Application of Microsoft Robotics Studio

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Oláh István
Department of Automation and Applied Informatics

In most cases, in complex industrial development, seems to be an increasing need

of creating hardware and software operating them. Developing these tools requires a lot

of time and resources. A significant part of the development time of different solutions is

consumed by the testing and debuging the actual solution. Possible errors, caused by

damage is often considerable, not to mention the fact that such software bugs, often

appear to be insignificant, may cause that the prototype hardware needs to be rebuilt


It is, therefore, appropriate to use an environment where the hardware

construction can be tested before it is physically created, without the risk of actual

equipment failure. The various computer simulations, are making an important part of

the hardware and software development. The simulation environment is well-prepared to

recognize errors in the early stages of the project.

Writing a robot control software is often a very difficult task, because the actual

device may not be available all the time, or the errors in the program may cause serious

damages, which may result in destroying the robot, no matter how expensive is it.

Therefore, the simulation is particularly important in this area. Of course, this does not

mean that it is enough to rely on the simulation results, the final product must be built

and thoroughly tested before use in an appropirate environment, but thanks to the

simulations, it is enough to do it when it is considered stable and reliable. Before creating

a simulation, there should be a risk analysis, where all the significant issues are discussed.

A good simulation can test these and can reveal more risks, that should be resolved

before testing in real enviroment, increasing the reliability of the device.

The time, when this thesis was written, there were only few applications, that

actually can be used to create a realistic simulation. The thesis is intended to introduce

such a system, called Microsoft Robotics Developers Studio, which also includes the Visual

Programming Language (VPL) and the Visual Simulation Environnement (VSE), providing

numbers of opportunities to the user. To present the abilities of this software package, I

will use a Parallax Boe-bot.

Unfortunately, this robot no longer enjoys the support of Microsoft, so only the

general purpose built-in components and services can be used. This simulation can be

altered for any brand of robots. In addition, to the simulation of the task specified in

chapter 4, I discuss the opportunities of the robot's own development environment, and

compare the two methods.

The first chapter of my thesis will summarize the history of robotics, its origin and

importance. Then, in the second chapter, I present the tools used to prepare their

properties and abilities through. In the same section, I want them to compare in terms of

developers and users. In this chapter I try to show, what advantages and disadvantages

can be expected.

The thesis explains a specific task through the third chapter, I want to show what

we can do with each tool. The Microsoft Robotics Studio is a solid and a very promising

system, however, the robot's "support" can cause difficulties. In this chapter I also

describe the experience that I gained through the use of the software.

The fouth, and last chapter, summarizes the results of practical work, the

conclusions and some other, possibly useful task, that can be achieved in practice.


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