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Preconference Workshops

Preconference classes are designed to give students, teachers, and mentors an opportunity to focus on a specific topic in a one day workshop environment.

Each year the Global Conference offers several different preconference classes on the day prior to the start of official conference activities. 2016 GCER preconference workshops will be held a day before the actual GCER conference on July 5, 2016. A full listing of the 2016 preconference classes will be coming soon. You can read about the classes that were offered at the 2015 preconference below.

2016 GCER Pre-Conference Classes


Title: Beginning Programming

Instructors: Steve Goodgame

Requirements:

  • Each student must have a laptop

Summary:

The goal of this workshop is to introduce new programmers to the C language through robotics. The class will provide demo robots that participants will learn to program. This class is designed for participants with little to no programming experience. Participants will learn basic C syntax, motor functions, sensor functions, conditional statements and loops.

Fee: $65


Title: Botball Game Design

Instructors: Dr. Ross Mead

Requirements:

  • Good Attitide

Summary:

Learn what goes into designing a robotics competition game and design your own!

Fee: $65


Title: Learning About Microcontrollers

Instructor: Joshua Southerland

Requirements:

  • Programming experience needed.
  • Each student will need a laptop computer.
  • This class includes a materials fee in addition to the $65 preconference fee. Participants will be able to keep and reuse the Arduino robot kit after the session.

Summary:

In this workshop you will be guided through the assembly of a robot based on the Sparkfun Inventor's Kit for RedBot. Afterwards, we will practice writing C programs to interact with accelerometers, mechanical bump sensors, line follow sensors, buzzers, LEDs, motor PWM control, motor speed/position sensing, and servo control.

This workshop will give you hands-on experience with low-level robotics and embedded programming, similar to what is provided by KIPR in the Botball user library. No electronics knowledge is required, but some C-like programming knowledge will be helpful. You will need a laptop for programming your robot and the Arduino IDE for your OS from https://www.arduino.cc/en/Main/Software.

Our kits include all of the robot parts necessary for the day, as well as batteries and tools. In addition to the Sparkfun robot kit, we provide a gripper kit, servo, and improved "whisker" bump sensor mounting hardware. After the workshop, you get to keep the kit, allowing you to continue learning and experimenting with Arduino-based embedded programming and robots!

Fee: $150


Title: Hands On Intermediate Programming using Python

Instructor: Jon Grasmeder & Les Newcastle

Requirements:

  • Basic understanding of C language
  • Computers and demobots will be provided for use during the workshop for all attendees

Summary:

This class will focus on more advanced coding concepts using Python in the KISS-IDE programming environment. The class is designed for people who have C programming experience. Participants will learn how to write code in the Python language through a series of fun and engaging hands-on activities using pre-assembled demo robots. The emphasis will be on using sensors to improve robot control. Computers and demo robots will be available to participants who don’t have them.

Fee: $65