Here's the one terrible thing about RoboGames: it takes place here in California, and only in California. Don't get me wrong, this is great for me personally (since I happen to live here), but for the rest of you, you'll either have to come to terms with the fact that the West Coast really is where everything exciting happens and move out here already, or kick in some money and get a professionally produced Blu-ray and experience the event vicariously.
Now, I'll be at RoboGames this year. And yes, I'll probably be taking video. But I've also been roped in to giving a talk, and I've got to pay extra special attention to the new Mech Warfare arena (which a bunch of you contributed to!), so while I'm going to do my level best to be absolutely everywhere at once and filming everything, certain irritating realities of the space-time continuum suggest that I may miss some stuff.
This is why you might want to consider chipping in for a professionally produced RoboGames 2012 documentary on one of those newfangled Blu-ray discs:
Help the robots gain greater market share in world domination by supporting The Robotics Society of America's RoboGames 2012 film production project! Our goal is to record and edit a professional documentary featuring as many of RoboGames' 60 events during the three days of frenetic robotic competition. The best matches and amazing robots will all be featured, along with interviews by the builders from around the world who built them.
Many have lamented that great robot sports coverage has fallen by the wayside in the last few years. Well, we live in the future, and if TV won't come to the robots, the robots will put up their own show! If we raise our Kickstarter amount, The Robotics Society will be able to put together a crack production crew and hire camera-persons, equipment and editing time to turn out a top notch web-based robot sports series.
For $25 on Kickstarter (which, for the record, is the cost of one adult ticket for one day at the door of the event), you can get "the full Blu-Ray DVD of all the great matches -- combat, android kung-fu, soccer, etc. -- along with behind the scenes interviews and as much excitement as we can get on the video." And, if you'd like a be a bit more generous, for only $10,000 you'll be allowed to drive Vlad the Impaler II (a 220 pound monster) in a combat match.
There are plenty of other tangible rewards to choose from as well, and only eight days remaining to get in on it, so head on over to Kickstarter at the link below for a piece of the action.
Evan Ackerman is a senior editor at IEEE Spectrum. Since 2007, he has written over 6,000 articles on robotics and technology. He has a degree in Martian geology and is excellent at playing bagpipes.