After having coded past midnight on Friday, the teams arrived back this Saturday morning to prepare for a day of coding, talking and tests. We did our first friendly game this year, against the Hamburg Bit-Bots. Some issues on both sides caused the number of shot goals to be quite low (final score was 1:1). , however that’s what these games are for. Overall we are quite optimistic about the state of our robots and software and are going to work on some of the issues. The Bit Bots played against Bold Hearts as well. Hopefully we’ll have more games tomorrow.
This weekend, we are hosting the latest of the RoboCup Berlin Open Workshops (“RoBOW”). While the SPL-Teams meet in Dortmund, several Humanoid teams have come to Berlin to discuss the latest developments and test their robots in some friendly games. What a wonderful opportunity to test the new big field and prepare for the upcoming competitions in April.
So yesterday, our robots donned their new shoes, and welcomed the visiting robots and their human teams. We are happy to have the teams Bold Heart, Hamburg Bit-Bots and WF Wolves join us this weekend.
After numerous complaints (not just from Ada and Grace), it became obvious that the robots needed new shoes. The old ones were quite clunky and also heavy, so a new much lighter model was designed and added to all robots.
In the spirit of sharing, our team has made available all developed electronic components used in the FUmanoid robots. This includes schematics and board layouts, as well as the required firmwares.
The first component released is our power board. It includes a microcontroller to monitor voltage, report the system state and cut off power if necessary.
Next is our sensor and actuactor board called Erolf. It provides three serial buses to the servo motors (in our case RS485 Dynamixel models), allowing for high-speed parallel setting and getting of the actuator position. It also includes an IMU with a dedicated microcontroller running an extended kalman filter. The board also includes safety functionality to cut off the power to the servos as soon as an abnormal state, e.g. a short circuit in the cables, is detected.
Erolf – an actuator control and sensor board
Finally, the third component released is an overvoltage protection module for our Dynamixel servos. Though quite small, it serves an important functionality in that it short-circuits the power to ground (detectable by our power board) as soon as a short circuit is detected between the data wires and VCC. This usually would cause many of the connected servos to become damaged (more specifically, the ICs connected to the serial bus). Together with the above two boards such damage is now virtually eliminated in our robots.
As last year, we decided to also release this year’s source code. More precisely, the version used in our last game (quarter finals) at RoboCup 2013 in Eindhoven. Even though a code re-use is rather difficult in the humanoid league (due to the different and often quite individually constructed robots of each team), we are hoping it will be of interest to other teams. And we hope that more teams will be releasing their code … Because that’s also a goal of RoboCup – to learn from the successes and mistakes of other teams.
To this effect, enjoy the download.
P.S.: The framework our robot software is based on has also been released in a current version (Download).
Last weekend the FUmanoids discovered their inner craftsman and built a new soccer field. Since the rules for the Robocup 2014 require a field of 9m x 6m the old field in the laboratory was too small. 3 hours, 5 rolls of carpet and 50m of tape later the field was completed and the testing started.
The large field poses new challenges as objects have to be spotted over larger distances and the localization has to be adjusted. So far our robots handled the new field well. Now the robots are looking forward to March when several other teams come to Berlin and will play some training matches on the new field.
It seems, one of our robots has found a new addiction to Club Mate…
The FUmanoids wish everybody a happy new year.
Yesterday we played our two matches in the first round robin, and we won 2:1 against TH-MOS (all goals scored by us …) and 3:0 against NUbots. This means we are first in our group and will directly proceed to the second round robin which will start this afternoon.
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A small update from the RoboCup competition. We arrived Sunday evening in Eindhoven. On Monday at 8am we went to the RoboCup site and unpacked our robots and equipment. A quick trip to the hardware store and the purchase of a shelf eleviated the chronic limited space this year for us.
Yesterday we thoroughly checked all the robots, and all 5 of them had to walk a lot to get accustomed to the new carpet. We also calibrated the camera and tested the object recognition. Generally all components seem to work, however there are several problems that still need to be fixed.
On Monday there was also the drawing of the groups. As every year, there will be to round robin rounds, followed by quarter, semi and finals. We got drawn into group C, together with the NU-Bots and team TH-MOS. We will meet them on Wednesday at 10am and 2pm. At 4:25pm (after they played against each other), we should know the ranking within our group. The first in the group goes to the second round robin directly, whereas the second and third in the group will have to play a knock-out match against the third and second of the other group (this will take place Thursday around noon).