Technology comes alive
A robot dancing to heavy metal music has won a group of Samuel Marsden computing students a national robot battle, but it was touch and go whether the machine would get there in one piece.
Year 11 and 12 students Josh Prow, Adam Deery, Autumn Prow and Tim Clarke beat out dozens of other students to place first in the ‘‘robot theatre’’ category at Dunedin’s Robocup on September 8.
Their robot, made largely of Lego, rocked out with a drum kit, guitar and flashing lights to Linkin Park song No More Sorrow.
The team, who named themselves Marsden Park in tribute to the band, had a hard road getting to the competition at Forsythe-Barr Stadium.
They nearly forgot their robot on the way to the airport, and were dismayed to discover it had been smashed to pieces on the baggage carousel.
‘‘By the time we got down it was in so many pieces.
‘‘We spent hours rebuilding it,’’ Autumn said.
Quick repairs meant the robot was fighting fit on stage.
The team’s win was a real boost and they are now planning to rebuild their robot for the international Robocup in Holland next June.
Marsden IT teacher Pravin Vaz says students start robotics in year 8 classes, which are a great way to make technology come alive. The school has a weekly ICT club at lunchtimes, where most ideas are born.
The school’s year 8 Robocup team, Bumblebees 2 da Rescue – Jack England, Aidan Fransen and Cameron Abbott – came sixth in their category.