QUESTION OF THE WEEK!!! [11-18-01]

Hi all. I’ve been talking to a lot of people about how much robots/components design are limited by the size/weight rule of the competition, as well as what is available in the kit of parts. And in those discussions I started thinking about how people started to take those rules/kit of parts for granted… Whether that is good or bad I don’t know… but anyway, here’s the question of the week…

QUESTION 11/18/01: Should FIRST modify the size/weight rules and/or the kit of parts? …and if so, what kind of changes?

Have fun,
-Ken Leung

P.S. I am open to suggestions of any questions you want as the “QUESTION OF THE WEEK!!!”… So e-mail me at [email protected] and show me what you got…

I think the Kit needs to include a Victor for every Victor-requiring motor in the kit. As a rookie team last year, we at 550 learned that there weren’t enough Victors to go around, especially after busting one. I know they put only a few Victors in there because they’re pricey and it makes creative juices flow, but I think you can be more creative with more to work with.

Personally I’d like to be able to use better sensors on the robot. We at 122 spent a lot of time getting our potentiometers (spl?) just right to give us pre-programmed positions (press a button, and the robot automatically gets in a position to go under the bar, etc.) but there are much better sensors than potentiometers than this. Robots would be much more like robots and less like fancy RC cars. I’m not suggesting complete automatons, but having the robot do some of its own logic would be fun.

~Tom~, who thinks that this would add more possibilities more than anything else.

I’d like to see shorter robots, if anything. 5’ tall is just a bit too much to handle at times. With that, they’d probably reduce the max. weight a bit, too.

I don’t see them making the footprint much smaller unless they really switch around what components we use. The motors, robot controller, battery, and electronics are all dead space that is necessary to have - so making the base smaller would just make everything very, very tight and cramped - and not much fun at all.

Oh, can we get rid of those stupid lights?