A powerful companion computer, like Ordoid XU4, can help build many interesting and complex applications on drones, such as, those using computer vision, swarms, cloud-connectivity, AI, machine learning, and more. Even for regular applications, like, aerial surveys, mapping, or photography, having a companion computer can greatly simplify application development and deployment. However, we need a reliable/robust/well-planned framework to make this happen, and keep it scalable/flexible for future drone applications.
We have been building FlytOS to address this need. FlytOS is built on ROS (Robot Operating System), and it helps drone developers exploit the power of linux-based companion computers. The APIs for navigation, configuration, setup, computer-vision, communication are available in C++, Python and ROS, making it extremely easy to build/deploy custom applications. Builtin web-server allows developers to host web-based UIs and connect to remote/mobile devices using RESTful APIs and web-socket connections, with authentication and security. Further, a ROS/Gazebo based simulator has been tightly integrated with FlytOS to allow developers test their applications in simulation, before deploying those on real hardware. Several other features, such as, onboard web-based setup/GCS utility, video streaming utilities, are also included in FlytOS.
Overall FlytOS architecture is shown in the image below:
To learn more about FlytOS, please visit: http://flytbase.com/flytos/
We are happy to announce the release of initial version of FlytOS. It has been extensively tested at our lab over last few weeks, and we are now inviting more collaborators, contributors and testers to try it out! It can be used with your own hardware setup (recommended setup: Pixhawk + Odroid; feel free to try it with other combinations and submit your results) or with FlytPOD. It is available for download as two options: a debian package (about 20 MBs), or a complete image (about 2 GBs). The instructions for installation of both the options are available in the documentation.
FlytOS is available for download here: http://flytbase.com/flytos/#download
FlytOS installation instructions are available here: http://docs.flytbase.com/docs/FlytOS/FlytOS_install.html
API documentation is available here: http://docs.flytbase.com/docs/FlytAPI/ListOfAPIs.html
FlytSim documentation is available here: http://docs.flytbase.com/docs/FlytSim/FlytSim.html
Repository for sample onboard and web/mobile applications is here: https://github.com/flytbase/flytsamples
Please do share your feedback and comments. We are looking for more contributors to join us in this effort!