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The Player Project

The Player Project

The Player Project creates Free Software that enables research in robot and sensor systems. The Player robot server is a widely used robot control interface in the world. Its simulation backends, Stage and Gazebo, are also very widely used.

Player is a device server / networked interface that provides a powerful, flexible interface to a variety of sensors and actuators (e.g., robots). Because Player uses a TCP socket-based client/server model, robot control programs can be written in any programming language and can execute on any computer with network connectivity to the robot.

Stage is a scaleable multiple robot simulator. It simulates a population of mobile robots moving in and sensing a two-dimensional bitmapped environment. When used as a Player plugin, Stage provides virtual Player robots which interact with simulated rather than physical devices. Stage can also be used as link library to create custom simulations.

 Player Project 4.0.0

Free to download

3.1MB (Player)
18.8MB (Gazebo)
1.1MB (Stage)


Brian Gerkey, Richard Vaughan, Andrew Howard, and Nathan Koenig


System Requirements

Manuals, FAQ, Wiki, Mailing Lists, GitHub

Selected Reviews:

Features include:

  • Robot platform independence across a wide variety of hardware
  • Support for a number of programming languages including C, C++, Java, Tcl, and Python
  • Flexible design
  • Support for multiple devices on the same interface. For example the Pioneer 2 and RWI drivers both use Player's 'position' interface to allow control of the robot's movement. Therefore the same control code can control both kinds of robot
  • On-the-fly server configuration
  • Supports the following robots:
    • Acroname's Garcia
    • Botrics's Obot d100
    • CoroWare Inc. Corobot and Explorer
    • Evolution Robotics' ER1 and ERSDK robots
    • iRobot's Roomba vacuuming robot
    • K-Team's Robotics Extension Board (REB) attached to Kameleon 376BC
    • K-Team's Khephera
    • MobileRobots' (formerly ActivMedia) PSOS/P2OS/AROS-based robots
    • Nomadics' NOMAD200 (and possibly related) mobile robots
    • RWI/iRobot's RFLEX-based robots (e.g., B21r, ATRV Jr)
    • Segway's Robotic Mobility Platform (RMP)
    • UPenn GRASP's Clodbuster
    • Videre Design's ERRATIC mobile robot platform
    • White Box Robotics' 914 PC-BOT

Gazebo's features:

  • Simulation of standard robot sensors, including sonar, scanning laser range-finders, GPS and IMU, monocular and stereo cameras
  • Models for commonly used robot types such as the Pioneer2DX, Pioneer2AT and SegwayRMP
  • Realistic simulation of rigid-body physics: robots can push things around, pick things up, and generally interact with the world in a plausible manner
  • Player compatible: robots and sensors can be controlled through standard Player interfaces
  • Stand-alone operation: programs can interact directly with the simulator (i.e., without going through Player) using libgazebo (included in the distribution)
  • Stereo camera model: generates stereo image pairs, disparity and depth maps
  • Re-written GUI using wxPython: most devices can now be directly controlled/inspected through the simulator GUI
  • Plugin models: users can develop their own robot/sensor models, and have these models loaded dynamically at run time
  • Skins: simple geometric models may be augmented with realisitc 'skins' from 3D modelling programs

Gazebo in action

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Last Updated Saturday, December 20 2014 @ 07:29 AM EST

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