A total of 87 robot teams from 11 universities from across Indonesia participated in the Roboline Follower Contest organized by the Department of Electrical Engineering Faculty of Engineering, UGM, on Saturday (24/7). Other teams came from UGM, ITB, Jakarta State Polytechnics, Trisakti University and Padjajaran University.
Roboline Follower Contest is an activity held annually, this time with the theme of Techno Corner UGM. In this competition, the robots raced one another on the path of black stripes. In addition to its ability to move fast, the robot must be able to read the black lined track to make it run in line.
The competition that was held on the ground floor of Engineering Department since Saturday morning has been filled by the participating teams. One at a time they tested the ability of each robot to be the fastest to reach the finish. Not all the robots managed to complete the job though. There were even a few of them getting stuck in the middle of the track. For those that managed to reach the finish, they will be brought to the grand jury table to be assessed for accuracy on the track and the timing. The panel of jury that consisted of four students is also assessing the design of each robot.
There is something unique in this time competition. A girl wearing a headscarf was passing in the middle of the arena. She was watching and following her robot running in the middle of the track. Her presence attracted other participants. In the field, not only the girl who looked excited, the other participants gave their support to the "beautiful tortoise" to be able to finish the job. This name is not a nickname for the girl, it is the name of her robot. Her robot, at a first glance, looks similar to turtles. The turtle robot is painted pink, so it looks more attractive.
"Because I'm a woman, this robot turtle has been painted pink to make it more beautiful. At first, we painted it green in the previous contest, and then we changed it to pink," said Rida Maulani, the robot team’s participant from Padjadjaran University, Bandung. The turtle robot, said Rida, was inspired when she saw the tissue box in her home. Because the tissue box has a slightly curved shape like a turtle shell, then Rida and two of her friends, Marni Noviati and Popi Khoirunnisa, implemented her ideas by creating a turtle-like robot. Since the robot design is quite unique, Rida did not expect to win in the best robot design category. "I don't expect to win in this competition; it’s more about experience to participate in a contest. I'm more interested in the design, because (the robot) is rather unique," said the student majoring in computer engineering who had spent approximately IDR250,000 to make her turtle robot.
Committee chairman, Indra Perdana, on the sidelines of the race admitted that the competition apart from selecting three winners will also pick a robot with the best design. Each will get a commemorative inscription and coaching cash prize. Although the prizes are not much in amount, but the competition is an effort to support the preparation of all teams that will participate in the Indonesia Intelligent Robots Contest next year. "The goal is to increase students' competitiveness in similar robot competitions as a first step to participate in the next Indonesian Intelligent Robot Contest," said the UGM student majoring in Electrical Engineering class of 2008.