3 Nov 2002 rudybrian   » (Master)

Zaza is back in action!

The encoder adapter cable arrived from iRobot on 10/17 allowing the installation of the last replacement motor on 10/18. Everything with the new motors and belts checked out during tests in the afternoon.

The following week the Museum's shop was able to mill some cooling/speaker grille slots in the upper-enclosure panels. They did a fantastic job, and the slots do everything we had hoped they would. The internal temperature never gets above 94 degrees even under high-load, and the audio fidelity of the synthesized speech is much better.

Robbie Stone, one of the other Zaza project volunteers discovered what Sebastian has been up to in the past year or so. After the talk he gave at PARC in September of last year he hinted that an updated and open-sourced (yea!) version of BeeSoft was in the works. The CARMEN toolkit is fruit of their labor and looks like it could be a very good thing. Included in the standard distribution is a Monte Carlo Localization (MCL) application (localize) and path planner (Navigator) as well as map creation and editing tools. The CARMEN toolkit uses Reid Simmon's IPC communication framework, obsoleting BeeSoft's TCX. The down-side is that it will require re-writing all of our software to use it with Zaza :(

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