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Author Topic: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!  (Read 8669 times)

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Offline Half ShellTopic starter

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I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« on: December 12, 2008, 03:52:33 PM »
So WPI (Worcester Polytechnic Institute) started two years ago the first undergraduate degree for Robotics Engineering - this year I will (knock on wood) be one of the first handful of students graduating with said degree. I am VERY active on campus and do a lot of helping expand the major. It occurred to me that we have quite a few younger members on the forum here who are probably interesting in studying engineering or robotics engineering.

To that end - ask me anything! I'll answer any and all questions on it.

PS - If you decide to hit up a WPI college tour, drop me a line. I'll take you around to the labs they don't show and give a more in depth look, as well as introduce you to Professors.

Offline MaltiK

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #1 on: December 12, 2008, 03:57:16 PM »
I thought their were only 3 schools in the nation that offered majors in robotics: CalTech, CMU, and MIT, guess I was wrong, are theyre any schools on the east coast that offer them?
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Offline pomprocker

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #2 on: December 12, 2008, 04:36:52 PM »
Would it be possible to get the degree solely by online coursework? Or do you need to be there?

I am attending National University for my comp sci degree, and its completely online. (they do offer classroom sessions too)

Offline hgordon

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2008, 05:14:46 PM »
Not a question, but thought you might be interested to know that we just shipped a stereo vision system (Surveyor SVS) to WPI ECE department - Prof Looft.  It should arrive early next week.
Surveyor Corporation
  www.surveyor.com

Offline pomprocker

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #4 on: December 12, 2008, 06:40:58 PM »
Why are all the robotics school on the east coast :(

Although I hear UCLA has a robot program?

Offline Half ShellTopic starter

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #5 on: December 13, 2008, 12:09:03 AM »
Quote
I thought their were only 3 schools in the nation that offered majors in robotics: CalTech, CMU, and MIT, guess I was wrong, are theyre any schools on the east coast that offer them?
These schools all have robotics programs - for GRADUATE students. They also all have robotics undergraduate classes, but tend to focus towards a particular field. Robotics Engineering at WPI is built from the ground up to give more breadth in all three fields, while receiving additional training in robotics oriented concepts.

Quote
Would it be possible to get the degree solely by online coursework? Or do you need to be there?

I am attending National University for my comp sci degree, and its completely online. (they do offer classroom sessions too)
No online classrooms - this is a full university.

As for the reason why you couldn't, read the end part of my post where I'm not answering a question.

Quote
Not a question, but thought you might be interested to know that we just shipped a stereo vision system (Surveyor SVS) to WPI ECE department - Prof Looft.  It should arrive early next week.

That is hilarious - Professor Looft is my senior project advisor, a good friend, and I was JUST talking to him about that camera. A good friend and fellow Robotics Engineering student peer of mine was interested in doing stereo-vision research, so he bought the camera for him to study this on the side of his classes.

Quote
Why are all the robotics school on the east coast Sad

Although I hear UCLA has a robot program?
Possible? I know several schools are starting up undergraduate programs - WPI is currently the only active one, with Stanford looking to copy ours as soon as next year.


ANOTHER NOTE:

The courses are ridiculously lab intensive. You have a single week to complete a lab, and I'll be damned if you don't need more than that week to accomplish the goal. This isn't to say that the labs are impossible- they are designed from the ground up to challenge the student and truly push your potential. I've learned more through hands on labs than any class, and it really does back up the theory taught in class. Then again, all of WPI is based on project based work supporting theory throughout every major engineering course.

I will post soon about all the support I've been getting for "extracurricular" support and entrepreneurial suppot I and friends have been getting for our project work.
« Last Edit: December 13, 2008, 12:13:05 AM by Half Shell »

Offline Admin

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2008, 05:45:52 AM »
Quote
Quote
I thought their were only 3 schools in the nation that offered majors in robotics: CalTech, CMU, and MIT, guess I was wrong, are theyre any schools on the east coast that offer them?
These schools all have robotics programs - for GRADUATE students. They also all have robotics undergraduate classes, but tend to focus towards a particular field. Robotics Engineering at WPI is built from the ground up to give more breadth in all three fields, while receiving additional training in robotics oriented concepts.
CalTech, CMU, and MIT do not offer a major in robotics. CMU offers a minor in robotics, and also a masters and PhD. CMU allows undergrads to take most of the grad level robotics courses, given you have the prereqs.

