Talks: Open Source Robotics with Python: Learn Robotics with No Robot Required

Sunday - May 19th, 2024 1 p.m.-1:30 p.m. in Hall C

Presented by:


Do you want to learn robotics but are unable to sink thousands of dollars into a new hobby? Good news! It turns out that many professional roboticists rarely touch hardware at all! Many modern robot developers use simulations, basically fancy video games, to develop the source code for their robots. This new approach to robotics means you too can start learning robotics without ever touching an Allen wrench or a soldering iron. More importantly, you can transfer your existing Python skills into solving challenging robotics problems.

In this talk we’ll walk you through getting started with Robot Operating System 2 (ROS 2) and the Gazebo simulator. ROS 2 and Gazebo are two large, open-source projects used by thousands of companies, and tens of thousands of developers, to build the robots we encounter in our daily lives. Better yet, both ROS 2 and Gazebo support Python, making it easier than ever to learn robotics fundamentals. In fact, ROS should be very familiar, it draws much of a project structure from Python itself. Just like the Python 2 to Python 3 transition. ROS and Gazebo have seen some major changes in the past few years; and now is a good time for Python developers to revisit these important tools.

In this talk we’ll introduce you to ROS 2 and Gazebo using existing open source libraries and robots. We’ll touch on how to get started, the Python APIs for both projects, and some of the fiddly bits in between (like CLIs, and other file types) that make robotics simulation possible. This talk is geared towards novice to intermediate programmers who are ready to branch out and start applying programming fundamentals to the domain of robotics.