The final day of the Robo-One competition is extremely intense. 150 teams had applied, but only 82 made it into the demonstration round on Saturday where they have only 2 minutes to present their robot in operation and discuss its features in front of the panel of expert judges and hundreds of spectators. Then only the top 32 make the cut and get to come back on Sunday to battle it out in the ring. Early Sunday morning all the finalists were busy upstairs getting their robots in shape for combat . . .
The final 32 competitors included some traditional favorites like Yokozuna Great, Dynamizer, Hajime Robot, and ARIUS, along with some very unique and relatively new robots like Ivre and Layered-X.
Everyone was extremely busy making adjustments, testing and retesting new routines, and getting everything tuned up perfectly. They all knew how tough the competition was.
Yet, inspite of all the rivalry and competition, the general tone and feeling was very open and friendly. And, in more than one case we witnessed, a competitor would reach into his toolbox, pull out a replacement part and offer it to another competitor that desperately needed it.
There was lots of discussion about the fine points and trade-offs of robot design, and at one point they even let us walk one of the robots around the table top.
Here’s what it was like on Sunday morning just before the battles started in earnest: