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LEGO Mindstorms & Alexa Voice Challenge

by admin on September 28, 2019

in Community News

A couple of days ago, the LEGO MINDSTORMS and Amazon Alexa announced their collaboration for the LEGO MINDSTORMS Voice Challenge: Powered by Alexa competition. It’s an opportunity for Alexa developers, LEGO MINDSTORMS enthusiasts, and creators around the world to explore and build the future of voice-based experiences through construction and robotics play. There will be hundreds of prizes, including one grand prize winner who will take home $20,000 in Amazon Gift Cards, a powerful package of LEGO sets, and a trip to LEGO Headquarters in Denmark — where they will have an opportunity to tour the LEGO House and meet with LEGO designers. In addition, the winner’s creation will be displayed at the annual LEGO World event in Copenhagen. Below are the details of this interesting challenge. 🙂

Since the introduction of the very first LEGO brick, people of all ages have been able to build anything they can imagine. The LEGO product line-up has continued to evolve over the years, including the introduction of branded products and others that introduced new technological capabilities. Recently, the introduction of LEGO MINDSTORMS has delivered a fundamental step-change in the ability of builders to create advanced robotics, including prosthetic arms and a life-sized pinball machine. All of these LEGO products work together to create a universal system, which now has the opportunity to go one step further through the power of Alexa.

“Since its launch in 2013, LEGO MINDSTORMS EV3 has delighted its customers by delivering powerful technology in an accessible way, allowing them to learn and build an endless array of imaginative projects,” said Tom Donaldson, Senior Vice President, LEGO Creative Play Lab. “We feel voice is a natural way to interface with technology, and believe it will be a large part of the world of play in the future. We are excited to collaborate with Amazon and provide our creators with the tools needed to create a whole new set of experiences with our iconic products.”

Using the Alexa Gadgets Toolkit, fans can now connect LEGO MINDSTORMS EV3 to Alexa, in order to unlock a new world of voice-powered experiences. Through this contest, you have the chance to activate your LEGO bin, and think outside the box with a new input — your own voice. Create voice-powered experiences such as an elephant that dances to music, an Ev3Storm robot that defends its territory from invaders, or an immersive skill-based world where your R3Ptar snake responds to voice commands and sensor-based triggers. The possibilities are endless.

“It’s still Day One, and we are just scratching the surface when it comes to the delightful experiences developers can create using the Alexa Gadgets Toolkit,” said Miriam Daniel, VP of Alexa and Echo Devices, Amazon. “We feel LEGO and their powerful MINDSTORMS products will allow creators to build interactive experiences that delight, entertain, and inspire us all. We can’t wait to see what is possible with voice in the world of construction and robotics.”

HOW DOES THE CHALLENGE WORK? – Participants will build a LEGO MINDSTORMS creation that interacts with Alexa via voice using the Alexa Gadgets Toolkit. Creations will be judged on voice interaction, innovative LEGO build, and development process. The accompanying submission package must include a video demonstration and code snippets. With parental consent, 13- to 17-year-old creators can also participate in this challenge. See Official Rules for additional details. If you don’t have the LEGO MINDSTORMS set, you can purchase it at the LEGO MINDSTROMS section of the Online LEGO Shop.

COME FOR THE FUN, BUILD FOR THE PRIZES – All eligible contest participants will be considered for a chance to win a portion of prizes totaling $100,000. If participants enter as a team, prizes will be split among team members. LEGO and Amazon will offer the following prizes:

  • Grand Prize – Best Creation Overall (1 Winner): One grand prize winner who will take home $20,000 in Amazon Gift Cards, a powerful package of LEGO sets, and a trip to LEGO Headquarters in Denmark — where they will have an opportunity to tour the LEGO House and meet with LEGO designers. In addition, the winner’s creation will be displayed at the annual LEGO World event in Copenhagen.
  • Finalists – Top Creations (5 Winners): Five winners will each receive $10,000 in Amazon.com Gift Cards and $700 in LEGO models.
  • Bonus Prize – Best Creation by 13-17-Year Old Creator (1 Winner): One winner will receive $5,000 in Amazon.com Gift Cards and $700 in LEGO models. To be eligible, you must be 13-17 years old, and your project submission must be accompanied by a parental consent form.
  • First 100 Submissions (100 Winners): Each of the first 100 participants to submit a project that meets our requirements will receive a $150 Amazon.com Gift Card. See Submission Checklist for more details.

START TODAY! – Excited to start building? Follow these steps today to enter the LEGO MINDSTORMS Voice Challenge: Powered by Alexa. The contest submission window will close on December 31, 2019 at 11:59 pm PST and winners will be announced on January 17, 2020. The LEGO MINDSTORMS and Amazon Alexa teams are looking forward to see what you create — the possibilities are endless!

What do you think? Do you use LEGO MINDSTORMS? Is this a contest you would be interested to enter? What kind of creations do you envision to see? Feel free to share your thoughts and discuss in the comment section below! 😉

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Peter September 28, 2019 at 9:50 PM

They are really into this voice activation thing right now, it seems. There is also the voice activation contest on Ideas. I wonder what they are up to.

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brickmaster September 28, 2019 at 10:50 PM

I thought of that too. It’s interesting that both contests are about voice activation.

Reply

Martin September 29, 2019 at 12:23 PM

This seems to be a pretty complex challenge for people who are already familiar with both Mindstorms and Alexa gadgets. It’s not for regular AFOLs. The Ideas contest, however, is open for everyone over 13 and all you need is an idea. You don’t have to work out the details.

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DavidH September 29, 2019 at 7:51 PM

Not for me, I have little experience with Mindstorms, but I’m curious what will be the result of this. As others said, it seems that lego is really interested in voice activation right now. I wonder why.

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