30 jan Team Norway 2017
Team Norway consists of seven students from local upper secondary schools, Thora Storm, Ole Vig and Strinda. Everyone on the team is between 17 and 18 and our mentor Ole Einar is also 19 years old which makes him one of the youngest mentor in the whole challenge. As additional mentors, we have Bodil from the local STEM center, “Talentsenteret”, and Kåre from the center of innovative youth “Ungt entrepenørskap”.
All the primary team members get to meet at Strinda, and do all the building there. There we have the space and the tools needed to shape and assemble the parts. We even have a mockup of the playing field; compete with bridge and a bar for lifting the robot off the ground. We’ve all done our parts to assemble and program the robot, and are now, at the time of writing, entering the “testing and practice”-phase. Some have focused on the building and design, while others have written and tuned the code. The students take different courses in school and have varying amounts of experience with robot building. Three of us plan on going to university, and normally do theoretical tasks. The other four study to become electricians, specializing in automation. They therefore have a lot of practical experience with motors, servos, batteries and rig assembly. There is a bit of an overlap, though, with one of the first three having attended the First Lego League, and one of the last four doing some of the programming.
The team had never met before, but those from the same schools knew each other already. The creation of the team went mostly smoothly, with a few minor bumps and inconveniences. The Norwegian team was put together really quickly, without much planning. Therefore there had been some stress in the process, not only in building the robot, but also in getting sponsors involved and raising the funds needed for traveling.
Looking back at our progress, I at least, don’t have a clue how we got to where we are now. Several designs have come and go, building on previous iterations, slowly improving the robot. Not everyone has agreed on everything, and some of the ideas proposed were did in fact turn out to be ineffective. With varying levels of smugness we’ve combined our experiences, and all attempts made have undoubtedly given us valuable experiences shaping the current design. We’ve now used almost all the metal bars supplied, with only a few cutoffs to spare.