How to Use the Blue Robotics Forums (Please Read)

Hello, and welcome to our forums! :smiley:

This is a space for our awesome community to share, discuss, and explore exciting ideas, projects, and products in the marine robotics space. We’re here to support and interact with anyone working with or using our vehicles, software and products, but also things you build, or dives you go on, along with all those awesome third party products, from our distributors and elsewhere, that you can (or want to) use with our equipment. We also encourage general discussion of marine robotics, exploration, science, and furthering our shared understanding of all things underwater.

To use the forum effectively it helps to know what’s possible to do, so here’s an introduction to using the forum, including its layout and features, along with some tips for formatting content in your posts. You may wish to bookmark this post to refer back to later :slight_smile:

Contents (Skip to Section)

  1. Getting Started
  2. Formatting a Post/Comment
  3. Tuning Notifications

Getting Started

Home-page Overview:

Tags are useful to pull together topics that are related but already fit into existing separate categories. The most relevant ones to know about are:

  • #news for product announcements and other updates (by us and others)
  • #guide for when a post is a guide for other users
  • #vehicle-design for posts discussing best practices and relevant calculations and considerations when designing or modifying vehicles
  • #simulate for all things simulation
  • #poll for polls/surveys (generally relevant to product developments)
  • #arduino for Arduino related posts, and
  • #pymavlink for posts using or getting support for the pymavlink Python library.

Interacting with Posts

click for: main options, more options, accessing your bookmarks, quoting a reply

Main options:

... (more options):

Accessing your bookmarks:

Click your profile in the top right corner, then click the bookmarks icon to access your bookmarked comments.
bookmarks

Quoting in a reply

Select the content you want to respond to, and press the ‘Quote’ button that appears. You can have several quotes in one reply.

Before Posting

When you’re planning to start a discussion thread or ask a question, it’s always a good idea to search first, to find what’s already been covered.

Searching the Forum

Simple Search

Press the search icon in the top right corner, and type your search term. Press enter to search.

Advanced Search

Click ‘options’ in the simple search to access sorting and filtering options.

‘Docs’ Search

Somewhere between simple and advanced search, the ‘Docs’ tab tries to present posts as though they’re a form of documentation. It allows filtering by whether posts are solved, and smartly filtering by categories and tags that are relevant to what’s been searched for.

Searching Resources

As well as searching the forum, when you’ve got a question it’s worth looking to see if the information is already available in our documentation, guides, or other resources. These are quite spread out, so it can be difficult to know where to look for what.

This section provides a general overview, but a more thorough guide (and hopefully an advanced searching tool) will be coming in future. For now, each separate resource location has its own built in search functionality, accessed through either the top left or top right of the page.

Resource Usage
BR Website Product pages Product descriptions, technical details, CAD models, relevant guides
BR Website Technical Reference main product technical details (for comparison), CAD models, product documents, code library links, recommended software versions
BR Website Guides Product usage, assembly, and modification guides
BR Website Resources Programs, calculators, connector standard, and more
BR Website Distributors Our distributors around the world, who often have their own products too!
ardusub.com Documentation of the open-source software we develop/use (companion/ArduSub/QGroundControl), and developer docs/examples for external integrations (pymavlink, OpenCV, dvl, etc), including the Full ArduSub Parameter List, as well as hardware and connection overviews
ardupilot.org Documentation for the general ArduPilot project, and other ArduPilot firmwares, including Attitude Controller docs
docs.bluerobotics.com Ping Viewer and Ping Protocol documentation, and BlueOS
BR GitHub Source code and issues tracking for our companion software, our various sensor libraries, Ping Viewer, and our documentation
ArduPilot GitHub ArduPilot/ArduSub source code and issues tracking
mavlink GitHub Source code and issues tracking for the mavlink protocol and QGroundControl
mavlink.io Documentation for the mavlink protocol, including the common and ardupilotmega message sets used by ArduSub

Formatting a Post/Comment

Using Buttons

In Text (more options)

click for: text, headings, lists, hyperlinks, quotes, maths, code, tables, spoilers, separator-lines, toggles

Jump to:

Text

**Bold**Bold
*Italics*Italics
~~strikethrough~~strikethrough

Headings

Start a line with # symbols followed by a space to make headings. One (# ) makes a main heading, two (## ) is a sub-heading, and so forth.

