Contachit
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Top of Page Developer Info, and Q&A.
My name is Isaac Benson Powell, and I'm the sole individual behind this software project.
 
Q.Why am I creating Contachit?

A.It's a software development tool that I wanted to use, but was unable to find anything like it, that already existed (which met my core requirements of read/write flow-chart, in native compiled code).

The longer answer is... back in 2011, I bought a book that was an introduction into robotics.  The main "hands on" portion of the book, was to create your own "line following" robot, out of a sandwich container.  That book, and the process of creating the robot described within, Rocky, the line following robot. changed my life.  Before that, I was generally focused on a career as a software developer, but hadn't "found my calling" quite yet.  Ever since then, almost everything I've done, is related to my overall goal of being able to create robots.  A bit obsessed?  YES!

After building "Rocky, the line following robot", I started to engage in self-learning in topics I would need to know about... like electricity, and electrical circuits, etc...  This eventually led me to create a project using a micro-controller (specifically an Arduino Mega).

This new project that needed a micro-controller, was not a robot, but rather an alarm system.  At this time, my goal was just to learn the basics about how to program a micro-controller, and hook it up to various electronics, and have them interact.  The alarm system started simple, but I kept adding more and more features, like;  Two power sources (wall and battery backup).  Four LED lights that would come on when the power went out, or when triggered by a motion sensor.  A distance sensor on the display, that turned the back-lit feature of the screen on when user approached.  Multiple door/window sensors, an audio component, a temperature sensor, in addition to keypad for entering data, and a display screen.

The main takeaway, was that I had a LOT of different things going on, and the code for the micro-controller was getting a little hard to understand.  When I thought I had coded it correctly, and uploaded the changes to the micro-controller, things just weren't working like I thought they should.  I eventually had to manually draw up a flow-chart of expected functionality for any given state the alarm system was in at a given time, and compare that with code that I had written.  This, is what really made me realize that having computer code that could have read/write "flow-chart" capabilities, would be VERY advantageous.

 
Q.What are your overall design goals for Contachit?

A.I want it to be natively compiled code, with flow-chart read/write, which will help greatly in understanding the code I'm writing.  Along the way, I've adjusted syntax (away from C/C++), and added various restrictions on use of the language, and how the code is organized... all in a hope of creating a "better" software development experience.
 
Q.Why are you so obsessed about robotics?

A.I'm a computer programmer, and typically when you engage in such activities, the most excitement you see is an application display some info, etc...  With robotics, your code literally gets turned into physical movement of an actual object in the real world, not cyber world.  That's a very exciting thing, with tons of possibilities.
 
Q.Is Contachit ONLY usable for robotics?

A.No, at least not yet.  ┬áTechnically, as of the summer of 2021, there's zero "robotics" related items in Contachit.  I'm just trying to create a very good computer language, which I'll happen to use in robotics... someday.
 
Q.Once Contachit is "done", what kind of robots would you like to create with it?

A.Not quite sure at this point.  I do think there's a lot of opportunity for robots in farming... specifically growing crops without the use of any pesticides.  I'm not a farmer (yet), but I think there's a lot of work related to water management, pest and criter control, planting, harvesting, etc... all of which could be automated.  Could be anything useful or fun though.  To be honest, there's just so much for me to still learn before I get to that point.  For all I know, I could end up being a moisture farmer on Mars. LOL

Top of Page Software License
The license for Contachit is the IBP Time-Delayed Software License found here.   This license alternates between being "proprietary" and "open-source".  Basically, it gives the developer [0..3] years to make money from their hard work before they have to release the source code.


Note: The first binary release of Contachit was on November 5th of 2020, meaning the source code for Contachit will start to be released no later than November 5th of 2023.

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