Asia Pacific Open Championships

Earlier this month, FIX IT competed in the Asia Pacific Open Championships hosted virtually from Australia. We all had a lot of fun in the competition, learning about many team’s extremely impressive mechanisms, and being able to experience competing with an alliance partner!

In this competition, Beyonce held her own! Our Autonomous program works very consistently, we are always able to score Wobble Goals in the drop zone when needed, and we can effectively collect and shoot rings in both the high goal and power shots!

The links to watch the previous live streams are available below:
Opening Ceremony
Matches Day 1
Matches Day 2
Closing Ceremony

Throughout this journey, we were contacted by two new networks – Chek News, and the Times Colonist, for a story!

On Chek News, we were featured in the 6 pm news!
In the Times Colonist, we were featured on their front page!

At the end of this event, we placed 17th in the competition. We all had a lot of fun, and we hope to do it again next year.

BC Championships – Season Wrap-up

BC Championships marked the end of the season for FIX IT. Although this year was challenging for everyone, we persevered; working together to build the best robot we could, and constantly improving our robot over time. Even though the pandemic has separated us physically, we continued to reach out to other teams and communities. We created and led workshops, while continuing to connect with companies such as Boston Dynamics and Battlesnake.

And in the end, this would all pay off in BC Championships…

This year gave us many firsts, both good and bad.

In FIX IT’s 12 year history, it was the first year we didn’t get to travel to and compete in Washington; the first year that we didn’t get to meet other teams in person.

It was also the first time we won the Inspire award in BC, and the first time we were part of creating a network in which all BC teams can communicate together – helping each other through the season, from giving each other advice to improve their robot, to providing outreach opportunities for other teams.

It’s almost time for our two seniors, Ines and Mythri, to leave the team. We’ll miss them, but hope to see them as Alumni volunteers at events!

With the season now finished, we’re planning on how to develop our skills this summer, reaching out to our community and connecting with other companies, as we prepare for next season. And we defintely need to find some girls to join our team. ( And wishing for a Water Game! )

BC League 5

League 5 is the final FIRST Tech Challenge league event in British Columbia, and it was a success! All of our team members at the workshop did an amazing job during practice and during scoring matches.

Beyonce didn’t have any mechanical issues, but it was clear that we need more driver practice.

Picture of our robot, Beyonce, in March 2021

As a part of Fair Play, we recorded all of our matches, available for everyone to see on YouTube.

We are all excited for Wednesday, the Virtual Pits with League Wrap-up. We’ll see how we did compared to other teams around British Columbia.

FIX IT is a Fair Play team

What is Fair Play?

Fair play is a new program for FIRST Tech Challenge teams It was started by Mark Eldeman to “provide encouragement (and maybe a bit of extra incentive) to “do the right thing.”

In order to be a Fair Play team, a team must be:

  1. Honest
  2. Transparent
  3. As a team, take the Fair Play for FTC pledge

Fair Play teams will publish robot match videos with scores and encourage comments and feedback from other FTC teams. It’s a great way for all teams to get better at scoring their own robot matches this season.

For more information regarding the Fair Play initiative, please visit:
https://firstroboticsbc.org/ftc/fair-play/

Robot Design Process and Implementation

This is a narrated presentation. On the top right corners of some slides, there is a speaker icon; that indicates that the slide has been narrated, and you may listen to our presenters walking you through the slide. Please turn on your audio for the best experience.

There are two presentations: the first is the “Robot Design Process” presentation, and the second is the “Robot Design Implementation.” Please view the presentations for the best experience.

Robot Design Process

Robot Design Implementation


Thank you for reading “Robot Design Process and Implementation,” we hoped that we have helped you. If you have any more questions or comments please feel free to let us know through our Google Form:

This was last updated on the 10th of September. 2020.

Comparing FTC Kits

We have created a simple handout to compare between four main kits from:

Comparing FTC Kits

Thank you for reading “Comparing FTC Kits,” we hoped that we have helped you. If you have any questions or comments please feel free to let us know through our Google Form:

This was last updated on the 4th of September. 2020.

This post is only applicable to the FIRST Tech Challenge.

