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fresh new direction for first?

Posted by mike oleary at 05/19/2001 2:26 PM EST


Engineer on team #419, rambots, from bc high and...oh wait just bc high and hmmm...sponsors...thats a good idea.



i have it from very reliable sources that in a move to extend their already large influence FIRST has made a deal with battle bots. using battle bots access to media coverage, FIRST's mission (to get high school students interested in engineering), and a dynamic new parnership the new organization will have even more impact on high school students of america, and hopefully eventually the world.
while full details arent available as yet dont worry: FIRST will still be FIRST, and the competition wont be ruined by silly announcers like comedy centrals battle bots has been: FIRST is basically just using battle bots to spread the FIRST message
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I've heard different

Posted by David Kelly at 05/19/2001 5:41 PM EST


Student on team #234, Cyber Blue, from Perry Meridian High School [IUPUI] and Rolls-Royce/ NEC Computers Inc./ Peregrine Systems.


In Reply to: fresh new direction for first?
Posted by mike oleary on 05/19/2001 2:26 PM EST:



thats not what i heard. if you check on the BattleBots website, you can see that they are trying to start a high school competition. during the season, i heard that the executives from BattleBots were passing out business cards at some FIRST Comps. to try to recruit students. and if you were at the nationals you should of heard that Dean Kamen "DOES NOT LIKE BATTLEBOTS!" he doesn't like that violence stuff. i don't think that Dean would all of a sudden change his mind and strike a TV deal with BattleBots. FIRST isn't that desperate for TV coverage.

We'll have to wait and see what happens

David Kelly
Student Captain/ Webmaster/ Driver
CB Team 234

: i have it from very reliable sources that in a move to extend their already large influence FIRST has made a deal with battle bots. using battle bots access to media coverage, FIRST's mission (to get high school students interested in engineering), and a dynamic new parnership the new organization will have even more impact on high school students of america, and hopefully eventually the world.
: while full details arent available as yet dont worry: FIRST will still be FIRST, and the competition wont be ruined by silly announcers like comedy centrals battle bots has been: FIRST is basically just using battle bots to spread the FIRST message


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rumor forum (eom)

Posted by mike oleary at 05/19/2001 9:58 PM EST


Engineer on team #419, rambots, from bc high and...oh wait just bc high and hmmm...sponsors...thats a good idea.


In Reply to: I've heard different
Posted by David Kelly on 05/19/2001 5:41 PM EST:



: thats not what i heard. if you check on the BattleBots website, you can see that they are trying to start a high school competition. during the season, i heard that the executives from BattleBots were passing out business cards at some FIRST Comps. to try to recruit students. and if you were at the nationals you should of heard that Dean Kamen "DOES NOT LIKE BATTLEBOTS!" he doesn't like that violence stuff. i don't think that Dean would all of a sudden change his mind and strike a TV deal with BattleBots. FIRST isn't that desperate for TV coverage.

: We'll have to wait and see what happens

: David Kelly
: Student Captain/ Webmaster/ Driver
: CB Team 234

: : i have it from very reliable sources that in a move to extend their already large influence FIRST has made a deal with battle bots. using battle bots access to media coverage, FIRST's mission (to get high school students interested in engineering), and a dynamic new parnership the new organization will have even more impact on high school students of america, and hopefully eventually the world.
: : while full details arent available as yet dont worry: FIRST will still be FIRST, and the competition wont be ruined by silly announcers like comedy centrals battle bots has been: FIRST is basically just using battle bots to spread the FIRST message


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Should FIRST be worried?

Posted by Joe Johnson at 05/20/2001 5:30 PM EST


Engineer on team #47, Chief Delphi, from Pontiac Central High School and Delphi Automotive Systems.


In Reply to: rumor forum (eom)
Posted by mike oleary on 05/19/2001 9:58 PM EST:



I know that this rumor was just that, a rumor.

But...

...there is a serious point to be made.

IF (and this is a big IF) Battlebots for high school kids, has the explosive growth that Battlebots has seen in the last few years, FIRST will have a very serious competitor.

Is there room for 2 high school robots competitions of the magnitude of FIRST? I don't know. I think maybe not.

While Dean may not want heated competition on the robot playing field, I fear that he may not be able to avoid a very tough battle for the hearts and minds of the high schoolers he is trying to affect.

