Feeds

Feds pony up $3.5m for robot race

Military complex not as frugal as thought

Security for virtualized datacentres

After foraging through thousands of couches in Washington, the government has come up with $3.5m in prize money for the contestants in an upcoming robotic vehicle race.

DARPA - the gadgety arm of the Defense Department - today revealed that contestants in the 2007 Urban Challenge will receive prize money after all. New legislation had blocked the agency from offering cash awards as it had in the past two Challenge events. Now, however, Ken Krieg, the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics, has approved the payoffs.

The first place team stands to win $2m, followed by second place with $1m and third place with $500,000. The winning robotic vehicles must find their own way through a 60-mile urban course within 6 hours to stash the cash.

DARPA's Challenge events remain popular with the geek set.

Last year, a Stanford University team won the second running of the Grand Challenge by completing a 150-mile desert journey. Stanford's success helped redeem the Grand Challenge contest after a complete collapse by all participants during the first event in 2004.

The most successful teams have largely relied on hefty equipment donations from vendors and have produced vehicles that cost well over $1m. Still, the cash prize is a nice incentive.

The government takes the robotic vehicle contest very seriously as the US has set a mandate to have one-third of its military ground vehicles operate unmanned by 2015. The Feds turned to the Grand Challenge concept after military contractors were slow to show much progress with the technology. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
SECRET U.S. 'SPACE WARPLANE' set to return from SPY MISSION
Robot minishuttle X-37B returns after almost 2 years in orbit
LOHAN crash lands on CNN
Overflies Die Welt en route to lively US news vid
'Utter killjoy Reg hacks have NEVER BEEN LAID', writes a fan
'Shuddit, smarty pants!' Some readers reacted badly to our last Doctor Who review ...
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
Carry On Cosmonaut: Willful Child is a poor taste Star Trek parody
Cringeworthy, crude and crass jokes abound in Steven Erikson’s sci-fi debut
White LED lies: It's great, but Nobel physics prize-winning great?
How artificial lighting could offer an artificial promise
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.