Lists

Bulleted

- lists
  - sub-lists
    - sub-sub-lists
  • lists
    • sub-lists
      • sub-sub-lists

Numbered

1. numbered lists
part of the list item
1. auto-numbering

stuff in between

5. start from desired number

  1. numbered lists
    part of the list item
  2. auto-numbering

stuff in between (separated by new lines)

  1. start from desired number

Checkboxes

[ ] unchecked
[x] black check on white fill
[X] white check on black fill

unchecked
black check on white fill
white check on black fill

HyperLinks

to a general webpage

[link text](url)link text

to a pdf

PDFs can be linked to like normal webpages, but it’s worth noting that including #page=number at the end of the url will link to a specific page, e.g.
[link text](https://www.link/to/file.pdf#page=7)

to content/a video

Some content, including YouTube videos and some other video services, can be embedded directly. Instead of creating a named hyperlink to them, just paste the link on a new line - the output preview should give a sense of what the final result will look like.

to a heading in the thread

Set the link url to # followed by the heading id. The id is the heading in lower-case with dashes between words, followed by the number it is (e.g. the second heading in a given post/comment is number 2). You can also find the id by right clicking the heading and selecting “inspect”.
[Heading Name](#heading-name-N)

Quotes

Block quotes

> Block
> quotes

Block
quotes

Quoting with a specified source

Note: To quote part of a post, highlight it and press the “Quote” button that appears (see Quoting in a reply)

[quote="source (e.g. hyperlink)"]
quote
- text
[/quote]

Maths

We use MathJAX to provide maths support - it uses a similar syntax to LaTeX. You can right click on some formatted maths to show the underlying TeX commands.

Inline

Render $inline$ maths → Render inline maths

Block

$$
line\ breaks:\\
\begin{align}
maths &= x^{2t} + x_0 = 3\\
&= \frac{1}{2}\cos(\theta)
\end{align}
$$
line\ breaks:\\ \begin{align} maths &= x^{2t} + x_0\\ &= \frac{1}{2}\cos(\theta) \end{align}

Code

```nohighlight/language(e.g. python/c/arduino/...)/blank -> auto-detect language
code in the middle
```

code in the middle

Tables

| Left | Center | Right |
|---|:---:|---:|
| content | can be *formatted* | **like normal** |
Left Center Right
content can be formatted like normal

Spoilers

Click to reveal: [spoiler] hidden text [/spoiler]

Click to reveal: hidden text

Separator Lines

above

---
below

above


below

Toggles

[details="name"]
information you want to fold down
[/details]
name

information you want to fold down

Tuning Notifications

Once you have a feel for how the forum works, you may decide you’d like to be notified when new content is added that you’re particularly interested in. Alternatively, you may wish to disable notifications temporarily at some point, or turn them off permanently.

Discourse (which powers the forum) provides a variety of notification settings, which can allow you to configure how you get notified on posts you’re active in, as well as signing up to notifications for particular categories or tags.

Notification Types

It’s possible to get (and configure) notifications for specific categories and tags, as well as notifications on particular posts. It’s also possible to set individual users as muted or ignored if you don’t want notifications of their posts, or don’t want to see their posts or comments at all.

click for a list of categories and tags that are likely to be of interest to most forum users

Accessing Notifications

click to toggle instructions for main notification settings

To access the notification settings, go to your preferences via your profile icon in the top right corner:

Then go to the Preferences tab, and select one of the relevant sections in the sidebar:

It’s also possible to access category and tag notification settings from the bell in the top right corner of their individual pages, and notification settings for a particular post are configurable underneath the last comment. To mute or ignore a particular user, go to their profile and change the “Normal” dropdown in the top right corner to “Muted” or “Ignored”.

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Feel free to comment about any missing or incorrect information :slight_smile:

2 Likes