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SRS Meeting: March 17, 2001.

Renton Technical College, Room H103.

President: Ron Nucci r.nucci@worldnet.att.net
VP/treasurer: Ron Provine ronprovine@home.com
Secretary: Tom Dickens thomas.p.dickens@boeing.com  

Attendance is about 70 plus, with a few new people.

Doug: Robothon - April 28th, 2001.

Only 5 weeks away! Events are scheduled from 10am to 5pm.
We will have access to facilities from 7am to 7pm for
setup and cleanup. We can use help during Robothon, contact
Doug Kelley if you are interested.

The Robothon robot registration page is up and running.
Please register your robots so we can fine-tune the
schedule of the days events.

There is a Friday night hack session on 4/27, 6pm to 10pm.
Come and put the last minute changes on your robot, chat with
other builders, and get ready for the events on Saturday.

We have confirmed 4 seminars which will be given at Robothon.
These are the subjects, the actual titles have not been specified:
- Basics of Sensors
- Embedded Linux for the 68332
- Robot Vision
- Aibo programming

We have Robothon 2001 T-shirts available now for $20.
We also have raffle tickets available. There are nine
different prize packages for the raffle. When you purchase
raffle tickets you target each ticket to a particular prize
Raffle tickets are $1.00 each, $20 for 25 tickets, or $50 for
50 tickets and a Robothon T-Shirt.

Ron N:
Good collection of Robotic papers by Larry Barello:
PARTS, the Portland Robotic Society, is now meeting at
the university of Portland.
They have a limited number of mini-sumo kits available:
Ron showed some current Robotics magazines:
- Robot Science and Technology
- PopTronics
- Circuit Cellar
- Nuts & Volts

Karl: His current project is an RF sensor block, which he is
using to convert his house into a robot (he's tired of building
robot bases). This block has 4 analog and 3 digital inputs,
transmits 4800 BAUD at 433 MHz using 15 volts, and has a 100'
range. He is using his T5000 computer as the base.
The transmitters each send their messages 3 times in short
bursts, with unique addressing info, so multiple units can be
used without problem. See Karl's web-site for details:

Frank: Question. He has an HP scope (solid state) which needs
repair. Any ideas in the Seattle area?
Also brought in his Mechano robot arm, a work in progress which
is progressing well.

Lance: Brought in, from Boeing surplus, a linear servo out of
a Cannon AP300 electric typewriter. These are on sale for $10,
and it is well worth that just for this linear servo.

Ron P.: Robothon finance looking good.
He is organizing a hands-on section at Robothon for kids (even
adult kids), which will be a "robot playpen." This will contain
a number of RC-controlled robots which the "kids" can play with.
We can use more robots for this. Please bring them along and
contact Ron Provine for more info.
In 3/17/2001 paper (Seattle Times, Business Section) was an
article titled "Robot lays conduit for cable in city's sewer pipes."

(one long URL) http://archives.seattletimes.nwsource.com/cgi-bin/texis/web/vortex/display?slug=sewerrobot17&date=20010317&query=robot+sewer  

We are seeing more and more common uses of robots in everyday
life, and this is a great example of this.

AAAI contest in Seattle in August 2001.
The 2001 International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence
and Innovative Applications of Artificial Intelligence Conference
August 4-10, 2001 in Seattle, Washington.
Information about the conference is located at the IJCAI site.

Also, the 2001 RoboCup soccer contest will be in Seattle
in conjunction with the AAAI/IJCAI conference:

Bob: Brought in a couple of robotic videos for showing after the
meeting. He also brought in a robot build by Battelle in 1982.
It looks at, and solves, a Rubic's cube. It is very quick and
impressive. Bob will bring this to display at Robothon.
Very cool!

Tom: Brought in my current robot project, a walking dragon which
was inspired by Doug Bell's Lego walker. I plan to have it compete
in the grand maze and also in the fire fighting contests. I should
have it for show at Robothon 2001, but realistically am shooting
for Robothon 2002.

Bill: Brought in some pressure variable-resistance ink. See Bill if
you could use some.

Terry: Brought in a robot he found at Value Village. With the name
EMigLio on it, it is a cute 2.5 foot tall robot. He will hack it to
be an autonomous robot. Terry also brought in some catalogs for
give-away at the end of the meeting.

Peter: Brought in a robot he build from the Lego Droid kit he got
at Christmas. A nice progress robot projects!
A tip for SRS supporters. You can order products from Amazon.com
through the SRS web-site and the SRS will get a 5% rebate to help
support club activities. For more information, see:

Pete: Suggested we start planning this year's SRS GEAR (Great
Escape And Robots) outing. It was discussed that we should finalize
the plans after Robothon.

Pete (the other Pete): Mentioned that on April 21 (one week before
Robothon 2001) the 9th annual NorthWest Sumo Contest will be held at
the Edmonds Community College. For more details, see: 
(Editor's note: My sumo robot Leo took first place last year and
earned a good array of prizes. Very cool!)

Doug: Brought in a surplus LED tail-light from C&H sales. It runs
on 120VAC and is very bright (cost was $20). He made an order from
them and also got some encoders and other nice robot odds-and-ends.
See: http://www.aaaim.com/CandH/ 

Ryan: He brought in his robot elephant "Stampy." He has been battling
a weight problem by drilling holes in the clear-plastic body (removing
over 1.5 pounds). The robot has 30 servo motors, is controlled by a
Palm Pilot, and has a Cognachrome vision system (which he won at the
last Robothon). His robot is very close to walking, and he has been
learning through first-hand experience the fine line between range of
motion and power in motorized systems. The current weight of Stampy
is 22 pounds (including 4 pounds of batteries). We all wish Ryan good
luck getting Stampy under control and walking for Robothon.

Larry: Brought in some ATMEL development stuff, see him after the
meeting if interested.

Mark: Has some of his 68332 boards for sale, see him after the meeting.

Jordan: First time member, a 4th grader. He bought in his under-water
robot for show. Very impressive, I'd love to see it in action.

That's it, thanks for a good meeting. We had the SRS Fire Fighting
contest following the meeting, the results were posted on the SRS
listserver. We should have a good showing at Robothon.