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SDKs for Programming Robots

Every robot that is released these days seems to come with an SDK. A recent article focuses on one user’s experience using various robot SDKs. He discusses the SDKs from Dash & Dot, Sphero Mini, Cozmo, and Hexa.

So, I’m curious…which SDKs for programming robots have you used? What have you liked and/or disliked about those particular SDKs? Did you find anything burdensome or difficult when using them? I’d love to hear about the advantages and disadvantages of the SDKs from your perspective… Do you have any ideas or thoughts for improvement?

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I’ve tried Cozmo’s SDK but haven’t really had a chance to get too far into it- the phone dependency really kills it for me.

From the perspective of a beginner in robotics, I really appreciate when documentation is clear enough to get things going quickly but also nuanced enough to provide pathways to more complex creation and development. :slight_smile:

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It really does. I kinda want the little guy to just hang out and do stuff but to switch my phone to Cosmo’s wi-fi is a bummer.

I feel exactly the same way- I want to get way more use out of him but having to switch over to that network every time you want to use him is a massive pain.

Really a shame, too, because Cozmo’s pretty impressive!

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I grabbed a cheap Doogee android phone off of Amazon as a dedicated controller for various robot projects. That might be a good option for a Cozmo controller.

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Personally I sometimes wonder why someone doesn’t just make ROS a little easier to use and integrate there. I don’t really understand why, for developers, you would make a standalone SDK that only works for your robot.

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Having to be connected to the mobile device was a big let down for me as well, event when I hooked it up to letsrobot.tv it was still the killer, I couldn’t have cozmo too far from the device either, but let’s face it, the wifi signal for something that small isn’t going to be that great. They probably didn’t care too much about the distance since it was meant to have the device along side it for the “games”. As far as the SDK itself, the code and interface was pretty handy though.

I will say, all SDKs that try to make an ecosystem of apps (think leap motion) are no go’s in my book. Or ones that don’t have both a high level for non-experienced users as well as a lower level access for expert users is something I haven’t seen too much of.

I did like what Intel did with the Euclid where they made higher level web implementation of ROS what you interface with and write modules for. At some point you had to did deeper and learn more of ROS but it didn’t stop you from getting a robot going out of the gate too.

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@Durinwinter we evaluated ROS a lot in the early days of conceiving Misty. On the surface it seemed to make a lot of sense because of the history and the seemingly large amount of support for it. And, as we dug into it more, it became very clear that it wasn’t built to run on stand-alone processors that were relatively constrained and it wasn’t at all optimized for real-time communications and control. We’re definitely hoping that a member of the Misty community will create ROS interfaces to Misty and, likely, put them on an Arduino hardware accessory attached to Misty via the USB/serial port. In that manner we’ll be able to incorporate all of the real-time capabilities and, in addition, add new capabilities around computer vision, artificial intelligence, autonomous navigation and the like – which will all be able to run from the processors in the robot rather than external processors on laptops and such.

Curious how that comports with your experience with ROS?

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@station completely agree on the notion that one has to have both high level access/APIs and low-level access/APIs. It’s easy enough to get started on a project (whether that’s Cozmo, Ras Pi or Misty) via the high-level but for anyone who’s really looking to solve an enterprise problem with robots or start an entrepreneurial endeavor they’re likely going to need some pretty close-to-the-processor access to myriad services.

We’re starting with the high-level and have a definite intent to add the lower-level as soon as practical.

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I a really excited and eagerly waiting for delivery of my misty developers edition, so I can begin learning everything. I am wondering when I will be allowed to do so…

We’re reviewing applicants in batches, as we build Misty robots. Because they are hand-built, the process can feel pretty slow. We really appreciate your patience with us while we get our processes refined. I’ve just created a new category where we can share the ideas for things we’d like to develop once we have robots. Check it out!

What Will You Build? - Misty Community Forum

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wait you mean you don’t have robots building robots?! I know my first Misty task. BUILD MOAR MISTY :rofl:

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Misty-ception!

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sdks are fine - but a simple programming interface is better and a functional programming interface and sdk’s etc integrated into something like makecode to me would be a better route

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The goal is to have a range of options. For you block and simple programming is what you want. Others want to dive deeper and program their own skills and modules. Both can be accommodated and it not only provides options for a larger range of skills and desires it also creates room for growth.

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