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Is anyone using text-based programming language?

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  • #16
    It's important to know that Python is interpreted language which makes it slower (approx. 10 times) compared to EV3-G or EV3 Basic which use compiler. You'll get less loops per sec., bigger delays, etc. If your robot is not in hurry then use all Python advantages without hesitation. Also keep in mind, that .py files can be easily stolen from SD card (.rbf is far more complicated to decompile).
    Last edited by dofmaster; 04-18-2019, 03:27 AM.
    2016 WRO Regular Junior
    2017 WRO Regular Senior
    2018 WRO Regular Senior

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    • #17
      Originally posted by dofmaster View Post
      It's important to know that Python is interpreted language which makes it slower (approx. 10 times) compared to EV3-G or EV3 Basic which use compiler. You'll get less loops per sec., bigger delays, etc. If your robot is not in hurry then use all Python advantages without hesitation. Also keep in mind, that .py files can be easily stolen from SD card (.rbf is far more complicated to decompile).
      I'd wait for some benchmarks and real-world usage scenarios before proclaiming that using MicroPython will be dramatically slower than using EV3-G. It's likely that both languages call separately written subroutines to perform the majority of their work. For most interpreted languages, it is the speed of the library they use that really matters for performance.

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      • #18
        Is it important to know that Python is interpreted? EV3 programs don't directly read sensors or control motors, so how fast they run doesn't matter much. There are so many variables involved that compiled vs interpreted does not determine which programs will run faster and if it makes any difference. Interpreted vs compiled doesn't even mean one will run a loop faster than the other (though compiled programs usually run faster). I would run some tests before making that claim.

        Teams interested in Python should write some Python programs and see for themselves. Write a line follower in both languages and compare. Does one language out perform the other? I would like to hear about your results.

        As for stealing programs, when would that ever be a concern?

        My only concern about Python is it is really hard to remove the SD card on my EV3. I had to stab it with a pin. Makes me reluctant to plug it back in.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by Dean Hystad View Post
          Is it important to know that Python is interpreted? EV3 programs don't directly read sensors or control motors, so how fast they run doesn't matter much. There are so many variables involved that compiled vs interpreted does not determine which programs will run faster and if it makes any difference. Interpreted vs compiled doesn't even mean one will run a loop faster than the other (though compiled programs usually run faster). I would run some tests before making that claim.

          Teams interested in Python should write some Python programs and see for themselves. Write a line follower in both languages and compare. Does one language out perform the other? I would like to hear about your results.

          As for stealing programs, when would that ever be a concern?

          My only concern about Python is it is really hard to remove the SD card on my EV3. I had to stab it with a pin. Makes me reluctant to plug it back in.
          A pair of needle-nose pliers have worked fine for us so far, or are we missing something?
          FLL alumni, mentor, referee, judge

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          • #20
            In FTC and FRC, teams share their code, and make use of shared code on github. Not to mention the new routines available for source code management (VS Code makes git so incredibly easy), but I foresee that same sharing philosophy merging into FLL--judges will one-day ask "Who's line follower are you using?" or "How did you find programming with Dean's Proportional Gyro Turn routines?" (LOL)
            --
            Coach Brady P. Merkel
            Neon Supernova, 2016/2017 Animal Allies
            Neon Supernova, 2015/2016 Trash Trek, North Florida Regional Champions
            LEGO DestroyerZ, 2014/2015 World Class, State Champions Core Values
            LEGO Bosses, 2013/2014 Nature's Fury, Regional Rising Star

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            • #21
              Originally posted by Bpmerkel View Post
              In FTC and FRC, teams share their code, and make use of shared code on github. Not to mention the new routines available for source code management (VS Code makes git so incredibly easy), but I foresee that same sharing philosophy merging into FLL--judges will one-day ask "Who's line follower are you using?" or "How did you find programming with Dean's Proportional Gyro Turn routines?" (LOL)
              I really hope that a code sharing philosophy is never adopted by FLL. Let the kids learn and do the work! Teams need to realize they don't need to use the latest and greatest PID algorithm to make their bot make turns or (shudder) go straight.

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              • #22
                By the way, I do hope that the FLL rules this year specifically call out that non-lego micro SD cards are allowed. And if they want to be extra proactive, they should also allow a small amount of tape on the SD card. A lot of people like to put a piece of tape on the SD card to make it easier to remove.
                Norfolk, Virginia, USA
                FLL Coach and Regional Tournament Head judge since 2014

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