FRC 1466 Webb Robotics – 2023 Build Thread


Team 1466 is proud to officially announce its new brand identity! You may have seen our new logos, color scheme or t-shirts on our social media platforms (or the Open Alliance Show).

Check out the process that went into this redesign below. An explanation of our Google Drive is included, exemplifying our commitment to organization and the continued use of these design elements.

Brainstorming

With 2022 being the first time the overwhelming majority of our team attended an FRC event, new team members were exposed to teams with strong branding. This sparked ideas of adopting an entirely new theme, including spiders (Web robotics), gears, villains, and scientists with black lab coats. Other ideas included leaning into an elemental theme (periodic table element Wb) or Webers, the SI unit of magnetic flux.

Our brainstorming process became strategic at the beginning of November of 2022. While attempting to sketch out some logos and create merch designs, our lead mentor urged us to to use a strategic design approach towards establishing our new brand. Similar to how we approached robot design, we began to look at the function of our branding and the values we wanted to display through it. These included:

  • Representing us as a team, not a club
  • Keeping the name “Webb Robotics”
  • Keeping our school’s green color
  • Not being tacky

While our ideas of an entirely new team brand were exciting, they were dropped as we saw the value of maintaining our ties to the school that supports our program. Soon the NO’s of not using overly masculine branding, not using gear branding and not using any symbolism that directly represents our hometown of Knoxville (Sunsphere, mountains, etc.) became requirements. We chose our circuit theme since it is not common among FRC teams and maintains a good balance between Nerdy and Pablo (artsy). We kept the Nerdy-Pablo scale in mind throughout the design process.


Logo brainstorming whiteboard with our list of values and designs of Stuart, a mascot idea


Developed designs that include loops around our team number (not translated into our final logo)


Photos were taken of these board and then digitized using a stylus and the Sketchbook app on iPad


More digitized logos


Brand board brainstorming created collaboratively in Canva

We sent out a branding questionnaire to the team, asking for opinions on 8 logos, 3 fonts, 3 mascots, and the color palette below. 19 responses showed conclusive results, including positive feedback towards the sketch that would become our primary logo and distaste towards a fuchsia pink as our accent color. The final branding you see takes into account many of these suggestions, while making choices that weren’t loved by everyone. Overall, team feedback towards the new branding has been positive since the brainstorming sessions were highly collaborative and the ideas of many team members are represented in the redesign.


Palette voted on in our branding questionnaire (the fuchsia pink was ultimately replaced with a more subdued purple-pink)

All of our brainstorming and final design work was created in Canva or the Sketchbook app, with touch-ups made in Preview on Mac.

Primary Logo

Our primary logo includes a “W” made of circuits, our team number, and our purple-pink accent color. Variations of the primary logo, including transparent background files, are stored in Google Drive. These are used when the primary logo doesn’t seem appropriate aesthetically, like on business cards, print documentation, or social media. Our YouTube video watermark is our white transparent primary logo.


Primary logo variations

Large Logo

Our large logo is seen on our digital banner and includes our full team name.

T-Shirts

We hadn’t made a season t-shirt since 2020, and we decided a t-shirt for all members to wear would solidify our new brand and help build community within the team.



2022 hoodie designs in Custom Ink

Our 2022 hoodies were immensely popular with the team, especially since they could be worn over our school uniforms during the school day. With updates to the 2022-2023 dress code, students are no longer allowed to wear hoodies during classes. Students are allowed to wear season t-shirts on competition-week Wednesdays, so we had a larger incentive to create a new shirt.

The 1466 on the back of our hoodies was the highlight of the design, making the team number extremely visible. This was the starting point for the back of the season t-shirt, which evolved into a CPU-esque housing for the number that sticks to our circuit theme. Here’s the source for the blue circuit inspiration picture.

