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Unread 09-03-2005, 01:19 AM
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Give me your best scouting tip.

So, I am randomly thinking about scouting. And what are your best tips on scouting?

Like what have you find works best for you?

[this may be an old topic, I didnt search, but there will be new things anyways...]

Plus, I want your simple best tip .

Last edited by Ashley Christine : 09-03-2005 at 01:54 AM.
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Unread 09-03-2005, 01:44 AM
sanddrag sanddrag is offline
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Re: Give me your best scouting tip.

Get parents to help.
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Unread 09-03-2005, 02:51 AM
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Re: Give me your best scouting tip.

While making your scouting sheets ask yourself "Does this really matter?". Some teams have such unnecessary data with them which costs them so much time and effort. If you are not going to use the info, don't get it.

Create an organization system. You could make a thread asking teams how they do it.

Give your scouts a break.. don't kill them if they don't scout.
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Unread 09-03-2005, 07:30 AM
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Re: Give me your best scouting tip.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ashley Christine
So, I am randomly thinking about scouting. And what are your best tips on scouting?

Like what have you find works best for you?

[this may be an old topic, I didnt search, but there will be new things anyways...]

Plus, I want your simple best tip .
Don't scout using Chiefdelphi (as in: I'm looking for team # such and such). You will not get a nice reception.
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Unread 09-03-2005, 08:00 AM
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Re: Give me your best scouting tip.

If it's a fairly large competition such as Championships, work with other teams to get the scouting effort done. The process is efficient, and you make great friends with people on other teams in the process.
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Unread 09-03-2005, 09:06 AM
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Re: Give me your best scouting tip.

Concentrate on what you're alliance partners are best at.- When preparing scouting reports for the drive team, it's important to know what your opponents can do, but don't focus on it. Using examples from Triple Play: If you know going into a match that one opponent is great with the auto loader, let them use it and don't get in their way. If their manipulator is inconsistant, but they have a stable drive base, you can suggest they focus on defense. (That's not to say you shouldn't know which teams they should defend against)

Take pictures of all the robots. Have your head scouts try to watch most of the matches, and then use the pictures when preparing a scout report for the drive team. This way, if you don't have match data for a robot, or it's incomplete, chances are, the picture will remind you of what you saw. At the very least, you'll be able to see what kind of manipulator it has, and you'll be able to draw some conclusions that way.
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Unread 09-03-2005, 09:28 AM
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Re: Give me your best scouting tip.

What some teams say and their robots do are sometimes completely different. Be sure to have some one watch the team in question’s previous matches if possible to see what they really do. This goes for alliances and opponents. Take basic notes about speed, power, auto mode, capabilities, and points scored. This information can be very valuable when planning strategy.

And if you are allied with a team that you have seen have had issues in matches with scoring, effectiveness or penalties it is always good to ask what they have done to help correct those issues, or ask what you can do to help them work it out . . .

Last edited by Bcahn836 : 09-03-2005 at 11:45 AM.
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Unread 09-03-2005, 09:31 AM
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Re: Give me your best scouting tip.

I always found that manpower is extremely important. The more people you have collecting data, the faster and more efficent things seem to go. Also, don't put all your eggs into one basket. Don't expect that going around the pits is going to give you accurate information (sometimes it seems like the "spin zone" after a presidental debate). Make sure that people are collecting info on the specs of a specific robot, and watching that robot as it plays its matches.

For this years game, I found that it is very useful if you get six people together and count the tetras that are being scored by each team, and record the data in a spreadsheet. Then, all you have to do is average the tetras scored and viola, instant rankings. It is possible to accomplish this with only two people, but it's hard to watch three robots at a time. This information can be invaluable when preparing for a match, or selecting alliance partners. For the defensive robots, check out how well they do and if they get any penalties, and add a little note next to the team in the spreadsheet.
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Unread 09-03-2005, 09:45 AM
Ian Curtis Ian Curtis is offline
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Re: Give me your best scouting tip.

Take pictures of every robot (even if god forbid you don't scout them)

Have an effiecent method.

