On Thursday we interviewed the history teachers from our Middle School. We learned a lot about how they teach and their views on our project. It will be a huge help to us as we put our presentation together. We also set up a workshop to share FLL with the two Middle Schools in our district. We hope it is as fun as last year.
We fixed our square-up myblock and now it works with multiple colors. We made several prototypes for missions but they will need to be tweaked before we are completely satisfied. Tyler noticed that we were setting up a mission model wrong and double checked the orientation of the box. It saved us from a nasty surprise at the competition. Next week we plan to get a lot of the programming finished.
Today we came up with our interview questions to ask the history teachers we invited for Thursday. We also finished our project design questions. What we need to do now is make the actual game and record it. Not an easy task!
For the robot games we decided to scrap the synchro drive robot for now. It is just too frail to work. We added color sensors to the other robot and made other small tweaks for accuracy. Last week we realized that the forklift did not allow the loops to fall into the box because it was positioned straight up and down. Ben repositioned it to tilt back at the top and now it works just the way we envisioned.
There is only one month to go before our first competition and we are no where near ready. Time to get in gear and get some missions done.
Today we fixed the synchro drive robot so the gears don't pop, completed a mission and made a backup robot. We were even able to attach the forklift onto the new robot. We had a lot of laughs today with lots of things going horribly wrong in the best way. It was exciting to fix a problem with the synchro drive robot that we've had since it was built.
We voted on a battle to use as our project, which we chose Little Round Top. This is a good scene because there aren't as many people to make compared to Pickett's Charge and would take less time.
We spent the day at Gettysburg doing research for our project. We need to decide if we will use the battle at Little Round Top or Pickett's Charge. We visited both battle fields and walked through the museum for inspiration. We are leaning towards Little Round Top because the Maine brigade ran out of ammunition and ran off the Confederates with just their bayonets. It is an impressive story.
This week we went over how to use custom NPCs, a Minecraft mod used to make role playing games. We are going to make a Minecraft map that shows a historical battle to help people visualize it more and to get a feel for what was going on. We are going to Gettysburg next week to check out the different battlefields and decide which one we want to use.
Our robots are still not fully functional. Ben's is still unstable and will probably have to be started from scratch. The synchro drive robot is sensitive to weight and needs to be modified to allow the attachments to be put on. It shouldn't be a big deal to fix it but it's putting us further behind. Only 6 weeks until our first competition!
We spent this week finalizing our project ideas and voting for our favorite. Everyone is pretty excited about our topic, how can you not be when it includes Minecraft?? Hopefully we can get something decent put together before the scrimmage in November.
We are still testing both of our robot designs to see which one will work better for this year's robot game. The synchronized drive is really cool but has a lot of disadvantages to work through. Ben's robot has a few stability issues but that should be easily fixed with a few beams.
Our coach taught us the difference between relative and absolute motor moves at the last meeting. Patrick is already using the logic to solve a problem we've had with the gyro sensor. I hope he can get it to work.
During today's meeting we finished and are testing two kinds of robots. One has a synchronized drivetrain and the other is a rear wheel drive type build. Theo made a chicken foot claw attachment to do the football mission and hopefully a few of the loops.
We postponed the vote for our final presentation topic until next week. There is still more research that needs to be done before making a final decision.