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[DPRG] Meeting re-cap

Subject: [DPRG] Meeting re-cap
From: Clay Timmons ctimmons at cadence.com
Date: Tue Oct 10 14:18:33 CDT 2000

    DPRG Monthly Meeting re-cap
    October 7th, 2000
    32 people, 5 guests, 4 robots, 1 infant

Minutes were already posted but here's my version anyway.


Nearly everyone wants a new T-shirt  many also wanted nicer
embrodierd polo type shirt.  Sam's Club is supposed to
be able to make embrodierd shirts.  Artwork needed for
new shirt.  Winning artist gets free shirt!  Help needed
creating artwork.

   Can-Can Results

Many people were left wondering what happened to the
results of the Can-Can event at the contest.  The results
were not announced because none of the robots completed
the contest objectives.   In hindsight the judges felt that
the participants should be recognized and awarded
1st Erick Kluthe, 2nd Dennis Draheim, 3rd Clay Timmons.
The "objective" of Can-Can is not totally clear and
should be re-worded.

In future contests the judges will award 1st, 2nd, 3rd
including any prizes even if the robot did not complete
the objective.  Robots that do not complete the objective
will not be given times for thier runs.

   Contest Scoring

Future contests should have 3 judges plus 1 assistant and two
timekeepers.  Erick Kluthe wrote a visual basic program to
automate scoring.  Electronic scorekeeping will help bunches.
Thanks Erick!

   Contest Length

RoboRama contests are getting too long with all 4 events and
the increased participation.   Improving course setup and scoring
will help but eventually some events will need to be held at
another time.

  Contest Course

Size of  the RoboRama course should stay the same.   Wall height
may be reduced to 6 or 8 inches.   Another idea for flooring material
is the backdrop paper used by portrait photographers.  Comes in
rolls 9' wide by 36' long for about $50.  Made to be stepped on.

Tom Day suggested placing the line following line outside the
T-shaped course.   This would save setup time and allow
better viewing without the un-necessary walls.

   New Contest(s)

RoboRama contests are still going strong after 4 years!  They've
refined and grown and now it's time for some new events.
Many people want a contest inbetween T-Time and Can-Can
in difficulty.   Another idea many people have expressed interest
in is a tabletop sized contest for smaller robots.  I suggest we
pick a date for them next year first, then get the rules, course,
robots, etc. worked out.

  New Location

While the Science Place is great it would be nice to have some
of the contests next year at a new location.  One excellent idea
is a mall.   Most malls have stages or open areas and love events
that bring out spectators.

     Brainless Robots

Several robots have competed without the use of a microcontroller brain.
At some point in the future we may need a seperate class for brainless bots.
For now these bots should be recongized with a special award,
the Scarecrow award.   Perhaps we could have a special prize too.

    Officer Nominations

It's that time again.  Nominations are open now thru Nov 30th.
Any member can be nominated for an office.  Ask other members
if they would like to be an officer then nominate them.  Nominate
yourself if you like.  The club has 4 offices according to our bylaws
President, Vice-President, Secretary, and Treasurer.   Elections
will take place at the December meeting.  All offices have a
2 year term limit.

   Robot Movie

One guest at the meeting, Patrick Johnson, is making an independant
movie about a bank robbery that is done with a robot.   He interviewed
several club members and has lots of great ideas.   Check out

    Contest Committe

Big todo list for people willing to help out.
Tom Day, John Caldwell, Kip Moravec and Clay Timmons will
revise RoboRama rules and create a new "inbetween" event.

Robert Jordan and Frank Elia will come up with a Table Top

All contest updates should be presented at the November

   Show and Tell

Mark Steed had a Rug Warrior Pro named Issac (after Azimov).
It had several modes of operation and moved around well
using IR sensors for obstacle detection.

Robert Jordan had his Skate Bot, see articles in Encoder.
He also had a BOE-Bot with new motors from MPJA.
The BOE-Bot demostrated speed control via PWM.
Robert also had a two wheeled robot (no third wheel at all)
named Elvis.   He plans to have it move in a rocking motion,
hence the name Elvis.

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