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  #106   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 06-07-2012, 11:13 AM
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Re: FIRST is really looking into the Einstein problems

It's a good time to say, thank you, to everyone involved.

There's a big difference between transparency and a fish bowl. These people need the freedom to think and to work together without the pressure of a reality show atmosphere that the CD community could help to create if they were more transparent with the process.

They need this time to work and all they need from us is our support. They know they've got that.

Jane
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Unread 06-07-2012, 02:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JaneYoung View Post
There's a big difference between transparency and a fish bowl. These people need the freedom to think and to work together without the pressure of a reality show atmosphere that the CD community could help to create if they were more transparent with the process.
Agreed; live-streaming, or even posting pictures, might be going a bit too far. Most people I know get weird on camera, and that won't help these guys solve the issue. I still want to know their process, but anything more than a few paragraphs in an email is asking for way too much.

I think they are aware of how much this means to us, and how difficult it is to wait on their results. But I think they also have to consider what's best for the troubleshooting process. That's why they are spending only one weekend on it. It's Thursday, Monday is the soonest we can expect a summary of the tests (but not the conclusions, I give them another week for that). We've done all the speculation we can do (some of us with less knowledge than others, ahem, me); let's rest our minds and keyboards and wait.
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Unread 06-07-2012, 03:24 PM
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Re: FIRST is really looking into the Einstein problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by JaneYoung View Post
It's a good time to say, thank you, to everyone involved.

There's a big difference between transparency and a fish bowl. These people need the freedom to think and to work together without the pressure of a reality show atmosphere that the CD community could help to create if they were more transparent with the process.

They need this time to work and all they need from us is our support. They know they've got that.

Jane
Jane,
I think the issue is that many of the members of these boards do Root Cause Corrective Action (RCCA) in our everyday jobs. This is large base of expertise that could hel;p out including mentors who work for suppliers that make the components in question. I know I would feel better if they solicited peer review of their plan because there a lot of people who think they know how to properly do this type of work but don't really go in depth on it, or understand how to apply the ACE/Six Sigma processes.

I agree that they should not do this in a bubble, I'm just not sure that FIRST has demonstrated they have the most capable people involved in the process, and if they had asked for support many of us could have aided in the preliminary fault tree or other preliminary trouble shooting to set up the test plan. I hope that representatives from NI and CISCO were at least consulted for formulating the test plan.
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Unread 06-07-2012, 03:34 PM
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Re: FIRST is really looking into the Einstein problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Matteson View Post
I hope that representatives from NI and CISCO were at least consulted for formulating the test plan.
I believe they have, as several will be present at the testing.
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Unread 06-07-2012, 03:58 PM
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Re: FIRST is really looking into the Einstein problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Matteson View Post
Jane,
I think the issue is that many of the members of these boards do Root Cause Corrective Action (RCCA) in our everyday jobs. This is large base of expertise that could hel;p out including mentors who work for suppliers that make the components in question. I know I would feel better if they solicited peer review of their plan because there a lot of people who think they know how to properly do this type of work but don't really go in depth on it, or understand how to apply the ACE/Six Sigma processes.

I agree that they should not do this in a bubble, I'm just not sure that FIRST has demonstrated they have the most capable people involved in the process, and if they had asked for support many of us could have aided in the preliminary fault tree or other preliminary trouble shooting to set up the test plan. I hope that representatives from NI and CISCO were at least consulted for formulating the test plan.
Well, the question falls to how FIRST solicited help, including peer review. And, for many us, that answer is - we don't know.

I understand the concern.

Jane
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Unread 06-07-2012, 04:18 PM
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Re: FIRST is really looking into the Einstein problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Matteson View Post
Jane,
I think the issue is that many of the members of these boards do Root Cause Corrective Action (RCCA) in our everyday jobs. This is large base of expertise that could hel;p out including mentors who work for suppliers that make the components in question. I know I would feel better if they solicited peer review of their plan because there a lot of people who think they know how to properly do this type of work but don't really go in depth on it, or understand how to apply the ACE/Six Sigma processes.

