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Program robots using technologies created from industry experts. ARC is our free-to-use robot programming software that makes features like vision recognition, navigation and artificial intelligence easy.

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Germany
Asked — Edited

Will Ez Robot Be Opensource Inb The Future?

As I can see, ARC and the SDKs are free of charge. So you make with the program itself not money. So is it possible, that you publish it as OpenSource (for example on Github) in the future?
And it would be nice, if it will be ported to additional platforms like Linux and MacOSX.

MyRobotLab - on the other side - is OpenSource and platformindependent.
But it seems, that ARC is easier to use. So it would be nice, to have ARC and the SDKs as OpenSource platformindependent software, too.

Greatings
theuserbl

#1  
I prey that it never happens. The reason that I say this is that you can create plugins already. This allows you to make the app do whatever you want it to do. I currently use the app with arduino's, raspberry pi's and Beaglebone blacks along with the EZ-B. If this were opensource, the reliability would be worse and that isn't something that I want to deal with.

ARC does not have to be used with the EZ-B. You have the ability to make it work with anything that you can program it to work with.
#2  
Ez-robot could of course change their minds on this, but the terms of use page includes software license language that makes it clear they intend to maintain ownership of and control the use and distribution of their intellectual property. https://www.ez-robot.com/Terms-of-Use.aspx

I agree with David, the plug-in architecture allows you to use the software in pretty much any way you choose (limited by the terms of use) without EZ-Robot needing to relinquish control or reveal their source code.

Alan
PRO
USA
#3  
Welcome to the Forum !
For a first post, you picked a philosophical question.

I don't know if you are familiar with ARC/EZ-Robots, and/or MyRobotLab/Arduinos, but you can't compare the Application's audiences/targets neither the motivation behind the applications.

MyRobotLab's code is opensource and is Java, the motivation behind Java is multi-platform, with a single application base code you can target multiple operating systems: Windows, Mac, Linux.

ARC code is Microsoft .NET, Windows GUI/Forms, the base code only runs on Windows Desktops, using third party libraries/tools (Xamarian) and with some changes it works (with limitations) on Androids, IOS Mobile, and even with more changes can reach the Mac OS.

If the objective is to have the community to build an ARC for Linux or the Mac OS, how opening the proprietary Microsoft .NET Code will help that ?

the source code will be useless, let's break in blocks:

1)Programming language options: Java (common), python(common), c++(linux), objective-c (mac/ios), pick your poison.

2)GUI: windows forms, on Linux you have KDE/Gnome, on MAC you have COCOA, Java (common)

3)Text-To-Speech: windows SAPI, mac you have NSSpeechSynthesizer, linux you have several open source (free) TTS (festival, espeak, maryTTS). i have tested all of them (no $$$ addons) and the results are poor when compared to SAPI. off-course you can buy/license voices, but for an open source (free) product you need to stick with free stuff.

4)Speech Recognition: windows SAPI, Mac you have NSSpeechRecognizer, linux you have cmu/pocket sphinx, and once again compared to windows SAPI, oh my goodness !

5)Vision Features: OpenCV is the reference, you can use everywhere windows, linux, mac, although ARC does not use OpenCV instead uses a .NET library AForge, but no problem, what you do with AForge you can do it with OpenCV.

As you can see developing an ARC Linux/Mac you will need to pick the right tool for each block, and you need to have the same performance, not poor results and blame the platform.

It's possible to build the same quality tool, but i have doubts you can do it with free tools.

if you need to buy tools or licensing components, it's not a job for open source community.

MAC version, using Xamarian tools, last time i checked Xamarian is a commercial product, the community version is very limited, once again not useful for an open source community, if you need to license development tools & run-times, that can't be done without $$$

So far i don't see a justification for the ARC code to be open, unless the objective is to get more helpers (e.g. noise) to the ARC windows version.

Regarding MyRobotLab, now it's easy to understand why is not a polished tool (final consumer tool), but at least everyone is happy it runs on Linux, Mac, Windows !

Try the Text-To-Speech/Speech Recognition functionalities, and then go to ARC, night & day!

The main reason is not a single platform i.e. Windows, but multiple platforms, and when you have multi-platform you pick the a common base, you can't use the best of each platform otherwise it will break the compatibility.

I left the hardware outside of the discussion, not because Arduinos, ARMs and others are not good, but there are no standards, ARC is target to run EZ-Robots hardware, so it's easier when you control the software, hardware, support, sales etc.
PRO
USA
#4  
Let's be honest if someone has the skills, and/or know a group of developers (with free time),

EZ-Robots can't stop them to create an open source version for Linux, Mac, Windows (it's not my call) but i bet if they work hard and the results show up, i think they will support.

Like you said the EZR software costs zero...

if that effort brings more people from other platforms, more awareness, more advertising it's a sweet deal for EZR (it's my opinion)

I'll give one example: Lego Mindstorms, proprietary closed source tools, and LeJOS (Open source java alternative)

As a user (not a consumer) i like to have more alternatives, LeJOS initiative is fantastic, you can hack and bring the MS to another level.

So the question why is everyone waiting !?

I have a MAC laptop, and a few Linux machines waiting for an alternative:)