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URI students place 2nd in intelligent car contest

May 12, 2013

SOUTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. (AP) — Three University of Rhode Island computer engineering students, including a Massachusetts resident, are among the top finishers in a national competition to build a car that can drive without any humans controlling it.

Seniors Jillian Burgess of North Kingstown, Ben Ricci of Portsmouth and Steve Norris of North Attleboro, Mass., came in second in the Freescale Cup.

They started with a model car kit, standard components and a computer, then built the vehicle and wrote programs and algorithms to get the car to drive itself on a circuitous route.

They had the fastest car last month against 16 other university teams in the eastern region. But they lost to the winner in the west, the University of California at Berkeley.

The world championship is being held in China later this year.

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