RFID - Is it a GOOD idea or a BAD idea

Just to answer … Nope I do not think a team that can analyze better than another team is unfair.

I have heard some teams using AI to model the data… good for them!

Elimination TEAM Alliance Selection

Isn’t First not being able to adjust the schedules at a Team robot level a problem that RFID/Motion Tracking can solve? It is not a problem that I can solved at the Team level. Once the elimination events are matched that is it… there is no current way to adjust them if they are not correct. “Correct” matches Alliances together… why is alliance matching only correct at the playoff level? The same problem exists at the elimination level too.

There are no sports examples of this to correlate to because all sport teams manage their drafts except First who doesnt…
Still think matching HOT 67 team and creating an Alliance of high win teams then matching them against the lowest win record Alliance teams … only teams they have won against… and never matching them with any team that they have not beaten, or matching them to a game unless by a team that they beat. No one wants to watch a game that is 56 to 0. All real sports teams govern their drafts… they do not let ONE team dominate team selections of players. Of course this is not “Really” known until we play matches wink but once round of matches is played we start to know… at least with RFID and Motion Tracking we would.

By having team level performance values after the First round, Frist would be able to make adjustments to the other rounds. I do not see this as a team level issue? No longer would First have to depend on solving for unknown values gathered overr 3 or 4 rounds… they would have the values real time.

I would have to admit that if our team was picking a team “we have no scouting” and say HOT, Killer Bee’s were available I would just pick them… we do not have scouting … so I would pick teams I know. Either that or if I was the first team then I would always pick the second team. I know that is SOOOOO wrong but that is what happens.

That might work in IR. It sure didn’t work in that game that shall not be named in 2009 - when it was an official position.

Except…that’s not how elimination brackets work at all, in FIRST or in other sports…

Since you seem to want to compare it to other sports, take the NCAA bracket - across all the divisions it’s 1v16, 2v15, 3v14 etc. NFL has 4v5 and 3v6 with 1 and 2 taking bye weeks. Putting the Number 1 seed against the low seed is not that strange of a concept; it’s a right that you earn by being the best at an event. The NFL never stepped in after Brady earned his 4th ring and said “Alright, you’re too strong with the Patriots, we’re forcing you to the Bucks.” They let him keep on winning with the same team. The NBA never was like “Jordan has too many wins with the Bulls, he should move to the Pacers”.

I urge you to ask yourself - Am I mad because there is a better, more efficient way to track scoring objects, or am I mad because nobody picked us for Playoffs?


I see I am not being clear…because you are talking about teams that already have a top player they selected in the draft…then that makes them a top team… no what I am saying…

and I am not talking about putting the top seed Alliance against the bottom seed Alliance… nope that happens all the time…

(not directly what I want to make apoint on…but in the play-offs)
I am saying the first Alliance got the number one draft… then on top of that the number 1 alliance gets to pick the number two seed draft robot team 2. Now you have the makings for a slaughter… the other teams have no chance… while they might have if they could have picked the number 2 draft … they do not get to.

…back to the elimiation team picks…
The elimination round of FIRST picks… I have no idea how First picks them. Do you? I assume that it is a random pick. I think the Alliances are picked blind. No sports team lets their Draft get picked randomly or by luck. The draft is controlled by a win loss record from the previous season. Not their upcoming season. Can you imagine the mess our sports teams would be in if they did not control the draft? Well that is what FIRST does not just in the first round … but for the entire event.

I assume they do this because they do not know how good anyone team is… not really true… but we can give that to them for the first round… by the second they have a good idea… but currently they dont because they really do not have detail performance on a single robot… they only have it by team… so then they have to solve use their equations to create a sudo average based on the fact a robot will performance can be averaged out over 3 matches.

Whether I want a team that’s the #2 seed or the #35 seed, where they’re seeded is unimportant. What’s important is that as the #1 seed, “I’m the best, I earned my spot as the best, and as such, I have the right to pick anybody I want.”

Gonna be honest, I have no idea what you mean by this. As we’ve explained to you, multiple times in this thread, FIRST does not assign Playoff Alliances.

They are not. Teams do their scouting throughout the competition, record values based on performance that they think are valuable to their strategy, and from there create pick lists they believe give them the best opportunity to win an event.

Which brings us back to the point that, from my point of view, you keep blatantly ignoring and I am honestly at the point of abandoning the project because of it.
If you honestly, truly believe that there is value in adding RFID tags to scored objects because the additional data it provides would improve the QOL of events, continue proposing and fleshing out the idea. However, I simply cannot, in good conscience, continue to provide my support for this paper if you are invested in it simply out of a personal vendetta against all of the teams (or at least the “top teams like 67”) at the Milford event because they "blindly did not pick my robot for Playoffs this year even though our performance was much higher than teams recorded us at."


you say playoff I was talking about elimations… were getting two different things mixed up.

