Presenting ANOTHER entry in the “Definitely not a Backronym” series! This one is a bit different, being a project that is entirely software based. TL:DR I made a Terminal User Interface for ROS2. Is it good? No. Should you use it? No. Go use Foxglove Studio, it’s an open source WebApp, made by people mature enough to know that Terminal User Interfaces are limiting and dumb. If you’re still interested, you can check out the GitLab here.
K.I.W.I, aka ‘Kinetic Inverted Wheeled Invention’ is the next project on our journey forwards. You may have noticed a trend in naming: I really like bacronyms, no matter how forced. This project will be a little more involved than QUAIL, as an inverted pendulum is inherently unstable, requiring us to do some analysis before getting into the design. This is one of my favorite parts of working on robots, there is something really satisfying about being able to do a bit of math to predict how the robot will behave.
QUAIL is completed! Well, it took WAY longer than expected. Life got very busy for me over the last few months, and I struggled to find the time and motivation to get this thing over the line. The last requirement for the project was to ‘close the loop’, and figure out a nice way to feedback the state of the sensor bar. Thankfully, it was all pretty simple once I got going again.
Failure to encode Tragically, we have hit a speed-bump with the project, the phototransistor on one of the encoders is dead. Obviously this calls for a moment of silence. The rest of the circuit appears to be working fine, however. While I did want to implement the code to utilise the encoders, it was never actually needed in order to get the robot to follow a line. I could probably replace the part and get it working again, but I do not feel it is worth the effort given the scope of the project.