Thursday, February 19, 2009

Inside FIRST Robotics 2009: Robots Are Now Ready To Rumble

From Popular Mechanics:

On Tuesday, high school robotics teams from around the country concluded the six-week build period ahead of next month’s regional FIRST Robotics Competitions. Popular Mechanics dropped in on the Pirates of George Westinghouse High, in Brooklyn, as they made their final pre-shipment adjustments.

The tension brimmed outside Room 254, the home base of George Westinghouse High School’s FIRST robotics team, the Pirates. Six weeks of late-night work sessions, capped by a sleepless holiday weekend of final tweaks and modifications, had put the Brooklyn students at wits’ end. It was less than 24 hours before the construction deadline, when Fed-Ex would arrive to ship the robot to the scene of New York City’s regional competition—and an overweight robot threatened to send them over the edge.

“Welcome to 2009,” Nadav Zeimer, the team’s coach, declared as two Pirates argued over how best to position the robot on the scale. “Yet another year of too much weight.”

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