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HCRI And RI Students Of The Future Present RI Robot Block Party, A Showcase Of Robots In Education, Research, Work, And Play


Community outreach connects Brown CS students to the Providence area. For more articles on how Brown CS students inspire and lead members of the greater Providence community click here.

The Robot Block Party is a celebration of National Robotics Week held on April 11, 2015 at the Pizzitola Center at Brown University. Organized by Rhode Island Students of the Future, a non-profit organization that engages kids in science, technology, engineering and math through robotics, and the Humanity Centered Robotics Initiative at Brown University, the Robot Block Party showcases how robots are used in education, research, work and play. Exhibitors include:

University Exhibits and Demonstrations

RISD students will demonstrate the rover they built for the 2015 NASA Human Exploration Rover Challenge.

The Brown Robotics Lab will demonstrate cloud robotics technologies and quadrotor and telepresence robots.

Brown University Planetary Geosciences and NASA Solar System Exploration Virtual Institute (SSERVI). The SSERVI Evolution and Environment of Exploration Destinations (SEEED) team is hosted by Brown University and MIT. NASA and international space probes are exploring all the planets of the solar system and will reach Pluto this summer. Come see pictures of Mars from the sophisticated Curiosity rover, and share close-up images of the surface of a comet. Meet scientists from Brown University who are exploring the planets and satellites of the Solar System and learn of their discoveries and future plans for human and robotic exploration!

Human 2 Robot Lab will demonstrate the pick and place capabilities of the Baxter industrial robot, created by Rethink Robotics.

The Laboratory for Engineering Man/Machine Systems (Computer Vision @ LEMS) will display their Blindfind project.

The Brown IEEE Robotics Olympiad Micromouse competition will hold their annual competition at the Robot Block Party.

University of Rhode Island Graduate School of Oceanography will display the autonomous kayak and Lagrangian floats used to explore shallow coastal waters.

The URI RoboBoat team and the Robotics Laboratory for Complex Underwater Environments (R-CUE) will team up to display the URI Autonomous Surface Vehicle; a pair of flying robots; at least two underwater robots; and a variety of 'soft robotics' prototypes use for underwater grasping and manipulation.

Roger Williams University School of Engineering, Computing and Construction Management will demonstrate a student built, human scale mobile robot allowing for virtual telepresence.

Salve Regina University School of Business Studies and Technology will display student technology projects.

New England Institute of Technology will have a demonstration of robotics, quad-copters, and support products.

Manufacturing and Community Organizations

Hasbro will demonstrate their animatronic toy line, FurReal Friends.

igus, inc will display their movement machine and iglide and echain products.

The Rhode Island Computer Museum will present “Robots on the Run” an activity that explains basic circuits and programmable electronics in hobby robots.

FabNewport will demonstrate ArtBots that create original works of art.

IEEE Providence Section will demonstrate their role in the robotics industry and professional development of engineers.

The Providence Children’s Museum will provide the Rigamajig play area which encourages hands on exploration of mechanical design concepts.

BLT Robotics will display a Robotic Vertical Hydroponic Farm.

Members of Make:'s book publishing team will be joining the Robot Block Party to show off projects from some of our recent and soon-to-be-published books. They'll have hands-on interactive projects you can play with from our upcoming Getting Started with littleBits book, some 3d-printed-in-place objects, and some Raspberry Pi demos.

AS220 Labs is showing a new line of electronics kits and some drawing machines from the Lab.

Robotix Learning Solutions will demonstrate their affordable robot that helps teach kids (4-18 years) how to code in an easy and interactive way.

Student Exhibits

Coventry: Alan Shawn Feinstein Middle School students built a robotic claw that can pick up a ball and a Chain Reaction Machine.

East Greenwich: Our Lady Of Mercy School has over 30 students building autonomous parade floats and interactive robotics projects. The students range from age 6-12.

East Providence:  Martin Middle School has middle school students building autonomous parade floats and interactive projects.

Riverside: Riverside Middle School students are building autonomous parade floats, and interactive projects. Gordon School students are working on interactive robotics projects and a Chain Reaction Machine.

Middletown/Newport: Newport Community School is bringing students who built autonomous parade floats. All Saints STEAM Academy students are displaying their Arduino robots and several other interactive projects. Their Jr. FIRST LEGO League team will demonstrate their Think Tank project. The Aquidneck Island 4-H club runs robotics programs for kids aged 9-18. AIR Strike 78, their FIRST Robotics team will demonstrate their award-winning robot.

Providence: Providence Career and Tech Academy will demonstrate engineering and robotics projects completed by their engineering students. Wheeler School will exhibit projects built by lower and middle school students. FRC 2780 Robotics Team, based at Wheeler School, will demonstrate their FIRST Robotics Robot. Lincoln School will demonstrate Tetrix robots built by the Robotics I & II classes, plus a demonstration of our FIRST Tech Challenge bot with field elements from the 2015 FTC game, Cascade Effect. Mount Pleasant High School will demonstrate their student robotics projects. Nathan Bishop Middle School will demonstrate their student robotics projects. The College Crusade is a community-based robotics teams, composed of Cranston & Providence youth. They will demonstrate a rover.

Narragansett: The Pier School will exhibit classroom robotics projects.

Warren: Kickemuit Middle School is building a chain reaction machine.

West Warwick: 21st Century Community Learning Center, YMCA at John Deering Middle School will feature students demonstrating autonomous parade floats.

Many thanks to our sponsors and supporters:

National Grid

Humanity Centered Robotics Initiative at Brown University



igus, inc.

Textron Charitable Trust

Polaris MEP

MAKE: 3d Printing Providence