2012 Competition

Competition 2012


Day 1 of the Greater Kansas City Regional First Robotics competition – Thursday March 1, 2012

Practice Day

First Team 1723 the FBI had a standard start to any robotics competition on the first day as we got lost driving to the arena, “Hook’s fault,” the team grew with anticipation to get things started for the day. A mob of robot hooligans were gathered outside of Hale arena in the West bottoms of Kansas City waiting for the doors to open. After the doors opened and everyone rushed inside we began the process of setting up our pit area. This is the space we are provided to make repairs and changes to our robot, with the pit set up we unpacked our robot and started the drawn out process of getting the list of things done that we had made had to happen before participating in practice rounds.
Our robot had a small amount of wiring to be done, the decals and plastic coverings had to be installed and we had to make mechanical adjustments to our robot just to make an attempt to go through the inspection process. Inspection is a magical time when an official makes sure your robot meets all of the constraints and criteria of the competition rules and that all of your mechanisms are safe to operate. We went through inspection having only minor problems to be adjusted before getting our robot inspected again so we could actually compete.
Following Inspection we took our robot to the competition field to run our first practice match. I had a great amount of anxiety because the first time you hook up to the field with your controller it never does what it is supposed to, aaaand our robot, “Plan B,” didn’t disappoint and connection was lost. The way I always figure is that at least it happened in a practice match. In our next match Plan B has communication with the field and our driver Candyta Wilford is able to move the robot around the field while her shooter co-driver Quinten Vowells aims the turret and takes a shot toward the hoop. The ball missed and our attempt to push the competition bridge down failed, but at least we have a starting point of where to make further adjustments with our robot in preparation for seeding matches that start tomorrow.
Designing and building a robot is a learning process and sometimes it is a painful one, but in the grand scheme of things everyone learns many different skills and new ways to think about problems and potential problems. Our experiences don’t define us as a team, but how we respond to those experiences show us the true worth that what we are doing has a positive impact on our lives and will help us to become more productive and dependable citizens.
Thank you for taking an interest in our team and we hope that we are able to bring you more and more exciting information about how our team is doing tomorrow in Day 2 of the KC Regional competition. Tomorrow seeding matches will start and those matches determine our team ranking and if we will be in contention to make the finals on Saturday afternoon. Thank you and wish us luck.
From the Perspective of Coach Hook


Day 2 of the Greater Kansas City Regional First Robotics competition – Friday March 2, 2012

Qualification Day

Friday morning at school brought waves of excitement and anticipation for the first day of competition. Students slowly made their way through William Chrisman to Hook’s room to receive instructions for the day. Some students drowsily sat in silence while others were wound tight with excitement for the activities of the day all getting updates from coaches and other kids that were involved with the skeleton crew practice day. Students received their team shirts and made their way to the bus while the coaches actively recorded who had arrived. Things in the school wound down quickly as everyone checked in and made their way to the bus anticipating our departure.
From my perspective the bus ride was uneventful since I drove myself down to the venue in case we needed to go out and get something. I was the team gopher for parts and supplies that we didn’t already have with us in our pit area.
At the competition the excitement rose quickly as we waited outside the venue waiting for the doors to open for the day. I anticipated the mob rush of teenagers dressed for everything from Halloween to construction work; face paint, costumes, formal business dress, and the standard of jeans and a team t-shirt. As the doors open the crowd rushes into Hale arena staking out seats for their team while others rushed to the pits to make final changes and repairs to their robot. Opening ceremonies would start really soon and we still had some work to do before we could run our first match of seven for the day.
We got everything as prepared for the match as much as we could or so we thought. With the mild success of day 1 we hoped for good things, but the dreaded field crew robot check started our day. Our robot did not get the code loaded on it properly so we had to watch an entire match where our robot never moved. Our second match went much better, while our shooter underperformed with inconsistent shooting Candyta our driver outdid herself in the match by winning the match for us by balancing our robot on our alliance bridge at the last second.
The rest of our day went about the same giving us a 2-5 record for the day not great, but our robot performed better than our team ever has in the Kansas City Regional. As for the majority of the team they performed superbly and I can honestly say they exceeded my expectations in behavior, poise, spirit and attitude. In no way did the members of the FBI disappoint themselves, their district, schools, or any of their advisers.
We ended the day with a ride back to Independence and a dinner break at Pizza Street where the team really showed their bonding and dedication to each other displaying behavior of an extremely close family and leaving no one out of anything.