[Renamed Thread] Scout Machine: Development Thread

Hey Chief Delphi,

I’ve been working on a new app idea that I’ve had for the last day. It’s a reworked version of The Blue Alliance - more focused towards helping FRC teams scout & discover new teams, while maintaining a very minimalistic, modern and simple design.

I wanted to share a rough MVP with y’all to get your thoughts on it, gain some feedback, get any feature requests, etc. I’m still working on it and this is not an official release post - I’d love to know if this is something you’d like to see released though!

I’ve shared 2 images below: 1 of them is the current home page, where it displays all the FRC teams, as you scroll down it’ll load more, and on the search bar you can search for FRC teams from location (country, state & city), team name, team number. The teams on the main page are also being displayed randomly from teams 1-9999 (not including Off Season Demo Teams), so every time you go on the site you are seeing a new set of teams. I thought this would be a cool feature to add to help with discoverability of new FRC teams!

I would also like to note: I plan on adding way more features, this is just a day of work.

PS: All the data is being fetched from TheBlueAlliance API!


Seems like a neat project, good work on it so far. I’m still not quite seeing what this does that TBA doesn’t, but if you have new features that use TBA data to help teams, you should reach out to the TBA team and see about getting those features integrated into TBA.


I like the home page idea.


Thank you! Appreciate it.

Thanks! I get where you’re coming from, TBA has a lot of data already, I just felt like it was all over the place and it didn’t really have an integrated system for scouting. I wanted to make something like TBA, using the same API, but be able to make new FRC teams discoverable for new people, allow teams to scout for other teams using tons of data provided, have a clean UI, etc - sorta like an all in one.

I’ll be updating this thread however with more features to come within the next days/weeks.


I really dig the look. As others have said already I don’t see what this does that TBA doesn’t. Interested in seeing more!


Thank you! Excited to share more very soon :partying_face:


A few thoughts:

  • Maybe this is just me, but I greatly prefer old-school simple web design over modern, CSS-laden design. I like seeing all the numbers in my face and I don’t really care for fancy colors or lots of empty space and “minimalism”.
  • I don’t see the “sell” of this site. I can already get all my objective data from TBA and statbotics, and I find no need for a different UI for either. If I’m looking to do something to help my team scout, I’m going to use one of the existing open-source scouting apps that allow for manual data collection and analysis, or make our programmers write their own. Purely statistical data is cool, but you need real scouting to be able to really analyse the tiny sample sizes that FRC competitions provide.
  • The home page is neat for seeing teams you may not have seen before. I like that bit.

In general, I feel like a wrapper around TBA (itself a wrapper around frc-events) isn’t really helpful as it’s just a new way to display old information. If there are new features that you think TBA lacks… it’s open source! Contributing to TBA will go out to all teams currently using it (read: lots! every season!) and have much more of an impact than a side app that only a few teams may use for a few seasons.


Great points - I understand that some people may like the current TBA design, but I can’t make everyone happy with a new design, I know people that would really like to see a new design for it, and some that wouldn’t, we all have our own opinions on that part.

In terms of everyone saying similar things about the difference, there will be features on the site that TBA doesn’t have and that I have planned, I just wanted to get feedback on if the community would find a new version useful, those images I sent above were not 100% of the completed site, maybe barely even 1%.

I would contribute to TBA, but it’s using very old technologies & I think it’s time for an upgrade, TBA is already a huge codebase and it wouldn’t be worth the migration for the current TBA development team in my opinion at least. That’s why I’m building this.

Let me know if you have any other questions, would love to discuss more.


For what it’s worth, “TBA v2” was in the works at some point and was accessible at https://beta.thebluealliance.com/. Currently, it just seems to be TBA with broken event pages, but it used to host a complete design overhaul of the site.


I didn’t know about this actually, thanks for sharing this! Looking at their Github branches, it seems like they are still working based off of the current site and stopped development completely on a new design/the beta site - I might be wrong.

However, the site I’m building is being built ontop of TBA - it’s still going to have every feature TBA has, or at least most of it + some more unique ones that would be useful to FRC teams.


Regardless of looks, I feel like if you’re just extending TBA, why not bring it back to TBA itself and let many more teams reap the benefits?

If you’re making a fully new site, on the other hand, why reduplicate all of TBA’s features? I feel like that’ll mostly end up being redundant and lead to fewer people using the site for anything other than its exclusive features.

Edited-in side note: the title of this thread also got me a bit annoyed, as I expected to see something about TBA, not some other thing. Let’s respect people’s brands and clearly note that we’re making new things rather than making it seem like a continuation of an existing thing.


I just updated the title, that’s my bad.

Hi there! This looks like a great project, and I love the concept of surfacing random teams on the homepage, so you can always learn about something new.

The awesome things people build on top of TBA’s APIs is one of the reasons were so committed to keeping an open platform - it makes our entire community better!

The only thing I’d request - please take a look at the TBA API developer guidelines (Developer APIs - The Blue Alliance) - we simply ask that you not use “The Blue Alliance” name to reduce confusion and to make sure to provide a link back to TBA so others can discover the data and have an opportunity to build their own thing on top of it.

Finally, as others have pointed out, TBA is also fully open source, so you’re also always welcome to make contributions back upstream to the website, iOS, or android apps, if you have changes or features you’d like to build.


Cool, thanks. Though I maintain that keeping it as just “TheBlueAlliance v2” still makes it seem like something TBA-related. May I suggest “New TheBlueAlliance alternative” or “[insert orignal own title here] - TBA replacement” or something of the sort?


My apologies for that! I will be sure not to make that mistake again in the future. I fully support TBA and think it’s an amazing site, I’ve just wanted to build another alternative on top of it as an option for teams to use. It’s not a competitor, it’s an alternative.


Thanks for that suggestion, I like it. Just updated the title again. Super sorry about that :sweat:


TBA exists in part to enable people more creative than us to innovate new ways to interact with FRC data - the platform is designed exactly for this sort of thing :smile:

But for the same reason, we want to make sure the branding stays clear about which surfaces are “first party” and which are powered by the API but with a different look and feel.


Makes sense! I appreciate you for sharing the same goal I have.

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I might as well add: if anyone has any features that they’ve wanted to see in TBA that don’t exist yet, feel free to let me know in the replies here as well.

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