RoboCup competitors prepare for July melee

Posted by Mark Raby

Atlanta (GA) - 300 teams spread across 33 countries are making final preparations for this year's RoboCup, a robotic version of the World Cup soccer tournament.

Marking its 14th year, RoboCup 2007 will take place at the Georgita Institute of Technology.  Event organizers say the goal of the annual competition is to be able to create a robotic team by the year 2050 that can actually take on and defeat human competitors.

The event, which is sponsored by Microsoft, Lockheed Martin, and the National Science Foundation, among others, will begin on July 3 and will run for one week, when the global robo champs will be crowned.

Last year's competition, which was held in Germany, was won by a home town team.  The United States has won multiple times in previous years.