Saturday Open Thread

Good Morning. I hope that you are enjoying this weekend with family and friends.
Always trying to bring good news on the weekend.

Navajo robotics team heads to international competition

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — A team of Navajo high school students from a remote town in southern Utah is building a robot to represent North America in an international robotics competition.

The teenagers have worked all summer on the project, scheduling meetings between long drives to jobs far from the red rock and sage country of Navajo Mountain, where there is little paid work, said teacher Heather Anderson.

The team was specially invited to compete in the First Global Challenge that starts Aug. 14 in Mexico City. Teams from more than 190 countries will create robots for energy generation, especially renewable power. Teams hail from countries ranging from Congo to Ukraine, and also include separate teams representing specifically the U.S., Canada and Mexico.

Team Naatsis’aan, a Navajo name that translates to Navajo Mountain, has been competing for two years in Utah and ranks among the best in the state at that level, said Chelsey Short, the regional director for FIRST Robotics. They got started after an Australian team reached out online and supportive coaches kept it going, but sustaining the program at a high school with a total of 30 students has been challenging.

“It’s not like they had those technical skills, they decided they wanted to start a team and just kind of went for it, and they found mentors along the way,” Short said.

Even getting food for team meetings can be a challenge, since the nearest restaurants and grocery stores are 90 minutes away from the Navajo Mountain community, where a number of homes don’t have running water, Anderson said. When they ran out of specialized screws, they had to wait two weeks to receive more in the mail.

“It was frustrating because of the time it wasted before Mexico,” said team member Breana Bitsinnie, 18. They worked around it by focusing on other tasks while they were waiting.

Team member Jason Slender, 16, said he grew up repairing laptops and phones, skills that came in handy when it comes to building robots. “The best part was brainstorming how we should design the robot, and managing to all agree on one,” he said Tuesday. He’s taking his first plane ride for the event.

Each of the teams heading to Mexico City is building a robot capable of feeding power plants to scale and an efficient transmission network. The Navajo team will have to work in alliances with other teams to score points in the challenge organized by the robotics nonprofit First Global. Since they speak different languages, they’ll use a system of hand gestures to communicate, Bitsinnie said.

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33 Responses to Saturday Open Thread

  1. Liza says:


  2. Liza says:

    Thread. (Spoiler – has a happy ending).

  3. Liza says:

    SG2, have you seen this?

  4. Ametia says:
  5. It’s a very sad time to have this thug occupying our scared Oval Office that he obtained by theft.

  6. OMG! I repeat….they are demons walking among us.

  7. Ametia says:

    Word of the Day : August 18, 2018


    Adulation noun aj-uh-LAY-shun

    Definition: excessive or slavish admiration or flattery

  8. Y’all see this? A US missionary assaulting, cussing, using racial slurs and thinks he’s serving Jesus. A pure demon! I’m shocked he wasn’t missing any teeth & the taste smacked out of his mouth The gall of these rabid dogs going into someone else’ country and acting like folks have to bow down to his racist ass. I can’t say on Twitter what I really think of this POS.

    • Liza says:

      This is what can happen when a person becomes demented and loses all control over their impulses. They start acting out all of their worst character traits while being very confused and misinterpreting what is happening in the situation they are in.

      I have no idea who is responsible for this man or why he has been cut loose in Uganda, but someone needs to take control and get him into a long term care facility. Looks like he’s been a racist asshole all of his life, now he can’t control himself and he’s dangerous to himself and others.

    • Ametia says:

      Rest in POWER, Mr. Annan.

    • yahtzeebutterfly says:

      Thanks for posting this, Liza.

      We have lost a great uniter and a deeply compassionate leader.

      Rest in Peace Mr. Kofi Annan.

      “In the 21st century, I believe the mission of the United Nations will be defined by a new, more profound awareness of the sanctity and dignity of every human life, regardless of race or religion.”
      ~Kofi Annan


      “I have always believed that on important issues, the leaders must lead. Where the leaders fail to lead, and people are really concerned about it, the people will take the lead and make the leaders follow.”
      ~Kofi Annan


      “We may have different religions, different languages, different colored skin, but we all belong to one human race.”
      Kofi Annan

  9. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone 😄😄😄

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