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German Open (Setup) Day 1

Yesterday morning (Wednesday) we arrived in the lab early in the morning and drove to RoboCup German Open in Magdeburg. After arriving and unloading the cars, the first task was to inspect the playing field. As you know this year’s rules require a new, more challenging ball (at least 50% white, not the uniform orange color from the previous years) and new all-white goals (previously yellow) which we could already test at the Iran Open earlier this month. The third big change this year is the artificial grass. At Iran Open the turf was easily manageable, however in Magdeburg they picked a challenging one. Certified for FIFA games, this turf will require a lot of new skills from the robots of all teams.

The new artificial grass field at German Open

The new artificial grass field at German Open

At the end of the day, we have verified and slightly improved our robot software for the new tasks. Our new ball detection algorithm works remarkably well and we seem to see the ball (at least for now) much better than most of the other teams. We also tested our updated walking algorithm, and are confident that we will be able to handle the high and challenging grass in that regards. Unfortunately, and quite surprisingly, the robot motions for standing back up after a fall stopped working. It worked on the comparatively similar turf we tried back home, so this came quite as a shock (incidentally many of the other teams have/had similar problems). This is something we will have to work on today.

Alan relaxing on the grass.

Alan relaxing on the grass.

Emmy checking out the goals at German Open

Emmy checking out the goals at German Open

We don’t know the game schedule yet, as only five out of six teams have arrived. Depending on whether the last team will come to German Open or not, the preliminaries will either be split into two 3-team groups (with each team having to play 2 games) or a large 5-team group (requiring each team to play 4 games). It seems games will start Friday afternoon either way and continue on Saturday, with the semi-finals in the afternoon.

P.S.: Starting Friday morning, RoboCup German Open will be open (with free entrance) to the public.

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