Introduced in 2011, CHSR's FTC division is for incoming 9th graders as well as sophomores, somewhat of a "JV League" for our organization. Since the formation of one team in 2011, we've found it necessary to add another team - and two more - and two more - and two more. The community's increased interest has contributed to this rapid growth. FTC is all about transition; we mean to shape middle schoolers over the course of two years into strong, hardworking, and skilled individuals whose potential is honed for FRC and beyond.
FTC has eight teams as of the 2017-18 season, all of which have performed admirably every year. last season, the formerly six teams attended four competitions over the course of 3 months and won over 10 awards for their hard work in multiple fields. These include software, team unity, robot performance, design, cad, and engineering journal. the previously six teams worked hard to get to what they achieved and they're all hoping for a great season ahead in the 2017-18 school year. Look below to get a larger overview of what our eight teams are up to.
FTC 4950 has had an exceptional past and a great future to come. Ever since its founding in 2013, FTC 4950 has qualified to regionals every year. In the 2015-2016 season, our robot Crimson Crawler used a robotic arm like no other seen before combined with complex gyroscope algorithms to climb the mountain presented to us like no other robot was able to. In the 2016-2017 season Velocity Vortex, 4950 went to the Playspace qualifier with a great robot and high hopes. However, due to motor failure, the robot had to be totally revitalized- motors from around the robot had to be taken off and put on the chassis just for the sake of the drivetrain running again. Due to the unlucky substances, 4950 was unable to qualify. The team is hopeful on a waitlist for another qualifier, but they are happy with the PTC Design award they received for their exceptional plans, designs, and 3D models. It has been a great season, one like no other filled with laugh, love, and hard work. We are FTC 4950, diverse, loving, and determined!
FTC 6038’s five-month long journey was full of challenges and breakthroughs. It was full of both failure and success.
At their first competition, the Pathfinders created a path to success as they got pass the qualifier rounds and made it to semifinals. Unfortunately, they were unable to qualify at this competition but the members got their first introduction to robotics competitions and were determined to work harder and qualify.
6038 got another shot at qualifying and won the 3rd place Inspire Award, 3rd place Engineering Journal Award, and 1st place PTC Design Award. Although they didn’t qualify, the Pathfinders were able to go through a learning experience that will help them in the future. They learned about the importance of gracious professionalism and coopertition. The Pathfinders were given the platform to learn, practice, and improve their robotics skills. Their valuable journey proved to be more valuable than any award a tournament has to offer.
Team 7610 is proudly a participant of the FIRST Tech Challenge Program. By observing FIRST values, we are honored to have the opportunity to not only build robots, but build ourselves as people. 7610 in its current incarnation proudly participated in the 2016-2017 FTC season, playing the FIRST Velocity Vortex game. We unfortunately did not make it past qualifiers, but we were still able to learn a lot from our experience this year.
Overall the season was a great success and was really fun. This year, 7610 tried to get a little more structured by having multiple teams that split up into different groups which worked on different aspects of the robot (chassis, mechanisms, software). We let everyone learn the things they needed to in order to be successful in building robots or even coding them. Over all of these thought, 7610 truly embraced gracious professionalism and really embodied the values of FIRST with team bonding be it during meetings or outside of them. At our tournament, we were able to get to semifinals but what matters most is the fact that we really bonded as a team, made new friends, and gained a lot of knowledge.
Tino Trailblazers, FTC Team 7128, had a successful season overall this year. We began our season by bonding with all our new team members, and as soon as we were given our competition, we dived into creating a strategy in order to use our maximum capabilities for the season. As soon as our strategy was finalized, we split up into sub teams with our hardware and software second years in order to design our robot. However, we always began each meeting with a discussion between all parts of our team in order to keep everyone on the same page. Although our competition season ended earlier than we had hoped for, we still performed well. At our qualifier at the San Jose Playspace, we did not move past qualifier rounds, but we ended up winning the Control Award for our beacon pressing algorithm used during autonomous.
One of the most important things for our team throughout the season was making sure to educate the first years about what FTC encompasses. Therefore, even when working during the season, our second years made sure to include everyone in all decisions made, and ensure that everyone understood the plans that were being made and executed. This not only benefitted us by creating a well bonded team, but also gives the first years more to work with as they turn into second years for the upcoming season.
For the future seasons, we hope that the first years take what they learned from this season and build upon it for all the incoming team members. This way, our program will continue to grow and develop as each year learns from their experience from past seasons. Overall, 7128 had a wonderful season this year, and we hope this continues to improve in the future.
Despite the changes introduced to the CHS FTC program in the 2016-2017 season, such as the addition of two new teams, Team 11467 is off to a great start. Although we are happy to witness CHS Robotics’ growth this season, having more teams limited the amount of time that each team could spend in the roboshack. Considering this, we knew we had to increase our efficiency and change our design process. We could not do everything, so we focused on the tasks that would allow our robot to earn the most points. In addition, we invested in simplicity of design for the mechanisms that we did decide to build in order to ensure that we had a well-tested robot by competition day.
In summary, the Velocity Vortex challenge awards points to a team whose robot shoots “particles” into an elevated “Center Vortex” in the center of the field. As we considered this challenge, we noticed that the autonomous period would be the key to scoring the most points during the match. As a result, we made use of everyone’s skills in developing a robot focused on autonomous tasks. We developed a robot that could store and shoot two particles, the maximum that could legally be preloaded during autonomous, and claim two beacons during autonomous as well. Although it was a difficult task, the team was eager to learn and willing to work. Through every team member’s input and effort, whether in a technical, artistic, or other field, we learned a lot. Perhaps even more important are the memories that we have developed together throughout the season. On or off the playing field, team 11467 has grown into a family of individuals that genuinely love and care about each other, and that was probably the most important aspect of the entire season.
Team 11466 from Cupertino High School, is a proud participant of the 2016/17 First Tech Challenge. The challenge during the 2016/17 season was known as, “Velocity Vortex,” which our team competed in. From day one of our first team meeting to the day of the competition, our whole team and robot had grown. With the competition being held at Cisco headquarters, team 11466 miraculously fought their way up to the finals but unfortunately lost and claimed 2nd place. Even after this disappointing blow, we had all gained a lot more experience in the world of FTC robotics.
Those experiences were all during the actual competition, the real trial was before the competition. Our first meeting itself was very productive, we learned more about each other, assigned roles, and even started brainstorming ideas for our robot. A few pros we came across by working as a team were that we almost never ran out of ideas and that we could each help everyone else in different ways. For example, one person could provide tools for everyone else while another could make sure a 2 or 3 person discussion would not turn into a fight about what should go on the robot. The part about fights might sound like it is not possible, but it was one of the cons we discovered. Often many conflicting ideas about the robot would cross and would result in an intense argument about each person’s idea.
Build season was challenging as well, but we pushed through the issues to a strong competition where we placed 2nd. While we didn't qualify to regionals from this, we were happy that we'd come so far and done so well despite all the odds against us.