Saturday, March 20, 2010

The competition begins

Today is competition day here at SECON! The software competition team got started half an hour ago (it runs from 7 AM to 2 PM, with finalists then going an extra two hours). From what I hear, the hardware competition team (MSU_SECON on Twitter) is having a hard time, trying to improve their robot to take on the top dog, which can run ~6 laps compared to the teams ~4 lab abilities. Last-minute changes are always scary; I hope the robot still runs consistently for the competition!

Internet service got much better last night, so I'm more able to catch up on e-mail and get a few things done. That's nice.

I always learn something when I come to SECON. For example, one team showed me their Arduino environment. The things that made it useful for then is the object-oriented libraries for the processor (an Atmel 8-bit part) with a C++-like syntax based on Wiring. Essentially, a good library enables a wider audience to get involved in microcontroller development. I think my Python idea is therefore good, though the slowness and bulk of Python might be a barrier.

Interesting links:

I'm doing some catch-up, going through my inbox as usual. That always takes time. Projects for today (hopefully):
  • Permissions for the review paper -- I still haven't applied for them.
  • Salary request for Eglin trip.
  • Paper review -- I'd like to at least start reading a paper today.
  • Proposal review -- I need to download and take a look at this stuff.

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