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ROS Turns 10!

We're happy to be celebrating the 10th anniversary of ROS today!

On this date in 2007 the first commit was made to the ROS project on SourceForge.

Since then, ROS has grown from that first public commit to over 200000 commits made by more than 2800 individuals from around the world. These contributions have built up to over 4.5 million significant lines of code which - following standard development effort estimators - would take 169 full time developers 8.5 years.

As an open source community it's sometimes very hard to quantify the involvement in the project. To help measure what we can, we started putting together an annual Metrics report. Using these snapshots the progress of ROS is quite striking.

Charting the information over time can be seen in this post. Showing things like Monthly Unique IPs or Total Downloads year over year.



This year being a large anniversary we're happy to see that there are many others who are recognizing this historic milestone. There is already coverage in Science Robotics, , ZDNet and IEEE Spectrum

To help highlight the greater ROS community we've running a series of blog posts about some of the ROS Contributors who have helped grow the community.

Another way that we're celebrating is by making anniversary edition t-shirts available for CTurtle, Indigo, and Kinetic. You can order from the:

CTurtle was our first release with a full logo. And Indigo and Kinetic are our new current Long Term Support Releases. Get your anniversary shirt to support the ROS community by showing how many of us there are. This is a limited campaign and will end on November 21.

Of course if you'd rather have stickers, they are available from Sticker Mule.

For those of us involved in ROS since its inception, these last 10 years have gone by in the blink of an eye. We've gone from a first commit to an industry standard. The enthusiasm of this community, the creativity of the work already accomplished, and the plans to come all combine to paint a very bright picture of the future of ROS. All of us at Open Robotics and very much looking forward to the next 10 years, and beyond.

ROS Lunar Loggerhead Tshirt Campaign

With each release of ROS we have a tradition of having a logo and making t-shirts. ROS Lunar Loggerhead is coming out in May. To let you show your ROS colors and support this tradition, we have setup a Teespring Campaign in both the US and the EU. Note that both these campaigns can ship worldwide.

Ordering will be open until May 9th. Order now!


This year we're also excited to provide an opportunity to order stickers for Lunar Loggerhead. We're also providing stickers for Lunar as well as all other active ROS distros Indigo, Jade, Kinetic, and a generic ROS Sticker

Please visit our page on Sticker Mule to order


Note that there's pretty good price breaks if you order in quantity. So if you have a few friends nearby it's probably worth doing a group order. And the stickers will continue to be available. The tshirt campaign ends in 20 days so don't delay ordering.

Since this is the first public announcement, here's the full graphic for Lunar Loggerhead.


Thanks to everyone who's been helping prepare the Lunar release. We're looking forward to the release in May. We expect the tshirts ordered in this campaign will arrive just before ROS Lunar Loggerhead is released!

Celebrating 9 Years of ROS!

This year marks the occasion of ROS turning 9 years old! Through these years ROS has grown into a strong world-wide community. It's a community with a large variety of interests: from academic researchers to robotic product developers as well as the many robot users. Academic use of ROS continues to grow. Citations of the first ROS paper "ROS: An Open-Source Robot Operating System" has grown to 2,871.

To get a better sense of what's happening in the ROS community, if you have not already done so, I highly recommend reviewing the ROSCon 2016 program. You can also find all the video recordings in this gallery. ROSCon 2016 was another great event bringing ROS community members together to share how they're using ROS to solve their challenges. As the goal of ROSCon is to share information between the entire community we record the talks and make them available online. We've sold out our venues the last two years and are looking forward to another ROSCon next fall!


Part of understanding our growing community is to try to measure it. For the last 6 years we've been generating metrics reports. These reports can give a sense of aggregate what's happening in the ROS community. Our most recent report is from July 2016. David Lu has put together plots of several of the metrics across the last 6 years which can be quite informative.

This year we wanted to dig a little deeper into the code metrics, so we downloaded the source of all of packages listed in the Indigo Igloo rosdistro and ran some analysis.

