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#62490
I thought this might be a better place to discuss the Competition on April 15th, 2008.

I'm lucky to live nearby, so I scouted the course out a bit. (Actually, I've scouted twice - I hope I'm not freaking them out!) I didn't try to think of everything... just the ideas that I thought I might pursue. So, here is my flickr set of photos showing some details not visible from the satellite photo.

I worry that the East and West sides might be too narrow for gps navigation alone, but I could be wrong. I didn't measure the exact width, but it's slightly wider than a normal car lane.
By bcr
#62639
1. Are hand/catapult launches OK, or do UAVs have to do a takeoff roll from a stopped position on the ground? Do UAVs have to land autonomously (+ successfully?), or is a complete lap followed by a human landing/crash still counted?

2. Can a bot still win with an outside, around-the-building lap, even if the contest officially moved inside for the pathetic ground bots? :P

3. If #2 is no, will you allow fixed wing and/or rotor flight inside the building? 1m electric quadrotors? Gas TRex600? Kerosene 1/3 scale jets? :D
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By sparky
#62803
Hey guys,

Morcheeba - awesome set of photos to give people an idea of what pitfalls the route may hold. Someone should add a 'snow' set.

Couple things:

1) Please register. The $30 is a double action thing. It allows us to know how many people will be attending so that we can plan for things like chips and beer. And secondly, the 30-bucks means you have skin in the game. If we made registration $0, people would register, and then when they failed to get their bot working the night before, they would not show up. We want people to come!

2) The registration is limited to 20 teams simply because we don't know how many people are interested and how many we think we can handle. 20 sounded like a good starting point.

3) Entry Deadline is 2 days in advance. April 13th.

4) The weather will have to be really bad to make us move it inside so I haven't really thought about the inside course. We've got a very large (8,000 sq ft open space) that we will probably create fake walls out of card board or something. No solid plans yet.

5) We are not going to be intentionally adding obstacles around the building. There may be cars parked in the way. Maybe not.

6) Vehicle does not have to stop on the finish line, only cross it (at near warp speed).

-Nathan
By macoklein
#62863
http://www.bubbleshare.com/album/528292/overview

This is a GeoChron generated track of three laps around the SFE building on a bike. I tried to stay as close to the curb as i could but there was a car parked on the north side of the building so i had to avoid it. The yellow track represents where i was biking and the green track is the GPS position. Please note i did not have WAAS enabled.

This should give an idea of what to expect from GPS.
By morcheeba
#63025
Thanks, macoklein - that's really useful!

I remember back in the old days of GPS (back before all the satellites were up and, depending on where they were in the sky, you might not get a fix) I walked around our building and was surprised to see it vaguely square-shaped (as opposed to just a bunch of noise). Wow times have changed!
By hoofinasia
#63389
Just to be sure: 20 isn't the actual max? I'm scrounging up some fellow students, but it'll take a few weeks.
By Joe P
#66233
Oh wow, this sounds so fun... I'm devastated that I live in South Carolina, and can't participate...
By ryowens84
#66415
Unfortunately we are limiting this competition to 20 teams. Hopefully in the future we'll be able to host larger competitions, but as this is our first one we don't want to get in over our heads.

On the other hand, though, there is no limitation on how many people can be on your team; it's just you can only have one car per team.
By puppetboy
#66973
How big can the vehicle be ? Will there be cars outside that can be destroyed ? What is the maximum elevation the vehicle can operate at ? What is the minimum ? Have all 20 slots been filled ?
By puppetboy
#66974
So if my vehicle takes off and flies around the building following the roof outline, how far out does it have to be ?
By zlite
#68332
Here are some hotel recommendations from Nathan:

Depends on your budget:

Anything downtown is very nice, but >~$150: St. Julian, Hotel Boulderado. Downtown (7th and Walnut) is where I live, and is a great place for walking to food, beer, nightlife. 15 minute drive to SparkFun.

Millennium harvest house is nice, big hotel. ~$135.

Boulder mariott - $220. Never mind.

http://www.twinlakesinnboulder.com/

Boulder Twin Lakes Inn - ~$70. I had not heard of this place before searching, but it looks really pretty nice, and within a mile of SparkFun.

It's about 50 minute drive from DIA to Boulder. I'd recommend GPS if you've got it.
By zlite
#68335
bcr wrote:1. Are hand/catapult launches OK, or do UAVs have to do a takeoff roll from a stopped position on the ground? Do UAVs have to land autonomously (+ successfully?), or is a complete lap followed by a human landing/crash still counted?
Nathan says that's fine. As long as it crosses the start line autonomously and then crosses the finish line autonomously, it doesn't matter how it was launched or lands. This contest is more about having fun and trying cool things than rules.
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By FartingMonkey92
#68375
Lol... I was waiting for someone to comment about that. Brilliant.
By The_Todd
#68494
sparky wrote: 4) The weather will have to be really bad to make us move it inside so I haven't really thought about the inside course. We've got a very large (8,000 sq ft open space) that we will probably create fake walls out of card board or something. No solid plans yet.

5) We are not going to be intentionally adding obstacles around the building. There may be cars parked in the way. Maybe not.
Weather and parked cars will have a hard time stopping my autonomous snowplow!