OCCRA
Go to Post Values aren't really dictated, they are created by everyone involved. - Herodotus [more]
Home
Go Back   Chief Delphi > Technical > Programming
CD-Events   CD-Media   CD-Spy   FRC-Spy  
portal register members calendar search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read FAQ rules

 
Closed Thread
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
  #1   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 11-18-2002, 12:15 AM
Dan 550's Avatar
Dan 550 Dan 550 is offline
Behold the Awesomeness!
AKA: Dan Richards
#0550 (BattleTech)
Team Role: College Student
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Rookie Year: 2000
Location: Jersey, Baby!
Posts: 310
Dan 550 is on a distinguished road
2003 Programming

Hey, does anybody know the story on programming for the 2003 controller? Still pBasic as always, or new language? Expanded memory? I'm in the dark here, and the ninnies are buggin me already...
  #2   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 11-18-2002, 08:57 AM
Jeff Waegelin's Avatar
Jeff Waegelin Jeff Waegelin is offline
El Jefe de 148
AKA: Midwest Refugee
FRC #0148 (Robowranglers)
Team Role: Engineer
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Rookie Year: 2001
Location: Greenville, TX
Posts: 3,218
Jeff Waegelin has a reputation beyond reputeJeff Waegelin has a reputation beyond reputeJeff Waegelin has a reputation beyond reputeJeff Waegelin has a reputation beyond reputeJeff Waegelin has a reputation beyond reputeJeff Waegelin has a reputation beyond reputeJeff Waegelin has a reputation beyond reputeJeff Waegelin has a reputation beyond reputeJeff Waegelin has a reputation beyond reputeJeff Waegelin has a reputation beyond reputeJeff Waegelin has a reputation beyond repute
I don't think anyone knows. Innovation First has pulled all the documentation for the "Full-size RC" and won't put the revised documentation up until mid-December. We'll have to wait and see. If I were to take a guess, I would say it will still be PBASIC, same memory limitations, just a different default code.
__________________
Jeff Waegelin
Mechanical Engineer, Innovation First Labs
Lead Engineer, Team 148 - The Robowranglers
  #3   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 11-18-2002, 10:28 AM
rbayer's Avatar Unsung FIRST Hero
rbayer rbayer is offline
Blood, Sweat, and Code
no team (Teamless Orphan)
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Rookie Year: 2001
Location: Minnetonka, MN
Posts: 1,087
rbayer is a glorious beacon of lightrbayer is a glorious beacon of lightrbayer is a glorious beacon of lightrbayer is a glorious beacon of lightrbayer is a glorious beacon of light
Send a message via AIM to rbayer
Quote:
Originally posted by Jeff Waegelin
I don't think anyone knows. Innovation First has pulled all the documentation for the "Full-size RC" and won't put the revised documentation up until mid-December. We'll have to wait and see. If I were to take a guess, I would say it will still be PBASIC, same memory limitations, just a different default code.
Ditto.

Given that the OI you got with your EduBot is the same sa the one we will use for the real RC, I'd guess it's not changing much. A few things that may be different:

autonomous control?
user-defined feedback on OI
Oscilator (sp?) similar to EduRobot
Two dashboard specs (see the OI documentation on the dashboard port).

Other than that, I'd guess it should be about the same
__________________
New C-based RoboEmu2 (code simulator) available at: http://www.robbayer.com/software.php
  #4   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 11-18-2002, 10:39 AM
xNexus's Avatar
xNexus xNexus is offline
Registered User
#0271 (Mechanical Marauders)
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Bay Shore, NY
Posts: 19
xNexus is an unknown quantity at this point
Send a message via AIM to xNexus
It would be really nice...

If they switched from PBasic to a Java based system.
__________________
--
The Trekkie Techie


Use Debian GNU/Linux and become a better person =)
  #5   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 11-18-2002, 11:30 AM
Unsung FIRST Hero
Matt Leese Matt Leese is offline
Been-In-FIRST-Too-Long
FRC #1438 (The Aztechs)
Team Role: Engineer
 
Join Date: May 2001
Rookie Year: 1998
Location: Long Beach, CA
Posts: 937
Matt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond repute
Send a message via AIM to Matt Leese
The information I have is over a year old now, but when I talked to Eric, he seemed very interested in the idea of supporting other programming languages. Basically, FIRST primarily wanted to allow teams to continue using PBasic if they chose to. They also wanted to allow teams to use another programming language if possible (Java and C were the two that came up then). I have no idea if InnovationFIRST is working on anything like that. I was told that if we were going to see it, the possiblity of seeing it would start this coming year.

