Stewart Tansley - Robot Building Club

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Our new camera guy, Mike Hall, found a robot enthusiast group where Stewart Tansley gave us a tour of some interesting robots that employees at Microsoft are building (or modifying) in their spare time.





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The Discussion

  • User profile image
    I was only able to watch 70% of the video because of streaming problems..

    Anyway, I have a couple of questions. Why was it decided to use byte-code as opposed to assembly instructions generated by the host machine. 

    The problem is, you have a high speed processor on the host system and very low speeds on the actual device, so why not shift the load to the big machine by having it generate the 'final code' that is executed as opposed to having the device do (byte-code > Assembly)?

    If it was me, I would have written a Micro-kernel that has the ability to start executing a single set of instructions but supports some basic form of multi-threading. Such a system would mean you need minimal memory and CPU power and thus the device should consume minimal power.
    This is a very odd question, but at the start of the video you have the interview.. there is a guy behind him working on his laptop.. does he have a web-cam type device stuck to the top of his laptop screen? It just looks like he does..
  • User profile image

    I always had the same thought, as above, why not add some custom CE build that has some kinds of Webservice and wireless connection and let the large pc do the processing sending the data to the client/slave/robot

  • User profile image
    Hi.  Cool Video!!!

    However I couldn't understand a thing after the dancing robot part.  What was the deal with that robot and the Aibo? What was the Aibo running on? WinCE/.net?

    It would be cooler if that group publish a "How to build a robot and program it with Visual Studio" web site. (Is it farfetched?)

  • User profile image
    The dancing robot is a pet project of Stuart's, I think he's looking at programming this to do something useful - one of the guys in the room brought an Aibo along for everyone to take a look at - is was highly entertaining, especially when asked to "get the bone", instead of picking it up it kicked it.

    I think it would be cool to replace some of the existing controllers with either Windows CE or SPOT... could be an interesting project.

    - Mike

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