Acceleration Robotics hosts ROS Developers Meet-up in Bangalore, India

Acceleration Robotics organised another ROS Developers India Meet in Bangalore with the goal of creating a cohesive community of Indian ROS Developers.

After the successful meet-up in Pune, Acceleration Robotics held another ROS Developers Meet-up at the prestigious Indian Institute of Science(IISc) in collaboration with ARTPARK, a not-for-profit promoted by IISc to enable technology innovations in AI and Robotics. 250+ people registered for the event with working professionals making up half of the attendees. The meet-up was held on Saturday 11th March from 9:30AM to 1:30 PM and was attended by 120 people.

The opening address was given by Professor Bharadwaj Amrutur, interim CEO of ARTPARK explaining their vision and mission. He delved into the various programs at ARTPARK that enable startups and individual innovators to realise their potential. ARTPARK is at the forefront of creating a healthy ecosystem for robotics and their support for this meet-up was highly appreciated.

This was followed by an introduction to ROSCon and the international ROS Community by Prateek, and the reasons for Acceleration Robotics to host these meet-ups. Prateek provided an overview of the features and capabilities of ROS 2, and discussed how ROS 2 is getting more industrial traction.

Gaurav, for Acceleration Robotics, presented hardware acceleration for ROS. An introduction to the ROBOTCORE Framework and REP(ROS Enhancement Proposal) 2008 was given, letting the audience know how Acceleration Robotics has made it easy to incorporate various hardware accelerators into the ROS 2 stack. Our benchmarking efforts in the form of Robotperf and The Hardware Acceleration for Robotics Report 2022 were also put forth.

Jegathesan Shanmugam, a lead robotics engineer at Airbus, took the stage next and discussed the lessons learned while building a real time pipeline in ROS 2. Jegathesan took a deep dive into the various executors and transport mechanisms available in ROS 2 and analysed their performance. This was later followed by a discussion on the tools available for analysing performance in ROS 2.

Mohan Sivam, CTO and Co-Founder at FloMobility presented their efforts in developing a real world dataset for outdoor navigation and how they trained deep learning networks on them to solve for certain parts of the navigation stack. Mohan mentioned that through their immense efforts they have arrived at the conclusion that solving for parts of the stack is an inferior solution to end-to-end training like done in other autonomous platforms like Comma or FSD by Tesla.

Ajay Paul and Rashmi Ballamajalu, robotics engineers at Bosch, came next to discuss two tools available for designing behaviours for robots i.e. SMACC and Behavior Trees. Rashmi explained the concurrent and orthogonal nature of the SMACC planner and Ajay went on to discuss how Behavior Trees achieve concurrent behaviour. This lead to a discussion on what should be your planner of choice for certain robotics tasks.

The last talk of the day was given by Meenakshi Sarkar, a Ph.D. scholar at IISc and a former Intel Research Fellow. Her research interests lie in creating safe vision based systems for mobile robot platforms. She presented her work on creating the RoAM i.e. Robot Autonomous Motion dataset, created for aiding and benchmarking for new visual prediction frameworks for their application in motion planning tasks. She went over the structure of the dataset, the collection method and explained her future plans with regards to augmenting the dataset further.

This is the link to all the presentations.

The event was a great success and provided a great knowledge sharing avenue for all people involved. We had attendance from the excellent roboticists at Chirathe Robotics, Eternal Robotics, Mowito and many other amazing robotics companies. Overall, the event further reinforced our belief in creating this ecosystem which is why we are partnering with Rigbetel Labs to do ROS India Summit 2.0. Pallavi Saha, Co-Founder at Rigbetel Labs, gave a recap of the last ROS India Summit and showed our plans for this year’s event. We plan to host this event in July and are actively seeking sponsorships/partnerships for the same.

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It is one of the best opportunity to connect and network with industry experts and talented students from academia. I enjoyed the presentations especially on ROS 2.0 from practitioners. Looking forward for the next event. Thanks to Acceleration Robotics and ARTPARK for organizing this event in pleasant location IISc, Bangalore.

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