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mott
03-14-2012, 08:08 PM
GAME - Team UPDATE - 2012-03-14
GAME
Special Message from the GDC



The Coopertition Bridge in Rebound Rumble is this year’s method of fostering Coopertition and Gracious Professionalism among students while inspiring an appreciation of science and technology. The white bridge's purpose is to motivate participating players, teams and alliances to collaborate with other players, teams and alliances (even in the heat of competition) by rewarding them for working together. Coopertition and Gracious Professionalism are tenets of FIRST – they are part of what makes FIRST different and wonderful; all FIRST participants, teams and alliances should strive to exercise those principals at every given opportunity. To quote Woodie, “FIRST does not celebrate being an incompetent jerk. FIRST does celebrate high-quality, well-informed work done in a manner that leaves everyone feeling valued.” In other words, bullying, coercion, and unsportsmanlike conduct have no place in FIRST. We expect all teams to always try their best to accomplish the tasks at hand, and always push themselves to achieve even greater successes. Best of luck to all of you as you continue to balance the real-life struggles of competing against each other while cooperating with each other – both on and off the Court.

Andrew Lawrence
03-14-2012, 08:10 PM
Then that's that. No more strategically preventing balance to create an influx in QF points. Oh well.

Mofasa2130
03-14-2012, 08:17 PM
Very true. Best of luck to you and your team also. :)

Legator91
03-14-2012, 08:22 PM
After what happened last weekend, and the huge argument that took place in the forums here, this was bound to happen. I personally think its a good thing the GDC did this. FIRST is all about gracious professionalism and coopertition, and tipping that bridge, especially after it is already balanced, goes against both of those principles.

If anything the rule will prevent future conflicts, by not allowing teams to sabotage the bridge.

wilsonmw04
03-14-2012, 08:27 PM
two comments:

1. the GDC does have their finger on the pulse of the FIRST community.

3. This update = best update!

Steven Donow
03-14-2012, 08:32 PM
While it's a great way to word all of it and to address the situation, it'd be nicer if they actually gave a ruling and would set forth a penalty for some of this stuff. Obviously, there's no way to know if certain "meta-coopertition" strategies actually are those strategies, or if they're just a simple mistake. But they should at least address teams intentionally ramming the cooperititon bridge...

gyroscopeRaptor
03-14-2012, 08:35 PM
The GDC knows the problems, but we will have to wait until tomorrow to learn if the message was heeded.

dag0620
03-14-2012, 08:36 PM
Libby K. mentioned it in another form, but I gotta agree this was needed, and the best way to address the situation at hand.

I think we've said it before, by trying to penalize those who break the spirit of the game, we get into a huge grey area that could be more trouble then it's worth.

The GDC has said doing that isn't in the spirit of FIRST, and there basically implying they don't like what happened this past weekend.

I applaud the GDC for their handling of the situation.

Tuba4
03-14-2012, 08:42 PM
After what happened last weekend, and the huge argument that took place in the forums here, this was bound to happen. I personally think its a good thing the GDC did this. FIRST is all about gracious professionalism and coopertition, and tipping that bridge, especially after it is already balanced, goes against both of those principles.

If anything the rule will prevent future conflicts, by not allowing teams to sabotage the bridge.

I see no rule in this update. Nor do I see any penalties either.

I am in full agreement that the actions described in the forums are reprehensible. There is no place for them in FIRST. But I still see no way on the books to stop them.

Legator91
03-14-2012, 08:50 PM
I see no rule in this update. Nor do I see any penalties either.

I am in full agreement that the actions described in the forums are reprehensible. There is no place for them in FIRST. But I still see no way on the books to stop them.

That is true. I guess this is more of just FIRST saying they don't approve. Maybe if it continues to be a problem, they will make a specific rule/penalty. At least they are acknowledging the situation. :)

pfreivald
03-14-2012, 08:55 PM
I see no rule in this update. Nor do I see any penalties either.

I am in full agreement that the actions described in the forums are reprehensible. There is no place for them in FIRST. But I still see no way on the books to stop them.

I see no rules on the books that says we should loan/give parts/expertise to other teams who need them, regardless of how it impacts our own team, just because it's the right thing to do... but it's the right thing to do, so it doesn't need a rule. It is perhaps the absolute best thing about FIRST.