CMU doesn't offer a major for two reasons:
robotics is too specialized, and will only result in people graduating without any jobs in the market waiting for them
no faculty at CMU is willing to take time away from research to set up a robotics major

(its been a big discussion at CMU for a decade now)

Quote
The courses are ridiculously lab intensive. You have a single week to complete a lab, and I'll be damned if you don't need more than that week to accomplish the goal. This isn't to say that the labs are impossible- they are designed from the ground up to challenge the student and truly push your potential. I've learned more through hands on labs than any class, and it really does back up the theory taught in class. Then again, all of WPI is based on project based work supporting theory throughout every major engineering course.
sounds exactly like a CMU class

Offline TrickyNekro

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #7 on: December 15, 2008, 08:37:14 AM »
OK, I'll make you a question as far as I see you can reply to many...
I'm a graduate student here in Greece in the major of physics and I'm strongly interested in robotics,
electronics and such....
My economic situation prohibits me of being able to pay university and leaving in a foreign country simultaneously!
What are my chances that I attract the interest of your university to get accepted to it... And if possible cover some of my basic needs???


It's not that I don't like my major, it's that I'm more interested in robotics....... Although physics cover it all....
Hope you can reply as soon as possible


Best Regards, Lefteris
Greece
For whom the interrupts toll...


P.S. I've been inactive for almost a year... Don't give promises but I'll try to complete my tutorials. I'll let you know when..

Cheers!

Offline izua

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #8 on: December 15, 2008, 09:08:31 AM »
what is the answer to life, the universe and everything ?
Check out my homepage for in depth tutorials on microcontrollers and electronics.

Offline airman00

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #9 on: December 15, 2008, 09:11:47 AM »
what is the answer to life, the universe and everything ?
Its 42
Check out the Roboduino, Arduino-compatible board!


Link: http://curiousinventor.com/kits/roboduino

www.Narobo.com

Offline Half ShellTopic starter

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #10 on: December 15, 2008, 09:25:47 AM »
Quote
CalTech, CMU, and MIT do not offer a major in robotics. CMU offers a minor in robotics, and also a masters and PhD. CMU allows undergrads to take most of the grad level robotics courses, given you have the prereqs.

CMU doesn't offer a major for two reasons:
robotics is too specialized, and will only result in people graduating without any jobs in the market waiting for them
no faculty at CMU is willing to take time away from research to set up a robotics major

(its been a big discussion at CMU for a decade now)


My mistake!

However, with 150+ robotics oriented companies in MA (that's just companies that do straight robotics) it won't be hard finding a job. On top of that I've had no problem being impressive in interviews. There are a lot of companies that are very interested in Robotics Engineering, evidenced by our extensive advisory board filled with key individuals in major companies, from iRobot to Segway to Bluefin to Raytheon.

Quote
OK, I'll make you a question as far as I see you can reply to many...
I'm a graduate student here in Greece in the major of physics and I'm strongly interested in robotics,
electronics and such....
My economic situation prohibits me of being able to pay university and leaving in a foreign country simultaneously!
What are my chances that I attract the interest of your university to get accepted to it... And if possible cover some of my basic needs???


It's not that I don't like my major, it's that I'm more interested in robotics....... Although physics cover it all....
Hope you can reply as soon as possible


Best Regards, Lefteris
Greece


http://www.wpi.edu

I know of several students who came from Europe, Asia, and South America and received a lot of help in coming to WPI. I'm not sure what office to contact though - check the website out and e-mail some people. I'm sure you'll find someone willing to help you out.


More to come after I'm doing with this huge project I'm working on (a beta version of a future product maybe).

Offline Admin

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #11 on: December 15, 2008, 09:47:40 AM »
Quote
My economic situation prohibits me of being able to pay university and leaving in a foreign country simultaneously!
What are my chances that I attract the interest of your university to get accepted to it... And if possible cover some of my basic needs???
I took out like $40k in loans, got another ~$40k in need based (poor hobo) grants, $20k from family, and worked 10 hours/week (the maximum CMU allows you to work) to pay for living expenses. No free ride, but worth every penny spent/borrowed ;D
Education is the best investment you can ever make :)


Half Shell, I think CMU is watching the WPI experiment. If most of the graduates come out with robotics jobs, CMU will quickly follow suit (evidence fixes non-believers).

Offline vidam

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #12 on: December 15, 2008, 11:46:36 AM »
I've heard of WPI. A friend's son toured WPI and was very impressed with their curriculum. However, he did not get accepted to WPI. He was waitlisted at CMU though and then CMU granted his admission.