Matt
  #6   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 11-18-2002, 01:10 PM
Jnadke Jnadke is offline
Go Badgers!
#0093
Team Role: Alumni
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Appleton, WI
Posts: 775
Jnadke is on a distinguished road
Send a message via ICQ to Jnadke Send a message via AIM to Jnadke Send a message via Yahoo to Jnadke
It'd be pretty neat if they used the Java Stamp Modules from Parallax in the controllers. It would throw some spice into the mix for the programmers. Everyone would have to learn Java...




The negative side of the Javalin Stamp is increased complexity. I was reading through the manual and it said that serial input in the new modual is seamless. By this, it means that data is input into a buffer in memory, and it is up to you to check for the data. When the data comes, it comes, no matter what.

The positive side is that the data is constantly updated without having to wait for the Stamp to finish execution. This is very useful, because you are getting the latest data when you are doing your in-program calculations.

Another positive side of the Javalin Stamp is SRAM memory. SRAM is much, much faster than EEPROM, resulting in a faster execution time. Also, the memory is "flat". Your variable space and code space is the same. This means MORE VARIABLE SPACE!

This is the largest improvement over the BASIC Stamp. The previous stamp transferred data from the memory in a serial nature, and it used EEPROM, both of these factors being considerably slow. Although the stamp ran off a 20Mhz PIC microcontroller, it continually had to wait for the EEPROM to send it the next instruction. The new SRAM is connected in a parallel nature, resulting in much faster memory transfers.

The last big improvement is... of course... decimals! They are no use for output... but in your calculations they can be a big help.





Personally, I think the transition to the Java Stamp would be a good one. The biggest advantage is that the students are learning a programming language that they will actually use, not some proprietary BASIC mock-up.
__________________
The best moments of our lives fall in two categories: those that did happen and those that did not.

Last edited by Jnadke : 11-18-2002 at 02:14 PM.
  #7   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 11-18-2002, 02:47 PM
xNexus's Avatar
xNexus xNexus is offline
Registered User
#0271 (Mechanical Marauders)
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Bay Shore, NY
Posts: 19
xNexus is an unknown quantity at this point
Send a message via AIM to xNexus
Java is very easy to learn... And increased complexity is a very good thing. PBasic is far too simple of a programming language for an increasingly complex field such as robotics. Even though I dont think java is the best solution, but it is a good step towards a better programming solution for First. And the learning that would require for students to learn java would be much better spent then learning PBasic/increasing their skill in PBasic. Java can be and is used in real world apps unlike PBasic.

And just think about it... a First robot with a ip address and ftp server! Thanks to java.
__________________
--
The Trekkie Techie


Use Debian GNU/Linux and become a better person =)

Last edited by xNexus : 11-18-2002 at 02:52 PM.
  #8   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 11-18-2002, 02:52 PM
Neal Probert's Avatar
Neal Probert Neal Probert is offline
Registered User
#1015 (Pi High Samurai)
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Ann Arbor, MI
Posts: 48
Neal Probert is on a distinguished road
Send a message via ICQ to Neal Probert Send a message via AIM to Neal Probert Send a message via Yahoo to Neal Probert
Java Stamp

I'll agree with you there with the Java Stamp (actually the Javelin) over the Basic Stamp. I'd like to see something better meself.

Most embedded systems are done in C, then C++ with more and more Java appearing. With the availability of Java compilers, that is much more feasible nowadays.

It's also much easier to do cross platform development in Java than in any other language. Coming up with an emulator or simulator should be much easier as well. The Java classes for robot I/O would be pretty easy to rewrite for those purposes.

The multi-tasking capability is definitely the next step in robot programming. Almost a necessity in really good robot programming.

The Basic Stamp is nothing more than a PIC with a PBASIC interpreter. Thus, the PIC could be programmed in C with a custom application as well, such as robot control.

Of course, ideally, I'd like to see an embedded Linux in there to do some really cool stuff. I could do anything in C, C++, Java or whatever.
__________________
Ypsilanti-Ann Arbor Area Robotics Club
YAAARC! The sound you make as your robot rolls off the workbench...
http://www.yaaarc.org/
------------------------------
Software Engineer (20+ years experience)
ProbeStar Technical Systems, LLC.
http://www.probestar.com/
  #9   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 11-18-2002, 07:44 PM
rbayer's Avatar Unsung FIRST Hero
rbayer rbayer is offline
Blood, Sweat, and Code
no team (Teamless Orphan)
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Rookie Year: 2001
Location: Minnetonka, MN
Posts: 1,087
rbayer is a glorious beacon of lightrbayer is a glorious beacon of lightrbayer is a glorious beacon of lightrbayer is a glorious beacon of lightrbayer is a glorious beacon of light
Send a message via AIM to rbayer
I'd personally like to see Lisp/Scheme implementations--the power of Scheme is truly overwhelming.

