IN-DEPTH blog post #2

In-depth 2019 has been going smoothly so far, but I do not have a mentor yet. I have been sending out emails to two people, but they have not responded yet. I want to get replies from these two people before I start contacting other people that I do not know. The first person I contacted this year is Ms. Smith (I won’t disclose her real name until I get her permission). Ms. Smith was my last year’s mentor and she helped me learn a lot about robotics. I emailed her back in early January, but she didn’t respond. I followed up with her a few days ago and still no response, but hopefully, she will respond soon, if not, I will start sending emails to other people. The other person I am trying to get in touch with is someone named Adam McDonald (I won’t disclose his real name until I get his permission). Earlier this school year, I had a phone interview with Adam and he taught me lots about robotics careers. He also gave me some tips for me next robotics project. One of these tips was to download something called Linux, and then download something called ROS.

What is Linux?

Linux, from what I can understand, is a computer OS, or, Operating System. Most computers, run off of Mac OS, or a Windows OS, like Windows 10. The OS is responsible for almost everything on a computer, and Linux is a special kind of operating system, often used by programmers.

I ended up installing a Mac OS, Windows OS and a Linux OS all on my laptop at the same time using a process called dual-boot. I could restart my computer in either one, but as I was trying to fix something on my Linux OS, my computer ran into some problems and all three of my operating systems got corrupted, basically meaning my computer didn’t know how to operate itself. I ended up re-installing Linux on my computer and now I have one working OS on my computer, Linux Ubuntu. Great start to In-Depth 2019! From there, I went on to installing ROS.

What is ROS?

ROS stands for Robot Operating System and it is the world’s standard program for creating robots. ROS is open source software that has hundreds of files added by the public, available for download. ROS is only available on Linux operating systems. ROS works in an unusual way but is very powerful, it can even run simulations of robots. I could download a simulated robot, and code it in my own way. Here is an example of something I can do with ROS, involving turtles.

I will continue to search for a mentor, but for now, this post will have to do. I will continue to learn about ROS, and soon, I will attempt to re-program my In-Depth 2018 robot using ROS.

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