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Friday, July 1, 2016

Today In The AA [#15]: RoboCup Begins

As I write this... here is my view...

It's been a long day, to say the least. With lots going on.

I slept for 3 hours (2am-5am) and was back to work after hopping a shuttle to the convention center in Leipzig. Me and MC immediately began working on the High-jump event, which requires the robot to get as much airtime as possible.

Obviously, you can't use a jetpack, or balloons, or anything of that nature. All that is available are the limbs/actuators of the robot itself.

The first event we had during the day was one of the soccer matches, in which each team has a Striker and goalie.

The striker is responsible for handling the soccer ball and making goals, while the goalie blocks from the opponent.
Just as happens most frequently in robotics, we had an issue arise and found our golie robot rendered useless. We ended up losing the match 6-0, finding out about 40 minutes afterwards that a single wire connecting servo motors in the knee, had snapped....

There are many leagues at Robocup, one being the simulation league. I've noticed now just how much of a difference there is between a "perfect" simulated environment, and a noisy one we deal with in humanoid robotics. The number of things that can (and often do) go wrong, can drive you crazy. You begin to develop an intuition with it after a while, becoming a robot whisperer.

The small league (video above) is also interesting. The small players are given vocal commands from a ref and then play on their own.

Damn awesome hotdog
The leagues such as this are more entertaining to the audience since there is more going on at face value; but I believe in the next 20 years the humanoid league will become the highlight of Robocup (it already is for many of the researchers).

Standard platform league.
By 11:30pm we returned to the hotel again. I'm definitely feeling the tiredness kicking in; but not enough to get in the way of hard work. It was a busy day, we got a decent amount of progress.

Our next event will be at 11am tomorrow, despite the unfortunate shortcoming in our earlier soccer match, we have a good chance of recovering tomorrow through a round-robin system. Plenty of room to rebound.

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