Skip to content

Meeting Minute - Roadmap 2019-04-29

tags: Meeting

:::info - Location: B53/4025 - Date: 2019-04-29 - Agenda 1. Intro from DT 2. Dev team proposal (from SR core team) 3. Meta - Process for managing processes? 4. Current development work - Participants: - Dan Trickey (DT) - Dan Hobson (DH) - Alex Lockwood (AL) - Kajatan Champlewski (KC) - Joe Morton (JM) - Kier Davis (KD) - Andy Barrett-Sprot (ABS), remote - Tom Wheal (TW) - Rob Gilton (RG) - Josh Holland (JHol), remote - Jake Howard (JHow), remote - Richard Barlow (RB), remote - James Seden Smith (JSS) - Antione Petty (AP) - Tyler Ward (TW) - Peter Law (PL) - Chair: DT - Minutes: DH - Minutes Archive: - Available here



  1. Intro from DT
    • clarification of "SourceBots", "Hills Road", "Robocon"
    • Plans for next 6 months
    • Deadlines:
      • Smallpiece 2019 (August)
      • SR Kickstart 2019-20
    • Introductions of people present
  2. Dev team proposal (from SR core team)
    • link here
    • Need dedicated dev strategy
    • RG
      • Dev cover kit should only at first (long term development), then expand
      • "kit team"?
      • responsible for serving kit to core team
      • cover hardware, software, tools (IDE)
      • 3-5 people responsible, selected by trustees ~ every ~2 years
        • set long term direction
        • handle communications with teachers, students etc
      • "competition software" could follow same model for software specific to each competition e.g. screens
    • TW
      • separation of teams requires good planning so tasks aren't orphaned
      • asset tracking should stay with kit
    • RB
      • Agree get started with Kit Team, then model other teams to follow
    • ABS
      • Need to kepp scope managable as to avoid "make everything better" trap
    • Important for moving towards sustainability of SR
    • Proposal to be formalised and made available for review
      • propose a 2nd call after written
    • DT, TW
  3. Meta - Process for managing processes?
    • I.e. formalise the process for making proposals to trustees
      • E.g. Agree on version numbering system
      • System for communications ascociated with changes
    • DT, TW to do with kit team proposal
  4. Current development work
    • Write up results of interviews from teams
    • Brain board (ODroid)
      • No longer manufactured -> replace
        • Will need to decide on replacement
          • SourceBots and Robocon using RPi3
      • Intended to be replaced, hence the design separation of power and brain boards
        • keep flexibility (avoid device-specific dev like RPi hats)
        • power concerns: need to check power board can supply new brain boards
        • RPis lack protection on GPIO
      • Transition could be staggered if we are willing to ship a mix of boards
    • SR boards firmware
      • Is old, with improvements and 'quirks' to go through
      • TW has a chance to be paid for charity dev work
      • Automated testing would help us a lot
        • Build a basic test system for software and for hardware
      • Python2 will deprecated soon -> Python3
        • Upgrade existing API?
        • Or j5: platform agnositic API system with similar competitor-facing API
          • Working currently, should meet Smallpiece deadline
          • Hoping that competitors will look through it
          • Nice to be able to support kit for all competitions (Smallpiece, SR, Robocon)
      • Need to decide what to deploy for smallpiece 2019
        • JM as SourceBots director to have executive decision
      • OS choice
        • boot time is slow
        • read-only filesystem would protect against power loss
        • Alpine OS?
      • IDE
        • Online IDE is highly requested from competitiors
        • Existing IDE should handle python3
      • Comp screens
        • Migrate?


  • [name=DT, TW] : Kit team proposal to be formalised and made available for review
  • [name=DT, TW] : consider proposal procedure whilst doing kit team proposal
  • [name=JM] : To have final decision on choice of kit for Smallpiece 2019