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Looks very interesting! I will definitely take part! I would feel much more comfortable if the website had an https version though!
I believe that the courses organized by The Construct look very interesting and are useful to the community of roboticists. I can surely endorse that initiative and say that companies and universities in particular should consider to use these services.
But I am afraid that I am not convinced that the “certification exam” you are proposing here has any validity at all.
Furthermore, it might be misleading for a junior engineer that is eager to learn ROS, when you say:
“Get a ROS certificate to increase your job prospects”
May I ask what qualify this exam as “valid”?
I’m glad you asked that question Davide!
What qualifies this exam as valid? Three points:
The Construct is the issuer of the certificate. The Construct is a serious company composed by ROS experts with many years experience in hands on ROS development. Check some of our work here, here and here.
The exam is made using a live system that controls along the whole exam that the person doing the exam is the one that receives the certificate. We use camera validation and check during the whole process, as well as request ID prior to the exam to certify that the person on the camera is the person who is doing the exam.
Students must get 8 out of 10 points in the exam in order to get the certificate. This is a though exam which requires that the student masters all the subjects related to his level of certificate. You cannot pass the exam if you only master a small part of the subjects you should know for the exam. Just being lucky will not work. The extra 2 points to reach the total 10, are given to students that, additionally to master ROS, do master A.I. algorithms required to solve the proposed exam problem (this is something not related to ROS at all, that is why it is optional).
Hope this answers your doubts and decide to take the chances with the exam.
Waiting for your enrolment!
So if I have no additional AI knowledge, I have to answer all ROS-related questions correctly?
Have the contents of the exam been reviewed or otherwise endorsed by any third party? Speaking as a member of the ROS community who employs several dozen ROS users, this would be critical for us taking it seriously when we find it on a job application.
They’ve basically self-appointed themselves as a ROS authority without the community’s consensus. It hasn’t been reviewed by a third party, it is an attempt to push theconstruct web-based services on junior engineers. In my opinion, they are kind of abusing this forum for their own profit.
Only if this was an initiative of the OSRF, would I take it seriously.
it doesn’t matter if you have or not AI knowledge. Either you have it or not, you have to answer correctly the questions related to ROS and get the 8 points. Having knowledge of AI will only get you the two extra points from 8 to 10, but you can never get those extra 2 points if you have not reached the 8 level.
Hope this answers your question
Thanks a lot Ryan for your question and concern.
The exam is not endorsed by any other third party.
Of course, it is your option to take the certification seriously or not.
However, it would really be an honor to share with you the details of the exam and qualification procedure in order to meet your requirements for a trustable certification (according to your hiring needs). We would also be happy to change procedures to meet those needs.
Let us know privately if you are available for a chat about this matter (Ricardo Tellez, email@example.com).
Thank you David for knowing so much about our company. Honoured!
Let us know if you need help with your ROS learning. We’d be happy to help.
We at OSRF have not evaluated the courses offered by Ricardo and his team and we aren’t taking a position on them. The question of third-party validation of online educational curricula is certainly an important and timely topic and it’s not unique to The Construct, ROS, or robotics. It’s also a question that we at OSRF are not well-equipped to answer, given that we’re not experts in education or job training, online or otherwise.
In general we’re very much in favor of making it easier and more accessible for people to get into the field of robotics and to learn to use open source tools like ROS and Gazebo.
I’ll also say that commercial profit-driven activity is not necessarily a bad thing, just as non-commercial mission-driven activity is not necessarily a good thing. Our community got its start in an academic research environment, but as we’ve grown, we’re seeing companies spring up and make a living depending on, and in many cases, contributing to the open systems that we’re building. That is a sign of success for us, and, in my opinion, holds the promise for broader ongoing support for what we all love to do.
But why do you add AI-questions to the ROS-certificate at all?
OK, is not that there is an AI question to the ROS-certificate. Let me explain better.
The exam consists of making a robot solve a given problem… by using ROS.
This means that the student has to program very specific ROS parts (asked by the exam) in order to make the robot solve the problem.
Now, it can happen that you build the ROS parts correct but still, the robot is not able to solve the problem.
For instance, a very simple example to show you the point: you make the robot read from the laser topic but you do not calculate the proper movement direction from that laser scan. That means that, you understood how to read from topics, how to manage ROS messages and else, but you lack the knowledge of algorithms to compute a potential field.
In that sense is what we mean knowledge of AI (you can also call it knowledge of algorithms). Since that knowledge is not directly related to ROS, it is optional to the score. Hence you can fail that part and still pass the exam.
So it’s not AI but basis robotics algorithms? Misusing such a term does undermine your reputation (IMHO).
If you’re aim is to create a ROS certification, rather than a robot developer certification, but you are assigning marks for generic robotics knowledge, then you should rethink how you mark the exams. You should have a marking schedule that allocates marks based on ROS-specific knowledge and prevents non-ROS parts of the test impacting on the score at all, rather than having a confusing marking schedule that allocates marks for stuff that is not directly related to what you are certifying.
Very good advice, thanks!
I think we need first to complete the standard setup of ROS if we are going to put
a qualification exam-sort like this.
Lets just put ROS be like Linux OS ,otherwise we change name every version ,change support and etc.
I think the focus should be on stability standard the generality among users and developers.
Just my peso cent
You hit the fact and I believe better on selling logo and T-shirts