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How to Use This

There is a common catch phrase in FRC: Steal from the Best; Invent the Rest.

It's really just a recommendation to study and borrow from past (& current) successful FRC robot designs in creating new (& improving existing) FRC robot designs. Open source mentality and behavior has been embraced within FRC, for both software and hardware. Not embracing it is a competitive disadvantage... But how is it done?

This file is a gathering of resources intended to help...

During Build Season, the use of this resource might go like this:
- Kickoff happens. We learn about the game, including game pieces, field elements, constraints the game rules place on robots, and tasks robots will need to do.
- Do the post-kickoff game analysis & strategy work. Learn the rules and then analyze the scoring model, ways to score (prioritize), cycles, etc. until a short list of strategy options is identified.
- Invariably, there are past games with things in common with the new game. Similar game pieces. Similar tasks. Similar strategies. Use the "Game pieces and tasks by year" tab below to determine which past games are worth looking at as inputs to strategy and robot design for the current game.
- Go to Blue Alliance and watch matches from those past games (more recent is often better, due to both quality and relevance). Look at results from District and World Championships. Study the teams and robots that competed well. What kinds of strategies and robots were common at high levels of competition? Are there design choices (e.g. the dominance of elevators for high placing tasks in 2018 and 2019) you see the majority of these competitive teams making?
- The research in the step above should provide great insight into design options for the strategies on the short list.
- Those design options can be researched using the "Team robot summaries" and "Robot CADs by year" tabs. Of course, the other thing that must be done is the math and analysis of the design options (e.g. elevator or arm geometry vs. geometry of field elements, game pieces, and game tasks). Put the results of those analyses together with the competitive research using this tool, and the list of options should begin to narrow until choices can be made.
- And then design further & innovate in the context of those choices. What special sauce can we devise in our design that will differentiate us from other robots with similar mechanisms? What clever ideas will reduce our cycle times. This is the "Invent the Rest" part. :-)

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