Where can I find robotics classes/teams/clubs in Bay Area?
August 25, 2009 6:39 PM   Subscribe

I am looking for robotics classes/teams/clubs in the Bay Area.

I am a recent college graduate working as a co-op in a medical device company. I plan to return to graduate school in the near future majoring in robotics. Though the work at the company isn't boring, I am looking forward to working with robots. After finishing my first robot in my spare time, I have come to realize the amount of resource needed to scale up to bigger projects.

I am now looking to meet people of similar interest to tackle bigger projects. Ideally there would be some sort of team/club that's looking to build something. Alternatively I imagine certain mechatronics or similar classes would also fit the bill. I am simply looking to meet people of similar interests and established resources to allow me to tackle more complex projects.

I checked the community college (De Anza) near me and nothing related to robotics was being offered. Other suggestions are welcome. Thanks.
posted by typography to Technology (3 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Survival Research Labs.
posted by mollymayhem at 6:46 PM on August 25, 2009

A great place to start (and also feel warm/fuzzy) is to get involved with the FIRST robotics program. There are lots of active teams in your area who could all use professional engineers as mentors. You'll get an intro to some (hobby level) robotics -- microcontrollers, programming, motors, sensors, navigation systems, vision systems, mechanical design, machining, soldering, wiring, etc -- and also help kids out in your spare time. It won't give you ideas for a PhD thesis, but it will get you involved, and FIRST is a well-recognized and respected activity for many people to be involved with before taking up robotics full time. Plus, any other mentors you work with can help you network.

Also, here's a list (a possibly outdated list) of robotics clubs.

I'm an east coast roboticist, so I don't know much about activities local to you, but let me know if I can be otherwise helpful.
posted by olinerd at 7:14 PM on August 25, 2009

hackerspaces.org lists several groups in the Bay Area, such as BetaLab, Noisebridge, and Hacker Dojo. There seem to be some Meetup groups too.
posted by harmfulray at 7:30 PM on August 25, 2009

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