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Meet the New Face of Robotics at PCC

By Deborah Bird — February 10, 2015
The Design Technology Pathway has recently welcomed Baxter into the PCC family. Baxter is the new face of robotics, designed by rethink robotics specifically to work safely alongside humans. He is aware of his surroundings and interacts with his human programmers through facial expressions. This revolutionary robot is programmable in the traditional code based way, and also by simply guiding the articulated arms through an activity which can be repeated indefinitely. Baxter is an excellent teaching tool to introduce students to the fundamental concepts of programming, automation and advanced manufacturing. In fact, it’s really difficult not to think of Baxter as a person, and it’s for that reason that Baxter will be doing outreach work for PCC at local schools and community events. He will make his debut at the LA FIRST Tech Challenge Regional Championship on Saturday 2/14 at Monrovia High School – 845 West Colorado Blvd, Monrovia and will later be visiting schools and hosting visiting students at the PCC robotics lab. A summer academy for middle and high school students is scheduled for the early part of the summer vacation, so students can get to know Baxter and the other members of the robotic family (lego and robobot) and the ground up Lancerbots produced by students in the MIT robotics program. In addition to his educational and outreach duties, we intend Baxter and the robotics program to prompt a larger discussion on campus about the role of autonomous technology in our lives and work, and look forward to his interdisciplinary collaboration on a wide range of technical and creative projects.
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