Monday Evening Update

Fontana, CA – We completed the entire qualification course today. We didn’t hit any obstacles. There are quite a few “gates” set up on the couirse made up of two orange traffic cones which you are supposed to go between. I think we missed three gates.

They pared down the contestants late this afternoon. As far as we can tell there is a group of 10 teams which DARPA has already decided are in the final. Those teams have not been asked to run tomorrow.

The next group is a group of 18 teams which have all done fairly well. We are in that group and will be running tomorrow morning on the same course we completed today.

The last group is the group of teams who have not done so well. They will run a different course tomorrow. We are surmising that these teams have already been elimitated from the finalists and the new course will be easier so that the teams can complete a course before they leave.

The bit about who has made the race and who has not is all speculation on our part. All we know for sure is that some teams are not being asked to run tomorrow, those who have done well are being grouped together and are being asked to run the same course, and those who have not done so well have been grouped together and are being asked to run a differenet course.

If our guesses are correct that means that we have to beat 8 of the 18 teams in the second group in order to get to the finals.

The software team has decided to make no changes to the configuration we ran today except that we will decrease the maximum speed of the vehicle on the high-speed sections. One of those sections is extremely bumpy and our laser scanners did not operate well when the bot was being thrashed about.

– Patrick Landry

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