WHEN DAVID CONTACTED ME to ask about writing the foreword for his MINDSTORMS book, my first thought was, - other book about LEGO robotics-is there still some- thing to write about it?" In fact, the shelves of the bookstores now offer a wide selection of books about building robots with the LEGO MINDSTORMS system. Many of them are actually very good books, which cover the matter quite deeply and exhaustively. However, a few lines below in his e-mail, David explained to me that the book was to deal exclusively with robotic sumo. That raised my interest and made me feel sud- denly excited, because I love sumo. I strongly believe that building a robot to attend a sumo contest is one of the best experiences for hobby robotics fans, because it's both extremely instructive and a lot of fun! Let me clarify my thought. Generally speaking, attending a contest is a very good way to learn about robotics. First of all, the contest helps the builder to keep focused on a specific goal. In fact, many beginners get lost in simply deciding what to build- either getting quickly bored by too simple projects or frustrated by too complex ones. In the second place, the rules of the tournament state very precisely what is allowed and what is not, providing a context to the designer's choices and narrowing the possibilities.
Introduction to LEGO MINDSTORMS Robotic Sumo.- The Importance of a Battle Plan.- The Zip-Bam-Bot Chassis.- Zip-Bam-Bot Version XK1.- Zip-Bam-Bot Version XK2.- Zip-Bam-Bot Version XK3.- The Brain-Bot Chassis.- Brain Bot Version ZR1.- Brain Bot Version ZR2.- Brain Bot Version ZR3.- The Gargantuan-Bot Chassis.- Gargantuan-Bot Version BL58.- Gargantuan-Bot Version BL59.- Gargantuan-Bot Version BL60.- Attending a LEGO MINDSTORMS Robotic Sumo Event.- Organizing a LEGO MINDSTORMS Robotic Sumo Event.