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[January 21, 2013]
Tic-tac-toe-playing robots storm Penn State York
YORK, Pa., Jan 21, 2013 (York Daily Record - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) -- In an atmosphere akin to pro wrestling, hundreds of school students from as far away as New York, New Jersey and Delaware converged on the Penn State York campus to do battle with their hand-built robots on Saturday.
It wasn't killerbotz, but something more cerebral -- three dimensional tic-tac-toe.
For "Ring It Up," the FIRST Tech Challenge South Central Pennsylvania Regional Qualified, teams were randomly partnered in alliances -- blue and red -- on a 12-by-12-foot field and scored by placing plastic donuts on an upright grid.
Each match began with a 30-second opportunity for an autonomous attempt by each robot to place a ring on a designated peg. Teams were challenged with writing a code that would guide their robots -- without human control -- to place the ring.
Then followed a two-minute period where the robots were remote controlled. Robot-checking -- running into an opponent to dislodge the plastic rings or block the placement of the rings -- appeared to be part of the game plan.
Each alliance then had 30 seconds to have one robot lift the other robot at least one inch off of the floor for additional points.
Winners of the third robotic competition held at Penn State York were: CHS Cougars, Columbia High School, Maplewood, N.J.; Landroids, Livingston Robotics Club, Livingston, N.J.; and MASH, Friends of 401, West Vincent, Pa.
Regional qualifiers from Saturday's event go on to state competition at Millersville University on March 2. State qualifiers go on to the national championship in St. Louis.
Related Students to test who's got the smartest artificial intelligence at Saturday event ___ (c)2013 York Daily Record (York, Pa.) Visit York Daily Record (York, Pa.) at www.ydr.com Distributed by MCT Information Services
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