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RoboCup.org
SoftBank NAO

Call for Applications for Participation

RoboCup 2016 Standard Platform League

www.tzi.de/spl

Tuesday 28th June through Monday 4th July 2016 (Leipzig, Germany)

http://www.robocup2016.org

RoboCup is an international initiative that fosters research and education in Robotics and Artificial Intelligence through a variety of competitions (RoboCupSoccer, RoboCupRescue, RoboCup@Home, RoboCupJunior) involving mostly multi-robot systems. RoboCup currently includes a number of different robot soccer leagues that focus on different research challenges.

The Standard Platform League (SPL) is characterized by the use of an identical robot platform by all the teams. Participating researchers focus on algorithmic development for fully autonomous robots, i.e., robots that operate with no external control. The SPL at RoboCup 2016 will use V5 or older versions of the NAO humanoid robot manufactured by Aldebaran Robotics. The SPL robot soccer games at RoboCup 2016 will be played between teams of five robots on a 6m x 9m field.

The RoboCup 2016 SPL will host three competitions: a team competition, a drop-in player competition, and 2 technical challenges.

The RoboCup 2016 SPL team competition will be able to host 24 teams. 8 of these 24 teams will compete in an outdoor competition (featuring natural lighting and more realistic carpet) for the first round robin while the other 16 teams will compete indoor for the first round robin. All 8 teams from the outdoor competition will proceed to the second round robin of the team competition, while only 8 of the 16 teams from the indoor first round will advance to the second round robin of the team competition. The second round as well as subsequent rounds will be played indoors with semi-controlled lighting and normal carpet. The 24 teams participating in the team competition must also compete in the drop-in player competition and/or the technical challenges.

At most 8 additional teams, who do not compete in the team competition, will be selected to compete in the drop-in player competition and the technical challenges.

Teams for all three competitions will be selected from the interested parties responding to this call.

The full rules of RoboCup 2015 SPL as well as documents outlining the technical challenges and major rules changes? for RoboCup 2016 SPL (which will be incorporated into the RoboCup 2016 SPL rulebook in a more detailed form) are posted on the SPL website.

Qualification

All interested teams must submit an original qualification document. In order for the qualification document to be considered, it must (1) be no longer than 5 pages and (2) include all of the following information in sections with the specified headings:

  1. Team Information: the team name, the team leader(s), the team constitution (eg. 5 undergraduate students, 3 masters students, 1 professor), and the university/company affiliation(s) of the team
  2. Robot Information: the number of each type of NAO owned by the team (eg, intend to buy 6 H25 NAO v4s or currently have 5 H21 V3.3, etc)
  3. Preference: preference of the team to compete in team competition (specify preference for indoor or outdoor), drop-in player competition and technical challenges (do not list anything you are unwilling to compete in, order your preferences, listing a preference of (1) indoor team competition, (2) drop-in player competition would mean the team prefers the indoor team competition over the drop-in player competition and is unwilling to participate in the technical challenges or the outdoor team competition). Teams are expected to participate in at least two of the three competitions.
  4. Code Usage: acknowledge the team's use of any other team's code (1) previously from 2013 to present and (2) currently. Address how you anticipate the team's use of any other team's code will change by RoboCup 2016 competition, if at all. If the team does not use any other team's code, state so.
  5. Past History: provide game results in RoboCup Open competitions as well as main RoboCup competitions from 2013 onward. Include opponents and game scores from each competition in a table. State if the team plans to participate in any RoboCup Open competitions prior to RoboCup 2016.
  6. Impact: what is the impact of the team's participation and research in RoboCup on (1) the SPL, (2) the team's university/community
  7. Other: present any other information that you believe supports your application

    Note that submitting an application serves as a statement of commitment to participate in the RoboCup 2016 SPL. If you have doubts regarding the ability of your team to participate (due to funding, visas, ect), please note this in the 'Other' section of your application. Declining to participate in any competition after the official early registration period has opened may negatively affect future applications (the later you decline, the worse it will affect future applications).

    The written material must be complemented by a link to a video (maximum 5 min long, uploaded on the team's web site or on some video server) that demonstrates the current status of the team. The video is used by the TC to determine the readiness of the team to compete effectively, and hence should focus on the team’s ability to play soccer. Teams who did not participate in the team competition at RoboCup 2015 must include footage of at least one robot attempting to kick off and score (this footage must be captured as a single wide shot with no cuts). In cases where footage from multiple teams is shown (such as game footage), please include a textual overlay denoting which team is the applying team. Videos of simulation contributions will also be accepted, but only when real robots are unavailable. Preference will be given to teams that use real robots to show soccer skills in their video.

    The technical committee may also request a live demo via Skype or a similar video chat service between the dates of December 11 and December 15. Teams will be notified by December 9 if the technical committee wishes to see such a demo. A team would be expected to show one or more robots executing a kick-off and then attempting to score. If providing a live demo between December 11 and December 15 would be problematic, please note this in your email when you submit your application and provide earlier dates which would be feasible.

    Pre-Qualification

    Teams that satisfied the pre-qualification guidelines as set forth in the RoboCup 2015 rulebook will be pre-qualified for RoboCup 2016, if they submit the following original qualification document. Teams able to pre-qualify include: Berlin United - Nao Team Humboldt (BU-NaoTH), B-Human, Cerberus, Nao Devils Dortmund, Nao-Team HTWK, NTU RoboPAL, UNSW Australia, and WrightOcean .