  • The total line count is over 14 million lines of code
  • There have been 2477 authors
  • And 181509 commits
  • Averaging 73.3 commits per author

You can see the commits as a function of month in this graph.


Our committers are active around the world as evidenced by the commits coming in at all hours of the day.


And the git commits record 24 different time zones (out of 39 possible).

Analyzing the repository for significant lines of code using SLOCCount shows:

  • 4,077,199 significant lines of code.
  • This represents an estimated 1,236 person-years of development.
  • For a sense of scale, that is an average of 137 developers contributing full time over the last 9 years!

For those of you curious about the breakdown by language lines of code, it is as follows:

  • cpp: 2608592 (63.98%)
  • python: 553332 (13.57%)
  • ansic: 297629 (7.30%)
  • xml: 280615 (6.88%)
  • lisp: 149439 (3.67%)
  • java: 135343 (3.32%)
  • ruby: 26484 (0.65%)
  • sh: 21120 (0.52%)

This only represents the packages publicly released into the Indigo rosdistro index.

Note that the tools only worked on Git repos so code from other source control systems was excluded. There are also a few projects which predate ROS but have ported to use ROS and their history is included.

We're looking forward to continuing growth through 2017 leading up to the 10-year anniversary of ROS. With the Beta 1 version of ROS 2.0 out, there will be space for new development. We're looking forward to our next release, Lunar Loggerhead, to coincide with Ubuntu's next release, Zesty Zapus. With both of these, the ROS community can continue to rely on the many libraries, tools, and capabilities they have come to know and enjoy, as well as begin to experiment with the new features in ROS 2.0

Another exciting project to watch is the upcoming TurtleBot 3! The TurtleBot and TurtleBot 2 have been great platforms for learning and prototyping. However by packing that same capability into a smaller platform with more punch we look forward to it providing another avenue to grow the ROS community.

We write these anniversary posts to help give you a sense of how ROS has been doing over the past year, but we'd certainly encourage you to find out for yourself. Get involved. Write or edit a wiki page. Answer a question on ROS Answers. Come to ROSCon. And, when you're ready, think about helping to maintain ROS itself, or even contributing a brand new ROS package.

OSRF is doing great, but the long-term success of ROS depends on every member of the incredibly awesome ROS community. If you're already an active part of the ROS community, we can't thank you enough; and if you're not, think about how you can help ROS grow and thrive for the next nine years, and beyond.

ROSCon 2016 early registration deadline: August 26th

The ROSCon registration rates increase after Friday, August 26! Register now at: to get the early registration discount.

To save money, remember to book your hotel room soon as well. The Conference has reserved a limited block of rooms at a discounted rate which is available until September 1st or until the block is full. To get the reserved rooms at the discounted rate book through this link More information is available at:

For more information about ROSCon including the program and information on the location please visit:

We can't put on ROSCon without the support of our generous sponsors, who now include Canonical, Dorabot, Nvidia, and SICK.

We'd like to especially thank our Platinum and Gold Sponsors: Fetch Robotics, Clearpath Robotics, Intel, Nvidia, ROBOTIS, ROS-Industrial Consortium / Southwest Research Institute, SICK, and Yujin Robot.

ROSCon 2016: Call for Proposals

ROSCON 2016 is happening October 8-9 in Seoul, Korea:

Proposals for presentations on all topics related to ROS are invited:

The proposal submission deadline is July 8th, 2016:

Women, members of minority groups, and members of other under-represented groups are encouraged to submit presentation proposals to ROSCon.

Proposals will be reviewed by the program committee, which will evaluate fit, impact, and balance.

