Introduction to Robotics
|Computer Science Course|
|Sites Offered||ALE, BRI, CGV, GIL, HKY, LOS, SAN, SPE, SRF|
|Previously Offered||CHS, STP, WIN|
From the CTY Course Catalog (2004):
In the field of robotics, computer science and engineering come together to create machines that can perform a variety of tasks, from manufacturing contact lenses to exploring Mars.
In this computer science course, students build robots using LEGO® robotics equipment. In the design phase, students cover basic physical engineering topics such as simple machines, stable structures, pneumatics, and locomotion. They also survey principles of electrical engineering including sensor feedback, circuits, signals, and infrared communications. Students develop familiarity with foundational concepts in computer science, such as algorithms, sequential control flow, and the use of Boolean operators, as they learn to program and control their robots using the ROBOLAB™ object-oriented programming environment.
For their culminating project, students design, build, and program robots that work together to complete a shared task. Each robot is autonomous, but adjusts to feedback from the environment and other robots in the system. The project demonstrates the basic computer science and engineering principles that underlie everything from the space shuttle to the average home toaster: each is an interconnected system that functions through the exchange of information between sensors and subsystems. By working together to build the system, students gain a foundation in computer programming and real-world engineering that will be increasingly important in the highly technical 21st Century.