Joe J.


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Re: Should FIRST be worried?

Posted by David Kelso at 05/20/2001 7:47 PM EST


Coach on team #131, C.H.A.O.S.-, from Central High School and OSRAM SYLVANIA/ Fleet .


In Reply to: Should FIRST be worried?
Posted by Joe Johnson on 05/20/2001 5:30 PM EST:



Well there are two points here. 1) the cost of the program. Almost every team has had to struggle at some point to get funding. Just the registration fee for two contests is enough to stop some from starting a team.
2) You know how Woody suggests that team members act "as if his/her grandmother was watching". Well, if the game stays like this, even the student's grandmother would not take the time to watch them on TV


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Re: Should FIRST be worried?

Posted by Nate Smith at 05/21/2001 11:30 AM EST


College Student on team #66, Frostbite, from Willow Run High School and GM Powertrain.


In Reply to: Re: Should FIRST be worried?
Posted by David Kelso on 05/20/2001 7:47 PM EST:



: Well there are two points here. 1) the cost of the program. Almost every team has had to struggle at some point to get funding. Just the registration fee for two contests is enough to stop some from starting a team.

Good point...so maybe this should signal a shift in how a new team should be formed? Rather than a high school getting together and asking themselves, "OK, we want to do this, now how the heck are we going to pay for it?" with the increasing number of former FIRSTers who are now out working for potential sponsors, maybe it's time for more teams to be started on the corporate side, i.e. getting the money first, then going to a school and saying "we're willing to fund XX% of this if you want to do it...what do you think?"

: 2) You know how Woody suggests that team members act "as if his/her grandmother was watching". Well, if the game stays like this, even the student's grandmother would not take the time to watch them on TV

I can personally say this isn't the case...especially with parents/grandparents/family, if they know it's something you're dedicated to and love, they'll watch it anyway...my grandparents personally showed up at West Michigan this year, not to mention taping anything they caught on the news for me, and clipping out any news articles about either FIRST or Kamen himself(a lot of the Ginger/IT stuff that's been in the news lately) and mailing it to me while I'm at school...

Nate

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Re: Should FIRST be worried?

Posted by Justin at 05/20/2001 10:18 PM EST


Alumni on team #146, Blue Lightning, from none and The Blue Lightning Alumni Association.


In Reply to: Should FIRST be worried?
Posted by Joe Johnson on 05/20/2001 5:30 PM EST:



It interests me that I am now hearing this rumor again. A while back I heard the rumor about Battlebots making the forey into the HS robotics competition world (market?). I thought about posting then but it seemed like a pretty unsubstantiated rumor. Now I see it again, and here whisperings of crossover between the FIRST/Battlebots world. It makes me really ponder the idea.

What would happen?? FIRST is a small, understaffed organization, which is non-for profit. Battlebots by contrast seems to have lots of money, coniderable resources, and backing. I pondered the question of what would happen if FIRST/Battlebots were forced to compete. Would resources make Battlebots the instant in @ HS?? Surely the have the means to reach all of the HS and HS students very quickly their on TV, and they must have a fairly large marketing department. However I know that our HS wouldn't let us name our robot for example things like "crusher", etc. So I'm not sure how HS's would react to Battlebot style of play. But then they could easily borrow a few pages from FIRST's playbook...a good example of this is B.E.S.T. http://www.bestinc.org

I don't know what would happen...but it is an intersting question to ponder. One that I hope FIRST is asking themselves.

-Justin
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battlebots IS going HS -- not a rumor

Posted by Joe Johnson at 05/21/2001 10:12 PM EST


Engineer on team #47, Chief Delphi, from Pontiac Central High School and Delphi Automotive Systems.


In Reply to: Re: Should FIRST be worried?
Posted by Justin on 05/20/2001 10:18 PM EST:



Battlebots is planning on a High School level competition.

In addition to it being on their web site, I have from other sources that they are serious about the high school "market."

As to the size of the organizations, I would not automatically assume that Battlebots is the larger better finianced competitor. I guess that they are about the same size or that Battlebots is smaller if anything.

As to power behind the organizations, I would stack FIRST's backers up against nearly all comers.

Joe J.


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Re: battlebots IS going HS -- not a rumor

Posted by Mike Soukup at 05/22/2001 3:43 PM EST


Engineer on team #111, Wildstang, from Rolling Meadows & Wheeling and Motorola.


