“There is a robot soccer tournament called the RoboCup” in the Washington Post

September 18th, 2014

There is a robot soccer tournament called the RoboCup

By: Mark Berman | Posted 10 July 2014

Image: Stephen McGill, a PhD candidate, works with a RoboCup entree at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia this week.

The GRASP RoboCup Team, UPennalizers, featured in Washington Post’s “There is a robot soccer tournament called the RoboCup”

Do you like soccer? Do you have World Cup Fever? Do you want to watch robots playing soccer? If so, this is the post for you.

Robots from dozens of countries will gather later this month in Brazil to participate in a robot soccer tournament known as the RoboCup (!). I’m going to repeat that to let it marinate for a moment: It is a robot soccer tournament, and it is called the RoboCup.

This tournament was founded in 1997 with the stated goal of developing a robot soccer team that can beat the human World Cup champions by 2050. (The first RoboCup was held shortly after the supercomputer Deep Blue defeated chess champion Garry Kasparov, because, as the human historians will eventually explain, the robot uprising began on multiple distinct-but-parallel fronts.)

Dan Lee, an engineering professor at the University of Pennsylvania, told the Associated Press that more than a decade ago, the robots were not really great at soccer.

Read more