6.186 | January IAP 2005 | Undergraduate

Mobile Autonomous Systems Laboratory


Day One

  1. Solder the orc pad in your kit assembly guide (PDF) and show it to a staff member
  2. The staff member will check your soldering and give you the chip and lcd for the orc pad, as well as your gyro sensor
  3. Complete the orc pad assembly
  4. Write a hello world program for your eden
  5. Write a hello world program for your orc pad
  6. Solder the gyro sensor
  7. Assemble the pegbot (bolt on motors, etc.)
  8. Show finished gyro, orc pad hello world, and pegbot to a staff member

You have completed all required activities for today! Take your kit home. Brainstorm robot ideas with your team. Finish the tutorial if you have not done so already.

Day Two

  1. If you didn’t finish yesterday’s activities, do that first
  2. Sensor Characterization: pick from the following two assignments
    • Calibrate an IR sensor to have your pegbot stop 6 inches from an obstacle. The robot should either stop until the obstacle is removed (or back up and turn away from the obstacle). When stopped, the robot should indicate it is in front of an obstacle on the bot client.
    • Calibrate an IR sensor to find corners/gaps in a wall (such as mousehole or entrance into another part of the playing field). When it finds a corner/gap, the robot should pause and indicate this information on the bot client.
  3. Experiment with other data inputs (sonar, gyro, camera, encoders)
  4. Work on your robot

Day Three

  1. Finish Day Two activities if you haven’t done so (including BotClient) (PDF)
  2. Feature detection. The staff member will place a random bar code in front of your robot (with a plain background, in a vertical position). Publish on the bot client how many green squares are on the strip
  3. Work on the first checkpoint (find red ball and move towards it) for Friday and building your robot

Check Point One

Find a red ball (it will be in the robot’s line of sight) and drive towards it.

Design Review Guidelines

Put together 3-4 slides that encapsulate your robot’s current state and your plans for the contest. Things to include

  • Overall Strategy
  • Mechanical Design and Sensors
  • Software Plan (fsm? image processing plan?)
  • Current State of Robot

Each team will have up to 5 minutes to talk. Please put slides where the staff can access them – on the wiki, in someone’s Public directory – and email the staff as to their location by 9 pm on Tuesday evening.

Check Point Two

Your goal is to score a point. The robot will be placed on a simple playing field with one goal (possession also counts as scoring a point). The ball may or may not be directly visible if you do a 360 turn – be prepared to show off some wandering/searching algorithm to score a point.

You may check off with the pegbot, but it is highly recommended that you complete check point two with your own chassis.

Daily Wiki Guidelines

Write a few sentences about what your team did – problems encountered, tasks accomplished, lessons learned – and/or plans for the next day(s). You don’t need to write a lot, but take some time to reflect as a team on your day. If you have specific problems or suggestions for the staff, you may include them in your journal, but please also tell/email the staff as well so we can address the issue.

Final Paper Guidelines

The Final Paper

  • Should be written as part of the wiki (please do not upload a document)
  • Should be around 1250 - 1750 words (5-7 pages)
  • Should Summarize
    • Overall Strategy
    • Mechanical Design and Sensors
    • Software Design
    • Overall Performance
    • Conclusions/Suggestions for Future Teams
  • Should have clean spelling, grammar, and punctuation (but an informal tone is fine)
  • Images should be uploaded to the wiki. Do not include links (we archive all the papers; we don’t want to lose pictures when links change!)

You can look at last year’s papers as examples.