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    SoR Robot Tutorial Contest

    $200+ IN PRIZES!!!

    October 2009 Winners
    1st - Pratheek - An advanced line following robot with PID control
    2nd - Asellith - ExMod The experimental module development platform
    3rd - dellagd - How to make a wall-avoiding robot with the BS2 board
    other entries here

    March 2009 Winners
    1st (tie) - Canabots - Build Your Own Micro RC Surveillance Robot
    1st (tie) - TrickyNekro - LiPo Protection Circuit with kill switch
    3rd - Bangarang - B.A.H.X.
    other entries here

    August 2008 Winners:
    1st (Axon MCU) - airman00 - Butler Robot
    2nd (Axon MCU) - Ro-Bot-X - Balancing Bot
    3rd ($20/off Axon MCU) - dolinay - 6-Legged Walking Robot
    Honorable Mention (no prize) - sotu - Eye Biped Bot
    other entries here

    March 2008 Winners:
    1st (Axon MCU) - airman00 - Line Following, Obstacle Avoiding
    2nd ($100) - Pratheek - $40 Robot
    other entries here

    October 2007 Winners:
    1st ($100) - Brandon121233 - Build a wall avoiding robot!
    2nd ($100) - Ro-Bot-X - VCR Robot
    Hon. Mention (DVD) - TrickyNekro - How to turn a bulldozer into a tank-like robot
    other entries here


    Stolen Life
    The 'Stolen Life' DVD, a dark robot detective story starring Claudia Black of Stargate and Farscape.

    About the Contest:
    Ever wanted to build a robot but was always too student-like (poor) to buy parts? Here is your chance. The SoR Robot Tutorial Contest is an internet competition. Everyone builds a robot, posts details of it, and the community votes on which robot is best. The winners get a check, and thats it!

    1st Place will get an Axon II, 2nd Place will get an original Axon, and 3rd will get $20. 1st and 2nd can opt for cash value instead. 3rd place will only be given out for a high quality tutorial, not just a default. As an added bonus, all contestants get 10mb free webspace to post/share their robots online.

    The Two Rules
    1) Build a neat robot. It could be any kind of robot - a biped, a sumo robot, a sailing robot, or even a flying robot.

    2) Write a really good tutorial on your robot and post it on the members tutorials section. This means post pics, video, schematics, designs, source code, etc.

    FRC Calendar

    Due Date
    There are several dates of importance to note.

    January 1st, 2010 - This is the first due date. You must apply for a webspace account, as well as declare your entry with one or two pics/videos of your robot, by this date. Your robot doesnt need to be working yet, but I need to know who is competeting so I can set up your account and the voting structure. This is also a good way to keep you from procrastinating.

    February 4th, 2010 - All submissions must be fully made by this date. I chose this date to give contestants all winter break to build their robot, yet not conflict with school/university. Make it the summer that changes your life (if making a robot would do such a thing).

    February 5th, 2010 - Voting opens to the public!

    March 10th, 2010 - Voting closes, and winners are announced. I will contact the winners for address info to mail them a prize.

    Robot Funding

    There will be two prizes. 1st Prize (Community Award) will be determined by a community vote. Every SoR member will get 2 or 3 votes (additional votes if there are many contestants). Yes, you can vote for your own robot.

    The 2nd Prize (Admins Award) and 3rd (honorable mention) will be determined by me, based on my below guide to winning. I can choose not to have a 3rd prize. I reserve the right to choose 2nd and 3rd place despite the public vote results.

    Guide to Winning

    Guide to Winning
    There are a few metrics I will use to judge your robot, and I encourage voters to go by. Keep each in mind when documenting your robot.

      Engineering - I will judge your robot based on how well you engineered it. There is a huge difference between a robot thrown together with duct tape, and one planned out really well on paper or CAD. I will determine how well you engineered your robot in three ways: pics of your robot, plans/designs posted, and an optional shake test. If you can supply a video of you violently shaking your robot, then putting it on the ground and it still works, thats huge bonus points. =P

      Repeatability - Creators of semi-functional robots like to only show videos of their robot working. I discourage you filming your robot a dozens times, then posting the only video of the robot when it actually worked correctly. Tell me how well it works. Tell me the failure rate. Tell me why. If your robot does something unbelievable, have it do it multiple times in a single un-edited shot.

      Originality - Ive seen many robots in my day, and would like to be impressed. New ideas that others can use on their robots is really useful. You should explain any original ideas you have in a manner that others can copy.

      Tutorial Quality - This is a metric that judges your ability to convey your knowledge to others. Have decent grammar/spelling (please spell check!), good step-by-step pictures, good text spacing. Images and video are great ways to compliment complicated information. Include as much information you can about your robot to help others learn from it. Your source code should be well commented, and easy to understand, too. And dont forget a parts list, total cost to you, and time it took for you to make the robot!

      Usefulness - If your robot can acheive some useful function, practical or not, this will earn you extra bonus points. Examples would be a robo-maid, beer getter, or newspaper fetcher. What good is there in advancing science if there isnt a reason to do it?

    Blue Robot Chasing Carrot on a Stick

    My motivation for creating and funding this competition
    Robotics is known for people 'reinventing the wheel'. Everyone who makes a robot basically starts from scratch when it comes to writing software, designing electronics, etc. I would like to change that. I would like to make it easier for a beginner to start making robots. I would like to create a huge community of robotics enthusiasts to allow communication and collaboration, benefiting even the more advanced builders. This is my goal. And in return, everyone wins (not just those who get the checks).

    Additional Notes
    During voting IP's will be logged and emails cross-checked. If any cheating is discovered, that contestant will be automatically disqualified and banned from all future SoR events. (sorry, but it only takes one person to ruin it for all of us)

    If by chance there is a very large number of contestants, there will be a 4th place prize. As such, inviting others to compete won't hurt you! If you are a robotics company that would like to sponsor this and future SoR robot competitions, please contact me!

    Questions on the competition? Post them in the forum.

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