I will keep it shorter…
How does FIRST pick the Alliances for the elimation rounds! I think it is random…selection correct?

Playoff and elimination (sometimes referred to as elims) matches are the same thing. Are you trying to talk about qualification matches to determine seeding?

The qualification match schedule is determined by running an algorithm that attempts to balance a number of factors including match turnaround, unique number of partners, unique number of opponents, and driver station positioning. I don’t know where the most recent one is, but the one from 2016/2017 era can be found here. The current one is a similar concept. I think it runs a large number of random schedules, then analyzes each one by those criteria and selects the best one.

Assuming that you do mean qualification matches and not eliminations, what about qualification matches do you currently think is unbalanced?

Edit to add: Looks like the algorithm I linked is the one that’s still in use.


Clearly there seems to be a vocabulary disconnect here.
What on earth do you mean by elimination rounds? FRC events do not have “elimination rounds” anymore. Your typical FRC event has the following matches:

Practice Matches - These set of matches are generated roughly the night Load In occurs when a majority of teams have checked in.
Qualification Matches - These matches are generated later once teams have settled in and they know who all is in attendance. These parings are randomly made such that teams generally get a feel for all the other teams and rankings are based on both your performance in these matches as well as additional Ranking Points that vary year to year (For this year, it was 55+ Endgame points or a Level 3 Color Wheel Activation? Something like that.)
Playoff Matches - Following the Qualification Matches, teams are then put into a ranking order from 1 to however many teams there are in the event, and then participate in a Serpentine draft in which the #1 seed picks a team, then the next highest ranked team not on an alliance picks a team, until you have 8 pairs of two teams each. Then the 8th Alliance Captain picks another team, 7th Captain picks, etc. back to the #1 seed. At which point you have 8 Alliances of three teams each, who then participate in an Elimination Bracket which functions as most elimination brackets function.

Yes I mean qualification matches sorry… your saying there is an algorithm… okay now we are getting somewhere.

Also you have yet again dodged, for the 4th time, my question of whether you are invested in this from a technical stand point, or a personal vendetta standpoint.

Until this is answered, I’m afraid that this will be my final post both in this thread and on the Google Doc. I wish you the best of luck.

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Well I am here tell/show you that Algorithm does not fairly do its job. I am not the only to notice it doing that. If you do not want to take it from me.

The point of the matchmaking algorithm is to make a random schedule for qualification matches. It’s not supposed to be balanced around team ability.

Even if it hypothetically was balanced around team ability, what would that do? If low performing teams only played against low performing teams, and high performing teams with high performing teams, you end up with about half of the low performing teams at the top of the rankings and about half of the high performing teams at the bottom of the rankings.


The algorithm doesn’t do its job?

It assigns you to random matches yes?

In that case it works. Yes sometimes you get bad luck but it really is random.

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No of course you dont want to do that. You want to mix your draft picks so that the teams are more equal. The only way you can do that is by individual statistics. A top pick may get two low picks after that… to match a team that has two middle picks and a low… it is much more statistical but do you get the idea? Then if those two Alliances are about equal then they play each other.

While I await your explanation here’s some perspective for you…

I used to anxiously await the match schedule with bated breath. It was a critical moment, it determined it we were going to have a chance or not. We’d get it and quickly scan to see if we had a “good” match schedule. Luck mattered. I trust in the algorithm but for years it felt like the number of matches we played against 33 (felt like a lot let me tell you) vs. with 33 (very few) was quite the stroke of bad luck and a statistical improbability. And then about two years ago a weird thing happened… I stopped worrying about it. We no longer looked at our match schedules as “good” or “bad” or as something that determined our fate. Turns out that we are always on our alliance, and when we set out to control our own destiny we make our own luck. We don’t need to rely on “good” schedules anymore.

What robot would you have needed to build this year to be your own “good” match schedule? How do you win matches?


Okay… now we are getting somewhere… it is random… why is it random… that means as you are saying FIRST is depending on luck to build its Alliances. We can fix that problem once we start collection individual robot statistics.

So basically you want the algorithm to enforce gambler’s fallacy?

There’s a reason you play more against than with good teams. You play with 24 out of 40. You play against 36 out of 40 (in your district)

You didn’t get picked not because your schedule was bad.

You didn’t get picked because you couldn’t climb.


and what sort of algorithm would you suggest to make it fair
balance the total points scored by the alliance to make sure that it is fair.
Although the games would be more fair and might be funner to watch how would you determine first seed??? since according to your “fair” algorithm all matches should be evenly matched
getting a good seed is 90% robot 10% luck I think you should focus on the robot part rather than trying to remove the luck
besides if you have a dominant robot and just get really unlucky with your schedule chances are you’ll be pickled

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