In Reply to: battlebots IS going HS -- not a rumor
Posted by Joe Johnson on 05/21/2001 10:12 PM EST:



: As to power behind the organizations, I would stack FIRST's backers up against nearly all comers.

I definately agree here. It seems like when Dean sets his mind on something, he gets it accomplished. After hearing Dean's quote on 60 minutes a while back about changing the world through FIRST, I thought that if it's possible, Dean's the one who can do it.

With respect to the power of the FIRST & BattleBots organizations, I think FIRST is more powerful. Just take a look at the board of directors of FIRST and see how many corporate CEO's sit on it, and all the corporate sponsors of the FIRST organization and teams. Dean has professional relationships with a number of other CEO's, and he's had presidential candidates visit his house during the primary season (including current President Bush).

Mike


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Re: battlebots IS going HS -- not a rumor

Posted by Matt Leese at 05/22/2001 4:27 PM EST


College Student on team #73, Tigerbolt, from Edison Technical HS and Alstom & Fiber Technologies & RIT.


In Reply to: Re: battlebots IS going HS -- not a rumor
Posted by Mike Soukup on 05/22/2001 3:43 PM EST:



What's the number one difference between FIRST and Battlebots? FIRST has lots of grass-roots support and Battlebots does not. You do not have hundreds of loyal participants in Battlebots who are willing to evangilize the program -- FIRST does. And in the end, that will be the difference between which program has a larger impact.

Matt
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Why post in the mill? (EOM)

Posted by Carolyn Duncan at 05/29/2001 4:56 PM EST


Student on team #495, The Pack, from Jamestown High School and VBEP/Raytheon/Saic.


In Reply to: battlebots IS going HS -- not a rumor
Posted by Joe Johnson on 05/21/2001 10:12 PM EST:



: Battlebots is planning on a High School level competition.

: In addition to it being on their web site, I have from other sources that they are serious about the high school "market."

: As to the size of the organizations, I would not automatically assume that Battlebots is the larger better finianced competitor. I guess that they are about the same size or that Battlebots is smaller if anything.

: As to power behind the organizations, I would stack FIRST's backers up against nearly all comers.

: Joe J.


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"Battlebots IQ"

Posted by colleen - T190 at 05/21/2001 1:42 AM EST


Engineer on team #190, Gompei, from Massachusetts Academy of Math and Science and WPI.


In Reply to: Should FIRST be worried?
Posted by Joe Johnson on 05/20/2001 5:30 PM EST:



Battlebots IQ... a robotics competition for high schoolers.. is definitely no rumor.. it's some that will and is happening in the near future..

The concept of BattlebotsIQ is to greatly increase and stress the design/build stage of robot development, which is the most limited part of FIRST in it's '6-week' status. This way, students have the time to not only design mechanical parts, but be taught how to build them on all the various machining tools and build them on their own. And in the end, the competition is just a technicality to the process whereas in FIRST the competition is more the purpose of the process. Of course, a competition on nationalTV and as actually 'competitive' as you would expect competition to be makes for a much better deal in most young (and old) eyes..

So basically.. BBIQ is a beefed up FIRST.. with a stress on the process and learning and a game with a point but a little 'rough-n-tumble' as well..

And no doubt-- there are a few veteran FIRST brains behind this new thing, as you could imagine..

Honestly, I think it's a very cool thing, and in due time will accomplish exactly what FIRST is trying to.. at a much cheaper (in time and $$$) cost and a much larger (i.e. nationally recognized/accepted) plane..

Should FIRST be concerned-- I would think so.. BBIQ would offer a more relaxed worktime enviroment with more time to concentrate on teaching then just trying to get things built/finished plus a bit more exciting of game as comparison to this year and a primetime TV slot--

I love FIRST, but I'd do it.

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Re: Should FIRST be worried?

Posted by michael bastoni at 05/21/2001 7:08 AM EST


Other on team #23, PNTA, from Plymouth North High School and Boston Edison Co.


In Reply to: Should FIRST be worried?
Posted by Joe Johnson on 05/20/2001 5:30 PM EST:



Stop worrying, Start doing...

Please, let's get off this "us" vs. "them" perspective...it's all of us and it's NOT the Civil War of robots...we all can win here with the growth of the sport...that is what is ultimately important.

