Greetings, developer community!

During the past few months we have received a lot of positive feedback from developers who are using Humix to build their robots. There are also many good discussions from our monthly Humix community meetup (held locally in Taipei) and Facebook community page, which is really encouraging the team to move this project forward. Thank you!

We are excited to announce the release of Humix 1.0. Here is the list of major enhancements and changes:

1. Support for Synchronous Sense Command

Currently commands triggered from the cloud are executed asynchronously, and when the command execution is completed there is no way to return the result from the local part of the robot to its cloud brain. As such, it’s a bit tricky to implement scenarios where multiple commands need to be chained together. The new Synchronous Sense Command is specifically designed to address this issue. The flow on Node-Red will stop at Synchronous Sense Command and resume only after the corresponding module returns the result. To give you a better idea of how it works, imagine that someone asks the Humix robot “How old do I look?” When receiving such speech input, the cloud brain of the robot will trigger a Synchronous Sense Command to take a picture using the camera attached to robot. The captured image is then base64-encoded and returned to the cloud brain. The image buffer is then sent to Alchemy Image API to analyze the age. All these steps are implemented as a single flow in Node-Red in a synchronous manner. The following diagram will give you an idea of what this might look like :

Humix 1.0 Editor

You might want to take a look at Humix-Sample-Module, which provides an example how to implement the synchronous command.

2. Display of connection status

Sometimes, we want to know whether our local Raspberry Pi has connected successfully to our cloud brain. To make it easier to check the status, the new Humix-Think now shows the connection status of each Humix-Sense instance. You can also see the runtime status of each Humix module attached to that Humix-Sense. If the module status is red, the module has likely crashed for some reason. The following diagram shows an example of the display:

Humix 1.0 Connection Status

3. Better logging

As of this release, all the Humix Sense modules use banyan for log generation. The “Humix-Sense” npm module exposes a log object for this logging purpose, which will give you a more consistent way to deal with logs.

4. Separation of Humix Think and Humix Sense into two isolated repositories

Given that the use cases of Humix-Think and Humix-Sense are different, we think it would be a better idea to separate these two projects so that you are not forced to clone a copy of Humix-Think when you just want to prepare your development board for Humix-Sense. The same holds true for Humix-Think: you typically just want to clone Humix-Think on your laptop and deploy it to Bluemix (or run locally). We’ve decided to turn the one original humix-ng repo into two separate repos.

5. Upgrade to Node-Red 0.14

There are many new features available in the Node-Red 0.14 release. You can check this Node-Red blog post to see those updates.

Get started today!

You can find the project and installation guide in following repository:

humix-think
humix-sesne

And to make things easier to set up Humix-Sense on RaspberryPi, we have created a pre-built all-in-one image that you can use to load into your SD card and get ready to go. Download Humix Sense 1.0.

Please give it a try and feel free to drop us a note about what you think about this new version. We’re really excited to move Humix forward, and we would love to hear from you!

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September 30, 2016 at 04:42AM