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All comments should embody the FIRST values of Gracious Professionalism® and will be moderated prior to posting. Thank you for helping to keep the conversation civil and productive.

Posted On:
Wed, 04/03/2013 - 18:24

SpaceX Internships

Did you see the last email blast? SpaceX is offering exclusive internship opportunities to students in FIRST!  If you are a senior this year, and participating in FRC or FTC, you can apply for an internship that would likely take place after you complete your sophomore year in college.  It took us some time to put this together, and we want to select winners by Championship, so the clock is ticking...

Posted On:
Tue, 03/26/2013 - 13:06

Over the weekend I attended the Central Washington Regional at Central Washington University in Ellensburg.   My experience up until the final round was wonderful.  Folks were having fun, the volunteers were great, matches for the most part were running smoothly, I saw some terrific robots, and, I think, I made some new friends.  Things did not go as expected in the final round, though, and it caused some significant pain for many present.  I’d like to talk about this.

The final rounds were between two very closely matched alliances.  The blue...

Posted On:
Fri, 03/15/2013 - 13:50

The Action

Stuck at home this weekend but still want to catch some FRC action?  Check out the links below for live broadcasts.

Note:  These sites are independently run.  FIRST is responsible for...

Posted On:
Mon, 03/11/2013 - 17:27

I had the pleasure of visiting the double event in Duluth, MN over the weekend. The Duluth Entertainment Convention Center hosted two simultaneous Regionals under one roof – Lake Superior & Northern Lights Regionals – and it was fantastic.  These events were exactly what folks like to see – exciting gameplay, passionate, friendly and hard-working teams, committed volunteers and engaged sponsors, with everything running on schedule.  Also, having had the honor of shaking hands and high-fiving awards winners on the field at...

Posted On:
Wed, 03/06/2013 - 11:58

Week 1 Manchester Granite State Regional (Manchester, NH) 

Photo by (c) 2013, courtesy of BAE Systems

Week 1

I hope that teams who...

Posted On:
Fri, 03/01/2013 - 10:35

Week 0 Scrimmage (Nashua, NH)

"Week 0 Scrimmage in Nashua" Photo by Steve Lipofsky (c) 2013

Practice Day

I was at the BAE Systems Granite State Regional Thursday for practice day, and saw some great robots.  I’m really looking...

Posted On:
Wed, 02/27/2013 - 14:16

I thought you might like to know a little about how the scoring system will work this year.  For this year’s game, we created a system that weighs the goals to determine the number of discs they contain. Our testing over the past several months has shown that this scoring system is accurate most of the time, but because of the number of variables involved, the reported number of discs may be off by a disc or two from time to time.  We know how important it is that the scores are correct, so we will be verifying disc counts manually at the end of the autonomous period, and...

Posted On:
Mon, 02/25/2013 - 16:07

Hello Teams,

I hope everyone caught up on some sleep over the weekend.  Only a few more days until our first official events of the season, and as we say up here, I am ‘wicked’ excited!

Hey, remember Wild Cards?  I talked about them in the FRC Blog way back in September.  Teams can earn Wild Card Slots as described on the ...

Posted On:
Wed, 02/20/2013 - 16:50

I hope everyone had a great Stop Build Day!

Now that you may have at least a little more time on your hands, how about applying for the FIRST Future Innovator Award?  This award goes to an individual student or students, rather than an entire team, and will be presented on stage at Championship.  The team does not need to be present at Championship for students associated with the team to win.  To encourage greater participation, we are extending the submission deadline for this award to Noon Eastern Time on...

Posted On:
Tue, 02/19/2013 - 15:23

On Saturday, February 16th, FRC staff supported two ‘Week 0’ scrimmages, one in Connecticut and one in New Hampshire.  These events were run with official fields and electronics that will be put on the road during competition season.  FRC supports these events so we can test out our systems and see how the game plays with real FRC Teams.  We carefully review what we see at these events, and work to improve our systems, and if necessary, the game, in preparation for competition.

Here’s what we learned about which we thought you’d like to hear:

Posted On:
Fri, 02/15/2013 - 14:57

Teams, I am very sorry for getting this information out so late to you.  I recognize how much you have going on, and how important it is that you have information early so you can plan your seasons. The good news is, I am now ready to give you all the details on this award.  As you can see from the headline on this blog, the Digital Media Award has gone through a name change.  It is now the Media and Technology Innovation Award sponsored by Comcast.  We’re very happy to have Comcast sponsoring this award!

While the name of this award has changed, the...

Posted On:
Wed, 02/13/2013 - 10:26

Wireless Security

In the wake of the events on the Einstein field in 2012, FRC has been working to improve the security of our wireless system.  No wireless system is perfectly secure, and within FRC there is a definite need to keep the system we use practical as well as secure.  However, we know any system can be improved, and with over 2,500 FRC teams competing at...

Posted On:
Fri, 02/08/2013 - 13:11

"snOMG" by thisisbossi (CC BY-SA)

(Photo by thisisbossi copyright (c) 2010; made available under a Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 license)


Posted On:
Wed, 02/06/2013 - 17:15

Mandatory Team Update

Yesterday, we posted a Team Update that included a link to a mandatory Driver Station software update. This software update addresses issues with DS-FMS diagnostics and includes the new Log File Viewer. I wanted to call it out specifically because you won’t be able to compete without this new version. It’s a quick and easy update but if you have questions, please use the Technical Q&A system. Good luck!

Axis M1013

Posted On:
Wed, 01/30/2013 - 15:17

Over the weekend, it was brought to our attention that a failure of the white polypropylene air tank, donated by Clippard (Clippard PN: AVT-PP-41, AndyMark PN: am-2007, FIRST Choice PN: fc13-100), had occurred. Since the incident, Clippard has been in direct contact with the team that experienced the failure and is working to determine the root cause of the failure.

Initial investigation suggests that the tank failed because it was subjected to twisting while pressurized. This caused the tank to experience stress and strain not consistent with its use case. We’d like to make...