C++ is completely broken.

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Title: NooBot
Joined: 10/02/2013
BotPoints: 3
User offline. Last seen 9 years 17 weeks ago.

I'm new to botball and I am trying to program my first robot using C++ and I am literally finding it impossible to do so despite the fact that the KIPR website specifically touts its C++ and Java capabilities.

- The lack of C++ documentation is totally inadequate. No matter how much I tried I could not get my robot to move using the Motor class.
- Abandoning the C++ API and including kovan.h to regain the C functions works in the simulator but causes a compiler error when trying to run on actual hardware.

So who goofed up and decided to advertise features that just simply aren't there?

Jeremy Rand
Jeremy Rand's picture
Title: Botball Youth Advisory Council
Joined: 04/03/2009
BotPoints: 1168
User offline. Last seen 8 years 2 weeks ago.

Hi, welcome to the Botball Community!

Seems your post triggered the forum's automatic spam filter; I've fixed that, so it should be visible now. Sorry about that... if you have issues with the spam filter again, feel free to bug me in the IRC.

Anyway, to your question:

I agree that the C++ documentation is crap. KIPR should fix this. However, when determining how much wrath to send their way, consider that KIPR has been very adversely affected by the government sequester/shutdown, and they don't have enough resources to handle things not specifically used by Botball teams. (C is the only language for which KIPR guarantees support for Botball teams.)

Including kovan.h worked for me when I was programming for KIPR Open in June. My workflow was kind of convoluted (I was linking with some other libraries e.g. OpenNI, so I wasn't using the standard KIPR build scripts), but I wouldn't expect that to matter. Can you post the exact text of your #include statement, as well as the exact error(s) you get?

Speaking solely as a former Botballer and not as a YAC/KIPR affiliate, I chose not to back the Kovan kickstarter or advertise for it, because I had little to no confidence in the developers' ability to produce the advertised product on schedule. I won't comment on whom I consider to be at fault, but I will say that KIPR has never successfully launched a new controller which they made from scratch, without major problems in the first year or so of usage. The last "good" new controller was the XBC in 2005, development of which had been outsourced to Charmed Labs the previous year. I have repeatedly suggested to KIPR that they return to having Charmed Labs develop the hardware, based on their proven track record; as far as I can tell this suggestion has not been acted on. Again, I'm speaking as a former Botballer, not as a YAC/KIPR affiliate. There may be very good reasons why KIPR developed stuff from scratch from the CBC onward.

So, basically, I feel your pain.


-Jeremy Rand
Senior Programmer, Team SNARC (2012-2013), Norman Advanced (2010-2011), Norman HS (2008-2009), Norman North (2005-2007), Whittier MS (2003-2004)
2012-2013 VP of Tech, 2011 President, Botball YAC (2009-2013)
Mentor, Alcott and Whittier MS