CMU to Host First American Open in Robot Soccer & a Visit from Honda's ASIMO Humanoid Robot


April 7, 2003

More than 150 researchers, mostly from North and South America, and their autonomous, soccer-playing robots will meet at CMU from April 30 to May 4, 2003, to compete in the International RoboCup Federation's first American Open.

RoboCup is an international research and sports initiative founded to push the boundaries of science in artificial intelligence and intelligent robotics. The challenge is to create a team of fully autonomous soccer-playing robots that will beat the human world-champion soccer team by the year 2050.

This is only the second time in the RoboCup's seven-year history that a competition will take place in the Americas. RoboCup 2001 was held in Seattle and attracted 110 teams from 25 countries. Last year's international games, staged in Fukuoka, Japan, attracted teams from 29 countries and more than 117,000 spectators. This year, 390 teams are registered to play in Padua, Italy, July 2-12.

While the RoboCup competition is taking place, the university also will be hosting Honda Corp's ASIMO, the world's most advanced humanoid robot, which is visiting 14 cities in its first North American educational tour. Takeo Kanade, U.A. and Helen Whitaker Professor of CS and Robotics; Professor of ECE, helped develop ASIMO's vision system.

More than a thousand middle and high school students from across Western Pennsylvania are expected to visit the university to see the robot soccer matches, meet ASIMO, and attend demonstrations of various other robots. The American Open and visit from ASIMO will be open to the public on May 2, 3 and 4; events and times will be posted online.