Thursday, 22 March 2012


Once I tried to explain ROS to one of my friends, after about 15 minutes of blabbering and tapping keys on the computer .... he looked at me and asked; "We need to open 4 terminal windows to get this thing moving ?". Though the terminal window is what most of us just love to use, a colourful GUI is always more welcome. Such a GUI, rxDeveloper is provided by Filip Muellers at

The clear advantage that rxDeveloper has over the terminal window is that everything is pictorial and would lure the potentially non-initiated robot enthusiast. I used Stage and Gazebo launch scripts through rxDeveloper and everything worked nearly all right.

The GUI works well with launch files and it doesn't need to explicitly start the master. Tools as rviz, roswtf, rxgraph, rxconsole etc are available as a drop down menu, a bash like script keeps track of the execution of the launch files, each node/process is  pictorially denoted and there are facilities to create, edit and save all kinds of launch files.

With some effort it was  possible to add rxDeveloper to my Applications menu in Ubuntu 10.04,

NOTE : All observations are for rxDeveloper version 1.0b, ROS diamondback version 1.4.10 installed on Ubuntu 10.04 LTS