Minutes from the January 2003

Connceticut Robotics Society Meeting:

 

Total attendance: 15

The meeting started with a viewing of a video about the Mars Rover Project. There was also a small demonstration given by Jake about a new RCX educational idea.

A few days earlier Jake received several robots that the Chinese will be entering this year in the Trinity College Fire Fighting Home Robot Contest. There were three types of these robots, one for elementary level, middle, and college. Jake then asked for volunteers to try and get these robots to work. Scott, John, and Visar volunteered and they will be giving a report next month.

Mark then showed everyone a small toy gyro and explained how it works.

Next up was the construction contest. In this contest the contestants (Mark W., Daniel, Scott, Les, and a new member) had to use a box of parts they received at an earlier meeting and build something with it.

Mark W. was up first and he showed everyone a small air-plane shaped construction. Nice work Mark!

Daniel then showed everyone his robo-pet that he made with the parts. Whenever you touched it's head, the robo-pet would wag it's tail. Good Job!

A new member then showed her conveyor belt which she constructed. This conveyor belt was a model of a version that was able to move objects upwards. Great Job!

Scott and Les were up next and they showed their balance scale. This balance acted like a normal balance except that there was a special beam that no matter were you put the weights, it was always balanced! Nice work!

After much discussion between the judges (Jake and Jim), it was decided that everone won first place. Each contestant received a package of "Robot Eggs". These eggs are guaranteed to hatch robots in 1000 years! Congratulations to all contestants!

Mark W. then talked about the different sensors and motors needed to build a fire fighting robot for the Trinity College Fire Fighting Home Robot Contest. He made a list of what is usually needed:

INPUT:
a candle detector
sensors that detect the wall
a sensor to detect a line
encoders
a sound sensor (for sound-activation mode)

OUTPUT:
a candle extinguisher
drive motors.

He then talked about ways of adding more input ports to the RCX. Thanks Mark!

Next up was the second contest for this meeting...the fire extinguishing contest. The contestants in this contest were Scott, Mark W., and Daniel.

The contest results were as follows:

1'st: Scott with a Vortex Generator - was able to put out the candle from across the room
2'nd: Mark with leaf blower - 28 feet
3'rd: Mark with Lego Robot - 3 inches
4'th: Daniel with Lego Robot

Congratulations to all contestants!

After the contest, Les explained how vortex generators work. He also showed everyone a fan motor that was ripped from a toy styrofoam plane.

Next month's contest was then decided on. It was decided that the next contest will be a tone contest. The objective of this contest is to have the robot detect a tone while there is ambient noise (i.e. talking). The robot that could detect the noise from the farthest distance wins.

The meeting adjourned around 3:30pm.