“LOGO MOTION™” Revealed at SBPLI’s 2011 FIRST® Robotics Competition Regional Game Kickoff

LOGO MOTION Revealed at SBPLI's 2011 First Robotics Competition Regional Game Kickoff

Students watch the live transmission from FIRST headquarters in New Hampshire to learn about the new game “LOGO MOTION™” during the FIRST Robotics kickoff at Stony Brook University’s Javits Center on January 8.

More than 500 teenagers from Long Island and metropolitan New York-area schools converged at the Javits Center at Stony Brook University for a local kickoff of the FIRST® Robotics Competition (FRC®) where they learned details of a new robotics game called “LOGO MOTION™.”

“It’s not just about robots,” said FIRST founder Dean Kamen. “It’s about building self-confidence, respect and important relationships with people who invent new technologies to make a better future.”

Working with adult Mentors, FRC teams must determine their strategy and have six weeks to build, program, and test their robots to meet the season’s engineering challenge. In the game “LOGO MOTION™,” two alliances of three teams compete on a 27-by-54-foot playing field with poles, attempting to earn points by hanging as many triangle, circle and square logo pieces as possible. Bonus points will be earned for each robot that can hang and assemble logo pieces to form the FIRST logo. Robots can also deploy Mini-Bots to climb vertical poles for a chance to earn additional points.

Through collaboration with LEGO® Education, a new opportunity to earn extra points is available to teams if they design, build and deploy a FIRST® Tech Challenge Mini-Bot from their primary robot. For the first time in the history of the program, FRC will allow the use of the two robotic building systems from the FIRST® LEGO League and FIRST Tech Challenge programs: LEGO MINDSTORMS® and TETRIX®.

At Saturday’s kickoff, teams were shown the game field and received a kit of parts made up of motors, batteries, a control system, a PC, and a mix of automation components — but no instructions. Once these young inventors create a robot, their teams participate in competitions that measure the effectiveness of each robot, the power of collaboration, and the determination of students.

This weekend’s FRC kickoff was sponsored by School-Business Partnerships of Long Island, Inc. (SBPLI), which has also sponsored the Long Island Regional FRC for the past twelve years, and Stony Brook University. Sponsors provide resources including time and talent from professional mentors, services, equipment, financial contributions, and/or volunteers.

“This proves to be an exciting time for the students and the mentors when they learn the name and the rules of the game for this year’s FIRST Robotics Competition,” said Janet Anderson, Acting President, SBPLI. “We are very proud to present the FRC kickoff as we prepare for the upcoming Long Island Regional FRC in March.”

During the 2011 season, 50 teams from Long Island, New York City, upstate New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania will convene at Hofstra University for the Long Island Regional FIRST Robotics Championship (FRC) on March 24-26, culminating in the 2010 FIRST Championship on April 28-30 at the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis, Missouri.

“The next six weeks will be crucial for these students as they design and construct their robots for this competition,” Ms. Anderson said. “The Long Island Regional FIRST Robotics Competition showcases the talents of these students who learn not only the basic technological aspects of building their robots, but also about other concepts such as teamwork, problem solving and gracious professionalism.”