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THE JUNGLE ROBOTICS TEAM The members of the Jungle Robotics Team are headed to Orlando next week. Photo by Scott Proffitt SARASOTA COUNTY STUDENTS WILL BE IN ORLANDO MARCH 7-9 TO PIT THEIR FRISBEE-FLINGING CREATION AGAINST OTHER TEAMS��� ROBOTS By Scott Proffitt Staff Writer I want you to make a robot for a competition. You have six weeks. And you have to start from scratch. Oh, and the robot has to throw a Frisbee into small slots while competitors try to stop you. Finally, the robot must climb up a jungle gym. We are giving you no direction, just telling you what the robot must do. You are all in school, and some of you have jobs along with homework and other activities. Did we mention you have six weeks? Kyle Violete, a member of the Sarasota County team, put everything in perspective. ���We get the videos and have six weeks to build a robot. So six weeks ago, we watched the videos telling us what the competition would be. We were given no instructions. We were given no ���how to.��� We were given, ���Here���s the challenge: Go ahead.��� Over the next six hours we designed ��� a lot of prototypes. For a human to throw a Frisbee is one thing, but to make a This was the assignment relayed to a group robot throw a Frisbee was almost impossibly of Sarasota County students known as Jungle hard.��� Robotics Team 3627. During the six-week building period, the Presidents Day, Feb. 18, was the finale of students gathered together most days after ���Build Season,��� as it is called, for all the inter- school till late in the evening, and they worked national members of the First Robotics Club, at least six hours on Saturdays. sponsored by FIRST, For Inspiration and RecThis is the 24th year of First Robotics, the proognition of Science and Technology. gram that was the brainchild of Dean Kamen The regional FIRST competition will be held and Woodie Flowers, an entrepreneur and an March 7-9 in Orlando. MIT Professor, respectively. Having started

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