Task specification and state charts in the Orocos eco-system

Workshop, 6th March, 08:30 

When doing advanced robot task specification and coordination, how can you benefit from the Orocos eco-system? At this workshop, the attendants will get hands-on experience with the Orocos eco-system, which will allow speeding up their future application-development and testing process.


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The workshop consists of three consecutive sessions. The first session is a lecture, aimed to appeal both a research-oriented and industrial audience, and both junior and senior participants. The second and third sessions are hands-on, targeted at people who want to get started using the Orocos eco-system (no prior experience with Orocos is required).

The hands-on sessions assume that the participant attended the presentation session, but are mutually rather independent. It is hence possible to attend session 3 without attending session 2.

The participants are invited to bring their own laptop with the software installed. We will provide instructions on how they can prepare to participate. A basic understanding of robotics and software will be needed to be able to complete the tutorial.
 Instructions can be found on: http://www.orocos.org/wiki/orocos/european-robotics-forum-2012-workshops


The three sessions: 

  1. Presentation: Introduction to state charts and reusable, modular task specification through the Orocos eco-system
  2. Hands-on: getting started with state charts in the Orocos eco-system
  3. Hands-on: getting started with instantaneous motion specification using constraints (iTaSC): reusable and modular task specification


Remark: Registration for the second and third workshop is mandatory and the number of attendants is limited to 20. For registration, go to http://www.orocos.org/wiki/orocos/european-robotics-forum-2012-workshops.

Session 1 introduces the basic concepts of Orocos application programming, followed by rFSM state charts and the iTaSC framework.

Session 2 aims at making the participants familiar with rFSM state charts, which is a powerful yet easy-to-use tool for robotic coordination and supervision tasks. During the session a guided exercise is given where the participants will have to create an application with interacting state machines, that can be used for example to coordinate the behavior of the iTaSC application of session 3.

Session 3 aims at introducing the concepts of constraint-based motion specification using the iTaSC framework. During this session, a guided exercise is given where the participants will have to create an application consisting of multiple tasks on a robot in simulation. E.g. Drawing a figure on a table and avoiding a moving obstacle with a Kuka Youbot. The iTaSC framework and its software implementation was developed at KU Leuven during the past years. Its key advantages are the composability of (partial) constraints and reusability of the constraint specification. The software is an open-source project, which has recently reached its 2.0 version.


  • Dominick Vanthienen, KU Leuven, Belgium, dominick.vanthienen@mech.kuleuven.be
  • Steven Bellens, KU Leuven, Belgium, steven.bellens@mech.kuleuven.be
dr. Tinne De Laet, KU Leuven, Belgium, tinne.delaet@mech.kuleuven.be
dr. Wilm Decré, KU Leuven, Belgium, wilm.decre@mech.kuleuven.be
  • Markus Klotzbücher, KU Leuven, Belgium, markus.klotzbuecher@mech.kuleuven.be Dr. Peter Soetens, Intermodalics, Belgium, peter@intermodalics.eu

Key topics

  • Robot programming

Workshop category

  • Lecture
  • Hands-on tutorials


  • Dr. Wilm Decré, KU Leuven, Belgium, wilm.decre@mech.kuleuven.be
  • Dr. Peter Soetens, Intermodalics, Belgium, peter@intermodalics.eu

Planned follow-up

The feedback of this session will be used to further improve the framework and the tutorials.

Further information

Publications, in depth explanation, installation instructions, FAQ and tutorials can be found on:





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The European Robotics Forum, organized by the European robotic networks EURON, EUROP, the euRobotics Coordination Action and hosted by The Danish Technological Institute, is in the field of robotics the meeting point for engineers, scientists and business people from all over Europe. The event will take place from 5-7 March 2012 in Odense, Denmark. 

More than 300 robotics researchers from industry and academia, as well as entrepreneurs and public investors, are expected to discuss the latest developments, research challenges and business opportunities for European robotics. 
This year's theme of the European Robotics Forum is "European Robotics towards new horizons".

For more information, registration for the forum, and to become an exhibitor, please visit the official European Robotics Forum 2012 website at www.europeanrobotics12.eu