We cannot offer sessions that are not proposed! If there is a topic on which you would like to present, please propose it. If you have an idea for an important topic that you do not want to present yourself, please post it to

All ROS-related work is invited. Topics of interest include:

  • Best practices
  • Useful packages
  • Robot-specific development
  • ROS Enhancement Proposals (REPs)
  • Safety and security
  • ROS in embedded systems
  • Product development & commercialization
  • Research and education
  • Enterprise deployment
  • Community organization and direction
  • Testing, quality, and documentation
  • Robotics competitions and collaborations

To get an idea of the content and tone of ROSCon, check out the presentation slides and videos from previous years:

Submit your proposal here:

We can't put on ROSCon without the support of our generous sponsors:

We'd like to especially thank our Platinum and Gold Sponsors: Fetch Robotics and Intel!

If you're interested in supporting ROSCon, please contact us:

ROS Kinetic Kame Released

Happy World Turtle Day!

I am pleased to announce that the 10th ROS distribution, Kinetic Kame, is now available on Ubuntu Xenial 16.04, Ubuntu Wily 15.10, and Debian Jessie. Packages for 32-bit ARM (armhf) are available on Xenial, and 64-bit ARM (aarch64) is supported on Debian Jessie.


To install ROS Kinetic, refer to the Installation page on the Wiki:
Check out the Migration guide for a changelog of new features and API changes:

524 packages in the ROS ecosystem are in the initial release of Kinetic, compared to 2149 currently in Indigo and 1016 in Jade. You can see the released packages on the status page for Kinetic:

And you can compare the versions of packages in Indigo, Jade, and Kinetic here (thanks William for making changes to the new compare pages):

If there's a package missing in Kinetic that you'd like to see released, contact the maintainers to let them know. Even though we've made the initial Kinetic release, it's never too late to add packages to Kinetic (or Jade or Indigo) for upcoming syncs.

Kinetic T-shirts (and hoodies) should come through in the mail this week.

We'd also like to announce the name of the next ROS distribution, which you can look forward to downloading a year from now: Lunar Loggerhead!

Thank you to all of the maintainers and contributors who helped make this release possible. We couldn't do this without you.

- Jackie and the ROS Team


ROS Kinetic Kame Tshirt and Logo Announced

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With each release of ROS we have a tradition of having a logo and making t-shirts. ROS Kinetic Kame is coming out in May. Show your ROS colors and support this tradition!  Visit the Teespring Campaign page here to order your shirt. 

Proceeds from shirt sales go to supporting the costs associated with developing and maintaining ROS, including hosting the wiki and running the build farm. 

There are both mens and womens sizes as well as hoodies, v-necks and triblends available. 

Order now and if this campaign is funded we expect the shirts to arrive approximately when ROS Kinetic Kame is released. The campaign closes on May 9th don't wait too long to order. 

Here's a high resolution version of the Kinetic logo. 


Note that we have two providers one in the US and one in Europe. The main link: redirects based on your IP address. If you want to access the individual pages you can visit: and directly. 

ROS Spotlight: Stanley Innovation

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At Stanley Innovation we are engineers who build robots for fun and are eager to solve difficult hardware, software, and electrical problems for mobile robotics solutions.  We love creating turn-key robots for commercial and university researchers and our primary goal is to have you spend more time working on your killer app, and less time tinkering with hardware.


Stanley Innovation is a robotics engineering company headquartered just north of Boston, MA, USA--an area renowned for robotics innovation.  Our company was founded by former Segway engineers who were part of the development team for the embedded software and hardware for the new Segway® RMP (Robotic Mobility Platform).  We specialize in solution development for robotics and embedded systems with all the necessary equipment in-house. We have a very close and very unique relationship with Segway that allows us to continue the development of RMP and provide end customers with customized solutions using RMP technology.

RMP platforms are the most robust mobility platforms on the market because they leverage the years of experience and millions of dollars that were poured into the Segway Personal Transport; RMPs include the same safety architecture and the same reliability.

Stanley Innovation is a Segway Technology Integrator and Reseller. We are also the creator and exclusive provider of the RMP V3 systems which enables the full ROS Stack integration across all of the RMP platforms.

ROS has become the preferred operating system for robotics research and development. If you want to use these two amazing components together, then you will need Stanley Innovation as your sole source provider for V3 RMPs.


