This is an open-ended assignment. I hope to engage your creativity.
The task is to make particle filters understandable to naive robot
users, such as high school students getting their first exposure to
robot localization. You are going to develop a game that helps
students simulate a particle filter. Below I describe one way this game could work.
You are welcome to pursue this design, but if you think you might have a better idea,
you can go with that instead.
There is a maze with a bunch of landmarks. You
can use the Emaze as your environment: see Root Control > Framework
Demos > Navigation > Emaze.
Teacher mode setup:
The teacher picks a point in the maze by
typing in x, y, and theta values as a text message. Alternatively,
she can ask the behavior to pick these values. Your behavior sets the
agent shape to the chosen coordinates and heading outputs a
hexadecimal string that encodes, in a deliberately obscure way, the
location and heading values. The teacher then announces this string
to the class.
Student mode setup:
Students run the behavior and send it the
hexadecimal string as a text message. Now the behavior knows the
chosen location and heading, but it does not reveal this to the
student. It generates 10 random particles and displays them on the
world map. It also prints out a table like this:
Each round of play begins with the teacher
sending a text message to the behavior. The behavior responds with a
landmark number, a bearing, and a distance. (Rather than reporting
exact values, these values should have some noise added to them.) The
teacher announces these values to the class.
The students input the landmark number, bearing,
and distance via a text message. The behavior responds by updating
the scores of the actual particles (visible on the world map) and
printing out a new table showing the contribution of each landmark to
the total score. Suppose the first observed landmark was number 8.
Then the table would look like:
If the next landmark was number 3, the table would look like:
Concluding the game:
|Particle||x||y||theta||Lmk 8||Lmk 3||Total|
the game ends when the teacher's behavior
runs out of landmarks, or when four landmarks have been announced. The
student with the highest scoring particle announces its coordinates
and heading and is declared the winner. The teacher then discloses
the actual coordinates and heading so students can see how close the
particle filter came to estimating the robot's true pose.
Issues and advice:
- Make sure to only generate points inside the maze boundary. (You
can generate points at random, one at a time, and reject them until
you find one that lies inside the polygon that defines the maze
- Make sure to only generate landmarks that are visible from the
robot's location, i.e., there must be no wall between the robot and
the landmark. I will supply you with code for this test.
- Look at the source for PilotDemo to see how to parse text
- Consider possible enhancements. For example, you could add an
ellipse for each landmark showing a confidence interval for the
position and bearing. The region where these ellipses overlap would
be the robot's most likely location.
- Come up with a good way to illustrate resampling.