Let's Make Robots!

LMRv4 Donor Appreciation Robot

Results: Donor Drawing Winners!

See the LMR Donor Drawing Winners - Seeedstudio Prizes page


As most of you know, we are running a fundraiser to help cover costs for developing LMRv4. Visit our Donation Page for more info.

Anyone who makes a donation before May 1st, 2012 will be entered into a drawing to win one of five prizes generously donated by Seeedstudio!

We need a cool robot to pick the winners. So here is your challenge.

The robot must be able to make random selections from a pool of names. There are five prizes, and just in case we want to pull 5 alternate winners. So we need 10 names picked.

The rules for the drawing will be that the first name picked gets their choice of the prizes, the second name picked gets their choice of the remaining, etc. So the robot challenge must be able to support that.

RobotGrrl has offered to have the drawing made live on her weekly Robot Party after the May 1st deadline. The drawing will also be recorded for posterity.


  1. The challenger must set up a system that can pick a list of 10 names from a provided list. The list of names will probably be on the order of a few hundred.
  2. The system must provide a way to determine the order in which the names were picked.
  3. The system must be fair. (This may seem easy but it is hard to create a physical random number generator with a uniform distribution.)
  4. The system must use an autonomous robot as part of the process of picking a name. E.g., if a dice is used, a robot must throw the dice, or read the dice, or BE the dice :).
  5. The system must be as transparent as possible. E.g.. A robot printing out a name on a lcd is not very transparent unless you can show how the code works step by step as the choice is made. 

OK. Get those thinkers thinking and make it happen!

To be considered, you will need to post a link to a video as a comment to this challenge page. The video must show that your robot can meet the requirements in the rules above.

The winner will be selected by Nils and myself.

Update: Challenge Ends and Winner is Selected


Today is May 1st. Time to pick a winner.

It has been suggested that with two such great entries, why choose? If both contestants are ready and can be available for the Robot Party (this Thursday May 3rd at 8:00 PM Eastern/US), then let's have them both choose!

If there are no objections, I will select the first robot by coin toss. That robot will start the choosing, and will select three winners (1st, 3rd, and 5th) and two alternates (2nd and 4th). The other robot will select two winners (2nd and 4th) and three alternates (1st, 3rd, and 5th).

Update 2012-05-03: The drawing will be very late for RobotFreak (2 AM!), so his robot will not be picking live on the Robot Party, only Nils' machine will. However, RobotFreak will do a random pick of five winners/alternates, and will send me the video. 

BTW, the time will be 2 AM for Nils as well. Let's give him a hand for being so dedicated to stay up and help us celebrate!

Congratulations to both Nils and RobotFreak on really great robots! 


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Here is the complete recording of the Robot Party!