Mark McLeod
03-14-2012, 09:03 PM
Character development can't be legislated. :)

Tuba4
03-14-2012, 09:07 PM
I see no rules on the books that says we should loan/give parts/expertise to other teams who need them, regardless of how it impacts our own team, just because it's the right thing to do... but it's the right thing to do, so it doesn't need a rule. It is perhaps the absolute best thing about FIRST.

You typically don't legislate or codify good behavior. It isn't necessary. Most people or teams already know the right thing to do. But based on last week's problems, clearly some people or teams do not know what should be done here so rules will likely be necessary.

Brian Ha
03-14-2012, 09:18 PM
I was actually appalled when i heard about the unbalancing. It is definitely not in FIRST's nature and has no part in it as well. If I were to see it happen at one of our events i would blacklist you. Even if you placed higher than us and decided to choose us i might say no. It is something that you just don't do. I don't know what more to say. I'm glad that First addressed it because it definitely needed to be.

Peck
03-14-2012, 10:13 PM
I see it as a rule without being a rule. It is a way of saying: "this is not what we want, don't do it" that is perfectly black and white.

Also, I think there is a rule somewhere which penalizes actions not in the spirit of FIRST but I may be remembering a rule from a previous year. Anyone know what I'm thinking of?

EricH
03-14-2012, 10:17 PM
Also, I think there is a rule somewhere which penalizes actions not in the spirit of FIRST but I may be remembering a rule from a previous year. Anyone know what I'm thinking of?
[G15], uncivil behavior in the Arena. I mentioned it in another thread.

Peck
03-14-2012, 10:35 PM
[G15], uncivil behavior in the Arena. I mentioned it in another thread.
Thanks, I'll try to remember the number

Tristan Lall
03-15-2012, 03:33 AM
While it's a great way to word all of it and to address the situation, it'd be nicer if they actually gave a ruling and would set forth a penalty for some of this stuff. Obviously, there's no way to know if certain "meta-coopertition" strategies actually are those strategies, or if they're just a simple mistake. But they should at least address teams intentionally ramming the cooperititon bridge...
Despite the update being full of platitudes and non sequiturs, I do appreciate that FIRST has considered the controversy. Indeed, I'm all for outlawing predominantly destructive strategies employed against robots—but that's why we already have [G26]. And [G15] already covers bullying and most unsportsmanlike conduct. And there's [G12] for breaking the bridge (or other arena parts).

Is there any particular reason we needed an update to reinforce those obvious aspects of the competition?1 (Yes, I see what happened at GTR East. And yet, this merely skirts the real issues exposed there.) Fortunately, this update also gives the impression of action, which ought to be enough to quell the controversy (mainly because of people, officials included, jumping to conclusions that will serve to limit the behaviour of a few).

Despite the unsavoury parallels with libertarianism in government, I do like the fact that they haven't established a new penalty for it. What would that new penalty be for, anyway? Perhaps I'll lay out my thoughts in more detail later (or in that other, excellent thread (http://www.chiefdelphi.com/forums/showthread.php?p=1143286)), but essentially, it would be an impractical judgment call to speculate about the intent and eventual effect of contact with the bridge.2

And despite what Woodie said, the issue isn't of "incompetent jerk[s]": it's of competent ones. Competent jerks are willing, under the proper circumstances, to hurt a few feelings to advance their position in the rankings. That's not against the rules, but it might be offensive to moral values held by individuals in the community. The competent jerks are taking that risk, in the hopes that the good that comes of it outweighs the bad.

In fact, I really shouldn't even go so far as to label all such teams as jerks—the (good or bad) motivations of one team shouldn't reflect on all teams utilizing these controversial strategies.

I see it as a rule without being a rule. It is a way of saying: "this is not what we want, don't do it" that is perfectly black and white.
It accomplishes that effectively. I just hope we don't fall into the trap of believing that one carries the same weight (morally, practically, etc.) as the other.

Aside: Real life intervenes for a week, and I miss most of a good controversy? How disappointing.

