Tuesday, April 10, 2007

NYCFIRST Update #29 – April 10, 2007

NYCFIRST Update #29 – April 10, 2007

A newsletter for the NYCFIRST robotics community in New York City and the surrounding area. If you want to be removed from this list type “remove” in the subject are and hit return.

Compiled by Norman Scott
NYCFIRST Registration coordinator

New blog: http://normsrobotics.blogspot.com/
These newsletters will be available and updates will be posted as they come in. Feel free to comment.

This Update #29 will be the last one for the 2006/07 season.
The new season (07/08) will begin in about 10 days with the announcement of registration for FLL. Look for Update #1.

I had a wonderful time volunteering at the NYC FRC Regionals at the Javits Convention Center in mid-March. If you missed it try to make it in the future.

World Festival is upon us: April 12-14

Atlanta, here I come
I’m off to Atlanta for the World Festival and will send back reports on the blog if I get time. You can watch it at:

From FLL Central

We are pleased to announce that the Friday (4/13) and Saturday (4/14) Nano Quest World FLL Rounds will be broadcast on NASA TV - full details can be found at: http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/index.html.

You can also watch the live webcast of all three days of competition by clicking on: http://robotics.nasa.gov/events/webcasts/nationals_2007.php

Please join in cheering your fellow FLL World Festival teams on!

Events coming up

Young scientists of Mott Hall 3 April 20

2007 Region 4 Robotics Pentathlon: June 9 at Aviation HS

Vision Ed. announces Educational Technology Retreat in NYC! July 31-Aug 3

Richard Wong reports
Some of our NYC Robotics Teams traveled to the 2007 Long Island Regional and came back with some great wins!

Team 1594- HennBrearChap
Hennessy Family Foundation & Brearley School & Chapin High School;
Manhattan, NY
Win 1. Imagery Award
Win 2. Website Award
Win 3. Underwriters Laboratory Industrial Safety Award

Team 1688- Team Stick Shift
Port Authority of NY & NJ/Bloomberg LP/Richmond County Savings
Foundation & Port Richmond High School; Staten Island, NY
Regional Finalist #3

Team 1601- Quantum Samurai
Airborn Flightware/Stony Brook & Aviation High School; Long Island City, NY
Regional Chairman's Award

Congratulations to all the NYC team that attended the LI Regional.
Note: These NYC FIRST Teams are all young teams!

Richard Wong
NYSE/ SFTI Provisioning
Communications Engineering
212 383 4513

Young scientists of Mott Hall 3
Dear Friends and Esteemed Colleagues,
You're cordially invited to meet the young scientists of Mott Hall 3. (Just in case you don't know, MH3 is a public middle school in the Bronx.) We thought that you would make the perfect judge for our school-wide science fair on Friday, April 20. The presentations at the fair will be from 10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. with judging following immediately afterwards. In addition, you are welcome to stay for our awards ceremony beginning promptly at 1:30 p.m.

We would greatly appreciate your involvement in this event, and to show our gratitude we will be providing lunch on that day. As such, it is important to respond via e-mail or contact Derrick Wu (derrick.wu@gmail.com ) by Monday, April 16 to let us know if you will be attending.

Our students have spent a good deal of time on their work, and they are looking forward to having outside judges validate their effort. In order to make this possible, we are looking to have 15 judges, so please forward this email to anyone else who you think would make a good candidate.


Hulya Karamemis, Patricia Waters, and Derrick Wu

2007 Region 4 Robotics Pentathlon: June 9 at Aviation HS
Dear Robotics Teachers,

It's official: the Region 4 2007 Robotics Pentathlon will be Saturday, June 9th at Aviation High School.

This should be an exciting, high-energy event showcasing student achievement in robotics--technology in education in action!
Aviation High School makes the perfect setting for such an event: a first-class facility with gracious, committed staff and students. Your students will be able to make the connection between their own engineering endeavors and real world application like never before.

Find all the details, event rules, including NEW PRINTABLE VERSION at:

To see what the event will look like (and get a sense of the events), see the gallery of images from last year at:

**All Lego Robotics schools should strongly consider participating, no matter how long they've been doing robotics:

Why Schools Should Compete in the Pentathlon:
1.These events are the greatest motivators for the students. We see over and over how energized the students are *after* (and during) an event
2. Students gain from interacting with other schools and seeing different solutions to the same problem
3. Networking
4. It's a great deal of fun
5. It's easy: your students don't have to compete in all of the events
6. I will visit your school and help you ready the team for the event

Stephen Shapinsky
Technology Staff Developer Region 4

If you are not in region 4 but wish to participate, contact Stephen.

Vision Ed. announces Educational Technology Retreat in NYC!

Are you looking to inspire young minds? Do you want to integrate technology effectively into your school or community organization?

Come to Vision Ed's Stonington Retreat in New York City, a four-day intensive workshop aimed at empowering teachers, parents and administrators to effectively integrate creative technology into their classrooms. With hands-on workshops in Robotics, Computer Animation, Game Design, Digital Video and Blogging, participants will walk away with the resources needed to start or continue a technology program at their schools or organizations.

The retreat will take place this summer July 31st – August 3rd, 2007 at New York University's Kimmel Center.

From this retreat, you will:

* Learn about cutting edge research in the field of Educational Technology.
* View and try out exciting project ideas used successfully by veteran teachers.
* Engage in hands-on activities led by professionals in the field of Educational Technologies.
* Take away lesson plans and curriculum materials to use in your classrooms.
* Participate in discussions with people who face similar challenges, such as administrative support for new initiatives, faculty involvement in technology and learning how to make it all work.
* Access to new learning tools, including ones that are free and easy to implement within schools.

Special guest Mitchel Resnick, Director of the Lifelong Kindergarten group at the MIT Media Lab, will be giving hands-on workshops in two of his new projects: PicoCricket and Scratch. The PicoCricket uses robotics to make programmable artistic creations, and Scratch is a free software based on a programming language that lets you create your own interactive stories, games, music and art.

There will also be hands-on workshops in LEGO® Mindstorms®, both the RCX and the new NXT, as well as workshops in Microworlds, a Computer Animation and Game making software, and Digital Video and Blogging.

The cost of the retreat is $1895, but if you register by April 15th, you get the early bird special of $1795.

To find out more, go to www.vemny.org/stonington.html

and register here: http://www.vemny.org/stonington_reg.html

Vision Ed. believes that effective work with technology can have an enormous impact on learning and teaching. Our mission is to share this understanding with educators and learners to inspire educational excellence and school reform.

At the New Hampshire State Tournament on December 2, 2006, the Flying Geeks of Nashua Christian Academy achieved what had previously always seemed impossible -- they accomplished all of the missions of the FLL Nano-Quest challenge on a single autonomous robot outing! Congratulations, Flying Geeks! You have our admiration in regard to this most incredible accomplishment!

See link for more information and video:

Great Ball Contraption
check out this Great Ball Contraption presentation from the Robolab
conference in Singapore. It's the 2nd PDF file on this site:


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