Last Saturday, February 8th, our three FTC teams hosted and competed at the Philadelphia Qualifier. Along with our FTC members, our FRC and Business members were also seen in the gym volunteering.
Both Gold and Crimson qualified for the semifinals, and were in an alliance together. By a small margin, they didn’t advance to the finals to face off against Wrench Toast’s alliance. Wrench Toast were their alliance’s captain, and they won the final matches, allowing them to become one of the teams advancing to States.
Aside from the matches, our teams also had success in the Awards Department. Gold won the Design Award for their robot’s functional, efficient, and aesthetic design. Wrench Toast was nominated for the Control Award, and the Design Award, coming second place for both categories. They won the Collins Aerospace Innovate Award for their innovative and well documented robot design. Wrench Toast’s two Dean’s List nominees are now Semi-Finalists. Congratulations to Maria Calderon and Finn Brenner!
Last year’s RoboRUMBLE was an enjoyable experience for our teams. As they competed against 15 other teams, our teams gained valuable practice and one even walked out with a trophy. Alongside Robolancers Crimson and Robolancers Gold was a team that was ran by our programming mentors, and the team had shown excellent performance by the end of the event.
Ramp Riot was a learning experience for everyone. It was a great way to scout the other teams and improve our game strategy. Our drivers had a difficult time adjusting to the stressful environment, but with the help of our mentors and coaches they learned the ins and outs and performed well. Being a human player was a great way for me to participate in the matches and understand the rules of the game. Working with an alliance was a challenging experience, and although it hurt us in the end, it was a positive experience that taught to recognize the intentions of others.
On October 5, was Philadelphia’s first FTC workshop, Build It. The event, hosted by the Technabots, Girl’s High’s robotics team, was attended by two of our FTC teams, Gold and Crimson. By the end of the day, both teams made progress on their chassis. They also attended workshops on this year’s game, SKYSTONE, and on the Engineering Notebook.
Also, we had Robolancers volunteering at the event. Our volunteers helped teams with building, answered questions about getting started, and helped step up and pack up the event.
Overall, this event was very productive, and a good sign of things to come. The next FTC workshop is Program It on October 26 at Palumbo.
On November 3, 2018, Robolancers team gold participated in the robotics Ramp Riot competition. Team Gold had a wonderful time, we befriended other teams as they were incredibly kind and courteous towards us, never showing contempt or scorn. In the meantime while we were actually competing I had acquired the luxury of scouting and was excited to meet other teams. The other teams were fantastic, their robots were incredibly impressive, some even had a working latching system, which was essential for maximum point-gain during the matches. In general we had a rather wonderful time, and when we weren’t participating in matches, we were working! In the many hours we were there, we worked hard to develop our latching system and intake system, and in time we successfully developed our first working latch prototype! However we couldn’t attach it at the competition. The experience of going to our first robotics event was incredibly satisfactory, even if we didn’t do that well in the competition as we procured eighth out of tenth place.
Ramp Riot was a blast. The people, the jokes, and the game are sure to give me a lot of good memories. I was nervous Crimson’s first match because I was driver, during the match one of our wires wasn’t working right and our robot didn’t work. It was even more nerve-racking after that because of the anticipation that our robot wasn’t going to work but after a while everyone was relaxed. Overall our matches went really well until we forgot to turn on our robot which was really embarrassing. I’ll make sure to never forget my first robotics scrimmage.
During our introduction to robotics, we were exposed to the fundamentals of programming. We learned the structure of Java (the programming language we use to code the robot) in this class. Our teachers were very social and fun to work with. We had to “program” Ramon (giving him commands in the form of code) to grab a marker and draw something on the board. The teachers’ personalities made the programming subgroup quite interesting. We did dreadful icebreakers but they made everyone feel cool; I heard about Six Flags, and all the other famous trips the Robolancers take; everybody seemed like they were chill and fun to work with.
If you aren’t sure that you want to join programming, you should at least consider it, especially if you like mentoring and working with others who share common interests. If you like programming and teaching people new things, JOIN, JOIN, JOIN! You have the chance to meet new people and make new friends! Most importantly, you learn how to program, which could really help you in the long run.
While taking part in this amazing competition full of vitalized and confident teams, I was able to experience the thrill of competing. The states event was extremely enjoyable. Not only did I get the chance to meet other teams that were inspiring to see, I also was able to meet different people with a variety of creative and interesting views on their designs and problem-solving. The time I spent at states was genuinely fun. I saw people’s determination and excitement in building their robot, took part in the games, and met new a diversified group of people. Overall, the states event was an enjoyable time, and I hope to continue that excitement in thrill throughout my time in robotics.
I’m a FTC Gold member, and although we didn’t win, I enjoyed my experience at States. The robots there were amazing and I don’t think any of us are ashamed that we lost to such smooth and practiced teams. It even encouraged us to build a new robot; inspired by many of those we saw at States. There was a sense of community, not just among the RoboLancers teams, but all Philadelphia teams, as Girls High, Palumbo, and Central all cheered each other on. This was the first time we saw the semifinals and finals from an outsider’s perspective, not as someone competing, and it made the experience a lot more fun. We are all so proud of the judges award we won, and I think everyone had a good time.