The LEGO Mountaineers are getting ready to go to the U.S. FIRST State Competitions. I challenged the team that if they could get a perfect 400 score I would take everyone out for fresh doughnuts at the Bear Claw Bakery. They have been practicing for weeks, doing everything they could to optimize their robot, tighten the programming source code, and rehearse all movements to shave off a few seconds wherever possible. It's very rare for a team to achieve a perfect 400 score, in fact we used to think it was impossible. Inspired by The Flying Geeks, the kids learned that it was possible and set their sights on a perfect four hundred score in 2.5 minutes.

Next stop: The Bear Claw bakery, then the State Competition. If they win that, they will go to the Nationals. Their goal is to win the nationals and get invited to the White House!

The team has been working hard for months. I'm looking forward to seeing how they do at the competition and to celebrating their accomplishment with them.

Discussion/Comments (1):

The kids designed, built, and programmed the robot themselves

Some people will ask if the adults worked on the robot. the answer is no. The adults set up meetings, encouraged and mentored the kids, and coached them in how a winning team behaves. We provided kits, a practice table, lots of books, and crowd control.

The rest came from the kids. Wendy and Kevin spent months learning to program in RoboLab. (I don't even know how to configure RoboLab, let alone program in it!) and they designed and built multiple robots until they came up with a robot, strategy, and program they agreed to use.

Posted at 01/24/2008 17:08:59 by Eric Mack

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