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The FIRST® Robotics Competition (FRC®) community can come here for (at least) weekly musings on the FRC program, news, community highlights, science and technology shout-outs, and more directly from FIRST Headquarters! Comments are welcome, but they must embody the FIRST values of Gracious Professionalism® and will be moderated prior to posting. Thank you for helping to keep the conversations civil and productive.

Posted On:
Wed, 01/07/2015 - 10:56

New Behind the Lines Episode Tonight:  The Kit of Parts

Tonight's Behind the Lines episode features FIRST and AndyMark Staff talking about the Kit of Parts. Kate Pilotte (FIRST KOP Manager), Jonathan Bryant (FIRST KOP Engineer), Jerry Budd (FRC Teams 3098 and 5259- and AndyMark FIRST Choice Guru), and Liz Smith (FRC Team 3940 and AndyMark AM14U2 Guru)...

Posted On:
Tue, 01/06/2015 - 15:22

I hope everyone had a wonderful Kickoff! We had a great time here in New Hampshire. At the Founder’s Reception, Dean hosted over 600 of his closest friends at his home. And yes, we probably could have squeezed in a few more. Both of New Hampshire’s US Senators showed up to talk about the importance of FIRST and wish us well. The Founder’s Reception webcast had about 3,800 viewers according to the numbers we have now. I think that webcast is going to be a keeper in future years! Also, our local Kickoff here the next day at Southern New Hampshire University was...

Posted On:
Sat, 01/03/2015 - 16:24

With Recycle Rush now revealed, some District folks may be wondering how the Standard District Point System will change. Clearly, it can’t remain as it is, as two elements of the current system, performance during qualification rounds, and performance during playoff (formerly elimination) rounds are based on Win-Loss-Tie, which is not part of this season’s game until the finals.

A team of individuals, including two representatives from each District, is currently working on a revised system. This team started work in mid-December, under Non-Disclosure Agreements. The new...

Posted On:
Fri, 01/02/2015 - 14:12

I watched this at least three times, on a day when I have many other higher priority items to attend to.

Robowranglers, you’re right, some things are worth getting excited about!

Frank

Posted On:
Fri, 01/02/2015 - 09:51

Founder’s Reception Webcast Tonight Live from Dean’s Home!

We’ve talked about this before, but I’m so excited about it I wanted to talk about it again. Tonight, January 2, is the Founder’s Reception, hosted by Dean at his home. Traditionally, it’s been a chance to thank our fantastic mentors for all they do. However, while two mentors from every team are invited to attend, we recognize that you may have some plans the next day that could interfere with your ability to actually participate (note the casual understatement in this sentence). So, this year, for the first...

Posted On:
Wed, 12/31/2014 - 09:38

Encrypted 2015 FRC Game Manual

The encrypted 2015 FRC Game Manual is now ready for download here! The password will be revealed during the Kickoff webcast Saturday, January 3rd. No one is more happy that the manual is done than the FRC Staff, let me tell you. Of course, this means it’s time to get started on 2016. Uff da.

If you want to make sure you will be able to decrypt the manual when that exciting moment comes, please follow...

Posted On:
Tue, 12/30/2014 - 10:48


Here are a few things we want to make you aware of before Kickoff.

Share Your FIRST Stories:  You’ve Got Them, We Want Them!

Do you have a story about how FIRST has made a positive impact in your life? We’re calling all student participants, Mentors, Coaches, parents, and Volunteers to share their experiences.

These stories will be used in many different ways- from FIRST promotional content, to the opportunity to be showcased at the FIRST Championship in St. Louis. For more information and to submit your story, please visit...

Posted On:
Mon, 12/29/2014 - 09:59


Today’s blog post is from a special guest who worked on the design and development of the roboRIO controller, NI Chief Architect and Software engineer, Greg McKaskle.

Hi teams:

roboRIO, the new reconfigurable I/O (RIO) controller designed and built specifically for student robotics teams is here! It's faster, smaller, and more powerful than the previous CompactRIO controller, and best of all, it is in your FRC Kit of Parts, ready to control your awesome 2015 robot. Here are a few...

Posted On:
Tue, 12/23/2014 - 08:44


Please see the note below from the Kit of Parts team:

We’re happy to announce that we have items to add to FIRST Choice. We’ll be employing the same Priority List Process used in Round 1 (described here, but with an updated graphic...

Posted On:
Mon, 12/22/2014 - 12:50


Frank

Posted On:
Mon, 12/22/2014 - 08:36


Today’s Mentor Monday blog post comes to us from Claire Stuckey, an alumna and former mentor of FRC Team 1024 and current mentor of FRC Team 4234.

We’d like you to write a blog post about your journey to the current point in your career. What were the most important steps that you took? Were there influential people or events along the way?

The point I remember as the first time I decided to be an engineer was in 4th grade. We'd been going through a lesson about electricity...

Posted On:
Fri, 12/19/2014 - 08:57

This is a blog about a game hint. It’s not a game hint itself.

Our friends at FRC Top 25 contacted us a few weeks ago and said how cool it would be if they could build a show around a game hint. We thought it would be cool too. After some back and forth about how we could get it to work, here’s the deal:

FRC Top 25 will be premiering a game hint on a special episode of their webcast at 9PM eastern on Monday, 12/22. They will have a pre-show before a hint is revealed, starting at 8:30PM...

Posted On:
Tue, 12/16/2014 - 13:52

As mentioned in this blog, we said we’d notify the community before Kickoff if the Victor SP and Talon SRX motor controllers from VEX Robotics and Cross the Road Electronics will be legal for 2015. After review by the 2015 Control System Development Team and the 2015 Beta Teams, we’ve determined that these controllers will be legal for 2015. 

Posted On:
Mon, 12/15/2014 - 14:04

SlingShot

We’ve got some updates on the SlingShot film fundraiser, which I talked about here and here

Team 144, The R.O.C.K., from Mason, Ohio, USA, has successfully sold 77 tickets at $10 each for their fundraiser, and gathered an additional $490 in donations as of today, with three days left before ticket sales close. Subtracting screening...

Posted On:
Fri, 12/12/2014 - 15:24

We want to tell you about some software downloads that are available to you right now that can help you be ready for Kickoff.

First, in an effort to help you get up and running after Kickoff as quickly as possible, here are instructions to on how to download and install the programming environments for 2015 in LabVIEW [updated 12/17/2014] and...

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