Anyway, if you really want to do something in C/C++ during the offseason, you can always use RoboCon. It's available in the whitepapers as well as at my website:
http://FIRSTprograms.tripod.com/Programs.htm
__________________
New C-based RoboEmu2 (code simulator) available at: http://www.robbayer.com/software.php
  #10   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 11-18-2002, 10:52 PM
Unsung FIRST Hero
Matt Leese Matt Leese is offline
Been-In-FIRST-Too-Long
FRC #1438 (The Aztechs)
Team Role: Engineer
 
Join Date: May 2001
Rookie Year: 1998
Location: Long Beach, CA
Posts: 937
Matt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond repute
Send a message via AIM to Matt Leese
The reason against switching to Java is the same complexity that some seem to be a good thing. Java is much more complex than PBasic. Namely, the Object Oriented nature of Java makes it quite a bit more complex to learn than PBasic. It also requires a knowledge of functions/methods, encapsulation, data hiding, and quite a few other things. It's unlikely that the default program code would not take advantage of this. There would also be numerous more runtime errors that would have to dealt with. The main issue is that a number of teams have problems with getting the programming to work now. FIRST is not going to change the programming situation unless it's an optional change (think the same way that the electronics board was added this year). From someone who teaches Java to college students, it's not going to be nearly as easy to get high school students to learn it quickly.

For programming on PIC chips, the most commonly used language is Assembly. Following that, it'd be C (not C++). I don't have any actual information to back this up but I doubt that the JStamp uses a PIC chip as they just aren't powerful enough to run a JVM. I'd guess something like the Motorola 68000. I'd really not expect to ever see LISP/Scheme. It's too heavyweight for use in an embedded system and just really isn't suited to it.

Matt
  #11   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 11-18-2002, 10:59 PM
xNexus's Avatar
xNexus xNexus is offline
Registered User
#0271 (Mechanical Marauders)
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Bay Shore, NY
Posts: 19
xNexus is an unknown quantity at this point
Send a message via AIM to xNexus
it wouldnt be hard for them to throw in a Intel StrongArm 200mhz chip in there and redesign the robotics controller using standard comsumer tech... And if java was used the support based for new people using the Java based RC would be much larger.... imho
__________________
--
The Trekkie Techie


Use Debian GNU/Linux and become a better person =)
  #12   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 11-19-2002, 07:17 AM
Unsung FIRST Hero
Matt Leese Matt Leese is offline
Been-In-FIRST-Too-Long
FRC #1438 (The Aztechs)
Team Role: Engineer
 
Join Date: May 2001
Rookie Year: 1998
Location: Long Beach, CA
Posts: 937
Matt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond reputeMatt Leese has a reputation beyond repute
Send a message via AIM to Matt Leese
The StrongARM would be the exactly wrong chip for a robot controller. And there's a simple reason for that: the StrongARM doesn't have the components built in that we need. There's no PWM controller on a StrongARM. There's no serial input/output controller. That's just off the top of my head. The StrongARM is a microprocessor. What is needed for FIRST is a microcontroller. Adding extra chips just increases the cost and complexity of the system.

Again, the reason for sticking with PBasic is not the size of the user base, but instead the ability to accomplish some programming with minimal knowledge of PBasic. It requires quite a bit larger knowledge of Java to accomplish much in Java than it does in PBasic. Java probally is the superior programming language. It is much more powerful. However, because of that, it's harder to learn the basics of the language. It's that simple.

Matt
  #13   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 11-19-2002, 09:50 AM
Neal Probert's Avatar
Neal Probert Neal Probert is offline
Registered User
#1015 (Pi High Samurai)
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Ann Arbor, MI
Posts: 48
Neal Probert is on a distinguished road
Send a message via ICQ to Neal Probert Send a message via AIM to Neal Probert Send a message via Yahoo to Neal Probert
Cool The Next Chip?

The StrongARM may be a possibility, but I haven't seen many instances of it being used in embedded systems. I see that the tools are out there for embedded ARM development.

Many microcontrollers are microprocessors where the CPU core has additional I/O circuitry wrapped around it. Many of the old 8 and 16 bit micros have morphed into use as microcontrollers since they are no longer useful in personal computers. Motorola has done this with the 68000 and the PowerPC. Even Intel and its' licensees have embedded versions of the 386, 486 and Pentium.

The auto industry is a very heavy user of embedded chips, and they often ask the manufacturers to design chips just for their needs. For example, Ford has the PTEC which is an embedded version of the PowerPC chip.

