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View Poll Results: Who Builds your Bot?
Students 53 28.49%
Mentors/Adults/Engineers involved With Team 9 4.84%
Mixed; Adults and Students, Mostly Students 67 36.02%
Mixed; Adults and Students, Mostly Adults 13 6.99%
Mixed; Adults and Students, About 50/50 41 22.04%
We Send It Out To Be Professionally Built 3 1.61%
Voters: 186. You may not vote on this poll

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  #31   Spotlight this post!  
Unread 06-12-2003, 05:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by John JediMaster


I'd say that's what you can do with no engineers.
Why are "no engineer" teams so overly proud of this? Having no engineers does not make your team better.

Yes, you learn a lot, and do a lot on your own. But... there is only so much you can learn on your own, before someone has to TEACH you.

This is just another reincarnation of the age old "Student Built vs. Engineer Built" debate. There is NO RIGHT ANSWER. Every team does things differently. On 229, I wouldn't do things the same way Chief Delphi (47) does it, and I wouldn't do things the same way Big Red (19) does it.

One thing you should consider John:
You obviously learned a lot from this year, but did you ever think of the lessons you didn't learn because of your lack of engineers?

Something else to consider:
An amazing "engineer" bot you might recognize.


John
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Unread 06-12-2003, 05:14 PM
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as I pmed to to the previous user, I am saying this to all the people that think that you don't understand FIRST as well if you don't have engineers. This is just my opinion. I feel that teams that build their own bots later down the line will have a greater appreciation for technology and want to get involved because they have built their bot completely on their own, and have a greater understanding of the technology than if they had enginneers help.

With that I bid you all a loud HOY YO! (if you were at UTC you would understand)
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Unread 06-12-2003, 05:39 PM
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isn't that what FIRST is supposed to be about? FIRST stands for

For
Inspiration
in
Science
and
Technology

the way I interpret that is to get kids to want to get involved in the future.
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Unread 06-13-2003, 10:34 AM
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Students design and build it, the engineers/mentors are there to guide us when we stray off the path. A great way to learn, a great way to mentor, a great way to- grow.
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Unread 06-13-2003, 10:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by chellyzee93
Students design and build it, the engineers/mentors are there to guide us when we stray off the path. A great way to learn, a great way to mentor, a great way to- grow.
I think that's really the goal of FIRST, or it should be. The students should be able to design and build stuff. It's their program. The engineers should be there to teach and inspire the students.
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Unread 06-14-2003, 04:32 PM
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Wink

100% student designed and built.
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Unread 06-14-2003, 04:49 PM
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So when one of y'all chops your arm/finger/whatever off because you didnt have someone there teaching you how to do stuff right, will you be so proud of that? (yeah, it probably wont happen, but this is a parallel line of reasoning to the "Making mistakes on my own will be good for me in the long run" thought)

Cory
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Unread 06-14-2003, 05:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Cory
So when one of y'all chops your arm/finger/whatever off because you didnt have someone there teaching you how to do stuff right, will you be so proud of that? (yeah, it probably wont happen, but this is a parallel line of reasoning to the "Making mistakes on my own will be good for me in the long run" thought)

Cory
Can we get over this argument? 100% student built doesn't mean that noone else was there to help. It just means the students do the actual work. We do a fall competition called OCCRA, where the robots have to be 100% student built, but that doesn't mean everything's a disaster waiting to happen. Students can learn how to do something, then do it themselves. In my mind, that's the best way. They learn from the teachers/engineers, but they still get the personal, firsthand experience that is absolutely priceless.

I really do think we need to get over this argument. The last 10 posts or so have been "We don't have any engineers and we're better than you" followed by "Well, you're doing it all wrong then." There will always be differences in every team's methods. Let's not criticize people and tell them they're either missing the point, or what have you, just because they do something differently than you do.
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Unread 06-14-2003, 05:19 PM
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I'm interested in learning how many "100% Student Design and Built" teams began the process with any sort of master plan.

That is, I'd like to see complete drawings done for their robot, the calculations necessary to prove that a design will work, and the quality of the finished product.

I don't doubt that a group of like-minded high school students could easily hack their way through a season and produce a robot that functions; maybe even well.

I am far more interested in the process they use to get there than I am in the finished product. The how is often more important than the what, and, honestly, I don't believe that many (if any) "100% student" teams have fully experienced the entire process. I doubt that they can, really.

Engineering isn't sitting in the shop at 3 am, recutting a piece of aluminum for the fourth time; all while trying to justify it with a mantra of "student built." Engineering is planning ahead and making sure that piece need only be made once.

