Kinect in Hybrid Mode

The GDC has hinted that the Kinect system will be used more extensively in next years game.

Here is a video from a Newton Quarterfinal of Team 11, MORT, from Flanders, New Jersey, using the system in Hybrid mode.

I saw a few teams using it this year, but this is the best “dance” that I have seen to date:

You can watch the robot shoot when the “operator” kicks. His hand movements my be loading the next ball. IDK
Would anyone from MORT like to comment?

Our Kinect operator starts out with both arms out and the shooter wheels begin to spin automatically. When the leg is moved up, the piston is activated, shooting the ball. When the arm is moved down, the rollers move, loading the next ball.

In this case, that was repeated more than usual as we were being feeded. In normal a normal match, we would attempt to drive to a bridge to knock the balls down, or at least get close to a bridge so we could quickly grab them in teleop.

Because there are a limited amount of actions that can reliably be picked up with the Kinect, we decided to have two modes of control. These modes can be switched by moving a leg outward to the side.

The first mode that is initially active is the shooting mode, described above. The second mode is the driving mode. In the driving mode, the feeding rollers continuously run and the arms control the drive train. The leg up motion controls the bridge manipulation mechanism.

I was at FRC Live! with Bill Miller during champs, and he seemed to put a very, very big emphasis on the fact that teams should not put away their kinects, but instead should play around with it during the off-season. I have a feeling we’re going to see a more prominent use of the Kinect, perhaps even during teleop rather than autonomous.

Our original Kinect system had only two arms to control every function of our robot. The range of each arm rotated vertically would be put into different “zones”, and the left arm would select what mechanism would be controlled. The right arm would then control it, such as putting the catapult up or down and reloading. It was the best Kinect at North Star.

From the way Bill said it during FRC Live! it seems it would still be restricted to hybrid, but the hybrid would be set up so on-the-fly action would be required. Think 2006/2009 autonomous, where every robot gets into a giant mess in the center. On the fly control would have made those auto periods more interesting. I doubt Kinect would be used during teleop or endgame.

Maybe we’ll see a Kinect installed into each driver station? That’ll allow each team, not each alliance, to be able to use the Kinect during hybrid.