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this year for IDC Robocon is "Haiku Master". Initially I was
dumbfounded how engineering could promote and aid poetry! Turns out this
translated into some sort of JAPANESE GAME SHOW that our robots would take part
in. The simple aim is to grab as many balls as possible on the playing field
and get them onto each individual team's scoreboard.
are 3 gold balls per team that if pasted on the upper two thirds of the
scoreboard, would declare you winners there and then. WIN!
We made our way to
Tokyo Denki University, and received our mission. The theme of this year’s
competition is Haiku Master. Haiku is a short form of Japanese poetry, and is a
sublime expression of the beauty of nature. In this mission, we will have to
design and build robots to compose Haikus using the 3x3 scoring system. We
spent the entire day brainstorming our strategy and designing our robot.
On the way to Tokyo
Our handy folder that
contains all the rules and regulations, as well as timings to meet.
The battle zone where
teams will put their robots to the test.
The school’s effort to
care for the environment.
Almost all the bins in the university are recycling
and sorting bins.
A welcome party was
held at the end of the day for us to mingle and interact with all the
participants and organisers. It was an exciting day, and I can’t wait for the
next day, when we start building our prototypes and the actual robots.
It has begun! In the morning, we had a breakfast of various sushi
rice and set off for Tokyo Denki University. The school looks very futuristic,
and behold! It has air con so we can take shelter from the sweltering heat.
The final quote from the opening address:
"It's very, very warm every day,
but GO FOR IT, everyone." Yeah whoo!
The brief for IDC Robocon 2012 is given... we have to design robots that
compete in physical haikus. That is, the more items it puts on the haiku board
within a fixed amount of time, the higher our score.
Lots are drawn to determine teams. I'm in navy! Best colour :)
Really nice grape juice drink. Fuel for brain storming!
rest of the day was spent thinking of ideas for our robot. And it's not over
yet! Should we use two robots or one? Have it throw the items or paste them?
Ah, decisions, decisions. My group is having a late night meeting to continue
our discussions. May the force be with us :)
day in Japan: Woke up early for the briefing at the University.
which, we are randomly chosen to form teams.
Got into the red team. Members from various countries like China, Japan, Brazil
a picture of the robots from the past years to get a rough idea how are we
going to design it.
Designing the robot is a difficult task because of the placement of its mechanisms
and other engineering stuff.
forward to the finalised idea of our robots.
Today was the start of the first day of IDC
Robocon. We started off the day with a Japanese style breakfast. We had rice dumplings
of different flavours, some veggies, miso soup and green tea.
After that, we took a train to Tokyo Denki
University. The University just moved into the new campus in April. It really
looks very awesome. The area around the University consists of many small
shophouses that provides a variety of food choices.
We were given a mission to complete a set of Haiku using two
robots. These were some drawings taken from my group’s brainstorming process.
This whole robot building seems foreign to me. I came to Tokyo unprepared and
it took me a while to get used to the terminology used. At the end of the day,
everything went well. I really want to start building our baby soon.
We got our project brief today. It is surprising and not what I
expected as an industrial designer. It is a totally new ball game for me
because it is mainly Engineering and Mechatronics which I am not trained for
but I will still try.
Well, we met our teammates today and we are basically a bunch of
rojak. We have people from the USA, Thailand, China, Japan and ME.
On a lighter
note, everything here is so high-tech, even the toilets and restaurant!
Breakfast with Javier, Olivia, Dr Mohan, Dr Shaohui, Amos
Olivia posing on the bed with her iPad pretending to study. Haha!
Our itinerary! :D (Click on the image for a clearer version)
From orange group :) Sho (from TDU)
Joe and Zhu (from Thailand and Beijing respectively)
Rafael from Brazil
(he's the only one that speaks English quite fluently
- though it's his 2nd language)
Group Orange at the Welcome Party :)
After having the breakfast buffet at the hotel, we proceeded on to Tokyo Denki University
for our brief with regards to our project. After the briefing, we were told to
choose our groups by drawing lots. My group consists of people from Japan,
France and China. Luckily, there isn’t much communication barrier within the
Discussions and discussions for the whole
Soon it’s 4.30pm and we were asked to
clear up the area.
We were invited to the welcome party (with
Okay, stomach filled. Time for a rest!
>> Day 3 - 1st Presentation Day & Building in progress