Please feel free to visit our Stanley Innovation Resources page where Spec Sheets, User Manuals, URDF and CAD model files can all be downloaded from the Stanley Innovation website. 

Stanley Innovation has also created and maintains ROS libraries and information about the V3 RMP lineup in the ROS Wiki.

Click here to see a brief video of our ROS Robotic products in action

Click here to see an example of a ROS enabled autonomous, 3D mapping RMP, integrated by Stanley Innovation

Contact Stanley Innovation by email or phone:

If you'd like us to spotlight your project here, send us a note at info AT osrfoundation DOT org. Previous spotlights

ROS Turns 8

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Thumbnail image for ROS 8 Years.png
Eight years ago, Morgan Quigley, Eric Berger and Andrew Ng published a paper that was not about ROS. It was about STAIR, the STanford Artificial Intelligence Robot, which used a library called Switchyard to pass messages between software modules to perform complex manipulation tasks like stapler grasping. Switchyard was a purpose-built framework that was designed to be modular and robot-independent, and it was such a good idea that in 2009, "ROS: An Open-Source Robot Operating System" was presented at the IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA) in Japan. As of this month, the paper introducing ROS has been cited 2,020 times, an increase of more than 50% over last year.

The popularity of one single paper is only a minor indicator of the popularity of the robot operating system that it introduced. At eight years old, ROS is growing faster than ever, and helping the robotics community to grow along with it. We're especially excited to see how brand new startups have been taking advantage of the open source nature of ROS to help them develop useful, reliable robots that are creating entirely new markets. In 2015 alone, more than $150 million in VC funding (that we know of) was invested in businesses that utilize ROS.

Large, established companies have been taking more and more notice of ROS as well. At ROSCon this year, Fetch Robotics was joined as a platinum sponsor by Ubuntu, and a record number of gold sponsors included NVIDIA, Bosch, and Qualcomm and attendees from companies such as BMW, DJI, Intel and more. ROSCon 2015 was by far the largest conference we've ever had: it sold out weeks in advance.  Clearly next year we're going to have to find a much bigger venue to make room for more attendees, more speakers, and more exhibitors.

Taking a look at how much our community has grown this year, it's easy to see why ROSCon has become so popular: it's a reflection of the enthusiasm and engagement of the ROS user base. In May 2015 alone, nearly nine million ROS packages were downloaded from over 70,000 unique IP addresses, and these numbers don't even count mirrors. This suggests that ROS probably has hundreds of thousands of active users. We also have a very robust developer community: 1,840 people have contributed to ROS' 10 million lines of code, averaging 20 commits per day. The ROS wiki has gotten 10% bigger since last year, and there are over 11,000 users on ROS Answers, a 32% increase over last year, with a total of more than 5,000 questions answered. It's numbers like these that make us so confident in the long term future of ROS.

Counting ROS
Because of the nature of the ROS license, we actually don't know how many users, robots, and developers there are utilizing ROS.  Many of the numbers that we are citing throughout are likely to be much larger.  For example, we specifically know of approximately 80 types of robots using ROS, but almost every day we hear about new ones.  And not every company using ROS discloses so publicly, so our estimates on venture capital investment can be better characterized as lower bounds than estimates.

If you're not part of the ROS community yet, there's never been a better time to get involved. Even if you don't have experience with robots or programming, there's a wide variety of low-cost robots and helpful online tutorials that can get you started, and we're also delighted to announce (just in time for the holidays!) that O'Reilly Media has published "Programming Robots with ROS: A Practical Introduction to the Robot Operating System," by Morgan Quigley, Brian Gerkey, and Bill Smart, which will take you from zero to ROS expert in just 448 pages.

Learning ROS will allow you to do all kinds of cool stuff with more than 80 robotic platforms. You can choose from the capable, affordable TurtleBot, one of the many sophisticated humanoid robots that competed in the DARPA Robotics Challenge, or even NASA's Robonaut, currently undergoing testing on the International Space Station. Robots powered by ROS are everywhere, and here are just a few of them:

For full frame clips see the long version of the montage. 