As for Scheme, yes it's powerful, but a bad choice for embedded and real-time programming. Any language you use must have deterministic behavior in that you know how long it takes to respond to events (latency) and how long it takes to perform a task (performance).
__________________
Ypsilanti-Ann Arbor Area Robotics Club
YAAARC! The sound you make as your robot rolls off the workbench...
http://www.yaaarc.org/
------------------------------
Software Engineer (20+ years experience)
ProbeStar Technical Systems, LLC.
http://www.probestar.com/
  #14   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 12-10-2002, 12:04 PM
Animator Animator is offline
Registered User
#0120
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Cleveland
Posts: 11
Animator is an unknown quantity at this point
Javelin Stamp

I think they are going to offer teams a choice between controllers. If a team wants to use the traditional controller, then they can use it, but if a team wants to use the Javelin Stamp Robot Controller then they will be able to use it. Because the OI is using a Serial Stream to interpret data from the RC, it does not matter which Robot Controller a team uses. The same OI (included with the EduBot) will work with the RC.

Something is changing though. Otherwise, why would Innovation First remove the default program from their website which has not changed in 3 years?

According to the Javelin Stamp manual, they have designed the manual to help PBASIC Stamp users to convert to Java. So although Java is more complex, Parallax understans it and is trying to help people convert.
  #15   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 12-10-2002, 01:51 PM
Jnadke Jnadke is offline
Go Badgers!
#0093
Team Role: Alumni
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Appleton, WI
Posts: 775
Jnadke is on a distinguished road
Send a message via ICQ to Jnadke Send a message via AIM to Jnadke Send a message via Yahoo to Jnadke
Quote:
Originally posted by Matt Leese
The reason against switching to Java is the same complexity that some seem to be a good thing. Java is much more complex than PBasic. Namely, the Object Oriented nature of Java makes it quite a bit more complex to learn than PBasic. It also requires a knowledge of functions/methods, encapsulation, data hiding, and quite a few other things. It's unlikely that the default program code would not take advantage of this. There would also be numerous more runtime errors that would have to dealt with. The main issue is that a number of teams have problems with getting the programming to work now. FIRST is not going to change the programming situation unless it's an optional change (think the same way that the electronics board was added this year). From someone who teaches Java to college students, it's not going to be nearly as easy to get high school students to learn it quickly.
Matt
Although a lot of what you said is true, people don't necessarily have to program in object oriented fashion. They can still program their entire bot as a stream of commands within the main() function. It's possible to do that, although it goes against everything that Java stands for. Once you take that stuff out, you have an easier form of Pbasic. Ultimately, Java is easier because PBASIC has so many mathematical limitations. I can see that the transfer from PBASIC to Java may be confusing, but learning the mangled form of Java I described would be easy.


Java would give the more advanced programmers much more flexibility in what they can do. The biggest advancement in the Javalin stamp is TIME! Yes, the Javalin can tell differences in time. Differences as small as 8 microseconds, I believe. Another big thing is multitasking. You can set an operation to be performed every x number of seconds and continue chugging away at robot code until x number of seconds has passed.

You are contradicting yourself. You have high school students building mechanical transmissions rivaling some automobiles. Some students use sophisticated CAD software and automated mills to create complex parts for their robot. Yet you say that FIRST students are incapable of learning simple Java? Bah.

I took Intro to Java in my Senior year of High School at the local University. 4 credit class. I passed with an A. It was a rather fun class, I fell asleep a lot, but the labs were interesting. To some people it may have seemed difficult, because they weren't motivated.


However, in all practicality, I highly doubt Innovation FIRST would make the switch. I'd be really happy if they did, but I doubt it would happen, mainly because the EduRobot is already programmed in PBasic, and I don't think they'd want to confuse the Rookies. If anything, they'd give them the preseason to learn it.
__________________
The best moments of our lives fall in two categories: those that did happen and those that did not.

Last edited by Jnadke : 12-10-2002 at 01:56 PM.
Closed Thread


Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
The Science Channel to broadcast FIRST documentary Andy Baker General Forum 49 03-01-2004 02:03 PM
The Autodesk Design Awards 2003 Call for Entries Brandon Martus 3D Animation and Competition 1 12-26-2003 06:40 PM
Office 2003 David Kelly Chit-Chat 5 10-26-2003 10:26 PM
Cal Game 2003 date decided... Who is interested? Ken Leung Off-Season Events 15 06-02-2003 06:48 AM
Rules on making spare parts fyi DougHogg General Forum 0 04-02-2003 04:18 PM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:04 AM.

The Chief Delphi Forums are sponsored by Innovation First International, Inc.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright © Chief Delphi