Canadian robots competition canceled

Nov. 12, 2011 at 8:24 PM
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TORONTO, Nov. 12 (UPI) -- Canada's national robotic competition, scheduled for this weekend in Toronto, was canceled because of declining interest, the event's organizer says.

Steve Jones, president of the Canadian National Robot Games, told the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. the event was called off because attendance was going to be half of previous years.

"Kids aren't interested what's inside the robot, what's inside the box, what's inside the IT chip," Jones said. "It's very sad. That's part of my frustration. I don't know what it would take me now to spark that interest."

While he holds out hope the event can be revived in the future, Jones said he thinks children nowadays just want to play with a new toy rather than build one.

The decision to cancel the games doesn't sit well with defending national champion Aaron Ramsey, whose three children all have been bitten by the robot-building bug.

"My kids were incredibly disappointed. They really wanted to go," Ramsey, who heads up the Robot Enthusiast Club in Ottawa, told the CBC.

Ramsey said membership in his group has actually grown to 350 members.

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