Saturday, October 23, 2010

CalGames Day 2

Today was the second day of the 2010 CalGames competition. The whole day our robot did exactly what we told it to do and we only had to ever make a minor change before a match. The success of our robot didn't exactly translate into our matches, considering that we lost all of them except for the only match that our robot was not communicating with the driver station (we believe this was because the battery was running low). Our biggest downfall was most likely the fact that our divers had less than 24-hours to get used to driving the robot, and we now know to make lots of time to practice.

However, throughout the entire fall season, our goal was never to win CalGames. We wanted to make sure that our current team had the skills necessary to design, build and program a robot for the actual FIRST competition. We 100% completed this goal. We took what we learned from last season and applied our knowledge to the design of our robot. For the first time ever, we used pneumatics, and I am extremely proud of this accomplishment because we now understand how it works and we have a new tool to implement in future challenges. The programming team also proved themselves amazing, as they were able to complete all of the code (in a new language) in practically 8 days. One team called us crazy for making a robot just for CalGames, but we are all proud of the magnificent Will da Beast.

We talked to some amazing teams and we will definitely plan on attending CalGames again next year. Congratulations to all of the teams who competed, but specically to 971, 254, and 692 on their 2010 CalGames win!

Photos will be posted to the Picassa, and you can check out the videos we have posted on YouTube (1700gatorbotics). Don't forget to follow us on twitter (Gatorbotics1700).

Friday, October 22, 2010

CalGames Day 1

Today was our first day at CalGames! We started off the day meeting at Casti at 9:00 and we finished working on the robot, and practiced driving for the competition. We changed the autonomous code so that we were able to consistently score 2 goals during autonomous (we probably could have scored 3 but we only had 2 balls).

One of the highlights of the day was when we ordered the pizzas from Domino's . They have this special feature that allows you to tract the progress of your order online, and tells you the name of the delivery person. We made a big thank you note for Leonardo, the delivery guy, and waited for him outside of the school. He was extremely happy when he recieved the card and we think that this gave good karma for the competition.

When we got to the actual competition everything went very smoothly. We quickly had everything unpacked and passed inspection quickly. I'd like to give a shout-out to Inspector Martin, I can honestly say that he is probably our favorite inspector. We found out that our robot only weighs 83 lbs (even with the 12.5lb weight on it), but so far the weight doesn't seem to be an issue.

During our first match we were with 668 and 114 in the blue alliance, and we competed against 1351, 675 and 3045. Unfortunately we found a leak in our pneumatics set up (this is now fixed), so we were unable to kick during the amazing autonomous that our programmers have worked on. In the end the score was 3-5, which we were originally surprised by, but when we remembered that points scored during autonomous were now worth 2 points it made sense.

When we left today everything was working and we are all excited for day two of the competition. If you want to see what's going on, but can't make it to Lynbrook High School, check out the webcast at .

Photos and videos will be uploaded as soon as possible!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Fall Update


It has been a while since the blog was updated so I will try to include all of the important

The first piece of exciting information is that we cleaned out the robotics lab! Below is a picture so you can see how lovely it looks. However, the lab is once again messy, but we will clean everything up.

The big news that we have is that we are attending CalGames next weekend! CalGames is an off-season robotics competition that is a replay of last season's competition, Breakaway. We have been working on a new robot that we are going to bring to the competition. The robot is named Will da Beast and has a low chassis, pneumatic kicker, camera, autonomous mode and snazzy bumpers (they are reversible so we don't need to stress about taking them off between matches)! We are short enough to go under the tunnels in the center of the field and the robot looks amazing! CalGames was the first time that we programmed a robot in Java and so far everything has been going great! Today we got got the final version of the robot up and running. The kicker works and we decided to add some surgical tubing to make it a little stronger, but we have the piston mounted so that we can adjust how hard we kick the ball.

With 5 days left until CalGames we just need to make a few adjustments to the robot and we should be ready to go. We are all packed up getting excited for the competition. CalGames is at Lynbrook High School, and the first day's matches and opening ceremony starts at 6:00 pm on Friday October 22. The second day (October 23) starts nice and early at 8:00 am, and we would love everyone to come! What is a better way to celebrate Mole Day than to come and watch an exciting robotics competition?

I would also like to thank our incredible mentors Jimmy, Holly, Stephen and Santhi who have helped us so much with this robot! We wouldn't have a beautiful robot if it wasn't for their help!