New Flag for FIRST Robotics

Greetings ChiefDelphi brethren!

I am proposing a great idea for the FIRST Robotics community as a whole to bring a sense of pride to all of the students, mentors, alumni, and volunteers for being a part of this wonderful program.

On this forum I am introducing a symbol that I hope will not only be recognizable to the teams and volunteers of all four FIRST Robotics programs, but companies, schools, colleges, political leaders, and everyone else in the whole world. I have designed a flag for this great non-profit organization so that teams of all four programs would someday be able to display it in their shop, their robots, their pits at competitions, alumni’s college dorms, or even display it on the awards stage at the FIRST Robotics Competition World Championships where founder Dean Kamen is speaking every year. Here is my design of a new flag:

The new flag I have designed took me about fifteen minutes to draw. The proportion of the flag is 3 feet tall and 5 feet wide. It has four vertical stripes of different color, representing the colors of the FIRST programs in order from the left of the flag to the right of the flag. The stripes also represent the acronym “S.T.E.M.” in order from the left side to the right side of the flag because FIRST Robotics promotes the advocacy of the following principles in young students to help them prepare for the changing world economy.

The green stripe represents the Junior FIRST Lego League (Jr. FLL). It is a program for elementary school students to create LEGO Robots for an opportunity to learn about STEM. They also create “Show Me” posters to explain what they learned while building their robots. The green stripe also represents “Science” in the acronym “S.T.E.M.”

The red stripe represents the next program after Jr. FLL, the FIRST Lego League (FLL). This program is for middle school students and they build a LEGO MINDSTORMS robot to compete in competitions. The program also teaches more advanced skills, such as teamwork, problem solving, and safety. The red stripe also represents “Technology” in the acronym “S.T.E.M.”

The orange-yellow stripe represents the next program in the procession of FIRST programs, the FIRST Tech Challenge (FTC). Teams of FTC are comprised of middle school and high school students where they will learn more advanced skills, such as programming and robot design. Teams compete in alliances to win matches and the robot parts are reusable every year. The stripe also represents “Engineering” in “S.T.E.M.”

The blue stripe represents the fourth and final program of the succession of FIRST Robotics programs: The FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC). It is the most advanced program in all of the FIRST programs offered. In this program, high school students from around the world have six weeks to build a robot, and then use it to compete in a competition, where they could be eligible for a world championship. Teams also create a brand for their team and spread the word about S.T.E.M. in their community. The final blue stripe also represents “Math” in “S.T.E.M.”

To design this flag, my goal was to make the design as not only simple on the outside, but complex on the inside. To accomplish this, I followed the following principles of designing the FIRST flag. First, I did not use any words or pictures. Secondly, I used simple symbolism to give them meaning, such as the four stripes on the flag, so that people will recognize it. I hope that one day the flag design will be recognized and maybe it will be the official flag of FIRST Robotics so that it will be displayed in events across the world. It will be a dream come true to see the flag at the FIRST Robotics world championship where Dean Kamen is speaking and other teams or individuals receiving awards, such as the Make it Loud Award, and the Chairman’s Award.

I know this may sound crazy, but I think it would be pretty cool for FIRST Robotics to have an official flag, just like the Olympics. I hope that one day I will raise enough money so that I could make the flag as a keepsake and display it at other FIRST regular season events and off-season events. In my part, I would help make it loud for this organization.

What do you think?

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From a vexillology standpoint, it’s a pretty good pure-stripe flag. My wish was that you could somehow incorporate the phrase that gets echoed so often by Dean of 'two steps forward, one step back. Overall, nice :slight_smile:

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I think this is a really cool idea! I really like the deeper meaning, and I agree that it would be cool to see it displayed! :smile:

I made one that kinda incorporated it, it’s pretty neat.

Two arrows facing right (forward), one left (back).

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Saw that, instantly thought of Alan Walker’s logo design.

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My idea for an edit: Incorporating the Triangle Circle Diamond of the First logo

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I guess I’m not sure why the FIRST Robotics flag shouldn’t simply be the FIRST logo on a white field? Branding standards exist for a reason. The FIRST logo is highly recognizable and common across all FIRST programs and isn’t language specific. Inventing new symbols from scratch is far more confusing to people than using the recognized symbols that already exist.

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Keep in mind that this is not a replacement of the FIRST logo that is already in use. You are right that the logo is very recognizable and I am for the keeping of the triangle, circle, and diamond on all FIRST brandings. This flag is designed to be a supplement to the FIRST logo so that all teams and events can display it with dignity. I will explain my design in detail in a future post.

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TBH its a bit hard on my eyes. The colors are very contrasting around the red.

