Robotics

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The State of Robotics - March 2021

It’s never too late to learn. As any reinforcement learning agent, we get rewarded by the new knowledge that we acquire. Likewise, we learn by doing, by rolling up our sleeves and getting to work. (Do you want a hands-on book on Reinforcement Learning? Here is my personal favourite) March has shown us great examples of this. From robots learning to encourage social participation to detect serious environmental problems, it was a learning month.

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Hardened ROS with 10 year security from Open Robotics and Canonical

Canonical ROS ESM customers now can access a long-term supported ROS and Ubuntu environment by the Ubuntu and ROS experts. Learn more about ROS ESM. 6 April 2021: Canonical and Open Robotics announced today a partnership for Robot Operating System (ROS) Extended Security Maintenance (ESM) and enterprise support, as part of Ubuntu Advantage, Canonical’s service package for Ubuntu. ROS support will be made available as an option to Ubuntu Advantage support customers.

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The State of Robotics - November 2020

Goodbye Thanksgiving (well, for some of us), hello Christmas! The holiday season really is the best, and it always brings interesting robotics news, which we will now distill into a quick dose of delightful and easily-digestible tidbits. As always, if you’d like to see your work showcased here, please send an email to robotics.community@canonical.com, and we’ll feature it in next month’s blog.

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Distribute ROS 2 across machines with MicroK8s

Our simple ROS 2 talker and listener setup runs well on a single Kubernetes node, now let’s distribute it out across multiple computers. This article builds upon our simple ROS 2 talker / listener setup by running it on multiple K8s nodes. At the completion of this setup expect to have a ROS2 Kubernetes cluster running MicroK8s on three different machines. Applying a single configuration file distributes the ROS 2 workload across the machines.

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The State of Robotics - October 2020

This post marks the one year anniversary of the Ubuntu Robotics newsletter. We knew adding the year on the end of each title was a good idea! One full year where the Ubuntu Robotics team have been documenting their work, showcasing projects in ROS and discussing interesting things going on in the community. And my, what a year it has been. To mark the occasion, we’d love to hear and write about any work you’ve done in robotics or ROS over the last year.

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An Introduction to Testing Robot Code

The myriad of different fields that make up robotics makes QA practices difficult to settle on. Field testing is the go-to, since a functioning robot is often proof enough that a system is working. But online tests are slow. The physical environment must be set up. The entire system has to be in a workable state. Multiple runs are needed to build confidence. This grinds development to a halt.

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Tutorial: Getting Started with ROS

ROS, the Robot Operating System, is the platform of choice for robot development. However, the breadth and depth of existing documentation can be daunting for the ROS beginner. Where should you start learning about ROS 2 on Ubuntu? All robots based on ROS and ROS 2 are programmed using five simple but core constructs: In this tutorial and associated video we’ll introduce these concepts with simulated robots.

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The State of Robotics - July 2020

We know a lot of you are on vacation so we’ll keep this month’s State of Robotics edition short and sweet. Looking for an easy way to get familiar with ROS 2? We recently published a few helpers on how to simulate robots with turtlesim to help our readers get a rolling start on ROS2. For something that carries a little more punch, follow our tutorial on simulating a TurtleBot3.