Microsoft Switzerland Academic Team launched You Make IT Smart robotics campaigns in October 2008. As a part of the campaign we promised to give away up to 300 LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT for full-time students and faculty members of Swiss educational institutions to enable hands-on experiences on embedded development with Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio and robotics hardware. Over the past months hundreds of students have been participating to various campaign activities, such as Robotics Simulation Online Exercise, Imagine Cup and Academic events.
As a latest step in the You Make IT Smart campaign, we organized Robotics Expo, parallel to Swiss Imagine`09 Cup Finals, in Holiday Inn Bern on Friday 8th May 2009. Idea of the Expo was to give students a chance to show what kind of innovative ideas they have been able to realize with their selected hardware and Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio.
The valuable jury of Robotics Expo and Swiss Imagine Cup`09 finals consisted of:
• Prof. Dr. Torsten Braun, University of Bern
• Martin Frieden, gibb - Gewerblich-Industrielle Berufsschule Bern
• Vance Carter, EducaTec AG
• Milan Kubicek, Lead Microsoft Student Partner Bern
• Dr. Marc-Alain Steinemann, Lead Academic Relations, Microsoft Switzerland
Here`s short overview of the projects presented at the event:
1. Place: Alexandru Rusu (EPFL), Bogdan Stroe (EPFL), Dante Stroe (EPFL)
The winner team had developed remote controlled robot using inclination sensor of a mobile phone with wireless video transmission to the PC. As a next step the team had planned also video transmission to the mobile phone. Used hardware included LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT, mobile phone (Nokia) and wireless camera. The project was implemented with VPL, C# and Python technologies. The judges liked the nice mixture of technologies and good realization of the project – the robot was performing perfectly in the demo.
2. Place: Neeraj Adsul (ETHZ), Pradyumna Ayyalasomayajula (EPFL), Neetha Ramanan (Unine)
The team had built a robot that was able to scan books and had a robot arm turning the pages. The project used LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT, webcam and self-build robot arm. Implementation was done with VPL.
3. Place: Alexander Suhl (Hochschule Luzern), Marco Wyrsch (Hochschule Luzern), Meier Stephan (Hochschule Luzern), Philippe Schnyder (Hochschule Luzern),
The team had developed remote controlled robot using inclination sensor of a mobile phone. The project was build with LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT, mobile phone (Windows Mobile) and VPL.
4. Place: Bruno Barbieri (University of Geneva), François Amato (University of Geneva)
The team has built a plotter using LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT brick, Legos and a marker pen. The implementation was done with VPL.
Congratulations for all the winners and competitors!
If you are interested to start working on robotics on your own or with your class, we still have some LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT in distribution via the Robotics Simulation Online Exercise for students and for professors and teachers.
Academic Audience Manager, Microsoft Switzerland