Qualified or unqualified, trained or untrained, experienced or unexperienced, making a part again and again due to lack of sufficient planning, calculation or knowledge makes the entire process more dangerous.
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Unread 06-14-2003, 05:29 PM
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I am part of a 100% student team and i feal that students are quite underestimated. I would have no problem with mentors or engineers as long as they HELP and not take over. They should be there for guidance, not to design the thing and then say "go build this". They should be there to help us with the calculations etc not to do them for us. Everyone go flame me now.
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Unread 06-14-2003, 06:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by M. Krass
I'm interested in learning how many "100% Student Design and Built" teams began the process with any sort of master plan.
M, while I wouldn't say my team is "100% Student Designed and Built," we're pretty darn close. To say that students can't do a proper design and build process is an affront to our efforts. We spent just as much time designing, planning, cadding, and prototyping our designs as anybody. I should know; I did most of it. Yes, we had some trial-and-error. But that's what we like to call "prototyping." We make drawings on the blackboard, then do a CAD or Inventor model of how we think it should go, then make a mock-up out of something easy for us to work with. If it doesn't work, we fix it so it does, then make a new one based on our final prototype. We've found over time that sometimes, that model you drew up in CAD just doesn't quite work the same way in the "real world."

So, I ask you, what's so terribly, horribly wrong with making a part over and over again, if you're making refinements and making it work better each time? It's how the real engineering world works. Do you think GM, or Ford, or Chrysler, or anyone designs an entire car on paper, then immediately puts it into production? No, they have prototypes and concepts of all sorts. You can't expect to have a perfect finished product just based on your drawings. There is real value in real-world testing, and that's what we attempt to do every year.

Don't go knocking student-lead teams just because you think we don't get it. That's what our engineers and teachers have taught us. How to do it the right way, on our own.
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Unread 06-14-2003, 07:49 PM
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Allow me to work backwards.

Quote:
Originally posted by Jeff Waegelin
That's what our engineers and teachers have taught us. How to do it the right way, on our own.
Bingo.

That's precisely the point. You had the help and guidance of more experienced individuals that, in time, were able to give your students more responsibility. While your engineers and teachers may not be involved in each aspect of your robot's construction, or any aspect of it, for that matter, they were there in the important stages to ensure that your processes and behavior are reflective of a safe, intelligent, thoughtful team. You're not a group of kids meddling in a basement, but a team that's earned the knowledge it needs to function self-sufficiently.

Teams without such support don't ever have the benefit of being shown "the right way." Without that benefit, they're often long in finding a method of design and production that is safe, efficient, and demonstrative of their potential, should they find such a methodology at all.

The point, to me, anyhow, is that many of the teams who're so proud of their "100% Student Designed and Built" status aren't even aware of the parts of the process they're missing. That GM and Ford don't go from design to production is exactly what teams in this situation don't often understand, as they're not being exposed to the many steps of the design process.

This often results in a shoe-horn-it philosophy that ends up being something more akin to what MacGyver might do than an engineer at GM. It means that the detailed planning necessary to build a reliable, safe, attractive functioning robot doesn't take place.

Every time someone makes a part for these robots, it's a risk, and anytime an injury might occur, it's truly a shame. If that injury could've been prevented because of better planning, better design strategy, and better methods, there's really no excuse for it to happen. "100%" teams with no engineering support are more at risk for that type of accident, and that's not something to be proud of.
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Unread 06-14-2003, 08:19 PM
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Much better, M I was a little concerned by your previous statements, but your last post seems to fit more what I was thinking. Sorry for the misunderstanding, there.
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Unread 06-14-2003, 08:37 PM
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Every time someone makes a part for these robots, it's a risk, and anytime an injury might occur, it's truly a shame. If that injury could've been prevented because of better planning, better design strategy, and better methods, there's really no excuse for it to happen. "100%" teams with no engineering support are more at risk for that type of accident, and that's not something to be proud of.
Wait a second that is not really a problem as long as the teams are not using big dangerous tools. How baddly can you hurt yourself using a hacksaw?? The worst injury in our robotics club was did not happen during the building process. It happened as someone was testing our robot. Then again it rather was quite asinine from what I have been told.
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Unread 06-14-2003, 08:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Adam Y.
How baddly can you hurt yourself using a hacksaw??
That's the sort of attitude that leads to accidents

I once put a small wood chisel through my thumb. It's not a big, giant power tool. It hurt, and it was avoidable, as I hadn't yet been instructed in the proper use of the tool.
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