MARCH 23, 2015 BY PAUL SMITH excerpts from http://leadwithastory.com/top-10-differences-between-high-school-sports-and-robotics/
When introducing High School Competitive Robotics and FIRST to most people they immediately ask, like battlebots. After they attnd their first FIRST Event they are often surprised at the similarities between sports and robotics. But to the author of the blog we reference here what is more striking are the differences. Athletes, parents, and coaches, take note. THIS is how in his opinion (one that we agree with here on the Gearheads) to prepare kids for life.
The tournament itself was like a combination sporting event, dance contest, NASCAR pit crew competition, costume party, and rock concert all in one! Thirty-nine high school teams came from as far away as Istanbul, Turkey. Each spent the last three months working every day after school and on weekends to design and build their own robots, and then hone their skills to compete in speed and accuracy performing tasks in center court.
Like in athletics, these kids were learning sportsmanship: how to work hard, be team players, and learning to compete strongly but fairly. And in both sports and robotics, the events themselves are filled with excitement and tension, including last-second, game-winning plays at the buzzer. But I couldn’t help noticing several very telling differences worth sharing.
Read more blow for his top 10 (11 actually he added one since the first posting):
Saturday at Marysville was a roller-coaster ride of a day, as we saw our ranking go as low as 39th and as high as 7th. REAPER performed very consistently, but as the draw had it with win/loss record and some low RP matches drove our overall ranking up and down. Final ranking at the end of the Qualification rounds was 14th, which belied a little bit the performance of the teams robot, which had an OPR (Offensive Power Ranking) of 9th overall. Reaper it turns out is a bit of a Cargo Powerhouse, with 324 cargo points over the weekend, 118 hatch panel points, and 147 sandstorm bonus points attributing to that OPR.
We would have to get the rest of the scouting information to see exactly how many of those points are directly from Reaper as opposed to our alliance partners. In the end we were selected as the first pick of the 8th alliance and were eliminated, despite valiant driving on the part of our team and alliance partners, by the eventual tournament champs. The team was hopeful that maybe we could still earn a few more points for Safety, or Design, or Engineering Inspiration. But as the evening pushed on it seemed that maybe we would end our season early in week 5 and not progress any further.
However, when the announcers started listing the achievements of the Chairman's Award Winner -- A student lead diverse team with a majority of leadership positions held by women, a WOW chapter, efforts to feed homeless teens and their families, and creative use of VR and AR -- it became evident that the winners had a lot in common with US.
Walking into the shop at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, February 19th, people were ready for the 14-hour right-of-passage that is Bag Day, more commonly known as Stop Build Day.
Stop Build Day has been a annual tradition of the FIRST Robotics Competition, ever since the first game back in 1992, when teams were required to send off their robot in a crate by the 6th week of Build Season. Eventually, this transformed into teams doing a “bag and tag” of their robot, bagging them with a numbered tag, ceasing robot construction until the pits open at their first 4 day qualifier (or a limited 6 hours of “out-of-bag” time for 3 day qualifiers). However, this year marks the last year of this ritual being practiced, giving more time for teams to build their robot while observing certain holidays and school breaks, and allowing teams with financial limitation more time to build.
This article will be an hourly recap from beginning to end of the final Bag Day.
The Gearheads 2019 Destination Deepspace robot spent the last 6 weeks, nameless. Risking that it would never go to heaven, doomed to purgatory as an un-christened robot if anything happened to it. But on Bagday, it earned its name. Specifically when Chris "Closed on Tuesdays" Fong took some time away from the shop to eat a Carolina Reaper--the hottest pepper on earth.
Reaper is a SPICY, Muy Caliente, robot design that is one of the most complex undertaken by the team in its 16 seasons.
Walking away from a successful season and months away from kickoff, we are staying extra productive by helping the community and showing what we can do.
This past summer, we helped at the Detroit Phoenix Center by building and organizing their food pantry. It was a wonderful experience for the team to help others while growing and learning about how to get involved with other communities using our skills.
In addition, we also were the life of the party at Kercheval After 6 on August 25th. There, we showed off our 2016 robot, Mayhem, and had it play catch with some of the younger attendees of the event. Meanwhile, we also sold several Gearheads-themed baked goods at our tent.
As the school year began, we participated at the annual North-South rivalry tailgate. Despite the poor weather, we still showed our spirit and devotion for our team.
This Next saturday, we will be hosting a community event in our robotics shoppe. At this fun-for-the-whole-family event, we will be holding several presentations to show members of the community what our team is all about, with refreshments and robot test drives.
For the second year in a row, the Gearheads and the Blownfuses hosted middle aged students from across the Grosse Pointe Communities in a one day design challenge. The challenge, to conceive, design, build, test, the compete with a device to resolve a particular challenge. This year the challenge to design a "self propelled" rover out of household items. Autonomously drive a straight line, with points awarded for accurately stopping in defined scoring areas.
Invitations went out in mid-July and registrants recieved there first clues to the design challenge on Friday August 3rd, the contest was held Saturday the 4th. During the design challenge participants are judged on teamwork, creativity, application of design principles, in addition to the performance of their designs.
The second and final qualifying event for the 2018 season for The Gearheads was selected to be week four at Belleville High School. The event was attended by 42 teams who would pit their robots to "Face the Boss" and attempt to PowerUp!
After their performance at Center Line, the team came out of the gates with confidence and solid driving of a solidly designed and programmed robot. In their first match they with the help of their alliance team mates, Teams 6528 and 5907, The Terror Bytes and The CC Shambots, the Blue Alliance scored the first of two "Unicorn Matches" where the alliance complete the AutoQuest, Face the Boss (levitate 3 robots), and win the match. The second Unicorn match was scored by the Gearheads later on in match 63, with teams 2834 and 5577.
This years competitions kicked off at Center Line High School with the Center Line District Event, our home district event. We were off to an auspicious beginning, when Senior Ponette Rubio was selected to represent us by singing the National Anthem at the start of the day.
The qualification rounds were marked by one of the Gearheads all-time greatest streaks of sterling robot performance. In the 12 qualification matches, Triton and our amazing drive team only recorded 2 losses. Autonomous scoring was near perfect thanks to the coding efforts of Govin and the controls team. Teleop driving saw our team maintain control of our alliances switches and scale for most of the matches and successful levitation in the end-game.
The Gearheads finished qualifiers ranked 2nd overall with an average of 2.16 Ranking Points per match, and one of the highest statistical averages for scoring, Offensive Power Rating and Defensive Power Rating (OPR 205.04 and DPR 2.4 and CCWM 202.64 ).
The team breezed through the Elimination Playoffs to make it to the finals for the first time in a few years. Unfortunately, we were edged out in the finals by the number one alliance. So it seemed no blue banner for the team this event. But wait there is more.
After collecting their event finalist medals (runner up status is always a little anti-climatic after such a great day of competition), the team was starting to think about packing up and heading home when over the P.A. they hear something familiar, "We're all scholars, We're all makers, We're all ... We're all ... We're all ... GEARHEADS" The Gearheads took home the coveted Chairman's award for the event. Which means that among the 40 teams, the judges chose to recognize FRC 1189 the Gearheads as the team that most embodies the spirit of FIRST.
Bagday was a little more lively this year as we had 3 teams working in our shop toward bagging the bots before the clock strikes midnight and unbagged robots turn into pumpkins. Team 5225 The Shambotz and Team 7143 Cyber-Eagles joined us for many hours these last few weeks and especially as we sprinted toward the bag.
We are the crazy, amazing, ingenious Gearheads!