If in the top 16 put your list together the day before eliminations (or at least start)!!!
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Unread 09-03-2005, 10:00 AM
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Re: Give me your best scouting tip.

Talk to your drivers and drive coach and ask them what information they want. The cluttered sheets full of all sorts of information they don't need are just going to distract them from what they actually want to see.
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Unread 09-03-2005, 10:07 AM
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Re: Give me your best scouting tip.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jarowe
Concentrate on what you're alliance partners are best at.- When preparing scouting reports for the drive team, it's important to know what your opponents can do, but don't focus on it. Using examples from Triple Play: If you know going into a match that one opponent is great with the auto loader, let them use it and don't get in their way. If their manipulator is inconsistant, but they have a stable drive base, you can suggest they focus on defense. (That's not to say you shouldn't know which teams they should defend against)

Take pictures of all the robots. Have your head scouts try to watch most of the matches, and then use the pictures when preparing a scout report for the drive team. This way, if you don't have match data for a robot, or it's incomplete, chances are, the picture will remind you of what you saw. At the very least, you'll be able to see what kind of manipulator it has, and you'll be able to draw some conclusions that way.
Great example. My team has done databases for scouting and paper scouting and this year we did both. I think it's important that you have knoweldege and good people doing scouting, if you don't bad data will come and the best pic's for you team won't be made.
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Unread 09-03-2005, 11:40 AM
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Re: Give me your best scouting tip.

If you are short on manpower, skip the pits. Most robots are SUPPOSED to do this-or-that. Watch the matches and take GOOD notes - about what the robot REALLY does.

Quantify if possible. "Really good", or "sometimes has trouble" are not that useful. Cap cap 7-8 tetras per match, or tetra reload take 34 seconds - more useful.

And the one thing that our scouter did REALLY well... Come up with a single page summary sheet with all partners and opponents. Have a runner take this sheet from the stands to the drive team. That way the alliance can look at DATA and make informed choices. Almost real time.

Keep it OBJECTIVE.... subjective doesn't help as much...
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Unread 09-03-2005, 12:09 PM
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Re: Give me your best scouting tip.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Not2B
If you are short on manpower, skip the pits. Most robots are SUPPOSED to do this-or-that. Watch the matches and take GOOD notes - about what the robot REALLY does.

Quantify if possible. "Really good", or "sometimes has trouble" are not that useful. Cap cap 7-8 tetras per match, or tetra reload take 34 seconds - more useful.
I'll second all of the suggestions already said so far. However, (I know that at least for my team) if we ask another team what their record was so far that year, the students in the pits sometimes cannot remember. So I discovered a simple way to scout the FIRST Database.

Since most competitions have some sort of unofficial WiFi set up, accessing the Internet is easy. Go to the internet and go to Google. Type in site:www2.usfirst.org/2005comp/ xxxx and replace xxxx with a team number. (If you want to scout a different year, change the '2005' in 2005comp to whatever year you want to search. If you want to search every year, delete the 2005comp/ part.) In less than a second, Google will find everything that a particular team has accomplished that year, from rankings at regionals, to win/loss records, to what awards a particular team won. See this example in which I searched for records about my team if you are confused. Used with SOAP 108, (if available for a competition), one can scout teams' performances at previous competitions easier.
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Last edited by artdutra04 : 09-03-2005 at 12:11 PM.
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Unread 09-03-2005, 12:52 PM
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Re: Give me your best scouting tip.

One day we'll have a lovely large central database and won't have to have so many splintered efforts. Oh well, until that day comes...

The one thing that I'd probably say is the most important is turning the information into something usable. Having a huge amount of scouting info doesn't help zip if you it takes half an hour to find what you are looking for. Make it fast, and easy to find what you are looking for. And make sure to allow enough time to compile it, be it randomly scribbled notes into something readable, or simply printing it off the computer. Just make sure to allow enough time.

OK, so that's technically 2 points, but who cares? .

Anyways, that's my $0.02

-Chris
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Unread 09-03-2005, 03:10 PM
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Re: Give me your best scouting tip.

Read old threads in the Scouting Sub-Forum
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