Class Meeting 03: Obstacle Course

Learning Goals

Warmup Activity

Discuss with your groupmates how you would design a ClicBot and controller for the following obstacles. What design features should you prioritize? What type of controller would you use? Would you use rotational motion, steering, or demo motions?:

The Course

Today all groups will be using the same obstacle course in a competition to score the most points. The base amount of points is determined by how fast you finish the course. The group that finishes the maze fastest gets 80 points, second fastest gets 70, third fastest gets 60. Everyone else who finishes the course gets 50 points. If your ClicBot cannot complete the course you don't get any base points (Your group can attempt the course more than once). Bonus points are awarded as follows:

  1. [+50] Crawling over the stairs
  2. [+15] Each foam cube pushed into the goal zone
  3. [+10] Circling the slalom pole, per full rotation without hitting the walls or the pole
  4. [-10] Knocking down walls or other obstacles, per incident
Obstacle Course

Designing Your ClicBot and Controller

Take your time desigining your ClicBot! Discuss with your group mates what strategy you want to use. Which bonus points do you want to go for? How should you prioritize parts? You're limited to what's available in your kit, which may make some configurations difficult.

Once your team has a strategy, take the time to build your robot configuration. Pay attention to the way the joints move to make sure you're getting the desired motions before saving your ClicBot configuration and saving all your motions - for example, if you get started assigning motions to your steering wheel, but then realize an arm is configured wrong, you'll have to start over once you've rebuilt your ClicBot "correctly".

One thing to think about is how you make your ClicBot turn. The instructions for the steering wheel in the last class had you use what's called a differential turn where the wheel orientation changes, but there are other turn varieties (see below). Try experimenting to see which turn type you think is best for your strategy.

turn types

Try it out!

But first! Give your robot a name! We'll use it to keep track of the score.

Your team can attempt the course as many times as you like, but groups that haven't had as many chances to test will get priority. Feel free to make changes to your controller or to your robot configuration between attempts. We are expecting to see at least one improvement to your system during today's class, make sure to share what you've changed or updated with a member of the course staff.

Good luck and have fun!

Requirements to Meet Expectations for Today's Class