Dorkbot:28 Robotics You Can Use


May 3, 2006 - 7:30pm


Center on Contemporary Art, Seattle, WA
6413 Seaview Ave NW
Seattle, WA, 98107



Norm and Eli Sohl on the Vex Robotics Systems
Norm is a long time programmer with experience in mobile devices and 3D graphics. His 12.75 year old son Eli has a background in game programming and Lego Mindstorms. They've done several projects together, including converting an old BattleZone arcade control to work with a PC emulator, and building a Theremin.
In their robotic competitions, Eli usually wins. Recently Norm and Eli have been experimenting with the VEX Robotics Systems, and will present their findings on the good and bad of VEX (why do they call it VEX?). They'll demo their custom RC robots and provide an overview of the VEX starter kits, retail expansion kits, programming systems and VexLABS Pneumatics kits.


David Schilling and Gus Jansson on Lego Mindstorms
David Schilling and Gus Jansson started SMART, the Seattle Mindstorms And Robotic Techies, about five years ago for people interested in the LEGO Mindstorms robotic system. The purpose of the group is to give people a reason to use their Mindstorms kits, a place to show their creations to others, and a place to learn about building and programming their robots. Since the best way to learn something is by doing it, each meeting is focused on a 'mini-challenge' - a simple task that everyone is encouraged to attempt. SMART also puts on public robotic displays from time to time. Last year LEGO started work on a new robotic system to replace the RCX. Among a very small handful of adult Mindstorms fans, they called on David and Gus to participate in a secret group that provided input in the system they were designing. Not only did they get to see early prototypes and a chance to try out the system ahead of time, but they were able to affect some very important changes to the final system.


Rich Olson and other members of Western Allied Robotics
on Combat Robotics
Western Allied Robotics
has been fighting combat robotics throughout the Pacific Northwest since 2002. Robot builder Rich Olson will provide a crash-course on how you can build and fight your own combat robot. Various builders will be present to demonstrate their robots and answer questions. The evening will be concluded with actual robot combat!


Open Dork/Show and Tell

YOU!!! Yes, if you have a project - any project, at any stage of completeness, an idea - any idea, at any stage of bakedness, an artwork - any kind of artwork at any stage of doneness, please do bring it along to the dorkbot meeting and claim your 10 minutes worth of fame after the presenters.