FIRST Robotics Competition Discussions

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C/C++ w/o labview?

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Will it be possible to deliver code to the robot with out using Labview? Our team is planning on using C/C++ with WPILib, but we do not want to use Labview. Is this possible?

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Yes. All teams will be given two development environments: Wind River Workbench & LabVIEW. You can choose whichever one you want to use. It may be possible to use them together but you can definitely use them independently.

Joel Sumner
NI-Shanghai
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May I suggest that you do not use C/C++ with your robot.  I was on a team in high school for 3 years (Team #45).  I've also mentored Team #1646.  I can tell you for sure that it is A LOT easier for other people to understand how the logic works on the robot if you program in LabVIEW rather than text-based programming.  Believe it or not, there ARE people that don't know any text-based languages.  LabVIEW is MUCH easier to pick up and learn because it's a dataflow language.  That little lightbulb next to your run controls is unbelieveable; something I wish it were possible to do with text-based languages.

It is a lot easier to have someone come in and correct code if there were any mistakes while a programmer is unavailable.  You go directly from an idea straight to code without the barrier of syntax, memory allocation, etc.

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I would have to disagree. I think it should come down to whatever the programmer is most comfortable with. With the high level of abstraction brought by WPIlib, in many cases the C/C++ code is just as easy if not easier to understand than the LabVIEW code. As the lead/sole programmer, I have yet to decide which I am going to use. When I receive the kit on Tuesday, I will already have drive code finished in C++ and plan on developing the LabVIEW code over the next weekend. I will choose whichever allows me to create autonomous modes most quickly and easily and allows easy debugging.

Also, LabVIEW isn't that much easier to learn. To anyone who works with Math/Algebra in school on a daily basis, using text to represent mathematical equations is nothing new. What can be challenging is trying to convert a formula that someone came up with on paper into LabVIEW code.

Just my $0.02.

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If you have a long formula, you can use a formula node to enter it in text in LabVIEW.

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