deep RL method, together with methods for computing rewards and resetting the environment, a high-quality controller for a widely-adopted robot, and a number of challenging example tasks. We provide this library as a resource for the community, describe its design choices, and present experimental results. Perhaps surprisingly, we find that our implementation can achieve very efficient learning, acquiring policies for PCB board assembly, cable routing, and object relocation between 25 to 50 minutes of training per policy on average, improving over state-of-the-art results reported for similar tasks in the literature. These policies achieve perfect or near-perfect success rates, extreme robustness even under perturbations, and exhibit emergent recovery and correction behaviors. We hope that these promising results and our high-quality open-source implementation will provide a tool for the robotics community to facilitate further developments in robotic RL. Our code, documentation, and videos can be found at this https URL

1 Comment
2024/04/20
03:32 UTC

57

V4 of my fully printable minihumanoid ready to combat

5 Comments
2024/04/20
03:25 UTC

1

How AI Will Step off the Screen and into the Real World | Daniela Rus | TED

0 Comments
2024/04/20
02:24 UTC

1

Is it possible to convert a PWM signal into a Digital Output signal?

I bought this 32 Channel Servo Controller but I want use it’s 5dcv PWM signals to activate several relays,

but I’ve seen a lot of people say “don’t use a PWM signal on a relay because the relay will be damaged”.

So I was wondering if it’s possible to change the PWM signals into Digital Output signals?

https://preview.redd.it/bc2wej3zsivc1.jpg?width=1719&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=c868f6421ad0109d0fb1466b1cfd0a5e43c585e1

Back side

7 Comments
2024/04/19
23:44 UTC

4

How to calculate Center of Mass for each link of a robotic arm referring to the URDF?

I am currently working on a project which requires me to compute the center of mass for each link of Kuka iiwa 14, URDF: https://github.com/kuka-isir/iiwa_description/blob/master/urdf/iiwa14.xacro

I looked at this URDF https://github.com/uwgraphics/RelaxedIK/blob/master/urdfs/ur5.urdf for UR5 robot. The center of mass is readily available but I am not sure how it was calculated. Any help would be appreciated in computing COM.

5 Comments
2024/04/19
23:37 UTC

3

Atlus (remixed)

Video I made after seeing the new Atlus footage.

0 Comments
2024/04/19
18:22 UTC

10

Is Stretch actually in use anywhere?

this one: https://youtu.be/yYUuWWnfRsk

I only ever see spot. Im aware of their video from a year ago with DHL but those kinds of promos can often be just a 1 off for advertisement. Im talking about actual use as the main part of a businesses process in some way.

Are there any non-boston dynamics promo vids of it in use? What is the approximate price?

5 Comments
2024/04/19
16:33 UTC

11

Robotics Vs Mechatronics?

Hi am 18M and about to finish hs in 3 months, recently i started thinking what i want to be in life so i started researching for a field, i liked electronics, programming, aviation and mechanics, and i found mechatronics to be the perfect field to go into, but i just learned about robotics and am not sure which one will suit me more considering the following points :

• the dream job that am so into is devoloping drones, any kind of drones either its UAVs or UUVs or UGVs.

• jobs in general because im aware that i might not find the job i want right away after college, civillian or military jobs it doesnt matter.

8 Comments
2024/04/19
16:23 UTC

1

Kangaroo X2, Arduino Mega and Serial Port Examples?

Hi All,

Home robotics enthusiast here pulling my last grey hair out and wonder if there is a community out there, I am not aware of?

I am working on a skid steer robot platform based on two large 24v power chair DC motors, Dimension Engineering's Kangaroo X2 & Sabretooth 2x32 motor controller with quadrature encoders. An Arduino Mega for the motor control via MQTT back to the mothership.

Everything works except the serial port brick wall of the Kangaroo X2 and after many hours of Dimension engineering tech support, Reddit, Mr. Google and my personal Fiver (ChatGPT) with the same 5 examples over and over. Arghhhh

Questions:

  1. Does anybody know of a community or forums that are actively using these (Kangaroo X2) or should I move on to something else? I see a lot of mention of ROS and universities but not many examples or discussion beyond purchasing so suspect they are behind paywalls or internal to the school's curricula.
  2. Does anybody have a functional sketch (beyond the built-in example) that works that they would share?
  3. And finally, the issue at hand... any ideas why I have a serial port and the SoftwareSerial issue that freezes the code when run. Tried all the available serial pin combinations for Mega serial ports. Tried Serial1, 2 etc. as well.

This fails:

// -------------------- LIBRARIES TO INCLUDE --------------------
#include <SPI.h>               // ICSP 50(CIPO), 51(COPI), 52(SCK), 53(CS)
#include <Ethernet.h>          // Ethernet controller (Wiznet/WIZ_Ethernet_Library)
#include <PubSubClient.h>      // MQTT
#include <SoftwareSerial.h>    // Include SoftwareSerial library for Sabertooth controller
#include <Kangaroo.h>          // Dimension Engineering Sabertooth & Kangaroo X2

// ---------------------- PIN DEFINITIONS ----------------------
// Kangaroo X2 & Sabertooth
const int Kangaroo_Tx_pin = 12;  // Arduino Transmit Pin to Kangaroo S1
const int Kangaroo_Rx_pin = 13;  // Arduino Receive Pin to Kangaroo S2

// MQTT and other bits removed for clarity

// Mixed mode channels on Kangaroo are, by default, 'D' and 'T'.
SoftwareSerial SerialPort(Kangaroo_Rx_pin, Kangaroo_Tx_pin);
KangarooSerial K(SerialPort);
KangarooChannel Drive(K, 'D');
KangarooChannel Turn(K, 'T');

// Kangaroo power variable
int ForwardReverse_power = 0;  // Kangaroo -127 for full reverse, 0 for stop, +127 for full forward.
int LeftRight_power = 0;       // Kangaroo -127 for full CounterClockwise, 0 for stop, +127 for full Clockwise

// Ethernet bits removed for clarity

//========================================================================================================

// --------------- START OF PGM SETUP LOGIC --------------
void setup() {

  Serial.begin(9600);  //set Arduino usb serial port speed

  // Kangaroo X2
  SerialPort.begin(9600);  // Establish serial connection to Kangaroo
  SerialPort.listen();

  Drive.start();
  Turn.start();

  Drive.si(0);  // Set Kangaroo to zero ForwardReverse motion
  Turn.si(0);   // Set Kangaroo to zero LeftRight motion

// Code never makes it here.....

