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rjw
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Mon Jan 17, 2011 2:54 pm

RemoteContact wrote:
rdubard wrote:
Registration has been extended to Tuesday (January 18), prolly because Miami had a 15lb & VEX competition yesterday, and folks were kinda busy.

Last I checked, registration is closed.

I think that Nola might be convinced to let any stragglers compete...No?

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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Mon Jan 17, 2011 2:56 pm

There used to be 70 bots in the 15lb class alone, then we had bots worldwide and the attempt with battlebots. We have almost all traveled to miami before, we have almost all paid the entry fee before, its not the problem, its just the way the competition has been run in the past few years is the reason teams are choosing not to register. I give all the miami teams credit for sticking with Nola and trying to make it work but i just don't see Nola, without the help of the NTMA, holding a real national competition.
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rjw
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Mon Jan 17, 2011 3:09 pm

Another problem is the difference in battery rules.....it could be tough for MLEC's bots to get converted to non-lipo batteries....Others down here might have problems as well.

I guess we'll all have to see what comes out of all this...hopefully some sort on unification in the near furture?

I am also not sure if I like the ruling where battles are halted and bots returned to the starting square at various times.

what is that all about? Do you like/agree with it?

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Cody
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Mon Jan 17, 2011 4:16 pm

Its annoying but I think its one of the only clear ways to show controlled movement
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rjw
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Mon Jan 17, 2011 4:19 pm

Cody wrote:
Its annoying but I think its one of the only clear ways to show controlled movement

Do they stop the clock when telling the bots to return to their square?

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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Thu Jan 20, 2011 10:16 pm

They managed to add 7 more bots
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rjw
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Thu Jan 20, 2011 10:30 pm

So registration is closed, but not really.... affraid

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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Thu Jan 20, 2011 11:11 pm

jeeves_m_d wrote:
They managed to add 7 more bots

still only 4 15s from outside of florida. I should've had a PR cluase lol
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Thu Jan 20, 2011 11:15 pm

Cody wrote:
jeeves_m_d wrote:
They managed to add 7 more bots

still only 4 15s from outside of florida. I should've had a PR cluase lol

only 1 of them is in the highschool division
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Thu Jan 20, 2011 11:27 pm

I know, thats even worse, i was trying to be generous! haha college bots will probably fight in HS division as they always do

fun fact of the day: the number of high schools competeing at our regional is nearly double the number of bots in the HS15lb class
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rjw
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Fri Jan 21, 2011 12:23 am

Alex wrote:
I am amazed with how much some of these teams are paying for registration:

Jag: 1 HW 6 M = $2600
RE: 2 HW 4 M = $2400
CC: 1 HW 4M = $1900

Those numbers are INSANE!!! Team Jag is spending more on registration than Plum HS spent in the 2010 school year. I'm not trying to cause a fight with you rjw, I looked at that is was just amazed.

And according to the official botsiq website there are no price breaks listed for this event!

Not 100% sure how it works, but somehow MLEC can get funding to attend from somewhere thru the system...

Not money for materials or motors or whatever, but funds specifically as an entry fee. Also, everyone loves a winner, so it's maybe hard to turn them down.....at least this year...

Imagine what it would cost to send 10 or 12 kids and 3 adults ....plane tickets, rooms , etc for 3 or 4 days...to say San Fransisco ???

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rjw
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Fri Jan 21, 2011 12:57 am

Cody wrote:
I know, thats even worse, i was trying to be generous! haha college bots will probably fight in HS division as they always do

fun fact of the day: the number of high schools competeing at our regional is nearly double the number of bots in the HS15lb class

we can call the Miami event what it is....pretty much a local event, but we should ALL focus on trying to come up with a true national event, if that is at all possible.

I wish that we could turn the Miami Dade Youth fair into a national event.

Entry fees are ZERO dollars and it happens in April.

For us to go to you, we have travel, plus entry fees, plus some flakey rules, plus NO Lipos and possibly more.

If some of your biggest concerns are entry fees and the way things were run at previous national events , then maybe we could get some advisors to talk to Paul Kynerd about the fair, in that it is actually HIS show and again it is FREE !!!

Not saying that Miami is the only place to hold a national, but an event that is held religiously at the same location and time of the year and refuses to charge students an entry fee, seems like a pretty good place to start.

Northerners can run A123's or Lipos, so the anti there is optional, not forced.

Just some food for thought....in any case, WE NEED A TRUE NATIONAL EVENT.

I do think that Florida needs to be represented as much as any other state. without some of the better Florida schools, it could also be considered more of a regional event rather than a national one.

Anyone have any thoughts or ideas, options?

I will mention this to Paul tomorrow and get his take on things.


