paper: An Analysis of the FIRST Robotics Competition Shouting of "ROBOT!"

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An Analysis of the FIRST Robotics Competition Shouting of "ROBOT!"
by: amstrudy

A very factual whitepaper about the shouting of ROBOT! in FRC pit areas.

The incessant shouting of “ROBOT” in FRC pits plagues the FIRST community. Team 900 has a solution.

ZebraLabs_ROBOT.pdf (187 KB)


I love it when a plan comes together.

:ahh: I’m shook

Great whitepaper!

This needed to be said.

Great advice.

I intentionally stand in the way of people shouting robot. I look them in the eyes and correct their misguided ways. (At least that’s what I think about doing…)

Wasn’t shouting “Robot” FIRST’s recommended way of clearing a path in the pits? It would be cool if FIRST could come out and recommend a new process for clearing a path. The ground-breaking idea in this paper would be a great place to start.

If you look back at the older threads on that, it may have been “recommended” but teams were informed by the “Safety Advisors”* that it was “recommended”–or actually in some cases, “required”.

There’s been a LOT of pushback on it being either required or recommended, particularly the part where every pit around whoever is yelling yells too, over the last 7 years or so. Out here it’s a little quieter and usually it’s targeted for close range, at least what I’ve been hearing when I’m in the pits.

*I put this in quotes because for a while, it seemed like every other event someone had a complaint about either the requirement to yell robot or somebody in the green (now red) shirts telling someone working with rotary tools to wear gloves.

THANK YOU! Anytime I am with my team, moving our bot through the pits, I stress this emphatically. There is absolutely no reason to be shouting “robot” as loud as you can, when you are trying to clear a path. My go to phrase is either a polite, “watch your back guys, robot coming through,” or, “excuse us.” It’s amazing how well this works (contrary to popular belief) and I don’t even need to raise my voice in the process.

I remember being at a competition down south once, and the safety advisor at the competition actually insisted to us that we shout Robot while moving, as it was more “safe.” I couldn’t believe it.

To all those reading, please oh please stop this unnecessary tradition.

Not sure how far South you went but this is the unfortunate truth down here. We have now taken to having a member of the team stand in front of the cart and politely clear a path, we aren’t the only team starting this change down here but we are still a minority.

This paper could be more scientific, as it is lacking the control of not saying anything at all. It could be that “ROBOT!” impedes the natural crowd movement. Also, you could test against other methods like heralding trumpets or a car horn.

The problem with saying nothing as a control is that the basis for the paper is in getting the attention of others while trying to keep to a set schedule. Presumably, if we all paid attention then we wouldn’t need to conduct these invaluable scientific surveys to begin with.

Though heralding trumpets do sound cool.

This should be required reading for safety advisors. :smiley:

A very minor note: It looks like there are some LaTeX issues with the quotes going the wrong directions. That should be easy to fix.

This is good advice for safely working in a pit environment. It can be a tough habit for some to break though. I have found that we get good results by dissuading unsafe behavior with the use of a Safety Stick ™.

Thank you for this groundbreaking study.

Team 2706 will look into implementing the other suggestions from your paper as well, including not wearing intimidating-looking pants and refraining from running over the programmers while in the practice field. I think this will greatly decrease the turnover rates of our programming students. Great ideas.

I will say that at Denver this year the UL Safety Advisors frequently told teams to have someone walk in front of their carts and politely ask people to move before their cart arrived.

This needs to be printed out in little booklet format and given to every safety captain at every FRC event.

Does the Safety Stick ™ come COTS with the nun, or is that a fabricated component?

As long as you don’t put it on a robot then it doesn’t count towards withholding BUT if there is a chance you want to put it on a robot then you should count it on the first day of the event and never let it leave the arena as using it outside the event may count as withholding.

I feel like it should count as a power tool though and usage should be restricted during opening ceremonies.

Is this really a problem still? Maybe it’s regionally relevant. Seven or eight years ago, I wanted to pull my hair out (what little there is) because I heard it so often in Colorado and Utah. Now, maybe once a day, and pretty quietly at that. “Excuse us, please” seems to be the go-to these days. I dunno, YMMV.