Friday, 31 May 2013


The issue with the help file has been resolved. Despite the previous mention of attempts to open the help file or at least move the information with the jar file, the owness  will be left to that of the user ensuring that the ENTIRE folder (with all external docs, files, resources) is moved for the program to function. In order to properly convey the message to the user a file has been attached to inform the user about the specifics method of moving the files in order for the application/program to run properly.

On another note, the surfaces have been implemented however still require touch ups so that the tiled blocks for ice and concrete are aligned. Since the project deadline has been postponed to Friday June 7, 2013 we still have extra time to optimize the program.

In order to successfully use the time given we will enter a final debug test during the course of next week. Hopefully we can locate and correct bugs. We hope to make the program run smoothly on several different systems with little to know problems by making it less resource intensive and iron out the kinks in our application.

Thank You for your time.
 ~ Code Busters Team.

Tuesday, 28 May 2013


The issues with the initialization of the default values using the xml file have been solved. Upon opening the application the input values use to default to 0. Reworking the pathways to presently allows for the default values for standard dimensions and values in regards to the mechanical, electrical items.

Whilst fixing the previous issues with the default values the help text file refuses to open up properly. Although it was fully functional before it currently refuses to open and is to be adressed.

1. Rework pathways to open the help text files.
2. Get the pixel art done for the other two surfaces:
               - ice
               - concrete

Thank You.

~ Code Busters Team

Thursday, 23 May 2013

CRUNCH time.

Many things have been accomplished since our last blog post with the progression of this project. The list includes the implementation of our splash screen, adusting the graphs, adding the tool tips, the help files, and ultimately just tweaking and adjusting the program to meet our needs. Also the file is noted to work on home computers with the latest updated version of java, whereas the school computers don't even allow the program to open (school computers do not but the school's is still on the version of java from last year). All in all, the program is working fine and we wish to talk to our client in terms of useage of the application primarily for home use rather than within the school due to lack of knowledge as to why the file refuses to execute on the school's systems.

We are nearing the completion of our project, as well as, the end of the year. So what's left? Just updating the sufaces to look like ice, and concrete when the coefficient of friction is between a certain range. And yeah. yeah. yeah. CRUNCH!

Essentially that's all. Thank Yous!

~ Code Busters Team

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Make it, or BREAK IT!

Progress is moving along swimmingly we are continuously trying to integrate the code that acts for the simulation with the simulation code that graphs both the vector and acceleration graphs. Currently we are having a bit of trouble with finding the accleration of the sumbot however we are trying to use the same process to calculate the velocity and apply it to the accleration calculations and graph.

With this progress we will continue into the beta stages. We will be intensively testing for bugs, glitches, optimization options to make our program function as properly and efficiently as possible. Test subjects will be selected from our target audience of grade 12 students involved in the sumbot project will be asked at random to attempt to break the program (pssht not the computer its running on).

Executeable file of our program does not run on school computers.
- we need to get this work.

~ Code Busters Team
CHYEAAH! English is a muffin.

Friday, 10 May 2013

OH NO its struggling!

We have finally got part of simulation tab running! The moving robot segment of our program is working well. The speed of ones computer will dictate the quality of program. The robot tends to struggle due to lag and is to be optimized further.

Currently we have only the wooden surface updated with more to come (ice surface needs to be completed).

Since there are currently 2 different versions of the program with certain updates. We must add both the moving robot simulation and the graphs onto one program. And yeah.

Next up is attempting to do the simulation of the force that the robot exerts on other objects (in our program that will be a box).

Peace Out Girl Scouts.
~ Code Busters

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Le Update.

The SumBots Project has been progressing very well. We are currently finalizing our report that is to be submitted regarding our clients response/recommendations to the program.

The graphs for both the velocity/accleration have been implemented. Applying physics and incoporating the calculations with the input values is the next top priority. We still have to review the science/calculations with our client in order to finalize the math.

