Pi Wars 2018 - a post-event round-upFollow article
Pi Wars 2018 is over. The courses are disassembled and packed away, the teams have returned to their (often far-flung) homes, prizes are being sorted through and organisers Tim Richardson and Michael Horne have gratefully collapsed onto their respective sofas. What a weekend it was.
On Saturday 21st April, 29 teams from schools and kids’ clubs joined us. Our seven challenge courses lay in wait to put them to the test as well as Technical and Artistic judges who would look at their robots.
Amongst the 29 teams were groups from Hong Kong, Malaysia and Turkey - a truly international field this year. In the end, the team from Doctor Challoner’s Grammar School near Amersham prevailed and came first on the day with teams from London and Aberdeen in second and third place. Over on the Pi Noon course, Wilbury Primary School beat all the other teams to take the plaudits in our balloon-popping challenge. Thanks to our wonderful sponsors (including DesignSpark!), all of the teams were able to walk away from the prize-giving ceremony with a bag of goodies.
On Sunday, 36 teams categorised into Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced competed for prizes and glory. These teams were comprised of groups of friends, individual competitors, maker spaces, families and other clubs. We even had a returning team from New Mexico in the USA join us for the day! When all the scores were totalled, we had our list of winners. In the Beginner category, Medway Makers from Kent took first place. In the Intermediates, X-Bot, built and controlled by David Pride from Milton Keynes came first. In the Advanced category, the team from Ipswich Makerspace beat last year’s winner, Brian Corteil of Coretec Robotics by a single point! Over in the Pi Noon arena, a strangely beautiful final between the ultra-fast Hitchin Hackspace robot and the Mecanum wheeled X-Bot drew gasps as balloons were popped one by one until we were left with our winner: Hitchin Hackspace. Our prize-giving ceremony (which was not without drama!) resulted, once again, in every team going home with a prize bag.
As always with Pi Wars, the first question we were asked is: Will there be an event next year? Well, that is the question! We will be having long discussions about that over the next couple of months and hope to be able to make an announcement by late Spring/early Summer. The event takes about six months to put together, so it’s a big time commitment, but to see the faces of the competitors as they enjoy the event is well worth it.
Thanks to DesignSpark for asking us to share the journey before and after the event!