2019 summer recap!
For the first time ever, our team has been regularly meeting every Thursday this summer. All of our sub-teams were determined to complete the tasks they wanted to work on before the fall meetings. Public Relations (formerly known as Outreach) went through a restructuring and is now composed of Outreach, Entrepreneurship, and Marketing. We felt that Public Relations is a better term that encompasses all the aspects and categories that this sub-team has to offer. Starting off, the Outreach group contacted local schools about upcoming team registrations, our goal was to start FLL teams at Pine Hill Elementary and Hillside Elementary alongside restarting our FTC program at Oltman Middle School. On a side note, this upcoming season, our team will be returning to mentor at Crestview Elementary and will also be mentoring a new FLL team at Grey Cloud Elementary!
The Entrepreneurship team created a thank you letter to all of our current sponsors. We wanted to acknowledge how much we appreciate all the support and contributions they have given to our team! We wouldn't be as successful without our gracious sponsors! Aside from that, Marketing has gotten a lot more advanced in terms of graphic design. We upgraded our Adobe Creative Cloud plan, which includes Illustrator, InDesign, and Premiere. One of our team designers worked on creating multiple designs with Illustrator for our future team flag!
Meanwhile, the programmers are in the process of switching over to Java rather than continuing to use Labview. The reason for this is because Java has more desirable features that they wanted to be compared to Labview. It is also one of the most popular languages to program in the world and commonly used by other FRC teams. By switching over, they could get additional help, and the experience would be beneficial for them and their future careers. First, they had worked on getting familiar using Java. They then removed the old program and reprogrammed the entire frisbee bot with Java. Once they gained insight, they began and is currently working on the process of converting the competition robot with Java.
Our Strategy subteam created multiple predictive spreadsheets based on the information that was scouted on the tablets and collected in the pits from our competitions. This summer, their primary purpose was to revamp the spreadsheet to allow them to get the most accurate data and show them everything that they could want. They discussed what information was used and what wasn't and what additional attachments that they can apply for this year and future years.
In August, we participated in numerous outreach events in and outside of our community. Our team participated 4 parades including Strawberry Fest, Pioneer Days, Heritage Days, Woodbury Days. We walked alongside Royal T Wrecks, East Ridge Robotics, Fighting Calculators, and our sponsor Marathon.
We were excited to demonstrate our robot and lead projects at Crestview Elementary’s Discovery Day again! We recognized a few familiar faces but a lot of new faces came to our activity! We showed them about FIRST and FLL, built slingshot rockets, and then they drove our frisbee robot! It was also thrilling to see the assistant superintendent of our district, Michael Johnson and the Crestview teachers stop by take a peek at what was happening inside the robotics room!
Our second demonstration was at Armstrong elementary. We were invited by our local Skoolie organization to come and let the kids watch and drive ours and Royal T-Wrecks robot! They had a great time being able to launch our frisbees across the parking lot! Later, we traveled to 3M headquarters for "Robots Invade the Plaza." This event was hosted by 3M, where they invite teams that they sponsor from around the Twin Cities and surrounding areas to show off their creative robots!! We had a fantastic time interacting and showing off our robot to all the kids and adults! Later that day, ours and twenty-two other teams took part in the 3M parade, which happened in the heart of the plaza, where we walked in front of 3Mers and their families! Once it was all over, everyone headed inside for the last activity of the day. We were surprised to see the director of FIRST, Frank Merrick! He talked about the power of FIRST and how the future generations of scientists are increasingly getting involved in the STEM field!
Lastly, our team demonstrated at the Minnesota State Fair. We demoed with KnightKrawlers and Millerbots , as well as attending the daily parade! All of our demos started off with team introductions, and then after that, kids can drive the robot. Our job as students were to either help control the robots or answer any questions that the spectators had wondering. A frequent question asked was how long does it take to construct these robots, and how much does it cost?! They were quite surprised when we told them that all FRC teams only have a maximum of 6 weeks to build these complex robots, including all the designing, prototypes, constructing, and programming. Through participating in numerous events this summer, we hope that our team, inspired and motivated students of all ages to pursue their interest in STEM.