1 Given that the update changes nothing (apart from removing uncertainty about whether FIRST would change something), it would have been more than sufficient to say: 'The white bridge's purpose is to motivate participating players, teams and alliances to collaborate with other players, teams and alliances (even in the heat of competition) by rewarding them for working together. Bullying, coercion, and unsportsmanlike conduct—even directed toward that purpose—have no place in FIRST. No rules or official interpretations of rules are being changed at this time.' Next time, could they please spare us the recapitulation of FIRST's "principals"?

2 For example: Is the team trying to adjust its own ranking? An alliance partner's ranking? An opponent's ranking? The winner of the co-opertition award? (Or a combination of those?) Or maybe they're trying to appear stupid to avoid getting picked by a #1 alliance they don't like. Maybe it's a driver who didn't read the rules. And what about honest mistakes that have similar consequences? And if there was a penalty for trying to unbalance the bridge, how would you determine the proportion of culpability between the robots on top, and the ones on the ground? (After all, if FIRST had added a new penalty, in a limited set of circumstances, you might reasonably unbalance the co-opertition bridge yourself despite being on top, in an effort to secure the penalty for an opponent that could be interpreted to be attempting same.)

pfreivald
03-15-2012, 06:04 AM
In fact, I really shouldn't even go so far as to label all such teams as jerks—the (good or bad) motivations of one team shouldn't reflect on all teams utilizing these controversial strategies.

Yes, but the actions of each individual team absolutely should reflect on that team when it chooses to use these strategies.

jyh947
03-15-2012, 08:51 AM
Ironically, if you cross the barrier to the opposing alliance's side and attempt to help them onto the Coopertition bridge, you risk getting penalties. Due to the geometry of the field and how the Keys of the field are very close to the Bridges, there is a high chance that an opposing alliance robot will touch you and deal you penalties. In other words, only use the Coopertition bridge from your side of the field.

I saw this happen numerous times throughout the weekend at Waterford.

Adam Freeman
03-15-2012, 09:03 AM
Ironically, if you cross the barrier to the opposing alliance's side and attempt to help them onto the Coopertition bridge, you risk getting penalties. Due to the geometry of the field and how the Keys of the field are very close to the Bridges, there is a high chance that an opposing alliance robot will touch you and deal you penalties. In other words, only use the Coopertition bridge from your side of the field.

I saw this happen numerous times throughout the weekend at Waterford.

We crossed the field and balanced on the opponents side almost every match. I made sure to mention to the opposing alliance that if we were going to be over there near their key, that it would be great if they didn't take advantage of it (since we are attempting to work together). I don't think we fouled anyone during any of our Coop balancing attempts.

Teams just need to work with their opponents and be careful not to cause fouls. When it comes to the Coop bridge, it all about teams and alliances working together for an additional 2pts.

Tristan Lall
03-15-2012, 04:34 PM
Yes, but the actions of each individual team absolutely should reflect on that team when it chooses to use these strategies.
Fair enough, but I think we need to consider more than just the bare action when deciding how to evaluate a team's behaviour.

Are they generally nice people, or do they have a history of being belligerent? Are they cunning strategists, or do they rarely have a good sense of the big picture? Is there evidence of malice, or merely a desire to compete more effectively?

It should reflect on them only in conjunction with several other mitigating and aggravating factors. I would not be comfortable ostracizing a team solely on the basis of their choice of one of the strategies discussed here.

pfreivald
03-15-2012, 05:33 PM
Fair enough, but I think we need to consider more than just the bare action when deciding how to evaluate a team's behaviour.

Are they generally nice people, or do they have a history of being belligerent? Are they cunning strategists, or do they rarely have a good sense of the big picture? Is there evidence of malice, or merely a desire to compete more effectively?

It should reflect on them only in conjunction with several other mitigating and aggravating factors. I would not be comfortable ostracizing a team solely on the basis of their choice of one of the strategies discussed here.

Well, I know that once a team (or a person) has been dishonest or underhanded in any dealing with me, they will have to do something really special over a long period of time to be considered anything but dishonest or underhanded. Trust, once lost, is not an easy thing to regain.

I know lots of generally nice, smart people who I wouldn't trust with my wallet, my sister, or in my pit at competition. Whether or not they believe their dishonesty/underhandedness is intended with malice is quite moot.

