From Wed May 28 13:56:34 1997
To: Brian Schmalz <>
Subject: Re: Update to "Find Life on Mars" Rules 
In-reply-to: Your message of Fri, 09 May 1997 09:51:00 -0500.
From: Reid Simmons <>
Date: Wed, 28 May 1997 13:34:53 -0400
Message-ID: <>
Precedence: bulk
Status: RO
> Do we know the color of the floor? (Probably not, right?)
I believe it will be cement-color
> What will be the floor material? Tight-pile carpet? Cememnt? If it's
> cement, will it be painted? With a glossy paint?
I don't think the floor will be painted (Ron?)
> What type of lexan will be used for the walls? (ie solid color or translucent)
I believe the lexan is gray, with aluminum posts separating them.
> What will the exact height of the walls be?
I cannot tell you the exact height.  It will probably be about 1.5 meters tall.
> When you say 'the doors will be hinged at the top' where exactly is the
> hinge? (i.e. How high above the floor?)
> Where on the pen will the openings be? (If it's 2 meters in length, both
> could be on one side. Which sides will the openings be on?)
This is a good question.  Other teams have asked about the pen.  The idea is
to have the pen be about as tall as the walls, maybe a 1 to 1.5 meters
square.  The two openings will be on different sides, and the doors will be
colored to differentiate them (red and blue, as the rules state).  I'm not
saying whether the doors will be on adjacent or opposite sides.  The doors
will be about 50 cm tall, and light enough to push easily.
Another possibility is to have the openings be open, with a small (2-3 cm) lip
on the bottom to prevent objects from rolling out.  Then, the outside of the
> Have you decided if the arena will be hexagonal or square yet?
Most likely hexagonal, but still not completely determined (depends on how
difficult it is to fabricate).
> I'm building a replica of your arena, and thus all of the questions. If any
> of these are MEANT to be arbitrary (i.e. your robot needs to find the doors
> on the pen based upon color because they could be anywhere) then let us
> know.
> Thanks for making a really cool contest, and for giving us something to eat
> up all of our spare time. :-)
> *Brian Schmalz
> University of Minnesota team