Carmen is available undar a General Public License. As of yet, the documentation is this website, README files, and comments in the code. Click here to download the software.
Along with Carmen, you will get IPC, information on IPC is available at http://www-2.cs.cmu.edu/~ipc. There is an IPC reference manual in postcript format available at that site.
1. Switch into the carmen/src directory
2. Configure the Makefiles - Answer any questions
./configure3. Make the software
At this point, you want to set parameters for your robot. The key parameters at first are the communications between the computer and the robot hardware. Our robots have all used RS-232 serial communications, so Carmen is set up for that, and we've used RS-232 or USB to communicate with the SICK LMS devices. (Note that the use of USB requires the use of a special converter for RS-422 (laser) and USB (computer)).
Make a note of the identity of the serial connections the computer uses to communicate with the robot (we usually use /dev/ttyS0) and to the laser if you have one. Find the robot described in the carmen.ini file which most closely resembles your robot, and adjust the parameters using a text editor to match your system.
With the robot on blocks so that it doesn't actually move, you can start the programs and see if you get a laser display on robotgraph (if you have a laser), and response from the wheels when you instruct the robot to move. You can then adjust other parameters using the program param_edit, which is described here. After you get the maximum speed and accelerations to a safe setting for your environment, you can take the robot off blocks and try moving it around. Don't forget to adjust the robot size and laser offsets, too!