Monday 28 July 2014


After a long flight most of the team members are finally home :-) It was a fun RoboCup and we enjoyed it very much.

Sunday 27 July 2014

Landing in Sao Paulo

We had a good flight to Sao Paulo and currently waiting for our connection flight to Frankfurt. We saw a beautiful sunset from above. We will land at the 27th of July 3pm in Frankfurt. So see you back in Germany :-)

The long way home

We are leaving Brazil and it's an interesting story for itself. We have boarded our plane but the way to the airport was quite a challenge. Here is a glimpse of it:

Enjoying the beach

We had one day left in Brazil and used it to use the beach for the first time. It's just beautiful there. Other teams also joined and we extended our stay to the evening and a great time. :-D

Friday 25 July 2014

Promovideo for RoboCup 2016 in Leipzig

We participated in the promotional video for the RoboCup 2016 application of the city of Leipzig. We think this video is awesome and you should watch it for sure.

Enjoying the evening

After a successful RoboCup we enjoyed yesterday an evening on the beach with the other teams. We were celebrating each others victories and had a great time :-)

Rico will be organizing the GermanOpen 2015

Rico was asked if he would organize the GermanOpen. He eagerly accepted and is looking forward to the challenge. This is a great preparation for the RoboCup 2016 in Leipzig: Rico organizing the GermanOpen and Tobias is part of the team who will organize the RoboCup 2015 in Hefei China.

Drop-in Player Competition: A second second place

We received a second second place! This time in the drop-in player competition. In this competition each of the teams is assembled of players from five different teams from the main competition. It is judged how good a player contributes to the team and if he is a team player.

After the judging results were in we won second!

The final game in images

You may see the video from the final game. Here are some still shots from the game.

The preparations: 

Waiting for the start:

Promotion afterwards:

And the award ceremony:

Award Ceremony

Yesterday was also the award ceremony where we received our price for the second place.

Video Final Game: NaoTeam HTWK vs. RunSwift -- 1:5

Here is the video of our final game versus RunSwift. We lost 5:1 and these guys deserved to be the world champion. We will be happy to fight for a return match next year :-)

The video is provided by RunSwift.

Thursday 24 July 2014

Final Match: NaoTeam HTWK vs. RunSwift -- 1:5

This game was unlike anything we have seen before. The first few minutes of the first half were well-balanced between the two teams. However, soon it was getting interesting. Team rUNSWift scored the first goal. The wifi network was failing and every robot on the field was switching to the striker role. Every robot was moving to the ball and a wall of robots were approaching the goal. The half time ended there and we spent the pause attempting to get the wifi router working again. Sadly, it was no use and the referee was calling a referee timeout. We exchanged the wifi router two times and the second one was working eventually.

In the second half RunSwift scored a few more goals. The wifi was back working and we scored one as well.

So we are once more second in the world and we can't quite believe it. We came here with a code base which had faced us with huge problems and we fixed most of them.

We are also the best German team in the world and  the only team that scored a goal versus rUNSWift. We can be proud for this! :-D

After the game we used the time to make promotion shots with the locals. At the moment there should be a few thousand images on Facebook presenting a robot from the HTWK Leipzig.

And know we are celebrating a bit and enjoying the evening. A recording of the  match will follow soon.

SPL Teamfoto & Finals

Hi guys,

we preparing the final versus RunSwift. This final will be held at 7pm German time and you can probably watch it in the live stream.

In the meantime here is SPL team photo with the teams participating.


Must see: Video NaoTeam HTWK versus UChile -- 5:4

If you want to watch only one video... then watch this one! This game was intense and awesome.

Update: We fixed the overlays.

Video of the Quarter Final: NaoTeam HTWK vs Berlin United -- 4:1

Wednesday 23 July 2014


We had an extremely close semi final match with UChile. It was the most intense game we ever participated in.

We started the robots ten minutes before the game started and had problems with the communication. We used our timeout early in the game to get that fixed and also to recalibrate our robots.

The first half started good. We shot the first goal and then the world was coming down on us! UChile shot three goals in a row, our robots were completely delocalized (i.e. didn't know where on the field they are) and unable to dribble the ball. We were glad the half-time ended only 3:1 for UChile and our spirits were really down.

We discussed what's the issue and someone pointed out it rained a half hour before the game. Was the camera image maybe a bit dark? Yes the image was a lot darker than expected. We adapted our exposure and hoped for the best.

The second half-time started and we shot the 3:2. Not two minutes later we shot the 3:3 and the rooms was exploding with applause. UChile took their timeout and we used the time to recalibrate our cameras.

After the timeout ended we scored the 4:3 and took the lead. UChile used every bot against us and scored the 4:4. We took the opportunity when UChile had one bot less on the field to score the 5:4.