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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Fri Jan 21, 2011 2:18 pm

I dont see many teams (bergen, bloomsburg, plum etc.) traveling to florida anymore, but as usual just my opinion, it could happen.
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rjw
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Fri Jan 21, 2011 3:02 pm

I got the scoop from Paul today and it doesn't seem to be feasible anyhow, so scratch the Youth fair idea, I guess.

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Last edited by rjw on Mon Jan 24, 2011 9:50 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Fri Jan 21, 2011 6:30 pm

So what you have basically indicated is that Miami based Schools don't really have to pay registration fees for the event in Feb... The entrance fee has totally gotten out of hand and competing in a true MINI arena makes no sense. Why pay top dollar to compete in an arena you can barely see through the lexan? The cost to hold the event should be very minimal... Why do you need a conference center to host at most 100 people? Have the event in a high school gym, empty warehouse or a shopping mall.

Anyone outside of Florida only get information if we visit this site. I have written many emails to Nola and the IQ staff and not a single has been replied to.... phone calls go unanswered too, so basically everyone North of Florida aren't being considered anyway...


For years I thought the school's StarBot Mentored were under privileged inner city schools that had no funding or possibility of funding a robotics program... Boy was I wrong. A single student pays more each year to attend some of these schools than 80% of the teaching staff at my high school earns a year in salary. Carrollton, Christopher Columbus, and Ransom Everglades are the ones that stand out. All of them are private schools that the average student could never dream of attending anyway.

The division of the NTMA and IQ have actually hurt the entire robotic program. Which in fact is going to reduce the total number of students and programs able to participate in robotics. This is counter productive and makes no sense. What does it matter who hosts what events as long as the program benefits future engineers. Everyone has forgotten what this program is all about... getting students excited about engineering and manufacturing...
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rjw
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Fri Jan 21, 2011 6:43 pm

The only truly FREE event down here is at the Dade County Youth Fair.....the Nola/BotsIq thing costs a fortune in entry fees.

I agree that we could really use a new and bigger arena down here.


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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Fri Jan 21, 2011 6:45 pm

marsh368 wrote:
Anyone outside of Florida only get information if we visit this site. I have written many emails to Nola and the IQ staff and not a single has been replied to.... phone calls go unanswered too

Kinda made me laugh.
I believe nola waves entry fee's for some teams as to which ones i don't know
Miami has a really nice looking new arena that you can see in but there really isnt all that much to see because of the dimensions.

I wish "botsiq pa" would be more open to hosting teams outside of the area or possibly having another "national" (loose term) event. Hopefully you guys can make it to the NRL nationals, I think you would enjoy it along with what there trying to promote.

BTW Mr. Marshall do you know Shawn Lydon?
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Sat Jan 22, 2011 5:21 pm

I don't know Shawn Lydon... who is he?

I wish the SWPA group would also allow out of the area teams into events also. We were only allowed to play that one time because I travelled to Pittsburgh three times I think to help get the program there started. I didn't get payed to do it... but they did pay my mileage which was nice...

RJW... if the entry fees are so high and you say you pay them... why? You have a fall event down there with no fees, you have a Srping event that costs like $50. So now you want to pay $350 per robot to use the exact same arena and compete against the exact same schools as the other less expensive events. It doesn't make sense.

Basically what I think you are saying is someone makes a payment, just not the schools themselves. Sponsors of the "national" event and other contributors to the robotic program in Miami.

Just very frustrated none of the money goes anywhere else to help other programs in other states. The affluent schools should be able to cover their own registration... just like we would have to if we would ever consider traveling again. But we would have to pay for housing, transpertation and car rentals while there... As you can tell, there is a reason no one is making the effort to get to that event anymore...
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rjw
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Sat Jan 22, 2011 6:26 pm

Marsh

as I said before, (and I am not part of this, just an advisor) , MLEC has some sponsorship....from what I know, the sponsors expect the partially sponsored bots to attend the 'national event' , which they currently see as the regionally/national BOTSIQ Nola thing.

Somehow, thru the school system, MLEC is sometimes able to come up with some money to cover entry fees to this event.

If MLEC doesn't attend this event, they get NO sponsorship and no money for entry fees.

The way I see things at the moment, is tha it is all messed up....we (MLEC) are just going with the flow at this time.

For the sake of the kids (which this is all about) we have been attending ALL of the local events. Without our kids and their bots, some of these events would not exist.

Like you, I am not all that excited with what is going on both down here and elsewhere, espcecially about options for good teams like yours.

I hope that something can be done to bring this thing back to life.

