Date & Location 30 October 1999 Tech America 5600 Buford Highway Doraville, GA Meeting Attendance (21) Officers present Barry Ward, President Frank Borowiec, Vice President Charlie Oldham, Secretary Club Business Barry Ward announced that nominations for club officers are still open and invited additions. Daniel Schaeffer, a current Vice President, regretfully declined the nomination for next year due to his becoming a Georgia Tech student. This leaves the nominations as: Barry Ward President Frank Borowiec Vice President Richard Bodor Secretary Clint Bridges Treasurer (tentative; not yet accepted) Calvin Grier announced plans for the Robot Rally Contest. The competition will take place 5 February 2000. There will be three competitions: the vacuum contest, an open competition, and a Lego Mindstorms competition. Sci-Trek will provide the same space for the competition as last year but tables and work areas may be in an adjacent room. Sci-Trek has changed its entire staff since last year. If you enter a robot in the competition, you get free admission to Sci-Trek and possibly a discount for one other person. Problems with the club web page have prevented competition details from being updated but this should be fixed soon. Online registration for the competition is already up and working, however. The contest committee will meet sometime prior to the event to finalize plans. Porter Sadler has not finalized the rules for the Mindspring competition yet but is thinking of having multiple venues such as line following and maze solving. Barry Ward announced that the Stone Mountain Ham Fest is next weekend. Frank Borowiec called for people interested in working at the robot rally to let him know so they can be contacted prior to the contest committee meeting. Show & Tell Calvin Grier showed his Grow-Bot (Parallax Kit, $165.00). It includes a preprogrammed BASIC Stamp2 and even includes diagnostic routines. The robot uses two modified servo motors as drive motors. Lester Davis showed Bot Bert II which started off as Shop Bot. It is approximately 18" in diameter. It has a built-in PC with a hard drive and a floppy disk drive. It uses a power supply from a laptop; 12 VDC in and multiple voltages out. The "head" can be rotated 180 degrees. Vertical 22" panels are mounted with bumper switches at top and bottom all the way around the circumference of the robot. The panels are made of lexan and required heating before bending to shape. Several different heating methods were tried with varying degrees of success. The drive motors were from Herbach & Rademann and were assemblies that included the wheels already mounted on the motors. These motors draw about 14 amps at 12 VDC. Software is written in C and the operating system is Mandrake Linux. Barry Ward showed his robot built on the Robot Project Base. He designed, built, and tested a power supply to support hard drive, keyboard, mouse, and motherboard with built-in sound and video. He also showed a "Furby" that he bought for $30 at Target. The Furby contains examples of how simple sensors can be used to interface a robot to its environment and have it display certain behaviors. Technical Presentation Len Burleson brought part of the Southern Polytechnical University's entry in the International Aerial Robotics Competition. He has previously shown us the Helicopter; this time it was a ground-based Rover that is also part of the competition. Video The first video showed part of the 1997 International Aerial Robotics Competition that Southern Polytech had entered. A second tape showed video that was transmitted from the Rover while it was traversing the competition site. This video transmission was meant to be used as reconnaissance by the Helicopter to help it locate various targets. Monthly Contest The line-following contest was not held due to a lack of competitors.