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I like that idea

Creative projects can still be fun and interesting, even if they are never used.

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Vexillology is the study of flag design.

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Hey everyone!

Here’s more details about how I designed the FIRST Robotics flag. For the flag design, which I nickname “The FIRST Four Stripes Flag,” I took inspiration from the four stripes FIRST uses not only on their website, but on their banners and promotional material as well. Here is an example of the four stripes used at a FRC event:

Now here is an example at an FTC event. Notice there’s a banner showing the four programs of FIRST with the matching colors, as displayed on the flag.

Example%202

And finally, the stripes are used at the top of FIRST’s website:

Notice that I have blurred out the faces and the logos of the teams in the pictures. I did that to protect the confidentiality of the students, mentors, and the teams. Also, I found the team pictures from the Internet because I wanted to use them as examples to prove my points. I do not mean to steal content from anyone.

So, now you know how I got my inspiration for a flag for FIRST Robotics. It is much simpler and it is not crowded with logos. I am not saying teams should not use the shapes logo and I still believe it should be used for branding purposes, but I still believe this flag will be perfect for students, parents, mentors, and alumni to fly proudly at events, pits, shops, and the walls of college dormitories of FIRST alumni. The flag is currently in production and I am planning to display it at future FIRST events, along with the American flag and other countries participating at that particular event I go to, as long as I have permission from the event organizer.

If you have any more questions about my flag design, please reply and I will try to answer as best as I can.

2 Likes

It’s a solid design, but most flags use brighter colors to be more visible outside. I would recommend brightening the base colors.

EDIT: Some examples that are similar to what I recommend.


Here is an update:

I just got the flag today:

It looks alright, but it could use a little improvement with the colors, especially the green and orange ones. I found out when FIRST introduced new branding in late 2015, they changed the color indicator of the FIRST Tech Challenge from spanish yellow to just simply orange, so I would like to change the FTC stripe to that color. I also would want to change the irish-green color to a lime green so that the color would be much more brighter, but not too bright.

Overall, I think my personal flag project is at a good start. I believe that this flag is a great way to symbolize the four great programs of FIRST and how each student experiences them in their childhood years so that they could go on to great STEM careers. However, I would like to tweak on the colors a bit. I will be “debugging” the design so that the new colors will be updated because I don’t think this flag would be worth displaying at events just yet. Watch out for the updated flag and the new Pantone colors shortly.

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If you’re going to tweak the colors I’d recommend tinkering with the blue - at least going by the photo, it’s kind of grayish and not very striking. FWIW I think the green looks great as is, and the yellow is a little easier on the eyes than the more orange-y shade FIRST actually uses in their other uses of the stripes.

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FIRST has official CMYK, RGB, Pantone colors for the programs in their Branding Guidelines, btw.

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UPDATE:
5/11/19

Today I received a brand new flag, but this time with the correct colors according to FIRST branding guidelines. While consulting the FIRST Branding Guidelines, I have tweaked the colors of the four stripes to the correct Pantone colors of the progression colors and the flag looked very much different than previously designed. Here is the RGB color version of the new flag compared to the original design:

first%20robotics%20flag
Old design

first%20robotics%20flag%20rgb
New design

Notice the colors are a little darker on the new flag, with the orange stripe being much darker on the new flag.

Next, I had to match the stock fabric colors available provided to me by the flag manufacturer with the official Pantone colors of the FIRST progression of programs. I did my best to match the colors, and here is the result:

Overall, I am very happy with the way it came out! The new flag looks much better than the original flag, and it best represents the four progression of programs and STEM than the other flag. Now this is something I would want to see displayed at FIRST events and pits everywhere! It could even be won in a giveaway on First Updates Now!

Stay tuned, for you might be in for some surprises… :wink:

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Here’s something that I did to honor Kendrick and his legacy using the FIRST Robotics flag I created.

Today I bought a black mourning ribbon and tied it above the flag onto the string of my flagpole and flew it at half-staff. This goes to show everyone that when a member of the FIRST community is tragically taken, the teams from all four programs suffer as well.

If you look closely above the flag, you will see the black ribbon. I am planning to keep the display until sunset tomorrow, April 15, on the day of Kendrick’s celebration of life as an emotional tribute.

You will never be forgotten, Kendrick. Thank you for sharing your love and passion of robotics and STEM to your family. Your FIRST Robotics family. God speed.

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I always thought that the white FIRST banner/flag in the background was THE Flag. Its simple and recognizable without any explanation needed about its symbolism (other than the triangle, circle, & square) Okay, an explanation is needed, but there is no doubt that it’s FIRST’s flag.