If someone, some company, some school wants to do FIRST then they should by all means do it....it's a great thing, it's about inspiration and that is extremely important...but it ain't everything...

If someone, some company, some school wants to do BattleBots then they should, by all means do it...it's about learning and doing and that is extremely important...but it ain't everything....

Why are there 50 or so car manufacturers worldwide?

Because everyone has, to quote one of them..." A better idea"...this is what this country is grounded in. Freedom, choice and the opportunity to empower our own lives..so long as what we do is legal...

To my knowledge, it's legal to balance a machine on a ramp, to bash into rotating saw blades with a mechanical contraption on TV and to gather plastic balls for points...so what's the worry?

What really worries me, is when grown ups have to imply to children that in order for something to be "good"....something else has to be "Bad"....this is called a co-dependent relationship, and your therapist will counsel you to steer clear of such a social arrangement....

Forgive me tendency to partake in "Deceased equine flagellation" (Apologies to Alex Slocum) but there are multiple sports out there...and read up on James Naismith...he started basketball in the 20's in Springfield MA...11 guys on a team and no dribbling allowed...so when the "Book" on mechanized sports is written decades from now...Woodie (70' something), Dean 91', Marc Thorpe 94' Trey Roski 99 and a host of others will be footnotes....and the "Games" will have evolved to almost unrecognizable dimensions....

So quit worrying...go to work...do the things you love...there are currently more than 300 robotic "Games" to choose from...find one...do it your damned best....you decide what works for you...cause they all have merit, and they all have drawbacks...and if someone, anyone in life tells you they have the One right way of doing anything...be suspicious...cause no one does,,,no one ever has...probably, no one ever will.

Mr.B

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FIRST as a Commercial Entity

Posted by Justin at 05/21/2001 8:14 PM EST


Alumni on team #146, Blue Lightning, from none and The Blue Lightning Alumni Association.


In Reply to: Should FIRST be worried?
Posted by Joe Johnson on 05/20/2001 5:30 PM EST:



Hello All,

Colleen's post about BBIQ is very interesting. It sounds like an interesting program. One that would no doubt garner a lot of interest. One thing I've thought about a lot when thinking about all these discussions of FIRST being on TV and a household name is what would FIRST be like if it were ever commercialized???

Would we still recognize it??? Many of the vets from earlier times don't even recognize today's FIRST as FIRST. Things are always changing, and I'm not going to say that change is always for the worse. FIRST has a unique community feel. Many of us have had personal coversations and such with Woodie our beloved MC. However if FIRST were on TV and there were marketing departments, etc. Would Woodie sell tide?? In the TV world it is about getting people to watch and the actors and anchors are really sales people. Would we see Wooide on TV or a foucs groups impression of what Woodie should be?? I'm not sure what commercialization would mean for FIRST. I'm not sure it would be bad, or good. I'm currious has to what others are thinking about the full scale commercialization of FIRST. FIRST robots produced by Matel???

-Justin


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FIRST as a Commercial Entity

Posted by Justin at 05/21/2001 8:20 PM EST


Alumni on team #146, Blue Lightning, from none and The Blue Lightning Alumni Association.


In Reply to: Should FIRST be worried?
Posted by Joe Johnson on 05/20/2001 5:30 PM EST:



Hello All,

Colleen's post about BBIQ is very interesting. It sounds like an interesting program. One that would no doubt garner a lot of interest. One thing I've thought about a lot when thinking about all these discussions of FIRST being on TV and a household name is what would FIRST be like if it were ever commercialized???

Would we still recognize it??? Many of the vets from earlier times don't even recognize today's FIRST as FIRST. Things are always changing, and I'm not going to say that change is always for the worse. FIRST has a unique community feel. Many of us have had personal coversations and such with Woodie our beloved MC. However if FIRST were on TV and there were marketing departments, etc. Would Woodie sell tide?? In the TV world it is about getting people to watch and the actors and anchors are really sales people. Would we see Wooide on TV or a foucs groups impression of what Woodie should be?? I'm not sure what commercialization would mean for FIRST. I'm not sure it would be bad, or good. I'm currious has to what others are thinking about the full scale commercialization of FIRST. FIRST robots produced by Matel???

-Justin


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