T-shirts were ordered through Custom ink on December 20th and they arrived on the 30th. Here they are in their full glory:


The purple-pink accent color made it onto the t-shirts


We’re celebrating 20 years in FIRST™ this season

Fonts

  • Titles - Lexend
  • 1466 (On logos) - Lemon Milk
  • Subtitles - Exo
  • (Sub)headers - Open Sans
  • Primary Read - Jost
  • Alternate Primary Read - Lato

This document includes the exact specifications and use cases of our new fonts. The organization of this document is heavily inspired by the FRC team 2976, the Spartabots, and their Year 15 Special Branding Reveal. Our team has never had formal standardization of our fonts; these guidelines have greatly improved the uniformity of the content we publish.

FMS Avatar

An attempt was made to use a pixelation feature in Canva to create the logo, but this did not yield a design with a sharp contrast between the green and black of the design.

Created to resemble our primary logo, our 40 x 40 pixel avatar was completed in Piskelapp. The pink in our logo didn’t make the cut since it was not likely to be seen on scoreboards and FIRST™ has a rule against using fuchsia in team avatars.


The circle design isn’t commonly used among FIRST™ teams, and the black contrasts nicely against the standard alliance colors

Color Palette

Our color palette includes our school’s official dark green, a light green (an elevated version of our previous lime green), a purple-pink accent color, and gray.

Digital Banner

Our digital banner incorporates the circuit design in our t-shirt, edited to include less circuit breaks where the large logo sits. We used the Coolors gradient maker for the green to black gradient. The gradient is strategically spaced so that it does not appear in the banner in the YouTube mobile app, while being visible on the YouTube website.


Original t-shirt design elements rearranged


Simplified circuit background


Banner on YouTube website

Google Drive Organization

At the beginning of 2022, the Media Team completed its overhaul of the team’s digital storage in Google Drive. Home to documents and content for all 20 years of the team’s existence, an organized digital space allows for the storage of current knowledge and memories.

Our school provides Google Workspace accounts for all students, so choosing to use Google Drive came naturally. Google’s collaboration features prove great for editing collaboratively and sharing content from events with other teams.

The Drive is divided into 12 folders as seen in the image above:

  • Team Basics: team timeline, training records, schedules
  • Awards: Impact and Woodie Flowers Award submission documentation
  • Branding: logos, font .otf files, t-shirt designs, and branding redesign documentation
  • Build Season: Chief Delphi / Open Alliance weekly updates and prototype inventory
  • Business: grant applications, sponsorship letters, team budget
  • Content: lab and event videos and photos, social media posts
  • Off-season: CADathon, mock kickoff, and leadership meeting notes
  • Outreach: event brainstorming, gingerbread house build blitz files, Boys & Girls Club mentoring resources
  • Strategy: Charged Up game manuals, strategy breakdown, event scouting spreadsheets
  • Team Handbooks: CAD, CNC, Laser Cutting, Mechanical, Media, Robot Design, Scouting, Talking to Judges and General handbooks
  • Training Modules: Team structure, CAD, code, electrical, fabrication, outreach, safety, strategy, and general conduct presentations
  • Ze Archive™: former season documentation, award-winning essays, completed media projects, and Discord emoji files


Ze Archive™


Folder template for future seasons


Important logos easily accessible in the Branding folder; variations stored in folders

All folders contain the current season’s files. When competition season ends, all files are moved into Ze Archive™ and replaced with new folders. The Media Team kept the number of clicks needed to open a document in mind. Most current season documents can be reached in 2-3 clicks, while archived files take 3-5 clicks to access.

Google Drive shortcuts are used if content needs to be stored in two locations, such as videos in Completed Media Projects and in their respective season folder

Note that our team number is added to our “Team Basics” folder so that, when sorted alphabetically, it always appears first. We wanted our team archive folder to be the last folder in the Drive, hence the name Ze Archive™.

Google has recently announced a 100 GB cap on Shared Drives. Our Drive currently houses 99.52 GB of storage, so we plan on creating a separate Shared Drive exclusively for Ze Archive™ files from the past 19 seasons.

Ze Archive™ could stand to have a few files reshuffled to remove folders, our Team Handbooks are unfinished and out of date, our file naming system depends on our mood, and our training presentations include old branding, but the Google Drive serves its purpose. With our folder template, future members can maintain a well-established legacy of organization.

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