If you have read my previous post you will know that I recently built an automated ball catcher and programmed it to track and catch a ball. In this post I will talk about the software behind making the catcher work. The structure of the software can be broken down as follows: initialization, image analysis, flight path analysis, and cart control.
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For one of my classes at Penn, I got a chance to learn all about how to make quad copters autonomous. All the 'drones' that have been becoming popular recently are almost all radio controlled, with some of the more expensive ones having a few layers of autonomy between it and the user. But for this class, we wanted to figure out how to make the quad completely autonomous - we wanted to get to a specified point without hitting obstacles with no other human input. We can do this by breaking this problem into three smaller parts: control, obstacle avoidance, and motion planning.
While I was studying at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, I got the chance to participate in a competition called RoboRodentia during my freshman year. Our robot performed rather poorly since all our sensor decided to stop working the day of the competition and ever since then I vowed I would re-enter the competition and do better. Due to circumstances that wasn't until my senior year when I decided to try flying solo and entering my own robot.