Thank you, it's great to be here. Indeed, we had reasons. When we
started working with the WAM in ROS, only the BarrettWAM/WAMinterface
packages were available. These provided service-based control of the
WAM, but we wanted continuous (topic-based) control. After talking to
the author of that package and going through the code (originally
written pre-boxturtle, I believe), we decided a fresh start would be useful.
Over the past year we've been sharing our node upon request, and after
several requests at ICRA finally decided to release it 'into the wild.'
The BarrettCompat library (and associated WAM_msgs and WAM_sim_server)
were not available when we started working on our node, and may
represent duplicated effort. But such is science. We'll look into
merging, if possible.
I believe there are a few other WAM-ROS nodes in use in labs, but not
publicly announced. Hopefully they'll come out of the woodwork and join
the party as well.