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A Team, A Robot, And Some Wacky Ideas
In three days, we're well on our way to the competitions! Three days ago, we had just built our robot and were about to present it to the team. Since then, the robot has been approved and we have begun to program it.
   
IMG_3797.JPGOur first mission was to push the dump truck onto the small platform and launch it into the air. (The platform is attached to a string that, when the correct button is pushed, it will lift it up. The platform won't actually go flying.) Some of the challenges we faced was the possibility of the truck falling off the platform, and the possibility of hitting the launching button before the truck is fully on the platform. To the first problem, our solution was to program and aim the robot in just the right angle to push the truck straight onto the platform without giving it room to go diagonally off the platform.  The second problem took a while to figure out. Our first solution was to pick the robot up after it came back to base and attach a couple of detachable bricks that were low enough to hit the button. This worked every time, but attaching the pieces took time and were easily breakable. Our next solution was to build an attaching piece that would flip down when we pushed it. When the robot came back to base, we just flipped the piece down and hit the GO button. This worked more efficiently than before. We timed both was and found that the time we attached a couple of pieces we had a continuous fourteen seconds. When we tried the mission again by flipping the piece down we had a continuous nine seconds! This might not seem a major difference, but when you are in competition every second counts. Needless to say, we went with the flipping down piece.
   
Our next mission that we are focusing on is to get a container of medicine (buckyball) into the broken part of the bone (made of LEGOs). We have been discussing several ways to accomplish this,  but we have no permanent ideas yet. I hope we will be able to finish this mission soon.

Posted by Amy at 12:21:00 PM on 10/12/2006

Thursday, October 12th, 2006

A Team, A Robot, And Some Wacky Ideas

In three days, we're well on our way to the competitions! Three days ago, we had just built our robot and were about to present it to the team. Since then, the robot has been approved and we have begun to program it.
   
IMG_3797.JPGOur first mission was to push the dump truck onto the small platform and launch it into the air. (The platform is attached to a string that, when the correct button is pushed, it will lift it up. The platform won't actually go flying.) Some of the challenges we faced was the possibility of the truck falling off the platform, and the possibility of hitting the launching button before the truck is fully on the platform. To the first problem, our solution was to program and aim the robot in just the right angle to push the truck straight onto the platform without giving it room to go diagonally off the platform.  The second problem took a while to figure out. Our first solution was to pick the robot up after it came back to base and attach a couple of detachable bricks that were low enough to hit the button. This worked every time, but attaching the pieces took time and were easily breakable. Our next solution was to build an attaching piece that would flip down when we pushed it. When the robot came back to base, we just flipped the piece down and hit the GO button. This worked more efficiently than before. We timed both was and found that the time we attached a couple of pieces we had a continuous fourteen seconds. When we tried the mission again by flipping the piece down we had a continuous nine seconds! This might not seem a major difference, but when you are in competition every second counts. Needless to say, we went with the flipping down piece.
   
Our next mission that we are focusing on is to get a container of medicine (buckyball) into the broken part of the bone (made of LEGOs). We have been discussing several ways to accomplish this,  but we have no permanent ideas yet. I hope we will be able to finish this mission soon.

posted by Amy at 12:21:00 PM | View Full Comments Inline [0]