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Mark Womack
Husband, Father, Software Engineer, Gardener. But really just a little kid most of the time.
Husband, Father, Software Engineer, Gardener. But really just a little kid most of the time.
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Go PantherBots!

Thanks, 45!

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Productive work day for Team Victoria. We had some electrical issues where the main processor and microcontroller would seem to lose power for no reason and restart or hang. We ended up gutting Victoria, replacing the power connectors and wires with higher gauge. We took the opportunity to reorganize and label the innards, so it is much cleaner looking. Hopefully the electrical is more solid now.

In addition, we made some great progress on the software side. We started to organize a ROS launch configuration file to start to put all the node and topics together that will be the software of the running robot. And we also integrated cone detection code from our team member Mike. It detects the cone and then directs the motors on which way to turn so that it navigates to the cone. You can see that in the video. This functionality is the better half of what the robot has to do since GPS is not accurate enough to navigate to the exact cone. You have to utilize some kind of local sensors to find the cone.

Some great progress! 4 work weekends and then the competition on the weekend of 4/22. More latest images and videos here: https://goo.gl/photos/oVkftzpbEXjb92Ra8

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This would probably fair much better in a more controlled environment like mentioned at the end of the article. But shoot for the moon! 

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No. You can't change reality. You said what you said, Mr. Trump. You meant what you said, and you have no proof. You are an embarrassing mess.

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What is tomorrow?
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YOU: Gee, Mark. You used to be more of a happy, go-lucky kind of guy. Gardening, robots, etc. And then Trump got elected and your G+ feed has been almost non-stop anti-Trump posts.

ME: Yeah, well, defending democracy is pretty important to me. You end up taking a lot for granted, until you can't. There is a trend to my post topics.

BUT, I am still doing some cool stuff in between rants. I'm working with this great bunch of guys on a robot for the 2017 Robomagellan competition. We call ourselves Team Victoria (Victoria was the only ship from Magellan's fleet to officially make it back). We've been spending our weekends working on Victoria. She is pretty much complete mechanically, and now we are starting in on the software. We are using Robot Operating System (ROS) to run the core, with a Teensy (Arduino) interfacing with the various sensors. Yesterday was a good day as we got ROS talking to the Teensy to control the robot like it will for real when we have more integrated. We are going to work on the navigation and orange cone detection. It has been a lot of fun. We are aiming for the weekend of 4/21 to compete at the 2017 RoboGames at the Alameda Fairgrounds. More pictures and videos are at https://goo.gl/photos/oVkftzpbEXjb92Ra8 and our github is at https://github.com/victoriarobotics.

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