ROBOTICON 2020 Live Online! has kicked off, with a fun opening ceremony hosted by ROBOTICON program partner, Scott Ertz of PLUGHITZ Live, with a great welcome message from FIRST Tech Challenge Director, Ken Johnson, a sneak peek at the first ever ROBOTICON CAD Challenge with competition organizer and ROBOTICON Planning Team Member, Bryan Bautista, and a terrific overview of FIRST program by FIRST AmericCorps VISTA , Marissa Schiereck.

The full ROBOTICON program is now online on our Event Agenda page and starting Saturday, November 7 at 11am, you can tune into our ROBOTICON YouTube or Twitch channel to enjoy a full day of robotics team fun, starting with FIRST LEGO League teams running remote matches , followed by VEX and FIRST Tech Challenge teams.  On Sunday, you can enjoy FIRST Robotics Competition programming.

Not all of our participating teams are able to run their robots, for reasons ranging from COVID-19 school restrictions to early season building still underway.  But every registered team will get some time to shine online for both weekends of ROBOTICON.  We’ll have interviews, get to see some live builds underway, get some play by plays on past season videos and more!

During the week (and on a couple of weekend days), you can catch some terrific presentations and workshops, some by teams, some by our sponsors and some by some wonderful guests,  including:

Nov 7 at 2pm
Robotics During COVID-19: A Guide to Safe Meetings
Presented by Palm Harbor University High School Robotics
Join PHUHS Robotics on November 7th at 2:00 pm to learn about the steps they took to work with their school and Pinellas County, FL so they could compete in their FIRST Tech Challenge program this year. Aabhas and Miles, President and Treasurer of PHUHS Robotics will go over the different safety measures they have implemented, discuss their effect on meetings, and answer any and all questions!

Nov 10 at 6pm
Material Selection for ROBOTICON Builders
Presented by Dr. Les Kramer, PE with Advanced Materials Professional Services, LLC
This talk discusses material selection considerations for robot construction. Dr. Kramer is a Florida Inventors Hall of Fame 2020 inductee. He holds 17 U.S. Patents and is Vice President of Engineering and Manufacturing at TaiLor Made Prosthetics, LLC in Orlando, and a board member of the University of Central Florida’s College of Sciences and Nanoscience Center who created a remarkably advanced carbon fiber composite prosthetic foot that has improved the lives of many amputees.

Nov 11 at 5pm
Military & Robotics
Presented by The Florida High Tech Corridor (sponsor)
Paul Sohl, the new CEO of the Florida High Tech Corridor is a Retired Navy Rear Admiral, and in recognition of Veteran’s Day, will talk about his career in the Navy and the use of robots in the military.

Nov 11 at 6pm
RiSE! — Robotics in Space Exploration
Presented by José Cotayo with MOSI (Tampa Museum of Science and Industry)
This presentation will provide an overview of the various ways that robotics helps drive our understanding of Space. We’ll take a look at space exploration and how our robotic explorers have strengthened our knowledge of the Cosmos

Nov 14 at 11am
Introduction to Counterfeit Parts & Inspection Analysis
Presented by Chris Torrioni with Sensible Micro Corporation (Sponsor)
The threat of substandard and counterfeit parts entering the electronics supply chain grows ever year. Many Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) require obsolete parts to support active production needs. Being able to inspect and test parts accurately is vital to keeping supply chains safe. This workshop will focus on a brief introduction into how counterfeit parts get into the supply chain and how Sensible Micro utilizes industry recognized best practices to mitigate these risks.

Nov 18 at 6pm
Innovation in Robotics Education and Competition – VAIC, RAD and VRAD
Presented by Robotics Education and Competition Foundation
This year we’re excited to partner with the Robotics Education Competition (REC) Foundation, who will join us to discuss some of their newest program offerings, VEX AI Competition, RECF Aerial Drones Competition and Virtual Drones.

Check out the public schedule to see the full list of workshops and presentations taking place over the course of ROBOTICON Live Online!

We hope everyone, teams and livestream viewers, discover something new, interesting and exciting to learn about during ROBOTICON, and something to feel hopeful about – because as challenging as things are right now, there, it’s an amazing world out there and it’s our hope that the youth of ROBOTICON will find the inspiration, ,curiosity and wonder to live fulfilling productive lives that make their world and ours, better.