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Professional Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio Paperback – May 19 2008

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Product Description

From the Back Cover

Professional Microsoft RoboticsDeveloper Studio

Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio (MRDS) offers an excitingnew wayto program robots in the Windows environment. With keyportions of theMRDS code available in source form, it is readilyextensible and offersnumerous opportunities for programmers andhobbyists. This comprehensivebook illustrates creative ways to usethe tools and libraries in MRDS so you can start buildinginnovative new robotics applications.

The book begins with a brief overview of MRDS and then launchesinto MRDSconcepts and takes a look at fundamental code patternsthat can be used in MRDS programming. You'll work throughexamples—all in C#—of common tasks, including anexamination of the physics features of the MRDS simulator. As thechapters progress, so does the level of difficulty and you'llgradually evolve from navigating a simple robot around a simulatedcourse to controlling simulated and actual robotic arms, andfinally, to an autonomous robot that runs with an embedded PC orPDA.

What you will learn from this book

  • How to program in the multi-threaded environment provided by theconcurrency and coordination runtime

  • Suggestions for starting and stopping services, configuringservices, and packaging your services for deployment

  • Techniques for building new services from scratch and thentesting them

  • How to build your own simulated environments and robots usingthe Visual Simulation Environment

  • What robots are supported under MRDS and how to select one forpurchase

Who this book is for
This book is for programmers who are interested in becomingproficient in the rapidly growing field of robotics. All examplesfeatured in the book are in C#, which is the preferred language forMRDS.

Wrox Professional guides are planned and written byworking programmers to meet the real-world needs of programmers,developers, and IT professionals. Focused and relevant, theyaddress the issues technology professionals face every day. Theyprovide examples, practical solutions, and expert education in newtechnologies, all designed to help programmers do a better job.

About the Author

Kyle Johns is a principal software developer at Microsoft,where he is currently a member of the Microsoft Robotics DeveloperStudio Team. After receiving a master’s degree in computerscience from the University of Utah, he designed 3D graphicshardware for flight simulators at Evans and Sutherland. He joinedMicrosoft as one of the original members of the DirectX Team andthen went on to help develop the graphics system software in theearly days of the Xbox project. Recently he has been enjoying theopportunity to apply his 20 years of 3D graphics experience to thefield of robotics by developing the Robotics Developer StudioSimulation Environment.

Trevor Taylor is a consultant in the field of roboticseducation. After 20 years in the IT industry, including co -founding a consulting company that became a Microsoft SolutionProvider Partner, he moved to the Queensland University ofTechnology in 2002. For six years he taught a variety of subjects,including Visual Basic and Web development using ASP.NET. Duringthis period he also worked part - time on a doctorate in computervision and robotics. In early 2008, Trevor left QUT to concentrateon developing course materials for teaching robotics and to finishwriting his thesis. Trevor has worked with MRDS since the veryfirst Community Technology Preview in June 2006 and is an activeand well - known contributor to the community.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 8 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Excellent book for the determined April 21 2009
By Drew Wang - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
When I first got the book a few months ago, I had a hard time getting into it in large part because I could not readily build the sample codes associated with the earlier chapters. All the codes, as downloaded from the book's companion website, seemed to have reference and path issues. I was also using VC# Express along with MRDS Express at the time, so I could not avail myself of some of the helpful hints given in the book. Since then, I have switched over to Visual Studio Professional along with MRDS Professional, and having now figured out how to resolve those reference issues in the sample codes (easily done), I must say I have a new found appreciation for what the authors have accomplished with this tome. They obviously know their stuff, and for me, starting with Chapter 6 which details the creation of the Corobot robot in the simulation engine, the book truly becomes invaluable. Indeed, I now find myself referring back to the earlier chapters as well with great relish. Like a fine wine, this books apparently just needs to be given a bit of time to 'breathe' in one's mind in order to reach its full potency. So I want to amend my earlier two-star rating to five stars. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who is using MRDS.

(Note: The two-star rating as shown is based on my earlier review filed in April 2009. For some reason, Amazon only allows me to edit the text of my earlier review, but not the star rating.)
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Thorough but not easy material to get through Oct. 25 2008
By Daniel Sionov - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have not yet completed reading this book though I have read the first few chapters.

My first impression is that although this book is fairly thorough and comprehensive, it's not the easiest material to get through.

The authors start with the CCR (Concurrency and Coordination Run-Time) and discuss it in such a way that it has nothing to do with robotics. Obviously, it makes sense as to why you would have a specialized set of components to handle concurrency, etc., but it helps to know how it fits in the big picture of robotics programming.

Anyway, I don't regret having purchased this book, but I wish it was laid out more in the context of robotics rather than just the individual components of the Microsoft Robotics Studio.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
If you want deep knowledge, this is the book. Dec 5 2008
By Philip Wheat - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is not an intro book, but is the book you want if you want in depth knowledge. Very good book, but you'll likely use it as a reference rather than a tutorial as the topics are pretty targeted.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
good book needs to be updated Feb. 10 2012
By Herb - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a great reference book. While there are a lot of tutorials on-line and free, this is a very worth while addition to a library. The only reason it is not better is that the software has updated and the book has not.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Best book for the job July 7 2008
By Quintin Balsdon - Published on
Format: Paperback
Of the two textbooks available, Professional MRDS is an excellent reference book for those who need guidance with MRDS. The textbook has a plethora of examples that are easy to grasp and has an excellent code library (available from the website at no cost). In addition, the hands-on attitude of the authors make MRDS a pleasurable experience.