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The Psi Swarm: A Low-Cost Robotics Platform and Its Use in an Education Setting

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Towards Autonomous Robotic Systems (TAROS 2016)

Part of the book series: Lecture Notes in Computer Science ((LNAI,volume 9716))

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Abstract

The paper introduces the Psi Swarm robot, a platform developed to allow both affordable research in swarm robotics and versatility for teaching programming and robotics concepts. Motivated by the goals of reducing cost and construction complexity of existing swarm platforms, we have developed a trackable, sensor-rich and expandable platform which needs only a computer with internet browser to program. This paper outlines the design of the platform and the development of a tablet-computer based programming environment for the robot, intended to teach primary school aged children programming concepts.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    Projects created in the online tools can also be exported to a number of different tool-chains, such as Keil \(\mu \)Vision and GCC if desired.

  2. 2.

    This allows swarms of up to 15 to be simply set in hardware; larger swarms can be created by using the on-board EEPROM to store additional bits of index information.

  3. 3.

    Full load considered to be all LEDs on, IR sensors active at 10 Hz, Bluetooth active and motors at 100\(\%\) on a smooth surface.

References

  1. National curriculum in England: computing programmes of study, September 2013

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  3. Millard, A.G., Hilder, J., et al.: A low-cost real-time tracking infrastructure for ground-based robot swarms. In: ANTS: 9th International Conference on Swarm Intelligence (2014)

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  4. Olson, E.: AprilTag: a robust and flexible visual fiducial system. In: Proceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), pp. 3400–3407. May 2011

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  5. Pinciroli, C., Trianni, V., et al.: ARGoS: a modular, parallel, multi-engine simulator for multi-robot systems. Swarm Intell. 6(4), 271–295 (2012)

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  6. Resnick, M., Maloney, J., et al.: Scratch: programming for all. Commun. ACM 52(11), 60–67 (2009)

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Correspondence to James Hilder .

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Hilder, J., Horsfield, A., Millard, A.G., Timmis, J. (2016). The Psi Swarm: A Low-Cost Robotics Platform and Its Use in an Education Setting. In: Alboul, L., Damian, D., Aitken, J. (eds) Towards Autonomous Robotic Systems. TAROS 2016. Lecture Notes in Computer Science(), vol 9716. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-40379-3_16

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-40379-3_16

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  • Publisher Name: Springer, Cham

  • Print ISBN: 978-3-319-40378-6

  • Online ISBN: 978-3-319-40379-3

  • eBook Packages: Computer ScienceComputer Science (R0)

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