The Telegraph
Monday , December 17 , 2012
Since 1st March, 1999
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Robotics fest offers a glimpse into a different career

- 200 school and college students attend inaugural session at Cotton College, workshop today

Dec. 16: The first robotics festival in the Northeast began at Cotton College here today with the aim to attract students to the growing field of robotics.

Around 200 students from different schools and colleges attended the inaugural session of Robolook this morning which was addressed by teachers of Assam Science Technology and Environment Council (ASTEC), Cotton College and former state chief secretary J.P. Rajkhowa.

“Students here can take up robotics and explore the field, which is gradually beginning to offer numerous avenues. Students should take it systematically as robotics is a conglomeration of different fields of science, which can offer them different career options,” the head of ASTEC’s science and technology branch, R.K. Barman, said at the inaugural session.

A robot is a mechanical device designed to do the work of a man. Its components are usually electro-mechanical and are controlled using computer programs.

The event has been organised by Cotton College and MerryLook Technologies Private Limited, a group focussed on promoting technology in rural areas.

The Telegraph is a media partner in the two-day event.

Representatives of the Bhopal-based Starbru Technologies Private Limited exhibited how robots work during the inaugural event.

A practical workshop on robotics will be held tomorrow. The workshop has been divided into two sections — one for school students and the other for college-goers. The school-level section will deal with manual robotics, which involves remote-controlled robots that need to be operated by human beings.

“During the workshop we will try to teach them how to assemble the wheels, motors, robotic plates to construct a full robot. In the second part, we will deal with circuit design and the third session will be on how to assemble electronic circuitry with manual robots to make it autonomous and finally, we will teach them how to construct a beam-follower robot like a fire-detector circuit,” a technical trainer of the Bhopal-based company, Ashutosh Rai, said regarding the school-level workshop.

Rai said the technical session for college students would comprise both basics and advanced lessons.

“The session for college students will involve micro-controller programming in which they will be introduced to autonomous obstacle avoiding robots, LCD display programming and computer-controlled robots, besides others,” he said.

About the career avenues available for students in robotics, Rai said, “Nowadays robots are used by companies in manufacturing of cars, washing machines and other electronic items. Many companies in India, too, are making robots and are recruiting personnel with robotics technology knowledge and offering attractive packages. We are organising the programme here keeping this in mind and will try to organise similar programmes in the rest of the Northeast based on the response here.”

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