New Project: FIX IT Tips and Tricks

Over the years, FIX IT enjoys helping teams from all around the world. We hope to continue this work with our new project: FIX IT Tips and Tricks.

FIX IT Tips and Tricks ( https://fixit3491.com/ftc-resources/fix-it-tips-and-tricks/ ) is our new resource library filled with information to help robotics teams from all around the world for any questions they may have. Although the website does not currently have a lot of Tips and Tricks, we will be updating the website frequently to upload and add more Tips and Tricks.

The next 3 posts will be:

  • How to write an Engineering Notebook Entry
  • Robot Design Process
  • What to expect in the FIRST community

We will also be open to answering questions anyone might have through our Google Form:

Thank you and we look forward to creating more resources and helping as many teams as we can.

How to Write an Engineering Notebook Entry

What is an Engineering Notebook Entry?

An Engineering Notebook Entry is the page or pages written every workday which is put in a section of your Engineering Notebook to keep track of the season.

Why is Engineering Notebook Entries important?

  • To keep track of what has been done
  • If a team member misses a meeting, they could check the Engineering Notebook and know what they have missed and where to keep going.
  • Judges review a team’s notebook when considering awards.

Engineering Notebook Tips

  • Make sure every team member documents what they did at every meeting. You don’t want one single person being in charge of entries, and making sure the team is consistent in documentation helps in the long run. Judges like to see different team members writing entries.
  • Check in and make sure the entries are done in a timely manner. Some teams have rules where you can’t touch the robot until the previous entry is done.
  • Document competitions – You can learn a lot at competitions and documenting things you learn can help you reflect and improve your robot.
    • Document the points your robot earned, what went well and what didn’t, as well as what other teams did well 

Format

There is no right or wrong way to format your Entries, and all teams will format their Engineering Notebook Entries a little bit differently. Entries. However, date and members names are required for every entry.

How FIX IT 3491 does Engineering Notebook Entries

Over the years, FIX IT has changed the way we format our Entries, currently ( 2019 – 2020, ) we format it as:

Heading

  • Title (Work day, programming, competition, etc)
  • Who was there?
  • What kind of meeting was it?
  • What date and time was the meeting held?

Reflection

A short but relevant reflection on tasks that has been completed throughout the meeting. Our reflections could be anything from a very detailed and thought out reflection, to a small funny comment about the task at hand.

Entry

You are not only saying what happened at the meeting. FIX IT likes to follow a formula similar to this one, for every task.

  • Description of the task
  • Changes made and why changes are made
  • Pictures of the Mechanism ( both in real life, and in CAD ). 
    • Try to include all sketches and pictures of the robot when new mechanisms come on the robot. Notes and calculations should be also put in the notebook!
  • What kind of difficulties did you face and how did you solve them?
  • What did you learn?
  • What was the final result? What’s next?
    •   To do List –  List of tasks for what’s next
  • What is the agenda today and what are our goals? These often come from the next steps from the previous meeting.
  • What decisions did your team make?
  • How did your team make those decisions?
  • Why did you make that choice?
  • What was the impact?
  • What is the next step?


Being able to reflect on the future at the beginning and the end of the meeting allows us to always be moving in a forwards direction and learning as we go through our robot design process.

Additionally

In the past, it was a requirement to have each team member sign each Engineering Notebook Entry, although that is no longer required, some teams still have each team member sign to acknowledge that every member has read every Entry.

Special features

Some teams also like to add a personal flair to their Engineering Notebook Entries, like adding a fun fact in each entry. FIRST Tech Challenge team “PrestidigiTaters 9761” adds a new potato dish/ snack in each Entry.

It can give the judges something special to remember you by. If you can think of something special that links to your team branding, even better!


Thank you for reading “How to Write an Engineering Notebook Entry,” we hoped that we have helped you. If you have any more questions or comments please feel free to let us know through our Google Form:

This was last updated on the 9th of August. 2020.

For anything more recent, make sure to check the current Game Manual Part One and Engineering Notebook Guidelines which can be found here.

This post is only applicable to the FIRST Tech Challenge.