Day 2: The calm before the storm? Follow Sagar’s adventures as he hangs around the Netherlands in the days leading up to the Grand Cooperative Driving Challenge .

Saturday started off at 7am with a typical hotel breakfast. The twist was that we also had Dutch pancakes this time. For the unintiated, Dutch pancakes are tiny, fat little things and the only thing you need to know about them is that they taste delicious. You can have them soaked in syrup or with powdered sugar (despite what heretic people will tell you about eating sugar in the morning..)

The rest of the day was spent at the TNO Automotive campus in Helmond and involved preparing the truck for the tests in the coming week. This is a mostly routine work phase, but it was good to mingle around with people from other teams. The entire event is one big ‘Geek fest’. Linux/Unix is a common denominator for all teams and it was amusing at times to hear an argument break out in some incomprehensible language, peppered with standard Linux vocabulary.

Our truck is huge. Really huge. So huge that we can’t fix the mandatory blinking lights on top of the truck, without grazing the roof beams of the VeHIL shed. Ditto for the Antennas. While driving around an internal road, we brushed the branches of an overhead tree and the antenna fell flat on its side. So it seems we will work mostly outdoors, which is not such a bad thing given the brilliant weather so far. But the size of the truck also prevents us from doing tests on normal roads within the campus. The official test-track will only be available from Monday, which means that we need to carefully discover and tie up whatever isses we can tackle while essentially standing still. Despite this, today we managed to find a hitherto undiscovered bug, yippiee 🙂

Since there wasn’t much to do, we decided to take an early day off and arrived back at the hotel by 18:00. Now the team is off to the sauna, while I will spend the evening with an old (pen)friend.