A plea to those at events: Take photos of bots!

Its easier than ever to whip out your phone and take a photo, yet theres still scores of events from last year alone where less than 1/5th of the competing bots have any media relating to them. While its not the most important thing in the world, Not everyone can watch events and not everything can truly be archived (and a lot can be lost with how touchy YT is currently with copyrighted music) so having photos saved and easily accessible on TBA is great for understanding the designs people chose in past years and it also saves a part of the teams history as well. While I havent looked at the IOS app, the TBA android app lets you upload a photo or take a photo on the spot which should make it easy for anyone to roam around the pits and take quick photos with their phones.

Not everyone needs to do this, but the amount of teams without photos just in the last couple years alone is astronomically high. There isint much reason anymore for this to happen, and its something that can easily be changed with a few minutes of taking photos.


I know a lot of teams already take pictures of robots for things like pit scouting. If you do take pictures please upload them. I personally find pictures of robots really useful when making a picklist because it helps jog my memory especially when I don’t have the vod of the event to look at.

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What about teams that don’t want pictures of their robot released on TBA for whatever reason? Or if they’re going to be put out, it was by a member of their team.

I know personally I’d be pretty mad if anyone other than a member of our team uploaded photos of our robot without our consent at the risk that they don’t look good. If it’s by a team member, we can control the quality. If it’s not their could be a hundred different pictures with a hundred different angles and a hundred different backgrounds.


Usually this applies before competition - once you bring your robot to an event it’s essentially presenting it to the public, as pictures aside your robot will be viewable by any strangers present at the competition during match play or in the pits, or via the event stream. How is taking pictures of the robot any different from this?

I’d say a vast portion of robot pictures from past years on TBA actually come from Koko Ed - most of the events he volunteers at he takes time to upload pictures of every robot present to TBA as well as FRC centric social media. It’s a great boon to scouters, people researching robot construction, and archiving the history of FRC.

Additionally, pictures of your robot on TBA or on social media only improves the exposure of your team, which I’m sure any business or marketing lead would appreciate.


One thing for TBA is I don’t think it supports the new CD for uploading pictures. Unless I’m missing something, the new CD has photo links in the format of https://www.chiefdelphi.com/uploads/default/original/3X/9/6/96f537008ce64a20e05963ceecec75a7f82e8d06.jpeg

Whereas TBA wants

Which corwesponds to how CD media used to work IIRC.

Is there any workaround? I’d use Imgur or Instagram, except both are blocked at my school so it would just show a blank white box for our robot picture when at school. I’d like to avoid that if possible.

TBA supports images from multiple sites, not just CD. Go to the team pages and click on Add Robot Image and it lists all the URLs it supports, include Imgur, Instagram and GradCad.

As I mentioned in my post, I have reasons not to use Instagram and Imgur. I wasn’t aware that GrabCAD images work, so I’ll try that. Thought it was just CAD models.

Sadly, I dont have the answer for that. The best workaround i know of is uploading via your phone, but that will just upload it to imgur too, so currently thats probably not an option. @Eugene_Fang is proabably best to ask there.

I have to echo Spang here, if its at a competition, which is a public event, photos are going to get taken either on the field or in the pits. FIRSTWA usually has someone taking photos that go on flickr already, so its not like this is some foreign concept even here.

If teams uploaded photos themselves I wouldnt need to make this post. TBA usaually denies bad photos anyways and if you see a janky one you want to replace, you could in theory message them about it.

I like to get to the pits as early as possible Friday morning, and take pictures of all the robots. Mostly for our scouting team to use. That time seems to be about the best, but still requires effort to get the few that are already out of the pits, or surrounded by team members working on it. Last thing Thursday night is also a good time although our team does not usually stick around that late. I’ve seen one or two robots covered up to maintain their secrecy…an interesting concept…

I agree that it would be really nice if everyone did post a picture of their robot where we could find it, but I can also understand why that does not happen.

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