I agree that they should not do this in a bubble, I'm just not sure that FIRST has demonstrated they have the most capable people involved in the process, and if they had asked for support many of us could have aided in the preliminary fault tree or other preliminary trouble shooting to set up the test plan. I hope that representatives from NI and CISCO were at least consulted for formulating the test plan.
FIRST didn't send out an e-mail blast asking for help, true... but they contacted those they needed to with the appropriate expertise to look into the issue. Rather than get a large number of people offering advice on how to proceed, it's important to get the right people in on the project offering advice. As a community of team members and mentors, we're being represented by those going for the Einstein testing. If they need an expert on the cRio, they'll contact engineers at NI directly, and that's a communication we won't be a part of. Likewise for all of the other aspects of the control system.

You know how the FIRST community is... if they asked us as a broad community for help, they would end up spending more time reading, organizing, and replying to our "help" than they would actually addressing the problem. Too many cooks in the kitchen, as the saying goes.

When I'm debugging a problem in our production environment (which is part of my job), I don't get our entire development team into a room to look at it. I perform initial triage, then pull in experts with specific knowledge that is directly applicable to the issue at hand. More people would only add confusion, delays, and arguments about the best way to tackle the issue.
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Unread 06-07-2012, 04:28 PM
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Re: FIRST is really looking into the Einstein problems

It's not about entitlement or putting FIRST into a bubble so we all can debate their every move. From the May 15th email.
Quote:
Please allow me to update you on our examination of the Championship final rounds.
Just keep us in the loop, That's all I'm asking.

I think that no communication sends the wrong message.
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Unread 06-07-2012, 04:35 PM
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Re: FIRST is really looking into the Einstein problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Stratis View Post
FIRST didn't send out an e-mail blast asking for help, true... but they contacted those they needed to with the appropriate expertise to look into the issue. Rather than get a large number of people offering advice on how to proceed, it's important to get the right people in on the project offering advice. As a community of team members and mentors, we're being represented by those going for the Einstein testing. If they need an expert on the cRio, they'll contact engineers at NI directly, and that's a communication we won't be a part of. Likewise for all of the other aspects of the control system.
I didn't expect FIRST to solicit help from everyone,because yes this would be counter productive. I would just ask targed teams/mentors to aid in the investigation and mention this in the updates.

I expected the flow of information to mention experts from the vendors involved being called in, and maybe some senior/well known mentors to be involved. Kristian confirmed that at least the suppliers are involved which makes me more comfortable than I was before.
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Unread 06-07-2012, 05:07 PM
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Re: FIRST is really looking into the Einstein problems

Just got this email from FIRST.

Quote:
ear FRC Teams:



Thank you for your continued patience, support, and submissions as we conduct the evaluation of Einstein from Championship. This examination and the ultimate solutions remain the top priority for the FRC team. Here are the most up-to-date actions and information.



The final twelve teams who competed on Einstein, including 1-2 representatives and the team robot, will participate in the evaluation this upcoming weekend (June 9-10) in New Hampshire.



FRC is recreating a full competition field, utilizing the same electronics present at Championship, on which to conduct the testing. We are duplicating all possible conditions to match the St. Louis environment. While it can never be a perfect replication, FIRST has matched each possible condition within its control, including using the same Championship production company to provide the same lighting conditions.



In addition to FIRST staff and team representatives, 18 additional key FIRST volunteers and outside experts from across the U.S. will be in attendance to collect data, form hypotheses, and analyze results.



We are deeply grateful to the twelve final Einstein teams for their whole-hearted participation and support. At every juncture, they have openly shared information and been extremely forthcoming and helpful true models of Gracious Professionalism. We also are thankful to our community for sharing their 2012 season experiences, theories, and advice. Thank you for your continued patience as we move through this important process.



We believe this upcoming weekend will be tremendously instructive and productive.



Sincerely,



Jon
Hmmm.

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Unread 06-07-2012, 05:30 PM
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Re: FIRST is really looking into the Einstein problems

Please forgive me if this idea has been posted before - I don't have time to look through all 8 pages of this (and many other) threads about the issue. I'm not an expert, but I just thought of a possible aspect of the problem that probably can't be replicated in New Hampshire. I want to at least mention it.