That is all.
         ~ Code Busters Team.

Monday, 6 May 2013

Graphs, graphs, graphs!

This past week, the Codebusters Team have come down with graph fever! That is to say, after a couple days of hard work, our developers have managed to display a working graph natively within the Slick library without the use of any external plugins! Through the use of calculus, we will then be able to easily compute both of the velocity and acceleration graphs (derivatives!), given a set position graph.

On the optimization front, while half of our modest resources have been dedicated to the task of making the simulator running amicably on a budget-oriented computer, progress is still very much in its infancy. With that said, we have already managed to decrease CPU usage on a dual-core system by 10-15%, and thus, our goal of reducing peak usage to less than 50% overall still stands. While memory (RAM) usage is less of an issue, we are nonetheless dedicated to limiting resource utilization in that area as well. 

In terms of the "Simulation" tab, we are happy to report that the inputting of default values into each of the properties is well underway, and as always, our graphics team is hard at work creating the images and textures that will increase the overall visual appeal of the program. Furthermore, advancements have also been made in implementing the many physical laws that will govern the movement of the sumobot while it is in the "Simulation" state.

Thus, while the team have encountered our fair share of challenges and obstacles over these past few weeks, we are nonetheless still running full steam ahead towards a final release, and we hope to return with more good news in the days ahead. =)

-The Codebusters Team


Wednesday, 1 May 2013

“Good progress so far”

It’s May Day! In other news, the Codebusters team has had their weekly meeting with our client, and we are happy to report that our progress on Sumobot Simulator 2013 has been extremely well received so far. At this point, we estimate that we have completed approximately 75% of the core programming, with completion of the “Simulation” tab and optimization being our immediate priorities. Here’s a list that we believe provides a good summation of the state of the program up to this point:


-The program state is currently nearing the “pre-alpha” stage, with stable daily builds being committed to Dropbox.
-Proper program versioning conventions are being/in the process of being adhered to!
-Various graphical improvements that increase the overall user-friendliness of the program has been made and approved by the client.


-While the current builds of the simulator are utilizing up to 75% of the available CPU cycles (on a 1.0 GHz dual core AMD C-50 CPU) during idle, we are aiming to reduce that usage down to less than 50% through various code optimizations.
- Furthermore, our R&D team is currently researching optimization methods through the use of multi-threading, which would assign specific tasks to each available core on a system and potentially free up system resources.
-In addition, multithreading would allow for the efficient utilization of hardware technologies such as asymmetric “Dual-channel” and “Quad-Channel” memory (RAM), which would enable each CPU core access to their own independent 64-bit memory controller (and again, reducing resource competition and the amount of memory faults to the page file)


-The client has suggested that default values for each of the sumobot’s properties are to be present into the corresponding input boxes at program start up, in order to increase user convenience.
-Moving graphs displaying the properties of the robot while it is in motion (such as its acceleration and velocity from moment to moment), will be implemented on the side panel with accompanying value readouts for each.
-A button or switch will allow for the user to specify the robot’s current state (whether it is in the simulation mode or not)
- Another series of switches will control the independent movement of each wheel (either in the ON or OFF state)
- Thus far, the simulation will consist of a side view of the sumobot as it traverses down a 10 meter path (which will loop), although this is subject to change. 
-The user will further be able to specify the mass of a block that the robot will push along a variety of surfaces (each with varying coefficients of friction). The default mass will be set to 2 kg.
-Lastly, our graphics team is hard at work with the visual aspect of the simulator, creating the many textures and images that will be required to implement all the features of the "Simulation" tab. 

Overall, these have been a very productive couple weeks for the Codebusters Team, and while we have undoubtedly encountered a few roadblocks during this time (as common with any project of this size), good progress is nonetheless being made towards achieving a complete build of the simulator. Kudos to the team!

The next progress meeting with our client is scheduled for a week from Friday, and we hope to return with more good news then!

-The Codebusters Team