Robotics team, X-Sighted DC, wins Ontario Innovation Celebration

Team 458 X-Sighted DC, an independent team made up of Glen Ames Senior Public School students, at the Ontario Innovation Celebration at Seneca College earlier this month. Photo: Submitted.

A group of Glen Ames Senior Public School students are continuing their robotics excellence with a recent win at the Ontario Innovation Celebration.

Team 458 X-Sighted DC is now taking part in robotics competitions in the FIRST Lego League (FLL) as an independent team due to the work-to-rule by the Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario.

The team is now being coached by former Glen Ames student Olivia Terenzio, who was a member of the school’s robotics team in 2012.

The Ontario Innovation Celebration took place on Feb. 22 at Seneca College. Team X-Sighted had qualified to take part in the event due to their strong showing at the provincial robotics championships in January of this year in Oshawa.

The second-place finish at the Oshawa competition also qualified the team to compete internationally at Legoland in California this May against more than 40 other teams from around the world.

The team’s project is called iSight360 and it helps make navigating cities easier for people who are visually impaired.

The FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Lego League is an international alliance which challenges robotics students around the world to come up with solutions to real-world challenges. The theme for this year’s competition is City Shaper, and it asked students to help plan for the future of cities by creating “new, innovative solutions to help shape an optimal future, using our environment and modern-day tools and technology to make it last.”

The iSight 360 uses a 360-degree camera, a speaker, a virtual reality headset, ultrasonic glasses and a “smart cane” that includes a touch sensor to help the visually impaired make their way through an urban environment.

Along with their robotics and technology skills, teams at FLL competitions are also judged on the creativity of their presentations and how they work together. As part of their presentation, Team X-Sighted members present as characters from the DC universe such as Batman and Wonder Woman.

The team’s success at the Ontario Innovation Celebration means their project is tied with two others as the best FLL projects in the province.

Along with qualifying for the California competition, Team X-Sighted can also now apply for the Global Innovation Awards in Orlando, Florida. If the team were to win one of those awards, it would receive a $20,000 prize to go towards further developing the ISight 360 project into a reality.

Members of Team X-Sighted DC are Hayden H-C, Georgia B, Rachel S, Beck M, Xavier R-D, Zach W, Julia S, Anthony F, Elise D, and Luke J.

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