Universities and teachers across Greece are encouraging the country’s young schoolchildren to experiment with open source software and hardware. The Panhellenic Open Robotics Competition also encourages school students and their teachers to work together, and aims to create open educational resources.
The competition was launched late last year. At the end of December, the organisers announced which of the projects will get funding for computer boards – such as Arduino, Raspberry Pi or BeagleBoard – intended for open source development.
All projects - including those that will not get their boards funded - have until 27 April to complete their work. The winners of the Robotics Competition will be announced on 17 May.
Teams are required to publish their work as open source software on the GitHub repository. Examples of selected projects include “No Snow”: students at a primary school in Florinato have set out to build an autonomous snow plough to help keep the school footpaths and yard free from snow. A school in Mytilene on the island of Lesbos has started building a tomato picking machine. School students in the town of Vlachata on the island of Cephalonia are working on a traffic light for cattle, which senses when animals are going to cross the road and stops motorised traffic.
The competition is being organised by 33 universities, academies and technical education institutes, together with the Greek Open Technologies Alliance (GFOSS) and over 80 teachers from primary and secondary schools. Also in May, the organisers are expected to announce dates for the second Panhellenic Open Robotics Competition next year.