CajunBot made it to the opening ceremony

Ontario, CA – The opening ceremony started at 9:00am, and CajunBot made its entrance at 8:59am.We had the replacement chain in hand at 1am, the Speedway gates opened at 6am, Joshua, Adrian, Murali, and Adam were in the garage at 6:05am. From there it took the whole three hours to put the new chain in place.

The main reason it took that long is that Max IV is a real compact machine. There is barely enough space to reach the drive chain without removing the engine. In the normal machine removing the engine is not a big deal. But with the changes made to build CajunBot, removing the engine and putting all the pieces back together could easily be a days job.

Joshua’s skinny physique and very malleable hands came in handy, no pun intended. Adrian and Murali were working with him. They tried to twist and turn their hands in, but to no avail. I do not know why Adrian even tried. With a football line backer physique, you’d not expect him to have Cinderalla fingers. Murali is not longer the skinny graduate student he was a few years ago. You can sense prosperity all around him, and there is more to come with Espion Interceptor, the anti-spam appliance he has built gaining notoriety of beating similar products from the big dogs of the industry.

Joshua working on chain
at about 7:17am Pacfic Time
CajunBot amongst other bots
after the opening ceremony

All the bots were expected to ‘assemble’ at the grand stand by 8:30am. That’s about the time Joshua was able to put clip the chain. We conveyed to DARPA that the bot will be ready in 10-15 minutes. By 8:50am we cranked the engine and left the garage, with Joshua driving the bot.

At 8:59am CajunBot was standing next to the other bots. By looking at her you could not tell the ordeal she had gone through.

Knowing what it took us to get to this point, The Star-Sprangled Banner at 9:02am had a completely new meaning.

– Arun Lakhotia

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