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June 2013: Spring to Summer in the San Francisco Bay Area - Will Roderick

June 2013: Spring to Summer in the San Francisco Bay Area - Will Roderick
June 2013: Spring to Summer in the San Francisco Bay Area - Will Roderick
July 03, 2013 -  Will Roderick    

With the end of spring quarter and the beginning of summer, I’ve come back home to Berkeley. I actually did my final engineering project on climbing and found that climbers who are extended and climbing horizontally (for example, under a roof) save about 25% more energy by smearing or keeping their feet on flat holds (relying solely on friction) over using no feet. Cool, right? And while I’m sad to have left Stanford and my friends there, it’s great to see my family and my friends from high school again. I’ve started working at UC Berkeley designing robots inspired from biological systems – for example, one project that the lab I’m working in focuses on is designing robots that can climb similarly to geckos. Currently, I, with the help of my brother, am working on a righting mechanism for an efficient, robust robot that was inspired by insects.

While I have been training in the gym quite a bit, summer has given me the opportunity to go outside to climb more. Earlier this past month, I went back to Stinson beach to climb and surf. More recently, I went on a trip to Tahoe with two of my buddies, Rick and Vitaly. It was amazing. Perfect weather, and we could see over South Lake Tahoe for miles. We quickly realized that we should have brought mosquito repellant, but we found some great shady spots to climb that were free of mosquitos. We were pretty new to this part of Lake Tahoe so we didn’t know where every climb was as we explored from boulder to boulder. We did find and send a great V8 that we had heard about. It was a sit start under a low roof with moves that became progressively more dynamic. We’re planning to do more trips in the next few weeks, which I’m really excited for! Should be awesome!


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