Peck
03-15-2012, 10:38 PM
I think what he means is that to decide If they were being dishonest/deceitful/whatever, you must consider other factors.

pfreivald
03-16-2012, 05:57 AM
I think what he means is that to decide If they were being dishonest/deceitful/whatever, you must consider other factors.

Of course there's a difference between agreeing to cooperate with no intention of doing so (lying), agreeing to cooperate with intention of doing so and then during the endgame making a tactical decision not to in order to win the game instead (not lying, but reneging on a deal -- so almost as bad), and agreeing to cooperate but failing in the attempt (maybe your robot died or slipped a chain or something). Only the last is acceptable, IMO.

fox46
03-16-2012, 06:21 AM
I was really expecting a new rule to be made that penalized an individual team for interfering with a co-op balance in much the same way an alliance is penalized for interfereing with a balancing attempt on an opposing alliance bridge.

Grim Tuesday
03-16-2012, 01:39 PM
Well, I'm glad with the way this update went, because I have seen teams interfere with the bridge for good reasons (twice today at Virginia, I saw a team help another robot onto the co-op bridge). However, it seems that some teams haven't gotten the memo: I just watched at LA, a team push a team on their own alliance that was trying to get onto the bridge off course, so they couldn't get on. Just to make sure that everyone knew it was intentional, they did it again. Apparently, some people just don't get it.

Mr B
03-16-2012, 02:11 PM
I would never ever condone intentionally unbalancing a coopertition bridge. Truth be told, trying to work the system like that may help you once in a while, but more often than not it backfires. But how do you judge intent? How do you know if a robot is trying to help balance or just really good at looking incompetent while sabotaging the maneuver? You can't. The part that I love most about FRC is the cooperation that happens in the pit, and in the community. We are a family and we help each other. Shoot, they had to outlaw teams taking time-outs in the finals to help their opponents. But it seems to me then whenever they introduce coopertition to the event, there are unintended consequences that detract from the game. I guess what I am wondering (and I mean no disrespect by this) is why isn't a pure competition enough to inspire young people to pursue careers in science and engineering?

Mr. Lim
03-16-2012, 02:26 PM
However, it seems that some teams haven't gotten the memo: I just watched at LA, a team push a team on their own alliance that was trying to get onto the bridge off course, so they couldn't get on. Just to make sure that everyone knew it was intentional, they did it again. Apparently, some people just don't get it.

Which match was this?

I wonder if the alliance was trying to go for the win and wanted two robots on their own alliance bridge for 20 points. One team could've "gone rogue," broke from strategy and decided to go for the coop bridge instead because they wanted 2 safe CP points, and had no interest in actually trying for the win.

Their alliance members could've disagreed with this choice, and felt they were trying to sabotage a chance at winning.

This is a situation that can very easily happen.

And exactly who is being ungracious becomes less clear.

Cory
03-16-2012, 03:08 PM
Which match was this?

I wonder if the alliance was trying to go for the win and wanted two robots on their own alliance bridge for 20 points. One team could've "gone rogue," broke from strategy and decided to go for the coop bridge instead because they wanted 2 safe CP points, and had no interest in actually trying for the win.

Their alliance members could've disagreed with this choice, and felt they were trying to sabotage a chance at winning.

This is a situation that can very easily happen.

And exactly who is being ungracious becomes less clear.

So you're saying that if red1 says they will go for the alliance bridge and then goes for the co-op bridge, leaving red2 behind at the alliance bridge, it's then considered sportsmanlike for red2 to go attempt to shove red1 off of/away from the coop bridge?

You can't be serious?

Mr. Lim
03-16-2012, 03:13 PM
So you're saying that if red1 says they will go for the alliance bridge and then goes for the co-op bridge, leaving red2 behind at the alliance bridge, it's then considered sportsmanlike for red2 to go attempt to shove red1 off of/away from the coop bridge?

You can't be serious?

No, I'm definitely not.

But it does provide is a reasonable explanation as to how things got ugly in the first place. And might add some perspective to this game that many still aren't quite seeing.

It's okay though, you wouldn't be the first (or last) to put words into my mouth this season. :P