RoboCup: the World Championship on robotics!
RoboCup was founded in 1997 with the main goal of “developing by 2050 a Robot Soccer team capable of winning against the human team champion of the FIFA World Cup”. In the next years, RoboCup proposed several soccer platforms that have been established as standard platforms for robotics research. This domain demonstrated the capability of capturing key aspects of complex real world problems, stimulating the development of a wide range of technologies, including the design of electrical-mechanical-computational integrated techniques for autonomous robots. After more than 15 years of RoboCup, nowadays robot soccer represents only a part of the available platforms. RoboCup encompasses other leagues that, in addition to Soccer, cover Rescue (Robots and Simulation), @Home (assistive robots in home environments), Sponsored and @Work (Industrial environments), as well as RoboCupJunior leagues for young students. These domains offer a wide range of platforms for researchers with the potential to speed up the developments in the mobile robotics field.
RoboCup has already grown into a project which gets worldwide attention. Every year, multiple tournaments are organized in different countries all over the world, where teams from all over the world participate in various disciplines. There are tournaments in Germany, Portugal, China, Brazil, etc. In 2014, RoboCup will be hosted for the 1st time in South America, in Brazil.