Technical Specifications:

Inputs - The inputs to our system consist of mainly user control commands issued to the robots. These inputs are described in further detail under The User Interface.

Outputs - The outputs from the system are the streaming video outputs, sensor data, and the movement of the robot. The live video feeds will be provided by the cameras on the robots and the overhead area camera. These video feeds will be updated at a minimum of 1-2 seconds depending on the Internet connection. The sensors in the system include 2 forward IR emitters, 1 back facing IR emitter, 2 forward facing IR detectors, 3 forward facing and 1 back facing momentary tactile bumper switches. The IR sensors operate at 40KHz modulated 940mm IR. The bumper switches will be used to indicate a collision with a course boundary or another player. The IR emitters will be used for tagging the other player, while the IR detectors will sense when the robot has been tagged.


The robots will have an onboard 12 volt 14 amp-hour power supply. This battery will supply the 68HC11 micro-controller board, the camera, the IR sensors, wireless modem and motors. The camera will operate independently of the micro-controller using its own internal wireless link. Sensor I/O will be administered through the 68HC11 and the wireless modem will be interfaced with the micro-controllerís serial port.


The server will be a pentium-class machine running a Windows based operating system. The server will also have software and hardware to perform the following functions: Video capture, web server, Java Virtual machine, and serial I/O. The video capture will consist of three capture cards, one for each of the cameras on the robots and one for the overhead camera. The cameras broadcast a live video feed in National Television Standards Committee (NTSC) format to the capture cards. The cards capture live video at 1 frame every 2 seconds and update the images sent to the users computer through the Internet. The time this update takes will vary based on network traffic and user connection. The web server is software that handles the user interface. This server will establish the network connection, send the image updates, load the web pages and load the Java Applets. The Java Virtual Machine is the program that interprets the Applets and will handle all of the I/O between the user and the robots such as movement control, sensor data and score. The serial port on the computer will be connected to the wireless modem, running at 2400 baud, which will be used for the I/O connection to the robots.

User Interface:

Player interface - The user interface will be a web page with a Java applet (Fig. 1). The applet will have nine motion control buttons, an image window, a status window and function buttons. The motion control buttons will be forward, reverse, forward left and right, reverse left and right, stationary left and right (spin) and stop. These buttons provide all the movement functions of the robot. The image window will display the captured image from the camera onboard the robot the user is controlling. Messages for the user during game play are displayed in the status window. These messages include confirmations of movement, sensor data, and when a tag is made. This window will also display any error messages encountered during the game. A message sending box is provided so that the user may send messages to other players in the status window. Also included in this interface are a reset button, a quit button and a score display.

Observer Interface

The observer interface will have the overhead camera image, a status window, and the current game score (Fig. 2). It will also have buttons to take the user to the game interface and to quit.

Demonstration Procedures and Environment:

Once the project is complete, the robots will be placed in a special environment where it was designed to operate. The systemís different modes will be tested in this environment according to the controls at a given computer station.

Single player mode

Testing the system in single player mode will be done by having one person assume the web-based controls at a given computer station. When the single player game has started, the following events should occur

  1. The playerís robot will be disabled while the opposing robot attempts to hide itself.
  2. Once the robot becomes active, the player should be able to control the robot using the web interface controls.
  3. If the player tags the other robot, the score will increase and the robot will be disabled again while the opposing robot hides.
  4. The player should be able to exit the game whenever he wishes using the interface.

Two player mode

Testing the system in two player mode will be done by having two people assume the web-based controls at two different computer stations. When the two player game has started, the following events should occur:

  1. Once the robots are activated, the players should be able to control their robots using the web interfaced controls.
  2. If a player tags the other robots, his score will increase, the status will change, and the tagged robot will be temporarily disabled while the first player attempts to hide.
  3. The players should be able to exit the game whenever they wish using the interface. If one player exits, the two player game will end and the other player will be notified.

Observer Mode

The observer mode will be tested by having someone use another computer station to access the observer mode. This person should be able to view the game activity no matter which mode is currently in use. The person should also be able to exit the game at any time using the interface.

Updated: 11/30/99
(c)1999 Bradley University ECET
Project Members: John Kiolbasa, Rob Harding, Jon Kujanski, Greg Harmon
Project Advisors: Dr. Aleksander Olek Malinowski, Dr. Brian D. Huggins