We create and maintain this page for our own benefit — to make it easy to have announcements and files all in one place. But we also know it can be useful for others, and we like to share it freely. If you can think of anything else that would be helpful to have available on the page, please let us know!
At last year’s North Texas regional qualifier tournament, the team’s robot did not perform as well as expected. After reviewing the robot’s performance, we decided that the practice table we had been using was partially to blame. So it was time to build a new one.
The video below shows the table we came up with. One important feature of the table is that it disassembles into pieces small enough to fit into our van, so we can take our FLL equipment to other schools and organizations for demonstrations. Indeed, this was the table we used for our Discovery Days exhibit at the Perot Museum earlier this year.
We’ve posted some videos with the team’s top-scoring practice runs on YouTube. For a wide variety of reasons the robot never achieved 580 in the Robot Game competition… its best competition score was 530. However, it regularly achieved 580 in the Robot Design judging rounds.
For the North American Championship the robot was upgraded to be able to score 590 and to be able to activate the ball game from the center platform just as time expires. Hopefully we’ll get a video of that soon.
There are two other practice videos available (these are also 580 point runs):
Today was the first UTD Coaches Clinic’ for 2012, hosted by Dr. Kenneth Berry. We made a lot of new contacts at the clinic and were able to hear advice and ideas from many other North Texas area FLL coaches.
We’ve created this page primarily for our own benefit — to make it easy to find and refer to announcements and files sent by the various contest organizers, especially when we’re away from our desktops. We figure others might find it useful as well.
Terrific news! Coppell Robotics will again be hosting a scrimmage for FLL teams on November 4th. They hosted a scrimmage last year, and as a (then) rookie FLL team we found it to be incredibly helpful in our preparations for the regional qualifiers.
Also, like last year, the scrimmage will be held in conjunction with the school’s 5th Annual Engineering Expo, which means that FLL team members can explore schools and projects related to engineering, as well as see some of the entries for high school level competitions. Last year our team really enjoyed touring the many exhibits.
So, if you’re a FLL 2012 team in the North Texas area, I highly recommend having your team participate in the scrimmage. Don’t worry if your robot doesn’t perform well — the important thing is to get some experience with a contest-like environment and to see how other teams are approaching the challenges. (For example, the “fish sweeper” we used in last year’s robot game came directly from watching another team’s robot at the scrimmage do a similar thing.)
Space is limited, though, only about 15-25 teams will be able to participate, first-come first-served. To register or get more details, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Even if you don’t have a robot ready for the scrimmage, make plans to attend the scrimmage and Expo. Just having an opportunity for your team to meet other teams and share ideas will be worth it.