    The original qualification document must include:

    1. the team name
    2. the leader(s), the constitution (eg. 5 undergraduate students, 3 masters students, 1 professor), and the university/company affiliation(s) of the team
    3. the number of each type of NAO owned by the team (eg, intend to buy 6 H25 NAO v4s or currently have 5 H21 V3.3, etc)
    4. preference of the team to compete in team competition (specify preference for indoor or outdoor), drop-in player competition and technical challenges (do not list anything you are unwilling to compete in, order your preferences, listing a preference of (1) indoor team competition, (2) drop-in player competition would mean the team prefers the indoor team competition over the drop-in player competition and is unwilling to participate in the technical challenges or the outdoor team competition). Teams are expected to participate in at least two of the three competitions.
    5. a link to a team research report describing their work for RoboCup 2015 (must be posted in a publicly available location)
      1. For teams who reached the quarter-finals in the team competition, this team research report must include a link to publicly release code as detailed in the 2015 SPL rulebook

    If a joint 2015 team splits, only one team can be pre-qualified for 2016 (please, indicate which one).

    Submission and Evaluation

    All applications with the (pre-)qualification material must be submitted by December 1st, 2015, by email to rc-spl-tc@lists.robocup.org. Applications must not be sent to personal SPL TC/OC email addresses and must not contain video attachments.

    Teams are encouraged to consider joint participation. Joint proposals will be judged on combined merit.

    Qualification decisions will be announced by December 16, 2015.

    Robot Acquisition

    Aldebaran Robotics has a special pricing package for teams who qualify for the RoboCup 2016 SPL Competition. A list of qualified teams will be sent to Aldebaran by the SPL Technical Committee after the qualification decisions have been announced, so teams may contact Aldebaran after that date to order robots if they choose.

    Orders will have to be placed to Aldebaran before April 1st, 2016 to benefit from discounted prices.

    Aldebaran is not allowed to sale, export and ship its products to natural or legal persons and to entities and countries which are subject to international sanctions or prohibitions from the United Nations and/or the European Union and/or the United States of America.

    Discounted RoboCup prices only apply to RoboCup Qualified Teams who participate in the RoboCup 2016 SPL competition. If a Qualified Team, who benefited from the discounted RoboCup price, does not compete in the competition it purchased robots for at RoboCup 2016, Aldebaran will invoice the said Team for the additional cost for the regular list price applicable at the time of purchase. Hence, if a Team purchases 6 robots at the discounted price and only enters the Drop-in and/or Technical Challenges, they will be charged for 4 robots at the regular price. If a Team purchases any discounted robots and then decides not to participate, they will be charged the regular price for all. Teams should contact Aldebaran if they have questions regarding these policies.

    Main Qualified Teams

    Aldebaran agrees to deliver up to 6 RoboCup NAO (either new robots or replacement robots) per SPL Main Qualified Team at the negotiated price detailed below. Above this limit of 6 robots, any additional robots can be purchased at the regular list price applicable at the time of purchase.

    Drop-In + Technical Challenge Qualified Teams

    Aldebaran agrees to deliver up to 2 RoboCup NAO (either new robots or replacement robots) per SPL Drop-In + Technical Challenge Qualified Team at the negotiated price detailed below. Above this limit of 2 robots, any additional robots can be purchased at the regular list price applicable at the time of purchase.

    NAO Version

    Aldebaran agree to deliver the version V5 of NAO for RoboCup 2016 qualified teams. RoboCup 2016 will be limited to NAO V5 versions or older. If a newer version is released by Aldebaran before the competition please note that teams will not be allowed to use them for any part of the competition.

    Price (excluding VAT)

    • Price of Robots within the Limit Number: 3.200€ *
    • Price of Robots above Limit Number: List Price *
    • Charger: 190€
    • Battery: 190€
    • Full Nao V5 Robot replacement of a NAO V4 within the Limit Number: 2.750 € **
    • Full Nao V5 Robot replacement of a NAO V3.3 within the Limit Number: 2.950 € **
    • Full Nao V5 Robot replacement above Limit Number: List Price **
    • 1 Year Warranty Extension for NAO V5: 700 € ***
    • 1 Year Warranty Extension for NAO V4: 700 € ***
    • 1 Year Warranty Extension for NAO V3.3 and previous versions: not available
    • Other types of replacements (metal gears/arms/head…): not available

    Repairs during the RoboCup 2016

    • On NAO V5 and NAO V4 during the warranty period: included in warranty
    • On NAO V5, NAO V4 and V3.3 outside the warranty period: quotation on request ****
    • On other versions: not available

    * includes: 1 year warranty starting at initial shipping date - 1 charger and battery – does not include shipping

    ** includes: 1 year warranty starting at initial shipping date - 1 charger and battery – shipping of replacement robot – does not include shipping of replaced robot, shipping possible to local offices – Paris/ Boston/ Shanghai

    *** The total warranty period may not exceed 4 years after the initial shipping date.

    **** Repair at reasonable price with quotation on request during RoboCup. Parts for NAO V3.3 may not be available.

    ”Limit number” is 6 robots or replacements for the SPL Main Qualified and 2 for the SPL Drop-In.

    Aldebaran requires that a "Delegation of Signature" document be signed by the Delegating Official for repair quotations on request during RoboCup 2016.

    RoboCup 2016 Standard Platform League Technical and Organizing Committees