Is is possible that as the finals were happening, and the storm was building, numerous - as in hundreds - of people were using their smart phones to check the weather, contact folks to see if they are ok, etc.?
From what I understand, many of these phones will be looking for wireless access points - like robots and the field. (I've noticed that my phone picks up our robot...) of course, they can't connect to the robot or the field, but many of the phones are at least pinging them - trying to make a connection - using bandwidth.

I think this could explain why the problem existed so prominently on Einstein and wasn't an issue in previous years.
1. Many more spectators - more smart phones
2. Storm - more smart phones in use than normal circumstances
3. More smart phones in the population in general.

Once again, I'm not an expert, and I'm sorry if this sort of thing has been mentioned before. I hope that if I mention it here and it is useful, it will get to those who need it.

I hope they figure this out!

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Unread 06-07-2012, 05:39 PM
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Re: FIRST is really looking into the Einstein problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Matteson View Post
Jane,
I think the issue is that many of the members of these boards do Root Cause Corrective Action (RCCA) in our everyday jobs. This is large base of expertise that could hel;p out including mentors who work for suppliers that make the components in question. I know I would feel better if they solicited peer review of their plan because there a lot of people who think they know how to properly do this type of work but don't really go in depth on it, or understand how to apply the ACE/Six Sigma processes.
...
From what I heard, they have done this. 5-why, Six Sigma, Root Cause experts have been brought in to help with this. Some are FIRST experts, some are new eyes to the situation.

I'm excited to hear how things go this weekend, and wish everyone the best of luck and good fortune to find out the most they can.

Sincerely,
Andy Baker
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Unread 06-07-2012, 06:15 PM
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Re: FIRST is really looking into the Einstein problems

I think that that was a great email from FIRST explaining where they are in the process. That's all we need to know.

FIRST needs to know that the CD community is interested in the process and the results.
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Unread 06-07-2012, 10:27 PM
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Re: FIRST is really looking into the Einstein problems

It is important to remind everyone that many First Staffers, GDC and Key Volunteers visit CD often, sometimes daily. Although many do not choose to post, they are reading what you all have to say. It is easy to see that First is taking this very seriously from that facts outlined in Jon's email. Read the letter and think about the investment that is being made by First to insure that everyone (your team) has a great experience in the future.
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Unread 06-08-2012, 01:53 AM
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Re: FIRST is really looking into the Einstein problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Van View Post
Is is possible that as the finals were happening, and the storm was building, numerous - as in hundreds - of people were using their smart phones to check the weather, contact folks to see if they are ok, etc.?
From what I understand, many of these phones will be looking for wireless access points - like robots and the field.
Yes, there was a large number of phones in one area, many of which I'm sure were using wireless. The robots, however, connect to the field on the 5GHz band, as opposed to the 2.4GHz band that most devices use(I don't think I've ever seen a phone that can connect on 5GHz)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Van View Post
I've noticed that my phone picks up our robot...
What you're seeing is actually the Wireless SSID's that the field is broadcasting, not the robots themselves. You're unable to connect because of the WPA2 encryption that every team has to put on their robot's radios(via the radio kiosk) before they can compete. The field is configured with those encryption keys and any device connecting to it must have it as well.
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Unread 06-08-2012, 07:18 AM
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Re: FIRST is really looking into the Einstein problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy Baker View Post
From what I heard, they have done this. 5-why, Six Sigma, Root Cause experts have been brought in to help with this. Some are FIRST experts, some are new eyes to the situation.

I'm excited to hear how things go this weekend, and wish everyone the best of luck and good fortune to find out the most they can.

Sincerely,
Andy Baker
This was all I wanted to hear. The letter makes me feel better that they had the right people involved and clearly were addressing this thread.

I don't want to go through stories of RCCA investigation gone wrong here but trust me my concern comes from experieince where I have had to clean up bad investigations from well intentioned people so I'm always a little sensetive to these types of issues.
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