After meeting for breakfast at the hotel, Ozone set out to the Wolstein Center at 7:45am for the first day of competition! A group of students left early to set up the pit and scouting station. Doors opened to the building a little late at 8:30 so all team members were there to help out. The fabrication team worked on finishing the bumpers and putting them on the robot before the safety inspection. Meanwhile, a drivers meeting took place on the field to discuss safety while competing, queue lines, where officials are located such as the defense coordinator, how to load and remove robots from the field and other rules. The drivers station was then taken to be calibrated.
No trip doesn’t come without some roadblocks. The team had to completely rethink two essential parts of it’s strategy, scouting and visual acquisition. No power cords are allowed in the stands which means that the team cannot fill out computerized scouting forms in the stands. The only solution to this problem is filling out scouting sheets by hand and running them outside of the stands to be manually plugged into a computer somewhere else or fill out scouting sheets via phone and a locked wifi hot spot. Also, the lights of the arena are brighter than initially anticipated so the visual acquisition wouldn’t work. Coders worked for countless hours to try to fix this issue and it’s getting slightly better, they won’t give up! Before practice rounds began, programmers and the drive team worked together to calibrate autonomous mode on the main field.
The pit crew stayed on the practice field to attempt to make visual acquisition more accurate but the practice field lights were no better than the arena’s. The rest of the team met for lunch. While watching other team’s practice matches members noticed that many more teams have visual acquisition working than initially anticipated, Ozone has some stiff competition this year but the team has worked very hard and is sure they’ll do great! The student section had amazing pride and cheered team 4611 on in the practice rounds by waving the spirit numbers and cardboard face cutouts. They showed support for other teams as well by collecting buttons and talking to them about their robot.
The fabrication team continually had to switch bumpers out according to color depending on which side of the field the robot was on in the practice rounds. In the second match the robot kept loosing connection because it was trying to connect to a nearby wifi hot spot but as the drivers ran more matches the team got better. Modifications continued to be made to autonomous code and the team tested it on the practice field in between matches. By the third match the robot made a high goal!
Team members briefly met at 4:45 to talk about the dinner situation. Students were to meet back up and walk to JB Mack in 2 groups (so the restaurant wouldn’t be overfilled). After eating dinner the team walked back to the Wolstein Center to finish the last of the practice matches. After that, the majority of the group returned to Comfort Inn while the pit crew stayed behind for a bit to calibrate visual acquisition on the field.
A team meeting was conducted at the hotel at 9:00 which discussed the match times for tomorrow (available at https://www.thebluealliance.com/ ) scouting times, and how to act in the pits and in the stands. The team will be walking to the arena bright and early at 7:40am tomorrow. Go Ozone!