Visual Robot Development Kit – VRDK
Microsoft Research Cambridge, UK; TU Berlin, Germany; Universität Stuttgart, Germany


The Visual Robot Development Kit (VRDK) was originally developed by Andreas Ulbrich and Torben Weis at the Technische Universität Berlin, Germany. The VRDK introduced the conept of meta programming different kinds of device, e.g., heterogeneous hardware specifications and runtime environments in a distributed environment. Written entirely in .NET the VRDK was extended by several target platforms such as fischertechnik, a modified Robosapien but also for software as Internet Explorer or Windows Media Player. The VRDK was used for further research at the University of Stuttgart, Germany. Basically the research for programming robots using the VRDK is not continued anymore since several research result ended up in the Microsoft Robotics Studio.


Heil, A., Moradi, I., Weis, T., LCARS – The Next Generation Programming Context. Context in Advances interfaces, International Workshop in conjunction with AVI 2006. Venice, Italy, May 23, 2006.

Invited Talks

Heil, A., Ethics in AI. SGAI 2006 – Intelligent Robotics Workshop, Cambridge, UK, Dec 11, 2006.

Heil, A., Brändle, A., Lightweight Concurrency: A Distributed Platform for Creating Robotics Applications, HUMANOIDS’06 – 2006 IEEE-RAS International Conference on Humanoid Robots, Humanoid Technologies Workshop. Genova, Italy. Dec 4, 2006.

Brändle, A., Heil, A., The VRDK robotics graphical programming environment. SGAI 2005 – Reaching Out With Intelligent Robotics Workshop. Cambridge, UK, Dec 12, 2005.

Further Readings

Weis, T., Knoll, M., Ulbrich, A., Mühl G., Brändle, A., Rapid Prototyping for Pervasive Applications, In IEEE Pervasive Computing, vol. 6, no. 2, pp. 76-84, Apr-Jun, 2007.

Anforderungsentwicklungssystem – AES
University of Karlsruhe (TH), Germany

Anforderungsentwicklungssystem - AESAs part of the Center of Excellence SFB346 “Rechnerintegrierte Konstruktion und Fertigung von Bauteilen”, I spent four years with the Institute of Computer Applications in Design and Planning (RPK) University of Karlsruhe (TH). There we developed a distributed requirements engineering tool. The tool (AES) was integrated into the so-called “SFB-Desktop”, Anforderungsentwicklungssystem - AESa CORBA-based approach to integrate different distributed tools into a uniform user interface. Entirely written in Java, the rule-based Expert System Jess was applied to solve conflicts during the requirement engineering process. To achieve the project goals innovative concepts for information- and knowledge processing have been developed.


Heil, A., Konzeption und Realisierung eines Anforderungsentwicklungssystems in Verteilter Umgebung, Research Paper. University of Karlsruhe (TH), Karlsruhe, Germany, May, 2000.

Further Readings

Gebauer M., Kooperative Produktentwicklung auf Basis verteilter Anforderungen, Shaker Verlag, 2001, ISBN 978-3-8265-9200-X.