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Robotics History  



See also:

Competitions and exhibitions

Competitions for robots are gaining popularity, attracting participation from amateurs, private industry, schools and research institutions. Robots compete at a wide range of tasks including destructive combat, non-destructive combat, fire-fighting, maze solving, performing tasks, navigational exercises (eg. the DARPA Grand Challenge) and many others. Some contests require participants to provide tutorials showing how they built and programmed their robot.

Here is a list of ongoing, successful competitions and exhibitions.

Botball is a LEGO-based competition between fully autonomous robots. There are two divisions. The first is for high-school and middle-school students, and the second (called "Beyond Botball") is for anyone who chooses to compete at the national tournament. Teams build, program, and blog about a robot for five weeks before they compete at the regional level. Winners are awarded scholarships to register for and travel to the national tournament. Botball is a project of the KISS Institute for Practical Robotics, based in Norman, Oklahoma.

The DARPA Grand Challenge has held events since 2004 testing driverless cars in obstacle courses.

The FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) is a multinational competition that teams professionals and young people to solve an engineering design problem. These teams of mentors (corporate, teachers, or college students) and high school students collaborate in order to design and build a robot in six weeks. This robot is designed to play a game that is developed by FIRST and changes from year to year. FIRST, or For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology, is an organization founded by inventor Dean Kamen in 1992 as a way of getting high school students involved in and excited about engineering and technology.

FIRST LEGO League (FLL) is a robotics competition for elementary and middle school students (ages 9-14, 9-16 in Europe), arranged by FIRST. Each year the contest focuses on a different topic related to the sciences. Each challenge within the competition then revolves around that theme. The students then work out solutions to the various problems that they're given and meet for regional tournaments to share their knowledge and show off their ideas. The World Festival is held every year in Atlanta.

The FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC) is a mid-level robotics competition targeted toward high-school aged students. It offers the traditional challenge of a FIRST competition but with a more accessible and affordable robotics kit. The ultimate goal of FTC is to reach more young people with a lower-cost, more accessible opportunity to discover the excitement and rewards of science, technology, and engineering.

The Intelligent Ground Vehicle Competition (IGVC) has hosted a yearly student robotics competition every year since 1993, usually in Michigan and usually in early June. See the web site for dates and location. It is multidisciplinary, theory-based, hands-on, team-implemented, outcome-assessed, and based on product realization. Many of the participants design their vehicles during year-long coursework. Students in business and engineering management, language and graphic arts, and public relations also participate. Students solicit and interact with industrial sponsors who provide component hardware and advice, and in that way get an inside view of industrial design and opportunities for employment.[citation needed]

The International Robot Exhibition (IREX), organized by the Japan Robot Association (JARA), has run biennially since 1973.

The Trinity College Fire-Fighting Robot Contest competition in April 2007 was the 14th annual event. There are many different divisions for all skill levels. Robots in the competition are encouraged to find new ways to navigate through the rooms, put out a candle and save a "child" from a building. Robots can be composed of any materials, but must fit within certain size restrictions.

  • ArtBots Robot Talent Show - An international art exhibition for robotic art and art-making robots. Awards for "Artist Choice" and "Audience Choice".
  • AUVSI Autonomous Underwater Vehicle Competition - The goals of this competition are to challenge a new generation of engineers to design and build autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) capable of performing realistic missions in the underwater environment. Information on rules, results, photographs, and prizes.
  • BEST Robotics Inc - BEST stands for Boosting Engineering, Science, and Technology. BEST is a non-profit organization that promotes team problem solving aided by local industry volunteers, teachers, and mentors through yearly competitions.
  • Binkey's Robot Rumbles for 1-15 pound bots - Test your 1-15 pound bot in one-on-one battles, a maze, and speed way. Competition in Sarnia, Ontario.
  • The Builders Database - Provides registration and tracking resources for robot competitions. Includes interface for teams and event organizers, and public pages describing the entries by category.
  • Eurobot - A technical, scientific and entertaining challenge organised in France for students from engineering schools, universities or for private scientific clubs.
  • Intelligent Ground Vehicle Competition - This site has information on the annual competition where college students design and construct autonomous ground vehicles to compete in the Autonomous Challenge Competition Vehicle Design Competition and Navigation Challenge Competition. The site consists of Location and date, rules, team photographs, entry application, news, and results from previous competitions.
  • Istrobot - Annual contest in Slovakia includes linefollower, micromouse, minisumo, and a free style category.
  • Jerry Sanders Design Competition - The Jerry Sanders Design Competition is open to anyone who can build a robot.
  • K'nex K-Bot World Championship - Information including rankings and rulebook.
  • Manitoba Robot Games - Canadian robot games which include, Atomic Hockey , Robotic Sumo Wrestling, Robotic "Seek and Capture", Mini-Tractor Pull, and Robo-Critters.
  • 6.270 - MIT's Autonomous Robot Design Competition - Provides description of class and robot competition contestants. Includes an overview of previous contests.
  • Roboexotica 2002 - A competition of developing technologies for the integration of technological achievements in everyday life, and as a means of documenting the creation of new interfaces for man-machine-interaction.
  • RoboGames - Annual competition in San Francisco, formerly known as RobOlympics. Classes and their rules, results and pictures from previous years, registration and ticket information.
  • Robolympics 2004 Commentary and Photos - Commentary and photographs of the 2004 Robolympic games held in San Francisco.
  • Robot Competition FAQ - Information and dates for all known Robot-related competitions and contests. Updated monthly and posted to comp.robotics.misc and news.answers.
  • Robot Crusade - Robot combat group that sponsors events in the United Kingdom. News, event listing, rules and sign-up information.
  • Robot Riots robot combat event - Robot Riots robot combat event in Toronto - check site for latest event. Part of the Toronto Robot Fight Club.
  • Robotic Gladiator - A site featuring news, tutorials, and forums for robotic competition.
  • Robotics Contest - Programming contest related to robotics and mechanics held in Timisoara, Romania in 19/01/2001.
  • Trinity College Fire Fighting Home Robot Contest - A challenge to build a computerized robot that can detect a fire and then put it out. Includes rules, registration information, photos, and a FAQ.

  • CNET - Robots ready to rumble - RoboGames (formerly called Robolympics) in San Francisco gives machines a chance to show their stuff in contests from sumo to soccer. An article by Richard Shim. (March 25, 2005)


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