Saturday, May 7, 2016

Louisiana Tech Robotics Competition 2016

Louisiana Tech held its annual Robotics Competition (and demonstration) yesterday, May 6, 2016 in the "Tonk" or student center. The event was organized by Tech's Computer Science Department and sponsored by Pioneer Rx Pharmacy Software, and Praeses - two software development companies out of Shreveport. Both companies had representatives there.

The event was well attended and featured a maze competition, design competition (which was more like a demonstration of various design ideas - Social Media App Controlled Bot, Voice Controlled Bot, a Spiro-graphic Scribbler, Floor Sweeper, Card Dealing Bot, Nerf Gun - with targeting and tracking, Painting Bot, Package Sorting Bot, and several more!) followed by some further demos of hobby projects, and robotic toys and gizmos.

One of the graduating students had a Parallax ELEV-8, V3 - quad-copter - modified with obstacle avoiding sensors and successfully demonstrated his proof-of-concept.

The thing that impressed me most was the enthusiasm, and the diversity of the crowd in terms of age, gender, and ethnicity - it was a true cross section of the university and community at large. I would say over a dozen elementary aged children attended and were very excited and actively engaged. Students also clearly had non-technical friends attend the event to cheer them on!

There were many failures and partially completed projects - just shows that in robotics - real-life implementation is often a trial and error process of failure, revision and refinement. Roboticists are always - Back to the Drawing Board, Computer or Lab Workbench!

Special thanks to Ben Choi, Ph.D., Computer Science Department, for organizing this event and to Jean Gourd, Ph.D., Program Chair of Computer Science, for showing up to cheer folks on!

Star Wars Fun-bots.

Spiro-graphic Scribbler

Floor Sweeper

Round One - Maze Competition

A couple of the "toys" and one of the awards.

Sphero's BB-8 made an appearance too!

No comments:

Post a Comment