Skip to main content

e4-Rover Mars Challenge at EclipseCon

Do you have what it takes to be a rocket scientist? EclipseCon 2010 is your opportunity to play with the top guns. The Eclipse Foundation, in collaboration with NASA JPL, is organizing the e4-Rover Mars Challenge. EclipseCon attendees will participate in a contest to create the very best robotic control system to drive a robot across a prototypical Mars landscape.

Two Ways to Win

  1. Best Client: Prove your e4 programming skills by creating the very best e4-Rover client. Start with the pre-built client and extend it to make it a more attractive, usable and effective command and control system for the e4-Rover. The winner will be determined by a judging panel.

    Grand Prize Trip to visit the NASA robotics lab in Los Angeles, CA, LEGO® Mindstorms NXT 2.0
    robotics set and $500 credit for Amazon Web Services
    Runner-Up Prize Eclipse shirt and $100 credit for Amazon Web Services
  2. Top Score: Use an e4 client to operate the Rover through a series of tasks to collect points. Use the pre-built e4-Rover client as-is, or modify it to improve your performance and score more points. The person with the highest score at the end of the contest is the winner.

    Grand Prize LEGO® Mindstorms NXT 2.0 robotics set and $500 credit for Amazon Web Services
    Runner-Up Prize Eclipse shirt and $100 credit for Amazon Web Services

Winners will be announced during the Closing Session of EclipseCon.

Prepare to Play

  1. Download Eclipse e4 and the e4-Rover client by following the getting started instructions.
  2. Register at the Mars Challenge Arena to participate as an e4-Rover driver. The arena is in the hall outside the Alameda Room. You must present your EclipseCon 2010 badge to register.
  3. Read the instructions on how to play the game to get top score.
  4. Read the instructions on how to use e4 to extend the e4-Rover client.

Drive for Top Score

To drive the e4-Rover and collect points a player starts a "mission". A mission is when you have complete control of the e4-Rover. Each mission last 3 minutes and consists of a series of tasks to complete to collect points. The more tasks you complete the more points you can collect points.

You first must register as a player before you can start any missions (see Getting Started #2). To start a mission you need to join the queue. If no one is on the queue, your mission will start immediately. At the end of the mission your score will go up on the scoreboard. At the end of the week, the highest score wins.

Read more details on How to Play.

Create the Best Client

A basic e4-Rover client has been provided to get you started. Your challenge is to improve the client so it is more effective in completing its tasks. Use the power of e4 to improve the usability and workflow of the client. We have created a Getting Started Tutorial to give you some tips. The client is built on e4, so this will be a great opportunity to learn all about it.

Learn more about the judging criteria to Improve the Client.

Contest Rules

  • You must be a registered attendee of EclipseCon 2010 to compete.
  • The contest opens Monday, March 22, 2010 at 9:00am and finishes Thursday, March 25, 2010 at 11:30am PDT.
  • All new clients created for the contest must be based on the e4 platform. The code for the client must be licensed under the Eclipse Public license.
  • People can work together as teams but there is only one prize per team, so you will need to share.
  • A person or team can only win one prize. The prize for the Best Client will be awarded first. The prize for the Best Score will go to the person with the highest score that did not win the Best Client prize.
  • In the case of a tie for Top Score, special run-off missions will be run to determine the winner.
  • The Best Client winner will receive a a travel credit of $1,800 USD towards an airplane ticket and 3 nights hotel to Los Angeles, CA. The tour of the NASA JPL facilities must be arranged in advance and at a time convenient to for all parties. The trip must completed before March 1, 2011. There is no cash value for this prize and it cannot be transferred to another person.
  • AWS credits are provided by Amazon Web Services and will be emailed to the winners after the winners are announced. AWS credits are non-transferable


If you have questions, see the getting help page.

Back to the top