Skip to main content

Linux Sucks

One of the to-do items from the SRR challenge was to learn Linux so I could investigate Robot Operating System and then use OpenCV for vision processing.

Linux does not make this easy and I am rapidly getting frustrated with it as I always do when I try it.

I downloaded and installed Debian Wheezy to get the latest version. It is up and running.

I used the package manger to install Eclipse CDT. Except it is a version of Indigo (3.8) not Juno. Grump, grump, grump. I tried to update Eclipse the other day on another box. There are NO clear instructions on the web on how to do the install over the old version and get it into the menu system.

At the same time I wanted to install Mozilla Thunderbird for email. Nope, not in the package manager and it downloads an archive, not a package. Grump, grump, grump.

Google Chrome downloaded okay and with only one false start I got the package manager to install it.

Even should someone walk me through getting those applications installed I shudder to think of what it is going to take to (1) get ROS and OpenCV setup and (2) get Debian running on all the rover's PCs and running my code.

Popular posts from this blog

Sensor - Accelerometer & Magnetics

Just as I was finishing my first look at the accelerometer and magnetic field sensors a couple of threads cropped up on the Android Developer's group:

http://groups.google.com/group/android-developers/browse_frm/thread/1b42c48ce47cb1c9/720c6f4f8a40fc67#720c6f4f8a40fc67

http://groups.google.com/group/android-developers/browse_frm/thread/2e14272d72b7ab4f#

I had the basic code working so dug a little deeper into the rotation routines and the timing. I posted responses on the threads but want here to dig into the details more.

First some observations applicable to my G1:

The sensors report approximetly every 20, 40 and 220 msec for FAST, GAME, and NORMAL.
A sample may be missed for a specific sensor but usually one of them will be generated - but sometimes all can be missed.
The magnetic field sensor is most reliable with only a few drops. The other sensors are dropped considerably more often.

A caveat in all this is the way I setup the sensor handling may make a difference. I have a singl…

Programming Languages Used for SRR

I asked at the SRR Challenge about the languages and vision processing used by each team. Here is what I found:

Team Language                       Vision Processing
Intrepid                         C++ / Matlab                                           Kuukulgur                     C++                                          OpenCV Mystic                           C++                                          RobotRealm SpacePride                    RoboRealm state machine          RoboRealm Survey                           C++, Python                             OpenCV Middleman                     LabView                                   LabView UCSC                           C/C++                                      OpenCV Waterloo                       C++, Python                                             WPI                              C++                                                              Wunderkammer             Python                                      ROS …

Cold Turkey on Linux

I bit the bullet a few weeks ago with Linux. I was getting ready to go to WPI for the SRR competition and decided to go cold turkey on my laptop. I put in a SSD and loaded Zorin Linux. It us recommended as a substitute for Win XP. One reason I liked it is the rolling upgrades instead of the Ubuntu staged upgrades.

There was still frustration. The WiFi did not work so I used the software updater to install the drivers it found from Broadcom. The OS would not boot after that. I reinstalled just before leaving and took the memory stick with the Zorin Live distro with me figuring I could always reload from it. I was impressed by the quickness of the installation. That encouraged me since if I messed up the laptop I could always quickly reinstall. I also had my iPad so accessing email, FB, and Twitter (I did a lot of tweeting with photos) were always available. 
I kept busy so it was not until Friday night up in VT to visit my sister that I had time to do much with the laptop. I cannot reca…