UChile used everything they had left and not two minuted before the end it looked very closed for them to score another goal, but we managed to fend it off. The game ended 5:4! :-D

Tomorrow we will play in the finals! Our opponent is being decided right now. The contenders are the teams B-Human from Germany and rUNSWift from Australia. We are currently celebrating a bit.

Next Game: semi final versus UChile at 8:40pm German time

Our opponent in the semi finals will be UChile which won in a penalty shoot out versus Nao Devils Dortmund. We are excited :-D

RoboCup side stories: Robots aren't the only ones with problems

It isn't just our robots who show some health issues. The people operating the robots have their problems from time to time as well . Their is a medical station nearby and we see dehydration, infections with swollen legs which needs antibiotics, people with a sore throat due the breeze at the venue and the air conditioning in the busses / hotel.

Also it seem that a few people have stomach issues: The organizer put on a note on the toilets so you are not drinking the tap water. Due to the different environment it is not drinkable for those wo are not residents in Brazil.

Fifth Game: NaoTeam HTWK vs Berlin United -- 4:1

Guys! We won the quarter finals! So we are participating in the semi finals.

It was an intense first half due adjustments when we shoot and we didn't know for sure how this will work out. Now we know: quite fine! :-D After the first half the score was 3:0. In the second half each team scored one more goal. So the final score is 4:1 and we will be participating in the semi finals at 20:40 CEST (15:40 BRT).

Next Game: 5:20pm in Germany versus Berlin United

Out next game will be our first in the quarter finals and will be versus Berlin United. If you like watch the live stream :-)

RoboCup side stories: Champions also need some time off as well

We give our robots also time to relax and calm down. Our champions get everything they need to be at the top of their game.

Day 5: We arrived at the venue

We arrived a while ago at the venue and try everything to get the most out of our current code. Being in the quarter finals we know it's sudden death and we try everything to make it to the semi finals and finals. Our next game will be at 5:20pm German time.

End of day 4

The fourth day ended and we got more than we expected. The robots are working and are functional. We won the group stage and enter into the quarter finals without any additional group games. We will be part of the organizing committee and the best thing so far: the RoboCup 2016 will be in Leipzig :-D

The Votes are in

The voting results for the organizing committee and technical committee are in. Tobias was nominated and won a place on the organizing committee. This is the second time we have the chance to make a difference and help the league to have a successful RoboCup. In 2012 Rico was already part of the committee in Mexico City.

We would like to thank everyone for honour they have given us and the trust they put in us. We want to ensure that we will do everything to have a great RoboCup 2015.

Video: RoboCup impression filmed from above.

Here are some RoboCup impressions from the hall, the people, ... we took from above via a quadrocopter. Have fun with it. :-)

Video of the fourth game: NaoTeam HTWK vs Northern Bites -- 3:0

Tuesday 22 July 2014

Video of the third game: NaoTeam HTWK vs EdInferno -- 5:0

Fourth Game: NaoTeam HTWK vs Northern Bites -- 3:0

We won our game against the Nothern Bites with a score 3 to 0. So we go directly to the quarter finals. We are very happy about it and now we have some  time to refresh our batteries.

Next Game versus Northern Bites

In 15 minutes our match against Northern Bytes will start. This will be our last group game, so far we managed to win every single one of them and we are expecting to enter the knock-out rounds as the winner of our group. Feel free to watch the game live on our stream.

Photos from our visitors

As promised here are some photos of the delegation from Leipzig including the Oberbürgermeister (mayor).

Third Game: NaoTeam HTWK vs EdInferno -- 5:0 -> Quarter Finals :-D

We won our third game versus EdInferno. We finished the game with 5 to 0 and if nothing goes wrong we are in the quarter finals :-D

Video Livestream

A few of you have already found our video live stream. If you like, watch the next game while it happens and with all well thought out commands from us. ;-)

The camera has already moved and internet is working again, so have fun.

Next Game versus EdInferno

Our next game will start in 15 minutes at 17:20 CEST (12:20 BRT) versus EdInferno.

RoboCup side stories: It's coming home!

Guys, we have great news. Yesterday we met a delegation from Leipzig including the Oberbürgermeister (mayor). We don't have photos yet as we were too busy with shaking hands, explaining what the Nao can do and where we are standing right now. The delegation travelled to Brazil to convince the Trustee committee that Leipzig would be a great place for a RoboCup competition. Lyon applied for RoboCup 2016 and tried to convince everyone as well. We also were involved in the preparation with an image film and promo pictures. As far as we know the decision was not easy.

We met everyone later and ... and we did it!!!!

Leipzig will be hosting the RoboCup 2016!!!

Monday 21 July 2014

Video of the second game: NaoTeam HTWK vs TJArk -- 1:0

Video of the first Game: NaoTeam HTWK vs Austrian Kangaroos

Second Game: NaoTeam HTWK vs TJArk -- 1:0

This was a close one. The game waged from side to side in the first and second half-time. We had a lot chances, but our robots were punished for pushing a lot. In the last minute we scored the goal which decided this game. It was thrilling till the end.