Of course, we have no idea how many robots are actually running ROS, or how many people or companies are using it, because ROS is open source and completely free. We're often surprised to learn that cutting edge robots that we're already familiar with are powered by ROS, as when BMW announced at ROSCon that they've been using ROS in their autonomous cars for the past few years. We weren't at all surprised to hear why BMW chose ROS for its autonomous driving research, though: they appreciate its popularity, its stability and reliability based on a large user base, the fact that it makes it easy to collaborate, and its open source nature. 

As the ROS community has grown, various special interest groups have organized to promote ROS for specific application domains. The ROS Industrial Consortium is one such group.  ROS-I is a software library that builds on ROS and leverages its power and flexibility to control manufacturing automation equipment including industrial robot arms. It is supported by the 36-member organizations comprised of companies such as 3M, ABB, BMW, Ford, Boeing, Siemens and more.  Representatives from Boeing, Caterpillar, Yaskawa and more speak on behalf of ROS and ROS-I in this video.

2016 is poised to be the biggest year ever for ROS, and we'd like to highlight two things that are worth getting particularly excited about. The first is ROS 2.0, which we've been developing for the past few years. ROS 2 will support the growth of the ROS community by making it much easier to work with small embedded systems, teams of multiple robots, and robots that require real-time control. We'd also like to make sure you're familiar with Robotics Fast Track (RFT), which is  a program that we're working on with DARPA. It's an easy way for you to get government funding for your awesome robotics ideas without having to give up any of your IP, and absolutely anyone can apply. 

We write these anniversary posts to help give you a sense of how ROS has a whole has been doing over the past year, but we'd certainly encourage you to find out for yourself, by getting involved. Write or edit a Wiki page. Answer a question on ROS Answers. Come to ROSCon. And, when you're ready, think about helping to maintain ROS itself, or even contributing a brand new ROS package. OSRF is doing great, but the long-term success of ROS depends on all of the incredibly awesome ROS users themselves. If you're already an active part of the ROS community, we can't thank you enough, and if you're not, think about it: you can help ROS grow and thrive for eight more years, and beyond.

ROSCon 2015 Talks Announced

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We're excited to announce a great collection of presentations that
will appear in the main track of ROSCon 2015 (also appended below):

If you like what you see there, register for ROSCon today!

Thanks again to our Platinum Sponsors: Canonical / Ubuntu and Fetch Robotics! And our Gold Sponsors: 3D Robotics, Bosch, CoroWare, GaiTech, Qualcomm, Rethink Robotics, Robotnik, and Shadow Robot!

Long presentations

  • "MoveIt! Strengths, Weaknesses, and Developer Insights" - Dave Coleman (University of Colorado Boulder)
  • "State of ROS 2 - demos and the technology behind" - Dirk Thomas (OSRF), Esteve Fernandez (OSRF), William Woodall (OSRF)
  • "Real-time Performance in ROS 2.0" - Jackie Kay (OSRF), Adolfo Rodríguez Tsouroukdissian (PAL Robotics)
  • "Bringing ROS to the factory floor: a status report on the ROS-Industrial initiative" - Mirko Bordignon (Fraunhofer IPA), Shaun Edwards (SwRI), Clay Flannigan (SwRI), Paul Hvass (SwRI), Ulrich Reiser (Fraunhofer IPA) Florian Weisshardt (Fraunhofer IPA)
  • "Commercial models for the robot generation" - Mark Shuttleworth (Canonical)
  • "An Introduction to Team ViGIR's Open Source Software and DRC Post Mortem" - Stefan Kohlbrecher (Technische Universitat Darmstadt)

