Robothon 2009


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Beautiful Seattle sky with the Space Needle in the foreground. Weather was great!

This past weekend, SparkFun descended upon Seattle for Robothon 2009 - a celebration of all things robot hosted by the Seattle Robotics Society! SparkFun sent a group of representatives to enter into a few competitions, run a SparkFun booth, and check out what people are up to in robotics! Needless to say, the weekend was a blast.

Competitions didn't start until Saturday, but SparkFun arrived in Seattle on Friday to do a bit of a meet-and-greet and check out the competition. After getting settled in the hotel and checking out a little of the Seattle night-life, SparkFun was ready for a weekend of robotic olympics!

SparkFun tech support guru Tim had two robots that competed on Saturday - one in a line-following competition and the other in the mini -sumo event. A misunderstanding of the rules (we thought it was a white mat with a black circle, not a black mat with a while circle) gave the SparkFun sumo some problems. The line-following robot faired much better though and took home 2nd Place, with Team Mexico coming in 1st! Way to go, Tim!

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Tim with his two robots, proudly displaying his 2nd Place ribbon.

Sunday was the main event, with the combat robots entering the ring for a "to-the-death" cage match. The arena was set-up in the Seattle Center right by the Space Needle - a pretty cool place to hang out!

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The set-up in the Seattle Center food court. Robots and Orange Julius?! Sign me up!

In its first fight, the aptly named SparkFun Doomba met Shag, a lightning-quick robot powered by four (4!) DeWalt drill motors. This thing was f-a-s-t! Its first hit dented the Doomba's aluminum paneling and locked our wheels. From then on, it essentially could have its way with the Doomba, batting it around like a hockey puck. Let it be known, however, that when Shag delivered its final hit, it was so hard that it shut off its own motors! Had Doomba still been able to move...we would've won! That's something, right?

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The control for the Doomba. No kittens were harmed during the making of our robot.

The second match was...uh...interesting. After some repairs, Doomba was ready to enter the ring against...T-Bone? Uh-oh. This doesn't look good.

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The Doomba, closely resembling an opened tin can, after its second match.

Yeah, that's the aftermath after the second "fight" (can we call it a fight?). T-Bone had a huge blade which sliced into Doomba like a hot knife through butter, shattering several of our wheels and bending our support screw like it wasn't even there. We were done for!

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Team SparkFun represent! Check out our great jerseys.

All in all, it was a great weekend in beautiful Seattle! We got to meet several of our customers and had a blast! We want to give a heartfelt thank you to the Seattle Robotics Society for hosting such an awesome event! Hope to see everyone out there next year!

Comments 8 comments

  • Seattle is a pretty cool place… did you all fly up there or drive?
    that would be a nice drive this time of year.
    ::sigh:: i miss colorado………….

    • We flew out on Friday, and were back in the Seattle airport around 4:30am on Monday morning. Busy weekend! But a ton of fun!

  • I have a fetish for those pelican cases. Ever considered stocking them?

    • It would be Great if they had these
      preferibly a few different sizes from small to large
      Plex you may need some help :?

  • dude!!!
    in that 1st side picture of tim, he looks like austin powers……
    :)

  • Fun fact: after a long day of robot competition, the word “Desroy” actually means the same thing as “Destroy.” I’m an ecksellent speler I sware.


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