On a side note, our local events are being dilluted by Vex events. This is not helping the combat robots side of things. Many are just competing in Vex, in that it is a lot easier to do, both time and money wise.

Things at the moment are not looking all that good for educational combat robot teams anywhere...jmo

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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Sat Jan 22, 2011 9:19 pm

rjw wrote:

as I said before, (and I am not part of this, just an advisor) , MLEC has some sponsorship....from what I know, the sponsors expect the partially sponsored bots to attend the 'national event' , which they currently see as the regionally/national BOTSIQ Nola thing.

Somehow, thru the school system, MLEC is sometimes able to come up with some money to cover entry fees to this event.

If MLEC doesn't attend this event, they get NO sponsorship and no money for entry fees.


Forgive me if this sounds a little rude, but that answer just doesn't make any sense to me.

You go to the competition because you would lose the money from your sponsor, but all the money from the sponsors goes to said competition...

In my opinion just save them there money, and compete in your youth fair and other cheaper priced event.

I understand that you have said that its not you decision, and that the school and sponsor makes the decision. But have you tried explaining the situation to said sponsor?
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Sun Jan 23, 2011 2:42 am

marsh368 wrote:
I don't know Shawn Lydon... who is he?

He's a TSA adviser/teacher at North Allegheny High School here in Pittsburgh. He's my girlfriends uncle and I started talking to him at christmas and threw talks I had asked him if he knew you and he said he did.
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Sun Jan 23, 2011 10:09 am

marsh368 wrote:
So what you have basically indicated is that Miami based Schools don't really have to pay registration fees for the event in Feb...

I think you misunderstood--as far as I know, there is NO team that gets a break on entry fees from BotsIQ. rjw was talking about school system money, I think, which can be spent on entry fees, but not on the actual robots or machines.

I understand some of the legitimate reasons why 'outside of South Florida' teams feel marginalized, but please don't spread the (again, as far as I know) untrue idea that the entry fees are part of this.

I also wish there were more ways I could do something to address the marginalizing issues. If you would PM me the specifics, I will gladly pursue addressing them within my limited abilities.
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Sun Jan 23, 2011 10:46 am

rjw wrote:
On a side note, our local events are being dilluted by Vex events. This is not helping the combat robots side of things. Many are just competing in Vex, in that it is a lot easier to do, both time and money wise.

I hate to admit this, because I want to support ANY program that gets kids into applied technology, but rjw is right--VEX is killing battlebots in Miami. Last year there was a local event in November that had task and battle, and the battle part dominated. Carrollton, Ransom, MLEC, Columbus, and Belen all had battlebots, and Miami Northwestern was talking about making one. This year, the equivalent event(s) have only had battlebots from Ransom and MLEC, with one from Carrollton (VEX, on the other hand had 24 robots from 9 or more schools.) Belen and Columbus both have essentially discontinued their battlebot programs to pursue VEX. It is yet another factor in the poor turnout for 'Nationals.'

I was one of the main organizers for the most recent event, and I can tell you I had to devote 95% of my time and volunteers to running the VEX part--I had to turn all the Battlebots stuff over to Nola (who did a great job, but I felt bad about not being a bigger part of it).

I can see how VEX is attractive--'kit' robots and a guaranteed 7 or more rounds of competition for every robot at every event. It is NOT cheaper (at least at first), but the school systems have bought into it, so most Miami public schools have the parts at their school. Also, VEX does not require more than a couple of shelves of space for all parts and tools.

I also find it a bit boring.

At Ransom, we only do VEX at the Middle School, and Upper School does battlebots.
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Sun Jan 23, 2011 1:48 pm

There are alot of schools that have picked VEX or FIRST becuase they simply are better robotics programs.
This sport is more about engineering and machining which is where the support of the NTMA is such a key in the growth.
Alex is running into this problem at his college.
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PostSubject: Re: IQ 2011 Miami   Sun Jan 23, 2011 4:07 pm

VEX came about in part because of a split in the USFIRST crowd. Innovation First (usually abbreviated IFI, the folks who make the Victor ESC), were once deeply associated with FIRST, making their control system and starter kits. Now, InnovationFirst Robotics makes VEX, and there is no mention of IFI on the main information pages of FIRST, and no mention of FIRST on the IFI main site.

My point being that splits like the NTMA with BotsIQ are pretty common, even among the heavy hitters. And that VEX is not "just VEX" but an intentional sort of simplified version of FIRST Robotics Competition.

It is entirely possible that VEX is beginning to challenge FIRST Robotics Competition as the largest (most schools, most teams/robots, most competitions) in the world, and it is by all indications the fastest growing.

As I said, it has a lot of appealing aspects, but I think it's just boring once you've seen a good BattleBots match.
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