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Which automation software for your optics bench?
Automated optical experiments involve the operation of heterogeneous hardware devices like cameras, motor controllers, digital to analog converters, analog to digital converters etc... These devices are often delivered with their own software and it is extremely difficult for end users to build an integrated software allowing to automate an experiment in its whole. There are some commercial integrated solution to handle such heterogeneous experiments provided that manufacturers deliver the associated drivers. End users risk to become somewhat limited to what the commercial solution they are bound to can provide to them.
Another approach is using Open Source software. The biggest and most complex research experiments are built every day using Open Source software. The most advanced software technologies have their source in Open Source software. It is possible to write integrated software solutions for optics bench experiments from free accessible software sources. This way, in public and private laboratories, students and researchers can keep 100% control on their software, keeping the possibility to modify and/or improve it along years.