I went back in Romania from the States in 2006 and the only robotic contest I found was RobotX, national qualifications for Eurobot. I was a one man team, with a Lego Robot. Using Lego to build a robot was something new to Romania and that piqued interest amongst the students and professors in the audience. I had a pretty complex robot that used lots of sensors and motors and had some cool mechanical linkages and gears to transfer motion from one motor to different outputs. The robot did not work as expected, but it was cool. There were only 3 teams participating that year, and all of us had trouble with our robots, but we all still qualified for the international competition held in Catania, Italy. Before I went there, I have redesigned my robot, simplifying it a lot, to make sure I score some points, otherwise I would not be allowed to participate in the qualification rounds. I managed to do that and after 5 qualifying rounds I got close to the end of the list. I didn’t expect much, as it’s hard to compete against 2000-3000 Euro robots. But I had fun and I generated interest in using Lego to build robots in Romania.
The theme of the contest was Golf. The robots had to collect white balls and place them in the holes marked with it’s own color. If a black ball was found in a hole, the robot could choose to get it out, so it would not get deducted points. There were a few balls on the field, but more balls could be released by making contact between 2 metalic rings on the totem poles situated on the play field. The robot that had more points at the end of 90 seconds won the match.
Here is the first version of the robot, that participated in Bucarest, Romania:
Here is the second version of the robot, that participated in Catania, Italy:
I also had to make a poster presenting my team and the robot: