Aerial Assist and FMS Lite

Does anybody know how offseason events that do not use the full FMS will run for Aerial Assist? A lot of this year’s game depends on the full FMS such as the assist indicator lights, and the pedestal lights. Since FMS Lite has not been updated in a long time and the field lights are counted as part of the FMS and not the field itself, how can Aerial Assist be played at offseason competitions at which it is too expensive to have the full FMS?

You can always make your own (possibly more reliable cough, cough) system to run the assist and pedestal lights.

You could dedicate a ref to watching ball readiness and have them control pedestal lights manually. You could use small lamps inside the pedestals with their power lines running to switches wherever that ref is located.

I expect some bored student/team is going to make an app for that.

I would expect most off-season events to run the same way that week 0 events were run.

At the week 0 that 2052 hosted with 2472, we trained our field staff to know when a pedestal should “light.” When a team should be able to take a ball off the pedestal, the field staff allowed the team to retrieve a ball.

If an off-season event isn’t using the FMS, there’s a pretty good chance that they don’t have the full field (including lights) anyway, so actually controlling the lights on the field shouldn’t be an issue.

That being said, the lights are very useful on the field (even if not strictly necessary). An enterprising team might create an application that displays this information, then project it instead of the standard scoring screen.

I think FIRST ought to open-source the full FMS.

Let the teams use it and just don’t offer any support for how to set it up or use it.

This would additionally allow teams to pick it apart for possible flaws. With as many teams as there are, problems such as those which caused Einstein 2012 might be found and fixed before causing a problem at an official event.

All of the lights are part of the electronics package and are part of the electronics road cases. So if you request just the field, you won’t be getting any of the lights.

With that being said, generally for off-seasons it doesn’t cost too much to add the electronics in. You have to pay to ship the field anyways, so really your only extra costs are paying the travel expenses for an FTA to come to your event (which isn’t a requirement but a courtesy that should be extended). Trust me when I say, full electronics or not, if you can get an FTA to volunteer for your event, things will run a lot smoother.

At ours we had an FTA, who is still available for this year, and we transported the field ourselves. However, last year when we got the FIRST California field they offered electronics if we paid insurance on them which was very expensive. After we declined to take the electronics and just use the field with FMS Lite, they told us that the electronics were being sent back to New Hampshire. I don’t know how the field logistics will be sorted out this year.

I forgot about insurance, since our school’s policy can be applied to the field. I get where your coming from though as, insurance for $174,000 isn’t cheap.

I’m sure either way you’ll figure things out. Hopefully everything will work out great for you guys!

Harsharan,
We have an FTA lined up! That was achieved by having a specific individual commit to being his FTAA. Guess who that was :smiley:

The existence of FMS Light in it’s limited functionality doesn’t really help much with Arial Assist if we want the full functionality of the field lights and indicators. Specifically the Hot Zone Retroreflectors, Goal LED lighting and Pedestal. As previously mentioned, we may want to look into what it would take to create our own lighting and control systems.

Additionally, if anyone knows if FIRST is planning something new in the FMS/FMS Light arena, please post it up here. I know there are SEVERAL people interested in this subject.

However, this does not answer the question for those areas where the shipping cost of the field if prohibitively expensive.

I would love it also if FIRST would Open Source just the FMS lite so that we could have the framework.

Additionally, if anyone knows if FIRST is planning something new in the FMS/FMS Light arena, please post it up here. I know there are SEVERAL people interested in this subject.

Well we(Team 2974) are doing just that(well sorta) :smiley:

We’ve created a fully functional version of the robot control aspect of the FMS/FMS Lite and now because that is our code we plan to adapt it to work with more electronics such as lighting, ESTOPS, and DS lights. This was the field control system used at GRITS(GA FIRST’s off season competition) this past October with around 30 different teams so we know it can run the full field! We are calling/going to call it O!FMS for “Open FMS”, however, we’ve been prepping it, the basic control code, for release by doing all sorts of commenting and making a users guide meaning it will not be publicly released until we finish that. Here’s a link for anyone who wants to see what the system looks like!

Until its release if there’s anyone who would like to try the system out and provide feedback just PM me and we’ll work with you on that!

Oh man, this is great. Please tell me this will end up on GitHub soon. I’d love to help contribute if I can help.