When there are almost 60 FRC teams within a 2-hour drive of one another, collaboration should be a no-brainer. In a more rural environment, teams might share practice fields or cnc mills. You might have handfuls upon handfuls of "254/968/60"s and 1592/801"s and "1251/179"s and “494/70” and "103/25"s etc.
Through that strategy, iteration becomes a process of sharing ideas, test results, and solutions and there’s communal value placed on continuous improvement. There are fewer limits to prototyping and the “real-world engineering” aspect of FRC is elevated.
But let’s remove cars from the scenario; the selection of machining spaces; and any practice field spaces. It’s challenging. It places perceptual barriers on our competitive edge. Collaboration is still essential - almost 60 teams within subway rides and bus rides from one another! We think of concerns like transforming the educational and social culture of the city and leveraging sponsorship sources and startup communities.
I don’t have a solution. But it’s a step. Communicate with other teams via facebook, email, phone, hangout, open meetings. Build more connections. Let other teams learn what your team does well and what resources you use. Host workshops and meetups. Build your team through the support of other teams.
If you’re not a New York City team and you’re visiting, take a look at the doc and consider if it might be valuable in your area.