Robotics and the Mars InSight Lander

Learn what the Mars InSight lander is, how it works, and how the skills you learn in the Robotics Software Engineer Nanodegree program can be applied to a project just like this!

In the 1960s, NASA inspired people all over the world to pursue STEM education. The historic lunar landings marked the beginning of an incredible journey of innovation that continues today. NASA remains a pioneer in robotics technology, and this past weekend they reached another milestone when they launched the Mars InSight lander from California—the first interplanetary mission from the West Coast! (I attended the launch in person, and you can read about my experience here!) Despite the foggy day, the launch was an awe-inspiring event, and I am still marveling that humans were able to engineer this giant rocket to make this incredible journey.

Have you ever wanted to apply your skills to a robot that will inhabit another planet?

It’s not as far-fetched as it might sound, and NASA is showing us it can be done. And I can tell you that the skills you need are being taught right here at Udacity. This article covers what the Mars InSight lander is, how it works, and how the skills you learn in the Robotics Software Engineer Nanodegree program can be applied to a project like this!

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Udacity at NVIDIA’s GPU Technology Conference

Udacity’s Robotics and AI teams present “Learning Robotics on the Jetson TX2”—an opportunity to build a robot, and use reinforcement learning to make it perform!


Udacity - NVIDIA - Robotics - Lights Out Robot

Members of Udacity’s Robotics and AI teams were invited to present a session at NVIDIA’s GPU Technology Conference on Wednesday. The session, entitled “Learning Robotics on the Jetson TX2,” provided attendees with the opportunity to actually wire up and run a real robot! Here’s the official session description:

Learning Robotics on the Jetson TX2

Are you ready to learn how to use your Jetson TX2 for robotics applications? Join AI and Robotics instructors from Udacity in this lab which will teach you how to get started using your TX2 to apply AI to your robotics application. You will get the chance to build a simple “Lights Out” robot that will use reinforcement learning to push buttons and turn out corresponding LEDs. We will cover how to wire up, program, and run the robot. Additionally, we will discuss the basics of applied reinforcement learning.

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Robotics Software Engineer Nanodegree Program: Term 2 Curriculum

Udacity welcomes NVIDIA as a new robotics curriculum partner and introduces an education discount for the Jetson TX2!

Robotics Software Engineer - Nanodegree program - Udacity

Teaching robotics is one of the most exciting, inspiring, and challenging endeavors we are currently engaged in. The space is constantly evolving, new innovations emerge with dazzling frequency, and the range of potential applications grows ever wider and more remarkable.

Creating, maintaining, and advancing a curriculum that mirrors in every way the dynamism of this space is both our passion and our mission, and to consistently achieve our goal of ensuring that every student masters the most valuable and most cutting-edge skills, we strive to be agile enough to leverage and incorporate new opportunities virtually the moment they appear.

Introducing NVIDIA

Exactly this kind of opportunity recently materialized, and we are now thrilled to introduce the NVIDIA Deep Learning Institute (DLI) as a curriculum partner for Term 2 of our Robotics Software Engineer Nanodegree program!

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