Short presentations

  • "Automated Driving with ROS at BMW" - Michael Aeberhard (BMW Group Research and Technology), Thomas Kühbeck (BMW Group Research and Technology), Bernhard Seidl (BMW Group Research and Technology), Martin Friedl (BMW Group Research and Technology), Julian Thomas (BMW Group Research and Technology), Oliver Scheickl (BMW ConnectedDrive Lab, China)
  • "Working with the robot_localization Package" - Tom Moore (Charles River Analytics)
  • "ROS android_ndk: What? Why? How?" - Gary Servin (Creativa77)
  • "Accelerating Your Robotics Startup with ROS" - Michael Ferguson (Fetch Robotics)
  • "The Descartes Planning Library for Semi-Constrained Cartesian Trajectories" - Shaun Edwards (SwRI), Jorge Nicho (SwRI), Jonathan Meyer (SwRI)
  • "Phobos - Robot Model Development on Steroids" - Kai von Szadkowski (University of Bremen)
  • "ROS on DroneCode Systems" - Lorenz Meier (ETH Zurich and PX4), Roman Bapst (ETH Zurich and PX4)
  • "Introducing ROS-RealSense: 3D empowered Robotics Innovation Platform" - Amit Moran (Intel), Gila Kamhi (Intel)
  • "ROS-driven user applications in idempotent environments" - Matt Vollrath (End Point), Wojciech Ziniewicz (End Point)
  • "ROS2 on "small" embedded systems" - Morgan Quigley (OSRF)
  • "ROS + Docker: Enabling Repeatable, Reproducible, and Deployable robotic software via Linux Containers" - Ruffin White (Institute for Robotics & Intelligent Machines at Georgia Tech)
  • "ROS for education and applied research: practical experiences" - Ralph Seulin (CNRS - Univ. Bourgogne Franche-Comte), Raphael Duverne (CNRS - Univ. Bourgogne Franche-Comte), Olivier Morel (CNRS - Univ. Bourgogne Franche-Comte), Cansen Jiang (CNRS - Univ. Bourgogne Franche-Comte), Jeremie Deray (PAL Robotics), Jordi Pages (PAL Robotics), Lee Kian Seng (Universiti Teknologi Petronas), Remi Groslevin (CNRS - Univ. Bourgogne Franche-Comte), Cedric Demonceaux (CNRS - Univ. Bourgogne Franche-Comte), David Fofi (CNRS - Univ. Bourgogne Franche-Comte), Yohan Fougerolle (CNRS - Univ. Bourgogne Franche-Comte)
  • "Maru and Toru: Item-specific logistics solutions based on ROS" - Moritz Tenorth (Magazino GmbH), Ulrich Klank (Magazino GmbH), Nikolas Engelhard (Magazino GmbH)
  • "Mapviz: An Extensible 2D Visualization Tool for Automated Vehicles" - Jerry Towler (SwRI), Marc Alban (SwRI)
  • "Docker-based ROS Build Farm" - Tully Foote (OSRF), Dirk Thomas (OSRF), Dejan Pangercic (Robert Bosch), Daniel Di Marco (Robert Bosch), Arne Hamann (Robert Bosch)

Robotics Fast Track now accepting applications

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Cross posted from

We're excited to announce that OSRF and BIT Systems are seeking innovative and revolutionary robotics projects for the Robotics Fast Track (RFT) effort, sponsored by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).

The goals of Robotics Fast Track are:

  1. Enable rapid, cost-effective development of new robotics capabilities designed to respond to, and even anticipate, quickly evolving needs in space, maritime, ground, and air operations. RFT will focus on the development of groundbreaking robotic hardware and software by funding novel approaches as well as creative adaptations of existing technologies.
  2. Achieve breakthrough capabilities in less time and at a fraction of the cost typical of government-supported robotic development processes by engaging highly agile organizations and individuals who traditionally have not worked with the U.S. government.

Learn more and apply at!

ROS Jade Turtle Logo and Release T-shirt

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With each release of ROS we have a tradition of having a logo and making t-shirts. ROS Jade Turtle is coming out in May. Show your ROS colors and support this tradition!  Visit the Teespring Campaign page here to order your shirt.

