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Revising the SRR Web Material

I have been fighting with fatigue since the June SRR competition. Finally seem to be overcoming it with some medications, better sleep habits, and who knows what else that may be making it better. As a result I am reworking and rethinking the Sample Return Challenge on my website. New material is under 2014 Table of Contents. Pages I am working on have WIP (work in progress) in their title. Comments and suggestions are appreciated here, via email, or on Facebook.

Happy holidays to all of you. May the robot of your desires be under the tree.

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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 …

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…

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. 
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