Otronicon v.10 kicked off at the Orlando Science Center on Friday, Jan. 16 showcasing the best in digital media, video game design and technology, modeling and simulation tech, robotics and medical/biotech developments.
In its 10th year now, the four-day event included demonstrations and exhibits from Disney, EA Sports, Florida Hospital, Lockheed Martin, NASA, the University of Central Florida and many others.
Futuristic and friendly, NAO, the humanoid robot from developer Aldebaran wowed everyone with its slick moves and lifelike interaction. Designed as a teaching aid, NAO is also being used to help autistic students enhance their social interactions by acting as a neutral, yet engaging educational partner.
Volunteers from e-Nable shared 3-D printed hands made by an all-volunteer network, of 2,700, which are then given to patients in need all around the world.
Lockheed Martin introduced kids to coding through its Mars Game, in which players need to ‘rescue’ a robot using increasingly complex programming skills.
“As a company we recognize the need to understand and reach out to kids at their level to get them interested in future STEM careers,” said Edwin Giraldo, test engineer at Lockheed Martin.
Florida Hospital put convention-goers in the roles of doctors, allowing them to try their hand at advanced surgical tools like the da Vinci Xi and the Stryker Navigation system used in neurosurgery.
Talon Simulations, sponsored by UCF, brings together simulation and mechanics to create an affordable virtual flight trainer without the expense of previous technologies. Its simulator uses Oculus Rift to immerse the user into a high definition virtual environment, augmented by a two-degree freedom of motion platform that simulates flight motion.
Guests at the Disney Science Faire got a firsthand look at the technology behind the now-famous animatronics used throughout the theme parks.
UCF showcased a number of programs including its School of Visual Arts and Design who presented character design workshops and work done by game design interns at their E2I Creative Studio.
Throughout the conference there were plenty of opportunities to test your skills against the pros (most were kids) in the latest in video games and digital fun. For the very adventurous there was a laser battle or the fully immersive escape game, ‘It’s a Trap.’
Showing off the very best and coolest technology Central Florida has to offer is the mission of Otronicon and once again it delivered, bringing together a diverse group of gamers, engineers, scientists and entrepreneurs for four days of STEM innovation and fun.
Watch as NAO schools us all with his slick dance moves: