A Software Architecture-Based Human-Machine Interface for Reconfigurable Sensor-Based Control Systems
The development of software for reconfigurable sensor-based real-time systems is a complicated and tedious process, requiring highly specialized skills in real-time systems programming. The total development time can be reduced by automatically integrating reusable software modules to create applications. The integration of these modules can be further simplified by the use of a high-level programming interface. We have developed Onika, an iconically programmed human-machine interface, to interact with a reconfigurable software framework to create reusable code. Onika presents appropriate work environments for both application engineers and end-users. For engineers, icons representing real-time software modules can be combined to form real-time jobs. For the end-user, icons representing these jobs are assembled by the user into applications. Onika verifies that all jobs and applications are syntactically correct, non-ambiguous, and complete. They can then be executed from within Onika, or can be saved as a stand-alone program which can be executed independently on the underlying real-time operating system. Onika has been fully integrated with the Chimera real-time operating system in order to control several different robotic systems in the Advanced Manipulators Laboratory at Carnegie Mellon University.