It seems to me that a simulation capability would be a good addition to the general FIRST culture. At universities, MATLAB is a standard tool for such things, but I haven’t seen much of it at the high school level. You can model arm kinematics, drive train controls, sonar, cameras, you name it.

Have any FIRST folks tried using it?

Mathworks says they’re prepared to offer an academic discount of $450/yr/team for ten seats. I think that’s probably too many seats per team, and on the high side in terms of pricing, but it’s a start.

Has anybody ever tried to get Mathworks to consider donating to FIRST, say 3 seats per team per year? Seems to me if we got a robotics library going, it could be useful to everybody.

-Bob Colwell
mentor, team 2374