Last Saturday (6/16) was the annual Sparkfun Autonomous Vehicle Competition where ground and air robots run a timed race around the Sparkfun Building in Boulder. What a show! (I saw some of it but was mostly stuck in the pits trying to get my robot to work)
The ground winner, Team 0x27, 1/5 scale buggy
Here’s a write-up for my robot, Data Bus: http://www.bot-thoughts.com/2012/06/2012-autonomous-vehicle-competition-avc.html
I am collecting AVC videos on this playlist: http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL890A8244F3EE6DC5
If it wasn’t hard enough to build a robot to drive itself 270 meters around the narrow parking lot of a large building, giant red barrels were added on the first leg. A hoop was situated in the center of the path; robots passing through it earn a 30 second time deduction.
But a misstep a few meters later could land a robot off the curb and down into the pond! If the robot makes it this far, on the next leg, curbs jut out waiting to grind unlucky bots to a halt and, surviving this obstacle a giant pothole awaits robots as they approach the last turn.
I counted 34 ground vehicles out of 50 entrants that actually made it to the event. Of those I think something like 7 or 8 made it around the building. The air vehicles – well, doing this in three dimensions isn’t just 3 times harder. I have no clue how many made it or didn’t…