Product Management Considerations for Robotic Systems

Modern product management experience is highly influenced by and optimized for purely software based products. While core principals translate well to products involving a combination of hardware and software, there are some unique considerations to be aware of when managing robotics products.

RobOpsCon 2022 Insights

I recently watched the session, “Reality Check: Getting to Scale” presented by John Simmons, Head of Product, InOrbit at the Robot Operations Conference. The talk was focused on John’s experiences in Operations at Bossa Nova and the lessons they learned as they scaled the robot fleet from 5-350 units. Bossa Nova manufactures inventory control robots […]

AWS RoboMaker – Simulating an RC Car

In November of 2018, Amazon announced the launch of RoboMaker, a cloud robotics service that makes it easy to develop, simulate, and deploy robotics applications at scale. RoboMaker provides a robotics development environment for application development, a robotics simulation service to accelerate application testing, and a robotics fleet management service for remote application deployment, update, and […]

Using Cruise’s Webviz Tool to Visualize Autonomous RC Car System Data

In June of 2019, Cruise announced their data visualization web application, Webviz, in a blog post entitled, “Webviz: An Open Source Platform for Robotics Data Visualization.” This follows previous announcements to open source Worldview, a library to translate the data-rich worlds our cars navigate into clear and intuitive 3D scenes, and rosbag.js, a JavaScript library […]

RC Car ML Model Development with an Ouster OS1 Lidar

The purpose of this project was to develop a Machine Learning model to enable an RC car to autonomously navigate a race track using an Ouster OS1 lidar sensor as the primary sensor input. The model is an end-to-end Convolutional Neural Network (CNN) that processes intensity image data from the lidar and outputs a steering […]

RC Car ML Model Development with Google Colab

Previously, the process for training and deploying an ML model to autonomously operate an RC car was described in the post, “RC Car End-to-end ML Model Development.” The purpose of the project was to develop an ML model that predicted steering angles given a color camera image input to enable the RC car to follow a […]

RC Car End-to-end ML Model Development

This post describes the process of developing a end-to-end Machine Learning model to steer an RC Car around using a color camera as an input. This is inspired by the Udacity Self Driving Car “behavior cloning” module as well as the DIY Robocars races. The purpose of this project is to create a pipeline for […]

Odometry Estimation with an Ouster OS-1 lidar Sensor

This post describes the process of fusing the IMU and range data from an OS-1 lidar sensor in order to estimate the odometry of a moving vehicle. The position, orientation, and velocity estimates are critical to enabling high levels of automated behavior such as path planning and obstacle avoidance. One of the most fundamental methods […]

Ouster OS-1 lidar and Google Cartographer Integration

This post describes the process of integrating Ouster OS-1 lidar data with Google Cartographer to generate 2D and 3D maps of an environment. Cartographer is a system that provides real-time simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM) in 2D and 3D across multiple platforms and sensor configurations. SLAM algorithms combine data from various sensors (e.g. LIDAR, IMU, […]

OpenMV Cam ROS Node Development

This post describes the development of a ROS node that can be used to process images from an OpenMV Cam in a ROS-based robotics system. The goal of the OpenMV Cam project was to create a low-cost, extensible, Python powered, machine vision module to become the “Arduino of Machine Vision“. The OpenMV team wanted to […]