Robotics, virtual betting at IIT Techfest

Over 1.5 lakh students from India and abroad descend on the Mumbai campus for Asia’s largest science and tech festival.

December 27, 2015 12:03 am | Updated November 16, 2021 04:04 pm IST - Mumbai:

A visitor with soccer-playing Nao robots made by the DutchNao team from the Netherlands at IIT Powai TECHFEST 2015-16in Mumbai on Saturday. Photo: Vivek Bendre

A visitor with soccer-playing Nao robots made by the DutchNao team from the Netherlands at IIT Powai TECHFEST 2015-16in Mumbai on Saturday. Photo: Vivek Bendre

Over 1.5 lakh students have descended on the IIT Powai campus to attend its annual technology fest (Techfest), Asia’s largest science and technology festival that is patronised by the UNESCO and the UNICEF.

Youths from 2,500 colleges from within India and 500 overseas colleges are participating in the fest that opened on Saturday.

On display at the Powai campus are the latest breakthroughs in science and technology that are aimed promoting the use of technology and its applications among the masses in India.

Also on display are the Walking Humanoid Robot, an automated robot capable of mining in lunar environments, autonomous football playing Nao Robots. These low-cost programmable swarm robots and robots that come in handy at times of disaster to provide relief – named rather quirkily Relief-e-Robot. This was created following the Rana Plaza factory collapse in Bangladesh in which 3,000 people died.

A Dutch team here has showcased its Nao Robots — who can take decisions. “They can think for themselves and take calls depending on the situation. Once the robot enters the football field, it decides when to attack and when to defend depending on the game. It does not require any instructions,” one of the creators said.

The field for competitions at the ‘Techfest’ ranged from sustainability and design to advanced robotics to events based on pure sciences. Robowars, a game of style, control, damage and aggression with the robots pitted each other in deadly combat, was a huge draw on Saturday with a large number of national as well as international enthusiasts and participants.

The teams enter a box with the James Bond theme music playing in the background and the audience indulge in virtual betting.

Two robots clash with each other through their mobile destructive remote controls. The show is of technical might across several rounds and boasts of Rs.1.25 lakh as the prize money for the winners.

A competition to make low-cost solar lamps available to common people in rural parts of the country was also held.

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