Field Resetters Choosing Auto Outcome


Imagine this scenario:

Team X is at the competition has a strong dead reckoning based auto mode. they can score a keeper in auto if the Rack ends up randomly placed in any of half of its possible positions. In the other half of the Rack’s possible starting positions, Team X always misses placing the keeper.

A veteran field resetter has been working the competition for 3 days, and it is now match 3 of the finals for that event. The field setter is excited that his team is still in the mix, and needs to win only one more match to win the event. He looks across at the opposition, and sees Team X lined up to dead reckon in auto mode. Remembering the 3 days of matches he has seen, he recalls that they always hit or miss auto based on the “random” rack position. The last ringers are put in their starting positions and he goes to give the rack it’s random move before the match, wondering how he can truly randomly position the rack.

The question is: Should anyone who uses dead reckoning to score keepers in auto mode be worried that field resetters who have been paying attention to robot opening moves could influence the outcome of auto mode? Obviously the most tempting answer will be “Gracious Professionalism dictates that the Rack placement should be completely random”. I am not sure that someone who knows what rack positions will lead to what auto outcomes can make a truly random placement of it.

Put yourself in this person’s shoes. You go to place the Rack before auto knowing that half the positions will lead to a blue keeper score, the other half will lead to a red keeper score.

Your thoughts?


It takes about 3-4 people to move the rack, no individual is going to make that much of an outcome on it’s final position. That’s my take.

I agree with lil lave. I will also add that a dead reckoning auton would be hard pressed to score a keeper even if the rack WASN’T moved. Consider the number of tetra’s stacked in auto mode two years ago (an amazingly rare event).

I was under the impression that the rack was THE last thing moved before the match started, and as such it would be pretty obvious if one single volunteer was attempting to move the rack.

Every FIRST official and volunteer I have dealt with so far has been fair, impartial, and helpful.

Even if all of the above reasons weren’t true, I don’t think what is proposed above would be a serious problem.


I would have to say, after 3 days of seeing robot’s it would be pretty hard to rememebr little details like that of every robot.

In the spirit of gracious professionalism and with three or more people moving the rack, the blind robots (dead reckoning autonomous) should not be aided in any way.

I think that was a good question but will not happen due to the amount of people it takes to move the rack and also I have never seen any volunteer show faveratism for their team other then wearing something with the teams colors on it or a button.

I agree with all of the cases above, this will not likely ever be a problem; volunteers are very impartial and understand gracious professionalism.

With that said, I also think there will be a system in place to determine the location that it will be moved to. 2 years ago, a random number generator selected where the green tetras would go on the field before the match.

I imagine at the least the ref’s will choose at random some location each time.


I’ll go along with everyone else. FIRST volunteers are completely impartial. The main volunteer and driving force of Team 57, though she might not admit to being such, is also the Lone Star regional coordinator. And she has called 57 on the carpet for any problems just as often as any other team. I’ve been behind the scorer’s table at LSR in years when I’ve been slightly less involved with 57.

If you really want to be paranoid about people throwing matches, well you can be. But given the number of former FIRSTers that make up the volunteer corps and have any remote ability to affect the outcome of matches… Well you’d basically have to assume everyone at the competition is out to get you. And that’s not really any fun at all.

Well, i don’t think that any of the volunteers would do something like that.

Oh yeah, and by match 3 of the finals, the field resetters will be too tired after running around for 3 days straight to think that hard (more or less move).

after volunteering on field reset 2 years ago, i would have to fully agree, if only everyone had a chance to experience it…

While there are definitely some volunteers that care about teams on the field, and this is a very interesting thought.

But I have to agree with the “tired” idea… and not only tired, many of the volunteers have very specific jobs and it takes all your effort to do that job… letalone have time to figure out which teams are good at what. So I doubt anyone would be able to really affect the outcome that much.

[Inside joke]
Yeah, I don’t think we have to worry about field resetters.

They’re always too busy text messaging people to actually pay attention to the match. :wink:

Some of the best advice I’ve ever texted to someone: “Friends don’t let friends text message while field resetting!” :stuck_out_tongue:
[/Inside joke]

Okay, now that I’ve had my fun in this post, I’m not worried about volunteers “throwing” the competition. Not in the least bit.

Kim stated it perfect, and I don’t think I can add much onto that. :slight_smile:

You could say this about any human aspect, including those that have been around from previous years:

What if the refs favour one team over another?
What if the inspectors go easy on ‘their’ team’s inspection?

Also, I don’t see how you could make a dead-reckoning mode work.

The field resetter’s choice is simple. Let the other 3 resetters take the lead on setting the rack. (S)He’s got a 50% chance of Team X scoring, and would take those odds.
Furthermore, half of GP is rooting for the other teams. Last year, if Redabot unloaded a dozen balls in rapid succession into the high goal, the entire audience cheered - not just Redabot’s alliance. I think similar conduct would be proper for this year’s auto mode.

In any human endevor there is the possibility of favoritism. We, as humans, are bias because of the paradiams we have built. It is only our integrity and honor (Gracious professionalism) that allows us to judge fairly.

I will tell you that when I have judged those that I am affiliated with (note: not in FIRST) I am typically more critical of them, than if I did not know the person. This is because i want to avoid even the appearance of impropriaty.

My personal experiances in FIRST tend to be that the inspectors / referees / Volunteers are of the highest moral character, and that I would never expect any of them to purposely favor any team, on the field, over another.

The last time something was reset right before a match was in 2005 when the tetras were randomly placed on the field.

And by random, it was done with 2 dice and the numbered postions 1-6 applied to the tetras. Roll the dice, and get 2 different numbers, and that was your placement.

I’m sure the fear of this whole thread will be alleviated when a random placement selector of some sorts is used this year to decide the position of the rack which the resetters won’t question when resetting the field and be able to “put it where they want”.

And if FIRST hasn’t thought of that already, I’m sure they will now. :smiley: :stuck_out_tongue:

Also, as a previous and future field resetter I’m kind of dissapointed in the lack of confidence and GP you are implementing on our parts… :frowning:

[offtopic]Actually, it was 2005, and the scoring software dished out two random numbers (one of the few parts of the Hatch software that seemed to work flawlessly), which one of the RTS folks would hold up for the reset crew to place.[/offtopic]

As for the topic, I’m not worried–I don’t think anyone with any sort of affiliation would intentionally put themselves in that position. I believe it was Andy Baker who said it best–do what people wouldn’t talk about when you win the Championship.

I’m sorry that you interpreted it this way, the intention of this thread was to generate discussion and not to “call out” anyone who may be volunteering.

The responses to this thread should instill confidence that those who are involved in FIRST know how to conduct themselves. I don’t think that the scenario I posted will happen, but I think it is worth discussing.