Proceeds from shirt sales go to supporting the costs associated with developing and maintaining ROS, including hosting the wiki and running the build farm. 

There are both mens and womens sizes as well as hoodies available. 

Order now and if this campaign is funded we expect the shirts to arrive approximately when ROS Jade Turtle is released. The campaign closes on May 11th don't wait too long to order.

Here's a copy of the full logo:

We're happy to announce the program for ROSCon 2014 has been posted and that registration is now open.

The early registration deadline is August 15, 2014.


The program fills two days with talks on applications of ROS from outer space to inside mines as well as overviews of useful tools for both research and product development. There will also be presentations on upcoming development and ongoing efforts to make ROS available on more platforms. 

In addition to the talks ROSCon will feature two lightning talk sessions and two birds of a feather sessions, all organized on-site. The lightning talks are an opportunity for you to have 3 minutes to present a topic of your choice: introduce a new project, recruit collaborators or users to an existing project, announce a product, whatever you like.

Immediately follow the lightning talks are birds of a feather sessions, which are an opportunity to propose and find people to talk about topics of interest to subgroups at the conference. This will be a mostly unstructured time with topics proposed on site and groups forming organically. 

Before you come to ROSCon, think ahead about any topic you'd like to propose for the BoF sessions and have some slides ready to present a lightning talk (3 slides or fewer).

We look forward to seeing you in Chicago in September!

Thanks for a great ROS Kong 2014!

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We want to express our thanks to everyone who made ROS Kong 2014 a great success. It was our first ROS event in Asia and it was great to see the enthusiasm from the nearby community as well as the community members who came from all around the globe. ROS Kong was designed as a complement to our annual conference ROSCon, which will happen in Chicago in September.

It took many people to make ROS Kong happen.  We'd like to give a special thanks to:

  • Our sponsors: Yujin Robot, ETRI, and GaiTech
  • Our host: The University of Hong Kong
  • Our organizers: Tully Foote, Brian Gerkey, Wyatt Newman, Daniel Stonier
  • Our volunteers: David Coleman, Annie Lam, Team HKU
  • Our speakers, who put together awesome talks.
  • Our attendees, without whom there would be no event!

The event included invited talks from ROS community members in the Australasia region. We started with a keynote from Kei Okada from the University of Tokyo. We also had talks from Paulo Borges, Chris Swetenham, Noriaki Ando, and Daniel Stonier. 

We have added links to video recordings of all the talks from the agenda and several of the presenters have provided their slides. 

We had two Lightning Talk sessions in which many attendees talked about their current work, put out calls for collaboration, or showed off new sensors or robots, such as Einstein from Hansen Robotics and the new RPLidar sensor from RoboPeak.  

In the afternoon we left a period open for Birds of a Feather sessions during which there were 16 different topics discussed. 


Over lunch, our host, The University of Hong Kong, provided us with live demos of ATLAS as well as a chance to check out the robot up close. 

We finished out the day with a reception overlooking Hong Kong in the HKU Faculty Club. 


If you'd like to see more pictures and videos of the event they are posted on the Google+ event page


ROS Spotlight: Shadow Robot's RoNeX

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This ROS Spotlight introduces Shadow Robot's new platform for
connecting ROS to robot hardware.

A spin-off from he Stiff-Flop Project, RoNeX is designed specially for cutting edge robotics prototyping and development. RoNeX provides a high speed, modular I/O network that fully integrates with ROS straight out of the box, accessible directly on ROS topics or within standard ROS controllers.

Utilising the industrial strenght real-time EtherCAT field-bus, RoNeX has 100Mbps of bandwidth available, and maintains a 1 kHz update rate on all channels allowing for real time joint control from a ROS Host.

To show just how easy it is to build a robot with RoNeX, Shadow has done just that in this video:

Using standard ROS packages for joint control, kinematics, path planning and visualisation, Shadow needed only ten new lines of code plus a URDF file automatically generated from Solidworks to drive the robot!