First Game: NaoTeam HTWK vs Austrian Kangaroos -- 4:0

We won our first game versus the Austrian Kangaroos with a score of 4:0. We're glad this first game worked out so well. It was quite important for us. We had to change three batteries that seemed to be fine before the game. This may be a heat related problem or the batteries were broken. We have to investigate further on this and also work on the problems we identified during the game, but over all we are quite happy.

First Game: Starts in one hour

Our first game starts in one hour - 5:20pm german time. We are quite excited :-D

Day 3 - First competition day starts

We arrived at the venue and started preparing for our first game right now. We are quite nervous about this first matche due to our walking problems and the robot situation. Currently three robots are operable and two are being repaired right now.

Day 2 ends - Setup and network trouble

The seconds day ends and we heading back home to our hotel. We used the time for a test game versus MRL and found some potential for improvements. Our team is already working on these findings. Tobias was also quite busy checking the fields for faults in the wifi configuration after a few teams complained that the GameController (translator between human referee decisions into networks packages) network packages aren't received by the robots. We found some issues and a faulty wireless router and now we hope to be ready for the first real game tomorrow. Th game will be played at 5:20pm German time.

We also participated in our first drop in game. In a drop in game we play like team blue versus team red a usual. However, each of the teams is made up by different competitors. The team members communicate via a standard protocol and have to agree on a strategy. This challenge is quite new and the teams are still working to get a good balance between trust to the other players and doubts about the information the other teammates provide.

RoboCup side stories: Episode Two - Relax Man!

The RoboCup is a very stressful time. We are working with a lot pressure to finish our features, tune parameters and get ready on schedule. Also the venue is very noisy due three thousand participants, construction work to build the rescue arenas and public announcement.

We need from time to time a moment to come done, collect our thoughts or just to distract us a moment. The organizers used a bit empty space to set up a few hammocks. It's a gift and used a lot by the teams.

Sunday 20 July 2014

Referee Meeting

The job of the referee is not yet automated. Every game is supervised by four referees at the event. One will be the main referee and will be calling the shots and the other two have the roll of an assistant referee. They will place the robots, show the main referee fouls he missed and support him how ever he needs them. The last one is operation the technics.

Currently the referee meeting takes place, so everyone will be on the same page when it comes to game decisions. The rules and exceptions are discussed, but in the end the main referee will make the final decision.  If you are interested in the rules, download the official rule book for the SPL.

RoboCup side stories: Episode One - Chica Bonita

As mentioned before the venue is outside of the city and without AC. So we need a lot water which was not available yesterday. We sent three of our bravest men to find a super market.

The taxi driver drove them to a place quite like Walmart, Rewe or Kaufland. Taxi drivers don't accept credit card here and our three men had to pay with hard currency  Also it's quite hard to get money from an ATM. Credit cards are not accepted in most places and you can only withdraw money from 6am to 10pm - that's usually the time we work on the robots.

They bought cases full of food and water. In the meantime the team "Hulks" asked us if they should bring also some water So we are good for the next few days.  As our men tried to find a taxi to drive back to the venue a friendly man invited them to his car and assured them that he is a taxi driver. Spoiler - he was not... but our three men where lucky. He was a good guy and drove them back to the venue for R$ 30 (~10€) checking Facebook all the time while driving, showing the guys the chica bonitas on Facebook and honked his horn at the chicka bonita on the street walk.

Finally, internet access - A post from yesterday

After the whole day without internet we are back online. The network equipment for the fiber connection was faulty and has been replaced. We helped to identify further network problems due to misconfigured routers. We tracked down at least two of them and helped the other teams and Aldebaran to come back online.

We used the time to work on the walking engine. We won't use the new walking engine, instead we will use the old with a few backported features. Our penality shooter reported also progress and a lot team members worked on their new or modified subsystems like ultrasound, path finding or the localization.

At the end of the day we relaxed at the beach, enjoying the recommended cold beverage in Brazil made with a lot love: caipirinha

Saturday 19 July 2014

We are at the venue

We got our bus to the venue. The venue has no AC and the company which should provide complementary water for all participants didn't show up this morning. Our place is fully setup, but internet won't be available till the evening. We use a mobile connection to write this text. So you won't hear much from us today.

Hotel and surroundings

We reached our hotel with the transport we booked in advance. The surrounding of the hotel is quite nice. The beach is near by and after the sunset the life seems to pulsate in the streets. We also met our friends from B-Human again and shared a fresh coconut between team members. This will be our last post of today.

Tomorrow is the first setup day where we have to figure out when our shuttle is leaving and how we will come back to the hotel. We will also register and establish our infrastructure on our table and on the field.

Here are some impressions of this night: