The Struggles of Scouting (And a Cry for Help)

Last year we switched from electronic to paper scouting because we found that people were less accountable for their own work when it was done on a phone versus when they were working on paper. Our setup requires 8 people but works optimally with 10. We have 6 people scouting, 1 on each both, 1-2 people entering data on a computer (depending on if we have internet connection), and 1-2 people collecting and distributing sheets and keeping track of shifts. Everyone who isn’t assigned to the pit or on drive team is required to scout during every event. Make sure you thoroughly train your team in the scouting setup so that you can have solid data from the beginning of competitions. But above all else, put scouting data to good use. As you mentioned, people are not excited to scout, but if you can prove that scouting is useful, they will be a lot more motivated to do so.

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Team 2733 is developing the second iteration of our scouting app. It worked tremendously well for us in our 2018 season, and the second iteration is gonna be way better. We designed it so it’s pretty easy for other teams to use it, so if you wanna drop me a PM towards the end of build season (we’ll probably have it done by then), I can probably add your team to it.

Features include:

  • Easy to change schema for reports
  • Charts of max/min/average report stats
  • Graphs of report stats over time
  • Team comparison

FIRST Faire Slides:

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Materials: Excel, Pen , Paper, Highlighter, game :alarm_clock:
Personel: Lead scout, Scout mentor, X number of scouts

Get schedule, import into excel. Red for foes, green for friendlies . Change color as you go through matches if needed. Should look like a xmas tree . One robot may be a friend then a foe etc.

Watch these bots in every game. Have the meterics you want to track , assign if possible ONE scout per bot each game… create a shorthand code last year her was mine. MSWA228+ sc226+Sw212+Sw189+SW165+ Sc92+ C25

Sw=switch sc=scale C= climb A=auto etc

This code told me what they did on the field from the shorthand (What/when/how) , Failed Attemps crossed out w/ notes explaining anything that game like Dead 97-87 …so ACTION and Time

Highlight good games in green, bad games in red , special charcteristics in blue, denote good defense.

Build a pick list 28 deep, that night verify stats and if any not watched stand out and add to last day list. Continue with green and red friends and foes, ADD likely captains and any you might have missed from stats… watch these bots. Reoder top 28.

Share insights with drive team (driver, captain) also entice other teams who need the info, they saw you scout every game

Hope you are a captain or 2nd pick so the list is useful. Rinse Repeat next event.

Im not saying its bad, but man is that confusing. i thought for a good minute that was a formula, and not what you “scored” them with…

Didn’t “score” with but sort of obvious which one can play as it lists cycles in detail. Helps refresh memory on what happenned those games and whats likely to happen.

We then look for those that help us, use details on likely captains to defend them

The problem with web-based systems is that you need to have good connection to the web. We found that at many of the venues, the cell connection is spotty for many of our students. Further, we are not allowed to create a mobile hotspot at the event. We are now exploring for ways to use Bluetooth connections to a base laptop. If anyone has a solution, I would love to hear from you.

New stuff is happening here too: First Match Scouting System for 2019

Our process is origonally on the web but you dont need cell service to sustain it. If you dont have signal then it dumps the data into a QR code for the “Lead Scout” to take a picture of. It is then post processed as normal. This system is slightly less efficient, due to some one having to take a picture of everyone’s QR code at the end of the match, but works the same.