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RoboChamps is a simulated robotics league that is open to academics, hobbyists, and developers from around the world. RoboChamps demonstrates the power of the Microsoft platform to enable a broad range of developers to explore new ways to use .NET for robotics programming. RoboChamps is built on top of the Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio (MSRDS) 2008 CTP, and uses that product’s robust, physics-enabled simulation environment to remove the barriers of entry that exist for many today. This simulated league provides you with immersive 3-D environments, simulated versions of robots, and compelling scenario-specific challenges where they can win real robots. The audience for this is breadth, including professional, hobbyist, and academic developers. For those that don’t see the connection to the Enterprise, MSRDS is being picked up and used in compelling scenarios by the likes of MySpace.
The focus of the contest is robotics and Microsoft Robotics Developer Studio 2008 (and its underlying technologies of CCR/DSS), The infrastructure uses a fair amount of Microsoft technologies: Silverlight 2, ASP.NET 3.5, Windows Communications Foundation (WCF) including REST and MTOM services, LINQ, Windows Live ID, Silverlight Streaming, .NET Framework 3.5, Visual Studio 2008, Expression Blend, IIS, and Expression Encoder.
RoboChamps also generates its own API keys so developers can compete and have their code tie into the site’s services, provides community with ‘robocards- rich SL cards that are exposed to be readily consumable on blogs, websites or third-party networks like Facebook. Advertising also plays a big role with sponsorship, ‘in world’ ads with Massive, and Silverlight Streaming is targeted for the video podcast.
For more information, see the RoboChamps site, a video on Channel 9, a podcast on .NET Rocks, and a video on On10.