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Ros-blessed: "curses" based ROS toolbox for the console

At Lumin Robotics we often feel the need for having better tools for debugging the ROS setup of our robot on the console, e.g., over ssh. Typically the things we need are already available in RQT such as the TF tree view, listing topics, and checking their bandwidth and of course, on the console these things are also already available via rostopic, rosrun tf .., etc… But we were looking for something that was easier to navigate and also allowed us to debug the TF tree on the console.

That’s why we started working on ros-blessed, a very small tool that uses rosnodejs and blessed to provide similar functionality to RQT but on the console. Below you can see a demo of what’s already implemented.

It’s already coming in handy almost daily, but before we develop this much further we’d like to get some feedback from others. Is this useful? Does something like this already exist and we just didn’t find it? Which features do you think would be most useful to add in addition to what’s already mentioned in the to-do list?

If you want to try it out, just run

sudo npm install -g ros-blessed

We’d appreciate your feedback.


Not exactly the same (what software ever is), but this reminded me of dheera/rosshow.

1 Like

Oh cool! Thanks for the pointer! Didn’t know about rosshow. Too bad it’s written in python. Would have been nice to combine these two projects, since they arguably attack the same, high-level problem – debugging in the console.

Not sure why it being implemented in Python is such a bad thing?

Seems to trade Javascript for Python, which is just another language to me.

Just in the sense that it won’t be possible to merge them into one executable.