Special Laboratory Subjects in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
(Autonomous Robot Design Competition)
6.270 is a hands-on, learn-by-doing class open only to MIT students, in which participants design and build a robot that will play in a competition at the end of January. The goal for the students is to design a machine that will be able to navigate its way around the playing surface, recognize other opponents, and manipulate game objects. Unlike the machines in Introduction to Design (2.70), 6.270 robots are totally autonomous, so once a round begins, there is no human intervention (in 2.70 the machines are controlled with joysticks).
The goal of 6.270 is to teach students about robotic design by giving them the hardware, software, and information they need to design, build, and debug their own robot. The subject includes concepts and applications that are related to various MIT classes (e.g. 6.001, 6.002, 6.004, and 2.70), though there are no formal prerequisites for 6.270. We've found that people can learn everything they need to know by working with each other, being introduced to some material in class, and mostly, by hacking on their robots.
The students work in teams of two or three. Each team is given the same kit containing various sensors, electronic components, batteries, motors, and LEGO. The kits are handed out in the beginning of January and they have three weeks in which to transform the parts into a working robot.
Our robot: DeLaBalle