My name is Zack and I run Chopshop 166’s website. I was thinking about a project I could take on over the year to help out the community. The idea was a custom CMS for FIRST teams. However, I looked on First Forge and saw that this has already been created.
Therefore, I wanted to ask the community what tools or resources they could use to either help with the creation of or the maintaining of team websites, or just online tools that could benefit teams in general. Does anyone have any ideas of a project I could take on?
An idea I have been kicking around for a while is a place where people can post opensource mechanical designs.
Many teams post their CAD files and document their designs heavily for other teams to use. However, there is not a central place where teams can go to get inspiration for designs or to learn something new.
I think it would be sort of like the Behind the Design books but any team could post pages that detail their design decisions and also post CAD files for other teams to learn from. There used to be a mechanism library, I think it is still up somewhere but last time I checked it hadn’t been updated. It just had photos of teams mechanisms but their was never any explanations.
I like the way FRC1640 does their website with many details of their designs, here is a sample.
Also the content that JVN has been putting out about their robot this year has been exceptional.
If you could figure out how to make a really easy to use site for people to post designs, explanations and tag them easily, I think it would benefit a lot of teams.
How about online BoM creation with pick lists and rules constraints?
Online electrical and pneumatic schematic generation?
Make them available “in the cloud” using mobile devices like an iPad or similar tablet?
Having standardized BoMs and schematics would be really useful for everyone - design records, inspectors, usage info for FIRST…
Something like this may already exist but maybe a FIRST orientated CMS for lists of files. On kickoff this year 2502 uploaded every .pdf on the FIRST website pertaining to KOP, rules, field etc but we just did it in a standard index.html generated by apache which made it a bit confusing.
Something with a search function and tags would be convenient as well as a “submit file” feature where admins would approve and upload, though something like this may already exist. If so I would be glad to know what is out there already. Last kickoff using a hackjob directory we created after usfirst.org crashed managed to save FIRST’s servers 30GB of load and 30,000 pageviews and provide 1200 copies of the KOP checklist to other teams. My goal for this year is to have the community use at least 100GB of our bandwidth in hopes that everyone will be able to get the documents they need on kickoff.