  Serial.println();
  Serial.println(F("Starting Serial...."));
  Serial.print(F("==============="));

Feeling like I am the dumbest person in the room and y'all are just pulling these things out of the box and applying power and MAGIC!

1 Comment
2024/04/19
15:14 UTC

1

Line following robot

Hey yall, I’m struggling with a school assignment for making a line following robot. I’ve looked at countless online tutorials but none seem to help me. I understand the basics but what is really getting me is connecting the IR sensors. I’ve tried dozens of times but they either don’t function as they should or simply do not work. I am using an Arduino uno, and the IR Sensor (OPB706A) by OpTek Technology. I need help figuring out where each pin goes and writing some code that could help me test it to see if it’s able to detect white background from the black line. What I’ve done before gave me very sporadic outputs that continued to give me readings even after disconnecting the sensors so I truely am stumped. Any help is appreciated, thanks y’all!

1 Comment
2024/04/19
14:10 UTC

0

Maze Solving Robotic Car

Hi guys, this will be my first such project. I request your assistance and your tips will be of high help to me, anything is appreciated. Like what algorithms to use or what kind of hardware or number of sensors, etc. Please help a fellow learner.

0 Comments
2024/04/19
11:25 UTC

1

Where can I buy sensors for low price

Sensors here, are so expensive and like they do not even have proper ratings. I am interested in robotics but they cost so much and there is no shop where you can buy it for low price. Can anyone help me?

11 Comments
2024/04/19
07:33 UTC

35

First design of the Robo-Arm

Obviously this is just the shoulder and elbow parts (the hand is a whole other can of worms) thought I’d show it off and see if anyone has any critiques or suggestions on the basic design!

1 Comment
2024/04/19
03:34 UTC

0

Is this a short circuit??

I’m doing this competition and I need my robot to move faster. I was setting up my code to run the dc motor at full speed but one of my team mates who developed their own robot has theirs going faster. I knew it wasn’t the code I made so I checked the chassis made by the previous year’s competitors and found a 103 capacitor jumping the positive and negative terminals. I was wondering if this was causing a short circuit and if it was hindering my robots speed and power.

19 Comments
2024/04/18
23:50 UTC

1

Direct conversion from block programming in LEGO EV3 to MicroPython

Hey guys.

Me and my team are studying a way to convert LEGO EV3 block programming (or any versatile block programming) to Python code bc we are gonna join in our national olympics of robotics. We already have a robot and its code from the past year tournament, we just want to convert this block code to MicroPython.

We searched through the internet (in english and in portuguese) and founded nothing 'bout this. Help us, please! ;-;

6 Comments
2024/04/18
20:30 UTC

0

UCSD MS in MAE vs WPI MS in Robotics Engineering

I want to go into controls and robotics and I've been between these two schools for a while now. Both have interesting research and are about the same cost, but UCSD is closer to where I live, it's higher ranked, and I would probably enjoy the area more. Seems like alot of people speak highly of WPI though. Thoughts?

1 Comment
2024/04/18
18:47 UTC

3

Laser-based Odometry for ROS2 with BotBox - ROS Developers OpenClass #188

Hi Robotics Community,

https://preview.redd.it/7kt9fcj96avc1.jpg?width=1920&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=3ed2d87baa7c7048717418ef297d8d59d36c37ab

Join our next ROS Developers Open Class to learn about Odometry, a fundamental concept in robotics that estimates a robot’s position and movement by analyzing sensor data. We will explore how to compute a robot’s odometry based solely on its laser data.

This free class welcomes everyone and includes a practical ROS project with code and simulation. Alberto Ezquerro, a skilled robotics developer and head of robotics education at The Construct, will guide this live session.

What you’ll learn:

  • What is odometry and why it’s crucial in robotics?
  • How to calculate a robot’s odometry using laser data
  • Practical examples using simulated and real BotBox robots

The robot we’ll use in this class:

Simulated & Real BotBox

https://preview.redd.it/0ji1outb6avc1.png?width=839&format=png&auto=webp&s=78e451899ccfee3ff17b21cf4bd87862abadbb11

https://preview.redd.it/5l6by2oc6avc1.jpg?width=1920&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=eef13491747f79e4db15933abe22dcabcb965a49

How to join:

Save the link below to watch the live session on April 23, 2024 6:00 PM 7:00 PM (Madrid) : https://app.theconstruct.ai/open-classes/3e880748-1ec4-4d9b-89f1-698e81038559/

Organizer

The Construct
theconstruct.ai

0 Comments
2024/04/18
18:26 UTC

1

Panasonic table mechanism

We have a VR-008 Panasonic robot with a side A and side B swivel table, G5 and G6. It has sat for 3 years and the teach pendant has been refurbished. Everything has been factory restored I guess, there's no programs no position registers and there's only a Mech1 option. I want the table to move from side A and B and want to rotate the fixture 90 degrees. But I have no option for controlling the table or even indexing the table. Where do I navigate in the controller to see these functions and turn on table rotations?

0 Comments
2024/04/18
16:29 UTC

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