Saturday, August 17, 2019

Robototes at Bellevue Arts Fair!


On August 26-28 the Robototes attended the Bellevue Arts Fair! With almost 300,000 attendees across 3 days, the fair features artists from across the country. We got to be part of the KidsFair and premiered our Artbots. Using LEGO Mindstorms and some markers, kids got to make creative art work by driving the robots around. Of course we couldn’t forget Raven, our 2019 competition robot! Kids had lots of fun watching her drive around and playing catch with her.

Throughout the fair we also got the opportunity to promote FIRST and inform parents about all the programs available to younger kids! This was especially exciting because many parents had previously thought only high schoolers could be on a robotics team.

Thanks BAM for hosting such a great event and allowing us to attend! This event was a ton of fun and we hope to be back next year!


Monday, April 29, 2019

2019 Houston World Championship

On April 17th-19th, we went to the World Championship in Houston! We competed in the Roebling Division along with 66 other teams. At the World Championship, we had the opportunity to play with teams from many different places, including Texas, California, Louisiana, and Georgia, and even international teams from countries such as New Zealand and China.
During the qualification matches, we stuck to our tried and true strategy of scoring cargo, climbing, and playing defense. Although we faced a few issues with our climber in our first few matches, we were able to climb fairly consistently by Friday.

Saturday was dedicated to alliance selections and elimination matches. The #7 seed, WHEA Sharkbots (3881) selected us along with fellow PNW team I.R.S., also known as the Issaquah Robotics Society (1318), and the Full Metal Jackets (1296). Although we lost in the quarterfinals, it was a great honor to play with these teams and with luck we’ll see them again next year!
After the quarterfinals, we stayed and watched other teams, many whom we have admired for years. It was truly amazing to see these powerhouse teams play in person, including in the finals at Minute Maid Park, and definitely one of the highlights of the trip! We would also like to congratulate one of our friends from Bellevue, the Newport Robotics Group (948), for reaching the Einstein finals!
On the last full day of our trip, we visited the Johnson Space Center! This gave us the unique opportunity to see NASA’s rockets and equipment, as well as the Robonauts’ (118) workspace in person.
Overall, this was a very special trip. Going to Worlds was a very valuable experience for not only competing and learning but also having fun and enjoying time together as a team. This has been a magical season and we are looking forward to next year, determined to replicate and build upon the successes we have accomplished so far.

Monday, April 8, 2019

2019 Pacific Northwest District Championships

On April 3rd – 6th we went to the Pacific Northwest District Championship in Tacoma! This is the first time in too long that we have qualified, and we are all very proud of what we have accomplished as a team.

This was also our first competition with the new pit! Redesigning the old pit was a preseason project we had to postpone when build season started. However, we were able to finish it after Glacier Peak, and we are quite pleased with the results:

Students working on Raven inside our brand-new pit

Throughout the competition, our robot performed well, scoring plenty of cargo (typically about 6-8 per match), climbing to level 3, and playing defense when needed.

Raven successfully climbs to level 3 while alliance partner 2471 parks

Despite a deceptively low ranking due to a difficult match schedule, we were invited to an alliance by R.A.I.D. (Raider Artificial Intelligence Division, 4469) and Spartabots (2976). While we were eliminated in the quarterfinals, we had a fun time playing together and hope to see them again soon!

After elimination matches ended, we received the Imagery Award for the second time this season! This is very gratifying because it means that all the work put into our new pit was not in vain.

More importantly, however, the award allowed us to advance to the World Championships in Houston for the first time in team history! This is an incredible accomplishment and we are ecstatic to travel to Texas in less than two weeks!