FIRST competition

Anyone going to the FIRST competition in Trenton NJ 3/17 - 3/19?
http://www.usfirst.org/ and http://www.usfirst.org/robotics /
LB
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snipped-for-privacy@notmine.com wrote:

I watched a few of the preliminary rounds of the Midwest playoff yesterday. What I find depressing about FIRST is that the electronics are contained in sealed up pre-fab modules. That approach makes perfect sense for high school teams, but for me it makes things a lot less interesting. All of the team effort goes into the mechanical aspects. Also the high school cheering and flag-waving and team uniforms and mascots really did not bring back any fond memories for me. I have always been rather repelled by the promotion of "school spirit."
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galt snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

I just learned a something (the sealed stuff). And I am not too thrilled with all the noise, but the mechanical differences and various strategies are fun.
LB
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snipped-for-privacy@notmine.com wrote:

Yeah, after watching a few rounds you could really see how the mechanical designs were limited. Too often they simply could not position the arm where they needed it, or could not release the object when and where they needed to. The primary problem seemed to be coping with the limitations of your arm and at the same time coping with the other robots who were engaged in blocking and pushing activities. If your arm did not have enough degrees of freedom you couldn't overcome the blocking and pushing.
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snipped-for-privacy@notmine.com wrote:

Here is a photo of what I believe is the main board that each robot carries. It is connected to a 900MHz data-modem which I have also pictured (except the robots use a short rubber duck antenna).
http://home.att.net/~galt_57/first_cntlr.jpg
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That's the old version. It's a great bi-di control system. www.innovationfirst.com
Dan
galt snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

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Dan Danknick wrote:

Couldn't they modularize it in clear plastic? I'd like to see the guts.
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