The Shadow team is releasing RoNeX with three Modules available now and are putting the final touches to a roadmap that includes motor drivers, ability to daisy chain RoNeX stacks and Dev Kits for advanced users and OEMs.

To find out more about RoNeX visit the Shadow Website.

RoNeX drivers are open source on Github and the user manual is here.

ROS Indigo Igloo Logo and Release T-shirt

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With each release of ROS we have a tradition of having a logo and making t-shirts. ROS indigo Igloo is coming out in May. To let you show your ROS colors and support this tradition, we have setup a Teespring Campaign here.  Ordering will be open until May 13th.


Proceeds from shirt sales go to supporting the costs associated with developing and maintaining ROS, including hosting the wiki and running the build farm. 

We're also happy to announce that there are a few variants such as long sleeved and v-necked shirts as well as hoodies are also available. 

Order now and if this campaign is funded we expect the shirts to arrive approximately when ROS Indigo Igloo is released. 

Update 2014-04-26: The campaign has exceeded the minimum of 100 t-shirts. It will be produced!

Here's a copy of the full logo too: 

ROS Answers reaches 15,000 questions

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We're excited to share that has grown to over 15,000 questions, submitted by over 6,000 registered users!


The site has matured into an excellent crowd-sourced resource for the ROS community. There are over 10,000 questions with accepted answers and another approximately 2,000 questions with at least one proposed answer. The site has recently maintained a sustained velocity of over 15 questions per day. It's been only eleven months since we hit 10,000 questions last March

The site is a community effort and everyone's participation, from asking or answering questions, to cleaning up tags, is greatly appreciated . Each and every contribution improves the site for the ROS community.  If you have not yet joined us on, give it a try and help us get to 20,000!

ROS Spotlight: Pal Robotics' REEM-C

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This ROS Spotlight introduces a brand new, advanced platform for roboticists.


The REEM-C robot from PAL Robotics is a fully ROS-based biped with outstanding autonomy. This guy can walk around for up to 3 hours and has an idle time of 6 hours. REEM-C is equipped with laser sensors in the feet so that the navigation system has up-close input.

REEM-C is human-sized: it is 1.65 meters tall and weighs 80 kgs. It integrates all computation on board with two i7 computers. After spending long hours in the gym, this robot is able to lift and carry up to 10 kilos, which makes it among the strongest robots in its class.

With this robot, researchers have an out-of-the box solution for walking, navigation, manipulation, vision and speech recognition, all implemented using ROS. The hood is open and the system is ready to be modified to fit your project requirements.

The simulation model of the robot is publicly available with basic controllers already set up. Find more information about REEM-C on its ROS wiki page!

PAL Robotics first established itself by developing REEM-A, a biped robot able to play chess with a human. PAL continued with REEM-B, which was engineered to do general manipulation and walking, and the REEM series, which is a robot designed to interact with people in public, dynamic environments.

To learn more about REEM-C, their latest biped robot for research, check out thePAL Robotics website!

New Book: "Learning ROS for Robotics Programming"

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Our first ROS Spotlight showcases the most recently-published book about ROS, "Learning ROS for Robotics Programming", by Aaron Martinez and Enrique Fernández. This book is available online via Packt Publishing, a company that focuses on open source software and pays royalties to open source projects.


"Learning ROS for Robotics Programming" provides practical examples to help readers understand the ROS framework. To begin, it presents basic ROS concepts to help new users get started. The authors continue by introducing various compelling topics such as modeling, sensor integration, computer vision, and navigation algorithms.

With your new understanding of ROS, you'll be able to build your own robot applications in simulation, allow your robot to see with its sensors, and make your robot navigate autonomously.

Pick up a copy of "Learning ROS for Robotics Programming" and dive into the exciting world of ROS and robotics!

Buy this book

For more on ROS, you can also check out "ROS by Example".

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