Robotics ends the season with South Tech showcase

After two competitions this season, OHS Robotics is taking a step back to show off their bots in a more relaxed robotics showcase.

The showcase has been done before, but this is the first time OHS Robotics Club has attended the event at South Tech School. It gives the group an opportunity to show the public what they have been working on and what robotics is really about. They also hope to encourage new students to join robotics club or FIRST Robotics, which is the organization that OHS’ club competes for.

“It really gives kids a chance to take what they have done and have without the pressure of competition,” Mr. Richard Kling, robotics sponsor and teacher, said.

The showcase will have space for the club to set up a table and display their big bot, which has not been used since a competition three years ago, so the programming and wiring had to be tested. A camera was also added so that the bot can be driven around corners and the operator doesn’t have to follow. There will also be a playing field where groups can have their small bots perform tasks like climbing mountains, picking up objects and pressing buttons. This will allow visitors to see the bots in a competition setting.

“This is our first time doing this showcase,” Kling said. “We are trying all kinds of new things to get our name out there.”

Members of the club are very excited about their work being available for the general public to see. For many, like Sheldon Salins (10) and Hannah Jokuti (10), this is the first time their work has ever been in a showcase.

“I’m honestly very excited for this showcase!” Jokuti said, “I have never done anything like this before. Therefore, I’m happily going into this and am very prepared to try and gain more members. I feel like people see robotics as a very hard sort of thing to do so that kills their interest… Yes, it does have its difficulties and it is hard work, but I don’t think that should stop anyone from joining. It was tons of fun for me. I think if we can get that message out at the showcase, people will be more interested.”

While Jokuti is excited about the future of the club with help from the showcase, Slains can’t wait to display his current work.

“I am excited about showing off the bots we built from scratch and programmed myself,” Salins said.

The OHS Robotics Club hopes for a large crowd and lots of interest in their small bot and improved large bot on Friday, March 7, at 7 pm.