/ blog projects miniprojects tagcloud   about contact github flickr where am I?

Initially I will use two different sensors for obstacle avoidance. lidar for closer range 2D image of space (obscale avoidance, scanning ground before landing, maybe SLAM)

and laser rangefinder for long range 1D distance sensing (looking for high buildings, maintaining altitude precisely, maybe high speed obstacle avoidance)

I went with cheapo robopeak hobby lidar, which seems to work well, here is a git repo for the library (node and beaglebone) (I also considered a lightweight hokuyo lidar) and for laser range finder I'll go with something like SF02 from paralax

these might be used in combination with some simple IR or just cameras (need more CPU but could double as optical flow sensors) used to locate becaons for landing or grabbing things

Ideally, both sensors should have an unobstructed front view on pitch dimension, with aditional unobstructed jaw dimension for LIDAR. Both sensors need to be able to independantly rotate on pitch axis for compensation of the angle of the drone when flying, and for scanning up and down (going in through windows, looking down when landing, etc) maybe rangefinder should also rotate on jaw axis on some fast servos for looking around independant of the drone orientation. not sure yet.

--

IR and ultrasound were also options, they are cheap but tricky and unreliable, (ultrasound behaves extra badly due to propeller noise on drones) These things can be compensated for, but laser rangefinding will always afaik give more accuracy and reliability at a price.

Thu Oct 09 2014 14:31:52 GMT+0200 (CEST), 37 months ago

people often ask me why I own a drone, what is it for, and then half of the time they say that I could use it to record weddings and get some cash flowin'

If mention of recording weddings doesn't kill all my will for conversation, I'll say drones are so simple to make these days that I find it hard to justify not owning one. also, at the time there is no regulation and no one ever counts on you owning a flying robot, so its a sweet spot to own one. a drone is a flying sidekick, it can, in theory, do whatever a flying sidekick can do. it can enter through windows and steal jewlery with its tiny robot hands. Sounds ridicilous but technically it is not hard to do. In the following years we'll have to rethink space and what can be done, and before that happens, I get to be a kind of a superhero.

today, drones are very primitive. I'll fix some parts that I care about. and if I make anything useful, Im guessing drone related kickstarter projects would be welcome.

a few ideas,

  • work on being more autonomus, gesture recognition, landing on backpack, automatic charging, simple commands like follow me, land and observe, and such
  • picking up bread in the morning
  • ground locomotion, wheels or legs!
  • stringing a rope somewhere high or for a tyrolean traverse - I can be a very slow batman and I always wanted to string a hammock up between two buildings.
  • guarding a camp spot and scarring bears away
  • looking for people
  • planting and picking up sensors
  • security? (I'm terrified of security robots working against me, I'm excited about security robots working for me - maybe I won't touch this.)
  • obvious things like scouting or mapping, it would be nice to have something that creates a google maps or openstreetmap layer as it flyes around, and it shouldn't be too hard to implement, in theory :)

few concrete things to work on, sorted by priority

  • integrate a real computer (starting with beaglebone in my case, will need to reverse and implement sbus and naza CAN bus protocols)
  • long range modem - something like xbee xtend and/or sim cards for control over gsm
  • transport layer supporting multiple communication channels with automatic fallbacks (sim cards are long range but not reliable)
  • some kind of distance sensors for autonomy - lidar, laser range finders, SLAM?
  • alternative controler - I want to use my cellphone, potentially with a ps controler or something, not a gigant RC
  • even more alternative controler and more autonomy - myo or some other kind of gesture sensing/voice recognition/etc
  • automatic folding, automatic landing and takeoff from a backpack
  • means of ground locomotion - legs! (half of legs would already be done by autofolding system)
  • some computer vision - detection of people, optical flow sensing
  • drawing grafiti on really strange places (half of this is done by optical flow sensing)
  • automatic landing and takeoff beacons (IR?)
  • beacons and universal handles for picking up and dropping things off
  • landing pad with automatic charging station and an automatic cover - could be mounted on a car? could be used as a backpack?

this is a lot of work, but none of it is far fetched and all of this will be done soon, if not by me, then by someone else

if you care about this project, you can follow it at http://lesh.sysphere.org/tagcloud/personal_drone rss @ http://lesh.sysphere.org/tagcloud/personal_drone/rss.xml

Sat Sep 27 2014 22:06:41 GMT+0200 (CEST), 37 months ago

Genetic programming language with a strong type system

First prototype in python, work in progress, I should think of more interesting project names.

repository

Sun Sep 22 2013 06:47:45 GMT+0200 (CEST), 49 months ago

generic communication framework

repository

uses a few of my libs like nodejs-graph, nodejs-subscriptionman, nodejs-validator2 and others

  • consists on bunch of interconnected nodes that can subscribe and answer to/filter/translate JSON mesages, kinda like actors but not really.
  • has network transparency and supports arbitrary transport protocols (http, websockets, tcp, tls, REST have been implemented for now)

I've implemented some protocols above this, like

  • live object syncing with a permissions model
  • database agnostic collections and object persistence
  • ongoing auto updating database queries

I use it for all kinds of things, like

  • web applications (clients and servers are running a simmetric code),
  • different distributed complex infrastructures
  • random things, my laptop is using it to watch and react to system wide events, like lid being closed or connection to the internet being established, my cellphone is running it in order to connect and sync with my computers and it is what I use to control lights in my appartment or display data from remote servers on my desktop

and I've built a few libs on top of this

Tue Sep 10 2013 07:07:06 GMT+0200 (CEST), 50 months ago