Halloween Horrors – First Competition just two weeks away!


Duct Tape Zombie!

TDT members have worked like the living dead (but with a lot more energy!) on their robot the last couple of days —  — trying to complete a robot design everyone feels will be competitive and successful.  TNT was an edifying experience that compelled team members to rework their initial design, after testing the practicality of their original idea on the actual playing field.

Demonstrating a prototype

Demonstrating a prototype

Prototypes have proven extremely useful in helping team members visualize different solutions.  A recent Skype meeting gave students more brainstorming time than student schedules allowed, too, and gave team members an opportunity to collaborate on design ideas, which they then refined further at yesterday’s meeting.  Team members also finalized team roles, enjoyed a sufficient amount of sugary sweet carbs,  and began working on their team “look”

Energy break!

Energy break!

(which is not that of the undead!).

The multiple levels of build complexity in this season’s Hot Shot! game have proven  more challenging than last season’s Face Off! build, with a lot more variables in the build and the game. Programmers face a dizzying array of controller needs, far beyond last year’s forward, back, left, right, up, down and dump. Fortunately, team members seem to have worked out a simple and elegant design that carves order out of the chaos of a field full of wiffle balls (hopefully!).

Going over Skype meeting design ideas

Going over Skype meeting design ideas

If the Engineering Notebook effectively documents TDTs journey,  it’ll read the Lewis and Clark expedition!

If progress continues as it has the past couple of days, though, the end of the journey may be in sight.  Hopefully team members will have a running robot by week’s end, and can work on their autonomous program and driving practice next week.  If not, the journey continues till we arrive at Hillsborough High School’s RoboMania qualifying competition on November 14!

In the meantime, we’ll keep checking the FTC Forum Q&A for tips and insights, communicating and keeping the notebook updated via our Google sites group, and grabbing whatever time we can to keep moving forward.



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