Offline Half ShellTopic starter

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #13 on: December 15, 2008, 01:19:13 PM »
Quote
My economic situation prohibits me of being able to pay university and leaving in a foreign country simultaneously!
What are my chances that I attract the interest of your university to get accepted to it... And if possible cover some of my basic needs???
I took out like $40k in loans, got another ~$40k in need based (poor hobo) grants, $20k from family, and worked 10 hours/week (the maximum CMU allows you to work) to pay for living expenses. No free ride, but worth every penny spent/borrowed ;D
Education is the best investment you can ever make :)


Half Shell, I think CMU is watching the WPI experiment. If most of the graduates come out with robotics jobs, CMU will quickly follow suit (evidence fixes non-believers).

A lot of colleges are watching us closely-  I've talked to a few professors from other colleges who are VERY interested in how we're doing.

And I can not agree enough - education is ALWAYS worth it. Period.

You will NOT regret working hard and improving yourself through learning.

~~~

Like I said before - I will happily give additional tours to people visiting...

Now, back to work!

Offline K-80

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #14 on: December 23, 2008, 07:44:39 PM »
Hi i am new to robotics and i am wondering what a microcontoller is and what does it do?

Offline Half ShellTopic starter

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #15 on: December 23, 2008, 10:33:54 PM »
Hi i am new to robotics and i am wondering what a microcontoller is and what does it do?

...

...I....

...

There's like 30 tutorials on the forum and the web site. Look around.

Offline izua

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #16 on: December 24, 2008, 09:14:08 AM »
heh, you couldn't answer that one  ;D
Check out my homepage for in depth tutorials on microcontrollers and electronics.

Offline Half ShellTopic starter

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #17 on: December 24, 2008, 12:51:19 PM »
heh, you couldn't answer that one  ;D

More shocked at the randomness of the question then not being able to answer it. I thought we're all smart enough to understand I meant ask me anything about the engineering program... Either that or well played randomness sir....

Offline izua

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #18 on: December 24, 2008, 02:01:10 PM »
I'm just joking, of course :)
Anyway, here's my question: what's the official approach to inverse kinematics, considering a random number of polar/cartesian joints?
Check out my homepage for in depth tutorials on microcontrollers and electronics.

Offline izaktj

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #19 on: December 25, 2008, 06:21:10 PM »
Hey bro, do you happen to have the programs of study? I don't know if I said that correctly, anyway it's a document that states the subjects that will be taught at classroom for X class (Math, physics, English, etc.)
For example, the math program of study for my first semester in high school stated the following subjects or chapters.
- Group theory.
- Ecuations of second grade (ax^2+bx+c)
- Ecuations of third grade
- I don't remember this one xD
« Last Edit: December 25, 2008, 06:27:23 PM by izaktj »

Offline pranesh

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #20 on: December 27, 2008, 06:24:13 AM »
This is pranesh from India. I am in the 2nd year of my undergrad course in Computer Science. Where can I find a list of colleges that offer graduate programs in Robotics

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #21 on: January 10, 2009, 11:17:00 PM »
CMU just came out with a 'Fifth Year Masters Program' for robotics:

http://www.ri.cmu.edu/ri_static_content.html?menu_id=365

Quote
The Fifth Year Masters Program provides Carnegie Mellon undergraduates an alternative admission process to the existing Masters program in Robotics in which admitted undergraduates may complete their Masters Degree in their "fifth year". This quicker path to admission allows Carnegie Mellon students to better utilize their undergraduate years to make inroads toward completing the Masters degree in Robotics. As with the regular admission process, the high standards for admissions to the MS Program in Robotics include strong evidence of research potential based on close interaction with one or more faculty members - whether in projects, summer jobs, or advanced classes. If admitted to this program, undergraduates then become involved with research that broadens their undergraduate experience.

Offline izaktj

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #22 on: January 15, 2009, 01:17:10 AM »
Nice, check this out. Lots of info about the program.

Offline klims

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Re: I study Robotics Engineering at WPI - ask me anything!
« Reply #23 on: March 19, 2009, 06:39:32 AM »
I'm doing a double degree in Robotics and Mechatronics/Computer Science and Software Engineering in Melbourne, Australia.
Both the single degree and double degree have been offered for a few years now at 3 of our major Universities here.

I would love to see an outline of the subjects(courses) you took to get your degree.
Not sure if your interested, but here is what we do at my University

http://www.swinburne.edu.au/feis/robotics/
http://courses.swinburne.edu.au/Courses/ViewCourse.aspx?id=26441


Andrew

 


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