Tag Archives: Staples robotics team

Staples Robots Want To Take Over Your Place

Well, okay. The Staples robotics team is not actually looking to “take over” anything.

But they do need space.

The squad — winner of the 2011 world championship — urgently seeks a new home.

For the past 3 years, they’ve operated from head coach John Solder’s basement.

But as the team has gotten more successful — and new students flock to join — they’ve outgrown their host.

With the 1st competition of the year approaching, they’re appealing to the community for help.

The robotics team needs a vacant office (private or public), or any other space of at least 1000 square feet. Plus heat, electricity and “access to bathroom.”

The world champion Staples robotics team (from left):  Erin Gandelman, Dylan Roncati, Haris Durrani, Mrinal Kumar, Alec Solder.  Missing from photo:  John Solder, Timothy Yang.  (Photo/Mrinal Kumar)

The 2011 world champion Staples robotics team  — with their robot (front). (Photo/Mrinal Kumar)

The Staples robotics team lacks cheerleaders, uniforms and spectators. But members work as hard as any varsity athlete — while learning important lessons about teamwork, practice, camaraderie, and competition.

They get no money from the Board of Education. They don’t earn NCAA scholarships. Team members do, however, go on to pretty good schools. You know: MIT, Harvard, Yale and Columbia.

Current robotics team members hope to repeat the successes of those who came before them — in tournaments, and at college.

But they can’t do it without a “home field.”

Got space? Email john.solder@wreckerrobotics.com, or call or text 203-450-9202. For more information on the team, click here.

Make Your Maker Faire Mark

President Kennedy once welcomed a gaggle of Nobel Prize winners to the White House as “the most extraordinary collection of talent, of human knowledge, that has ever been gathered together, with the possible exception of when Thomas Jefferson dined alone.”

You could say the same thing about the upcoming Mini Maker Faire.

This Brooklyn Aerodrome contraption was part of last year's Maker Faire.

This Brooklyn Aerodrome contraption was part of last year’s Maker Faire.

The event — set for Saturday, April 27 (10 a.m.-4 p.m., Westport Library and Jesup Green) brings together science, crafts, arts, engineering, technology, music and workshops.

It’s a hands-on celebration for everyone who has ever built something, created something, or appreciates those who have.

A hundred or so “Makers” will strut their stuff. Those from Westport include

  • Staples and middle schools robotics teams
  • Ben Shay, a Staples student demonstrating a home-built scuba diving propulsion unit)
  • Guerric Vornle von Haagenfels, also fromStaples, exhibiting blacksmithing techniques (if the fire marshal approves)
  • Tim Walker, displaying antique and modern amateur radio equipment
  • Wakeman Town Farm junior apprentices.

There’s plenty more, like a dancer who wears a body suit that translates movements into sound and graphics; solar-powered race cars; 3D printing, and an artist who carves images into the lead at the end of a pencil.

A few spots remain. If you’ve got a do-it-yourself project you want to share — and are not intimidated by all the Thomas Jefferson-types above — click here for a submission form. Entries close March 28.

Capote, Warhol, Plath And Durrani

On Wednesday “06880” ran a story on Staples’ robotics team — 1st in the Northeast, now shooting for an international championship.

That was only part of Haris Durrani’s week.

Today the senior learned he’s earned a national portfolio gold medal in writing.

Haris Durrani

Out of 185,000 entries in the Alliance for Young Artists & Writers contest, only 16 qualified for gold.

Past winners include Truman Capote, Andy Warhol, Sylvia Plath and Joyce Carol Oates.

The honor is nice.  Even nicer, it carries a $10,000 scholarship.

Haris will be honored onstage — at Carnegie Hall — on May 31.

Unless, that is, he’s got a robotics competition elsewhere in the world.