Architectural support for robotics – Software prototyping and testing


  1. Mackay, D.J.
  2. Broten, G.S.
  3. Monckton, S.
Corporate Authors
Defence R&D Canada - Suffield, Ralston ALTA (CAN)
The development of robotics software is difficult. The sheer size and complexity of these software systems, the interaction of robots with their environment including the potential need for real-time operation, and the lack of accepted standards all contribute to this situation. Due to the diverse nature of robot systems, contributions from multiple researchers with disparate fields of expertise are required and that in itself further complicates software development. At Defence R&D Canada Suffield, we have developed domain-specifc middleware based upon the Miro framework, that uses the ACE/TAO implementation of CORBA. This middleware provides infrastructure services enabling seamless communication between software components. Using this framework enables researchers to focus their attention at a level of abstraction close to the problem domain, for the most part ignoring the underlying details that enable a system to work. Over the past six years, researchers in Autonomous Intelligent Systems Section have developed numerous software components for an heterogeneous set of robotic platforms. A key conclusion arising from this endeavour was the recognition that components and middleware, although crucial enablers, do not of themselves fully address the difficulties associated with software reuse. Software reuse can only be realized if both the component interfaces and the underlying data structures are stable. And, although software reuse simplifes the process of adapting exist

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Report Number
DRDC-SUFFIELD-TM-2010-271 — Technical Memorandum
Date of publication
01 Dec 2010
Number of Pages
Electronic Document(PDF)

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