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Ideas for real time systems project

Posted on 2011-04-19
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Hi,
   I am doing a project on building a faster robot.The General idea of the project is to assemble 5 robots to  a starting point and then from there reach another destination point.
My concern is my project is in real time systems, so what are the algorithms/approaches/techniques which i can apply to make my robots reach the destination faster.Mind you the approaches should be within the boundaries of real time systems.

I want to use A* algorithm does this count?
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Question by:sriramvemaraju
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by:sriramvemaraju
ID: 35428872
Also my development time is just about 2-3 weeks.
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by:TommySzalapski
ID: 35429416
so what are the algorithms/approaches/techniques which i can apply to make my robots reach the destination faster
Give them long legs? What exactly are you asking? You want to program these robots, check. Can you give them wheels? That seems like it would make them more stable and faster.
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by:sriramvemaraju
ID: 35429677
Like i cannot change the robots's physical apperance/sensors i only can change the logic by which the robots can move to the destination with the help of a beacon.What i can also change is the time at which the sensor input can be taken etc.Actually the robots are a simulated software for which i need to tweak code.
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by:TommySzalapski
ID: 35429857
I see. Since this is real time, I assume there are real time obstacles? Objects move into the way or the destination moves? Otherwise the only strategy would be to run straight at the beacon.

Or can they not see the beacon right away? In that case, you would need searching algorithms.
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by:pmasotta
ID: 35433930
I think you guys are mixing concepts,
one thing is "real time" from a programming perspective, another concept is "live"  as something that has to respond fast enough to keep up with the "live" surronding environment...

you can code a "live" system w/o real time techniques...
but if you are asking about "real time" techniques w/o knowing the topic for a project you have to finish on 3 week I thing you probably got the wrong assigment....
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by:TommySzalapski
ID: 35434587
one thing is "real time" from a programming perspective, another concept is "live"  as something that has to respond fast enough to keep up with the "live" surronding environment...

That's what real time means. It means it has to be fast enough to keep up in real time. In some cases, this means it has to be really fast (video compression on 60 fps). In some cases, it doesn't need to be so fast (like this one). But you can't do a 3 minute shortest path calculation. That would take too long and the other robots would win. This is a real time programming assignment.
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by:pmasotta
ID: 35435648
I think we might have some concept issue here
A "real time" OS or "real time" micro kernel (embedded systems), is the one that can somehow guaranty the timing of service of the processes/threads that run under its control,
i.e QNX, somehow Linux with real time extensions (Montavista), rtOS, etc etc…

On the other hand Windows can i.e. very well deliver good quality video but it is NOT a real time OS,
 How does then deliver good video?? Well, its good performance is just based on the hardware speed…

Some time being just fast is not enough and it is also needed the
synchronism that a real time OSs provide.
Robotic & Communications very often need Real Time Os

bottom line
A fast system  !=  Real time system


Programming real time system is not simple that's why I think w/o knowing the topic fullfilling an assigment in 3 weeks sounds a bit difficult
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by:TommySzalapski
ID: 35437996
We're saying the same thing. "be fast enough to keep up in real time" is just a layman's way of saying "guaranty the timing of service."

I think you may have been out in the real world too long doing real projects. This is an academic challenge. He doesn't need to program the robots' OS, that's done already. He just needs to make them find the beacon in 'real time.' (There's a guarantee of 'service' (finding the beacon))

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by:pmasotta
ID: 35439216
your oversimplification can well lead to confusion:
we (you and I ) are not saying the same thing.

you do not know if the robots already have or not a real-time OS and probably he needs to code for that real-time OS. If that is the case it would be good if we tell him about these topics in the right way.

I think we should stop propagating conceptual errors
even if this is just an academic challenge.

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Author Comment

by:sriramvemaraju
ID: 35445935
The Implementation of robots is hidden from the programmer like how its able to read the data and how it is moving i only know that it reads data and will be able to move here and there. I can handle when i want to read data and when i need to use it etc.
Below is the link for them

http://sourceforge.net/projects/crdebugger/
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by:TommySzalapski
ID: 35445944
So do objects move into the way or does the destination move? Otherwise the only strategy would be to run straight at the beacon.

Or can they not see the beacon right away? In that case, you would need searching algorithms.
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by:sriramvemaraju
ID: 35445975
There are two areas namely, target area and home area first we must assemble the robots in target area and then go to a areaa called as "home area".


Below is the rules from the competition


5.2 Challenge
A team of 5 robots, playing simultaneously, is given a twofold challenge. First, it must locate and position
all their robots on the target area, placed somewhere in a maze. After that, all the robots must position
themselves within the home area.
When a robot is completely within the target area it can turn on its visiting led. The robot is disqualified
if the led is turned on in a different situation. The second part of the challenge, going to the home area,
can only be started when the returning led is on. It is automatically turned on by the simulator when all the
team’s robots, with their visiting leds turned on, join within the target area. Note that a robot is not required
to be stopped within the target area while it is waiting for its team mates. It can move around. When a robot
reaches the home area it must turn on its end led and stop.
Since communication is possible, the team should explore the maze, sending their robots in different directions,
in order to minimize the time needed to accomplish the goals.
There are two time limits to accomplish a trial, referred to as key time and total time. The latter represents
the total time available to a team to complete the trial. The former is used to benefit the fastest robots. The
total time can range from 1800 to 3600 ut, depending on the scenario difficulty.
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by:TommySzalapski
ID: 35445982
So basically the idea is that you have 5 robots all searching for some target in a maze and when one finds it they all run there? Then they already know where the home area is or do they have to find that too?
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Author Comment

by:sriramvemaraju
ID: 35445984
we have to find that too :-) . Can you give me an idea like on what lines i should start of the code?
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Accepted Solution

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TommySzalapski earned 2000 total points
ID: 35446014
Well, I would start by having all the robots run together, then the group should split in half every time there's a fork. After they are all split into singles, they should explore all unseen paths (always communicating to each other what they find so they build a map in their memory). If a robot finds the target, he should tell all the others where it is. Now you want to calculate how long it will take the farthest robot to get there. The rest of the robots should keep searching for the home area leaving enough time to all reach the target area at once. Then, if they haven't found it yet, they all would go continue the search patterns until it's found.

Or something like that.
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