Robotics Team Update: October 2015

by Chloe Schwartz

The Ingenuity Fest is held every year at the Great Lakes Science Center in downtown Cleveland. It’s a festival that brings together innovators, dreamers, and makers of all kinds, celebrating creativity and all who create. Team 2399 was invited to present again a few weekends ago, and on the Saturday morning that the pier area opened to the public, the weather was freezing, and any vendor who sold hot chocolate was doing good business. My first impression of Ingenuity was a conglomeration of interests and ideas, coming together to create a concentration of energy and excitement that was impossible to resist. Although it rained through all of Saturday, Sunday was warm and clear, and I took off my hat with a smile as yet another passerby asked if our robot actually had wheels on wheels.

Offseason for robotics has just ended, and preseason is up and running. Rookies (of whom there are many, and all of whom are wonderful) have begun to learn about computerized design and the basics of the machinery available in the new IDEA Lab. We’re on schedule to create a cool piece of engineering before the semester’s end, veterans and new members alike learning as much as they can before build season kicks off. The past few meetings have involved safety testing on the high power machines in the back of the lab, including the sander, the vertical band saw, and the lathe. There’s also been a training session for First Lego League (FLL) volunteers at University of Akron, which many Unicorns attended.

Of course, preseason is just the beginning. The teaser for the 2016 competition has already been released, and after winter break build season and competition season will begin. For now, we have the chance to relax, learn, and innovate to our hearts’ content. Keep an eye out for us around the Cleveland area as we attend maker faires, workshops, and school events to help get kids interested in STEAM. We’re off to a great start, so stay tuned for more updates!

Image credit: http://www.teenlibrariantoolbox.com/2015/10/a-look-at-the-akron-public-library-mini-maker-faire/