By Mary O’KEEFE
After six weeks of design and building – and several more weeks of waiting – the time for competition is finally here for local robotic teams.
Crescenta Valley, Clark Magnet, La Cañada and St. Francis high schools received their instructions on what game they will be playing and exact instructions on how to build their robot for FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) regional competition.
This year the game is a type of basketball that includes points for balancing on a bridge on the field of play, and for working with “gracious professionalism.” FIRST promotes professionalism and working together with other teams through alliances.
The teams had six weeks from first of January to Feb. 21 when they were required to “bag and tag” their robot in an isolation bag and to complete a robot lock-up form. This is another way that gracious professionalism is put to the test, working on the team’s honor system, and helps students realize the real world experience of being given and meeting a deadline.
In the past, the robot would be shipped off via Federal Express to the regional competition in Long Beach. The shipping is no longer an option, so the “bag and tag” was adopted by FIRST. Teams must transport their robot to the competition themselves.
Today, the students head to the regional competition in Long Beach where they will take their robots out of the bag, hook up their computers and set up for a weekend of competition.