The local “Robodesigner” team is no stranger to award winning competition, however, this year the team was able to make it to the top VEX robotics competition in the world. The Tech Council’s Future Focus Foundation is proud to provide sponsorship to assist this team in showcasing their talents on a world stage. For more information about the Robodesigner team, please visit their website at www.robodesigners.com.
Robodesigner team member David Norton provided a summary of the team’s first hand experience at the VEX Robotics World Championships.
“On April 18-21, thousands of students from around the globe competed at the 2012 VEX Robotics World Championship. Teams from middle school through college put in 12 hour days doing their best at the Anaheim Convention Center in California. We, RoboDesigners Team 2190, qualified as one of 396 high school teams to compete at this amazing event.
The World Championship was action packed from check-in on Wednesday through finals late Saturday night. Just 12% of the 4,800 middle school, high school, and college teams worldwide reached this level. The high school teams were divided into four divisions. Thousands of elimination matches were run to determine the top teams from around the world, culminating when the orange glow of fireworks illuminated the newly crowned world champions.
Our team competed in the Engineering division and earned 21st place with a record of seven wins and three losses. We were the top-ranked team from Virginia in our division. The three-team alliance that won the World Championship competed in our division. In qualification matches, we played two of these teams, winning against one. Our team also prepared a presentation for the Design Award. We spent the weeks preceding the Championship perfecting our Engineering Notebook to relay the merits of our process. We were not alone, as 126 other teams were trying for the same goal.
Between matches, we developed relationships with other teams from our region and beyond. We reconnected with teams we previously met at regional tournaments. After communicating with others on the VEX forums, it was a great to finally meet them in person! We made friends with teams from as far away as New Zealand, Puerto Rico, and California. Our ties with one college team cleared the way for one of our members to be invited as an on-field coach. In addition, our team was glad to see the E-bots again, a Canadian team we met at the Mid-Atlantic Championship. We cheered them on as they won the Programming Skills Challenge.
Part of the excitement of the World Championship is the release of next year’s game. On Friday night, teams packed the arena, called the “VEX Dome,” to see what they would spend thousands of hours on over the next twelve months. Everyone left excited and energetic over the upcoming challenge, Sack Attack.
All of us from RoboDesigners had a wonderful time at this event. We continued to learn about robotics, competed well, met new and old friends, and had a great time. As this robotics season ends, we anticipate what opportunities next year may bring.”
-David Norton, Robodesigners