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[DPRG] stella driving down a path

Subject: [DPRG] stella driving down a path
From: Chris Jang cjang at ix.netcom.com
Date: Fri May 11 20:35:17 CDT 2007


Hello Everyone,

Here is Stella again. There are no changes to the simple
obstacle avoidance algorithm from the last movie in a
parking lot. What's going on is purely reactive behavior.
There is no path planning or kinematic model.

Note that Stella has no sensors other than a USB webcam
running at around 1.3 frames per second.

It looks interesting but really there is a lot of work to
do. The computer vision is the simplest possible - look
for a clear patch of ground immediately ahead - and
ignores a lot that is useful. There is also no control
model. I just picked constant thresholds and duty cycles
for sensing obstacles and driving the motors. It is
entirely ad hoc and does not adapt at all. That's why
Stella over-corrects. A real control system is necessary.

By the end of the year, it will probably be necessary to
move on to another robot. That will probably be a hobby-
grade RC vehicle with at least 10x the computer power.


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