The "kid-size" humanoid league at the RoboCup features standardized humanoid robots that teams write software for. The reigning 2009 champs, from Technische Universitat Darmstadt, worked on making shots and passes quicker in this year's matches. Watch the video highlights and see if their strategy paid off.
Humans aren't the only ones playing soccer right now. In just two days, robots from world-renowned universities will compete in Singapore for RoboCup 2010. This is the other World Cup, where players range from 15-centimeter tall Wall-E-like bots to adult-sized advanced humanoids.
The RoboCup, now in its 14th edition, is the world’s largest robotics and artificial intelligence competition with more than 400 teams from dozens of countries. The idea is to use the soccer bots to advance research in machine vision, multi-agent collaboration, real-time reasoning, sensor-fusion, and other areas of robotics and AI.
But its participants also aim to develop autonomous soccer playing robots that will one day be able to play against humans. The RoboCup's mission statement: