Follow our progress at RoboCup 2005
The RoboCup 2005 has finally arrived. Here's a summary of the main events, as experienced by our team.

Flight to Japan (July 9 and 10)
At 9h15 AM on Saturday the 9th of July, 2005, we, 5 members of the team going to Osaka, arrive at the airport and get past customs. At 12h10, we take off. We land in Detroit about 2 hours later, and we get on our next plane to Osaka, taking off at 15h00. About 14 pretty long hours later, 18h00 Osaka timee, we land in Osaka and immediately aim for our hotel, which we find without too much trouble.

The preparations were complicated, but they were worth the time, since everything seems to be going fine for what concerns the hotel and the travel details.
Arrival at the Intex Osaka (July 11)
After a night spent half awake - we were experimenting the effects of the jet lag - we take the "new tram" to Intex Osaka (the building where to competition takes place) and register ourselves. The organizers show us the way to our table and we find the robots in pretty good shape, even if their trip was probably not that confortable. We set up our equipment and calibrate the robots for that new environment.
Technical challenge (July 12, 10h00 AM, Osaka time)
In order to do a preliminary rankings of the teams, a technical challenge is organized. One robot must start at one end of the field and take the ball to the goal at the other end while avoiding obstacles (6) placed at more or less random positions. Robofoot is the first team to be evaluated.
First game (July 13, 10h00 AM, Osaka time)
First match for Robofoot at the international competition: needless to say, we were nervous quite a bit. It so happens that we were to play against the japanese team Eigen, winner of the last 3 world competitions. There were some referee problems and one of the two motors of one of the robots broke. At the end of the first half, no one had scored. In the second half, however, Eigen scored 4 goals, and we lost 4 to 0.
Second game: first victory for Robofoot at the RoboCup 2005! (July 13, 15h00, Osaka time)
For our second game, our robots had to play against the ones from a team from Iran, Persian Gulf. Although their robots are equiped with very powerful motors, they don't really move - it's the case for several teams here. We scored 3 goals, including one very interesting for the obstacle avoidance sequence which preceded it. We win 3 to 0.
Découvertes (July 14)
A team from the SRC TV show Découvertes got interested in our projet a few months ago and have already taken some footage of us and our robots. They hired a cameraman and a soundman to take some more in Japan, so this morning they followed us to the competition and started taking some shots of the games, the booths and of us. They stayed here until 17h00.
Third game: second victory (July 14, 10h00, Osaka time)
The team against which our robots just played is japanese: DIT-RC. Their robots seemed to be having serious technical problems and didn't move at all. We won, 2 to 0. The score isn't very impressing since, due to a mistake in a recent update of the software, our robots were not able to orient themselves towards the goal when they were on either side of the field. As if it wasn't enough, when we tried correcting the problem, one of the motors broke.
Fourth game: third victory (July 15, 11h00, Osaka time)
This time, our robots are playing against some from Danemark - the DTU team. Their robots move a bit, but they are having serious troubles finding the ball. On our side, we have problems transfering information, but we still manage to win 1-0.
Fifth game (second elimination round) (July 15, 14h00, Osaka time)
As we were amongst the two best teams of our pool, we get to play a second elimination round. The first team we must face is called WinKIT, another japanese team, a very strong one. Some problems with the software were corrected, but we're having troubles with the wireless network. Neverthless, our robots will play very well in defense, so the final score, even with those network problems, is 1-0 for the other team.
Sixth game: Robofoot gets eliminated (July 15, 17h00, Osaka time)
This game was the one deciding wether we went in the finals or not: if we won, we were going. We were playing against a team from Portugal, Minho. We did not have network problems but a technical error prevented our robots from communicating each other information during the first half. There was also the fact that the other team had a really powerful ball kicker. We lost, 2 to 0, which meant Robofoot was not going to the finals. Even though we lost, we were quite proud of this game, which was one of our best in a competition: our robots played very well.
Second technical challenge (July 16)
For the scientific side of the competition, many "technical challenges" had been organized. For example, one involved endowing the robot with the ability to detect a ball of any color. Another of these challenges simply asked the team to show what they considered worth showing about their robots. So Julien Beaudry, team leader of Robofoot, made a small presentation of our robots abilities: cooperative behavior, information exchange and ball passing. Many spectactors stopped to see it, adding to the audience formed by the members of the other teams.
Sightseeing and flight back to Canada (July 18 and 19)
The principal events of the competition being over, we used the 18th of July for a little sightseeing in Osaka, mainly going to what is called the Den Den Town - a place where many electronics stores are located - and a traditionnal japanese castle. On the very next day we already had to fly back to Canada. So we're back there - or here, our brains stuffed with ideas for the new mechanical platform we will be developing for the next competitions.