This assignment gives an introduction to our course and reviews some basic material you will need.
Please write your answers to be submitted in a PDF format. We reccomend LaTeX or MarkDown, however scanning legible handwriten answers is also acceptable.
When you are done, please email your answers to firstname.lastname@example.org. The subject of the email shoud be [cs login] Assignment 1. The email should include the attachments
Please read and sign the collaboration policy for CS1951R. You must turn in the signed pdf with the assignment if you wish to be graded.
Please read and sign the safety policy for CS1951R. You must turn in the signed pdf with the assignment if you wish to be graded.
Before you start putting a lot of time into this course, it is important to figure out what you will get out of the course. Think about what you expect to learn from this course and why it is worth investing a lot of time. What do you hope to learn that you can take away for the next ten or twenty years of your career?
I. What is a robot? What is a machine? What is a vehicle?
II. Is a car a robot? How is my drone a robot?
III. If I can fly a drone by remote, what can I get out of programming it?\
For this problem we strongly recommend you do these calculations by hand, because they are warmup questions designed to remind you of some of the prerequisite material for the class.
Read the FAA website on Unmanned Aircraft Systems. Provide short answers to the following questions.
Here is a little bit of discussion of the relevant rules: Tl;dr - We are in Class G airspace, that classification doesn’t directly matter, and we need to notify Rhode Island Hospital before flying.
We had some questions come up about airspace classification on homework 1. In an attempt to make sure we are all on the same page, I’ve done some more digging on the subject. This is the relevant FAA webpage: https://www.faa.gov/uas/faqs/. Because we fall under the Special Rule for Model Aircraft, the actual classification of the space we fly does not matter at all. That is only relevant for commercial or licensed flying under section 107. The airspace rules that apply to us are:
Class C airspace applies within 5 nautical miles of airports up to 4,000 feet. It also applies within 10 nautical miles between 1,200 feet and 4,000 feet. Source
This means that the CIT is not in Class C for altitudes below 1,200 feet. If we fly high enough, we would be in Class C because we are within 10 miles of the airport. However, presumably at that height we would no longer be in line of sight (assuming by line of sight they mean within visible range). Therefore, we are indirectly restricted from Class C airspace, even though the Classes don’t directly apply to us.
There’s a final interesting FAQ on the FAA site:
Can an airport operator object to model aircraft flights near an airport? “Yes, an airport operator can object to the proposed use of a model aircraft within five miles of an airport if the proposed activity would endanger the safety of the airspace. However, the airport operator cannot prohibit or prevent the model aircraft operator from operating within five miles of the airport. Unsafe flying in spite of the objection of an airport operator may be evidence that the operator was endangering the safety of the National Airspace System. Additionally, the UAS operator must comply with any applicable airspace requirements.”
This seems to imply that you can fly regardless of what the air traffic control says, but that you could then be arrested for it. This seems like a really weird addendum, like maybe they are trying to regulate things that Congress hasn’t actually given them jurisdiction over.
Bottom line, as long as we notify Rhode Island Hospital it seems like we are ok.
Pick a robot that was used to solve a real-world problem. You might choose the Baxter robot, the NASA Curiosity Rover, the Waymo robot, the iRobot Roomba or another robot of your choice. Answer the following questions about the robot you pick:
Read the The Law of Leaky Abstractions. How might this be especially relevant to robotics?
Think about some ways that implemented systems might not be true to their modeled behavior. How can we plan with abstractions despite these challenges?
Robotics is especially suceeptible to the Law of Leaky Abstractions because for a robot to work, all aspects of the robot must work as well: networking, systems, memory management, processor heat. We have had PIs fail due to using too much CPU, causing the processor to overheat, as well as bugs in code other people wrote, such as reading the IR sensor.
When you are done, please email your answers to email@example.com. The subject of the email should be [cs login] Assignment 1. The email should include the attachments