07 August 2013

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 vision packages

Here is a rough synopsis of how the teams fared:

Team Intrepid was the first to leave and return to the platform. It thought it picked up the sample but actually did not.

Team Kuukulgur (it means Moon or Lunar Rover), a demonstration team, from Estonia, was the first to pick up the sample but did not make it back to the starting platform. They had the slickest looking robots but then three of the team are mechanical engineers. They brought a swarm of four but one failed so only three took the field.

Team Waterloo, a demonstration team from Canada, also picked up the sample and were the first to return it to the starting platform but the sample was just outside the 1.5 meter square area. It did not hurt them financially since they were a demonstration team and thus ineligible for the NASA money. They did receive $500 from WPI for picking up the sample.

Team Survey won the Phase I competition this year and will take home $6,000 for that effort. ($5,000 from NASA and $1,000 from WPI.)

Team Mystic Lake, myself, did not do that well but I consider it a "building year", to borrow from sports team terminology. Mystic Two traveled the furthest distance of a robot in the SRR to date. It just kept trekking. I proved out much of my code and the ability of my very small rovers to handle the terrain.

SpacePride fielded two rovers but were unable to accomplish much. Their software developer dropped out near the end so they had to scramble to get something working via a state-machine in RoboRealm.

I will update the table if more information becomes available.

Just after I returned from the challenge, an email on a robotics mailing list asked for advice on languages to use for robots. Since I had almost all of the information posted above I put it into a reply and received a nice thanks in return. Hopefully someone will find this interesting.

(Updated UCSC - UC Santa Cruz from comment. Thanks.)
(Updated Middleman aka RoBear from comment. Thanks.)