Demos at Sound by the Shore and Comicpalooza

May 26, 2015 in Slideshow by Scott Rippetoe

As the month of May drew to a close, Texas Torque went to an event (Sound by the Shore) at nearby Northshore Park to demonstrate our robot Apogee. At the event, we were able to see many people who were amazed by both the robot and our student-driven organization. Members allowed kids to operate the robot for an entire simulated match. The team was happy to teach the importance of STEM while the children at the event had fun operating the robot.

Texas Torque had yet another very successful demo at Comicpalooza, which was held at the George R. Brown Convention Center this past weekend. Our team managed to handle the problems that arose well, and Apogee was running like new.

On Saturday, Apogee performed well for interested spectators, helping the team captivate the crowd. Some members of Texas Torque and other teams played a casual game of laser tag, demonstrating that robotics kids can have lots of fun while they work. Between speaking about FIRST, operating the robot, and fetching flying discs, a few members of Texas Torque and the Robonauts had a game of Mech Corps, with Torque ultimately coming out on top while the others easily kept the robot running smoothly. At the end of Day 2, Comicpalooza seemed to be too much excitement for Apogee and it refused to run. However, that didn’t stop us; we continued to work with other teams to continue the show.

Throughout two days of demonstration, Texas Torque didn’t just show off an impressive robot; we showed the amazing teamwork it takes to build such a robot, passion in spreading FIRST to a broader community, and the ability to create friendships with other team members outside of Torque, whether through playing laser tag with the Disco Bots, Mech Corps with the Robonauts, or catching flying discs with Spectrum. Torque also advanced within itself, letting members who didn’t have experience driving or operating the robot try their hand at controlling the robot and actually showing promising potential for the future drive team, ready to fight for a chance at going to Champs.


Spring FLLing

May 26, 2015 in Slideshow by Scott Rippetoe

Texas Torque held an event for local FLL teams on May 16th. We were happy to see the joy in everyone’s faces while they were in competition, and to have a hand in spreading STEM throughout our community. More than 20 teams participated, and members of Texas Torque volunteered to referee, keep score, and help students to learn the importance of STEM. Our goal was to expose children in a critical learning age to (and hopefully spark lasting interests in) STEM.

During the event, FLL students were able to tour TTWHQ, where members of Torque taught them about subteam structures and showed off our robots from past years. Many FLL students enjoyed the tour, and we were happy to show off the lab. Through this, Torque encouraged FLL students to continue their STEM education by giving them a glimpse of the excitement of an FRC lab.

We at Texas Torque were happy to host an FLL event and hope to host the event again in the future to show the exciting competition to young students.IMG_0168 !

2015 FRC World Championships

May 15, 2015 in Competition, FRC by Scott Rippetoe

From April 21st through 25th, Texas Torque traveled up to St. Louis, Missouri for the FIRST World Championships. The team was excited to attend the championship event for the fifth year in a row, having qualified for the championship this year by winning an Engineering Inspiration Award at the Bayou Regional.

After a fourteen-hour bus ride, Texas Torque team members divided their time between work and play, taking time out of their busy schedules to enjoy the city in the midst of competition responsibilities. We were glad to see FIRST take St. Louis by storm; in every restaurant and attraction, another FIRST Robotics Competition team could be found leaving their mark. The Edwards Dome itself was bustling with 600 FRC teams preparing their robots for inspection, running practice matches, and generally enjoying the sights, sounds, and attractions of the FIRST World Championship.

The much-anticipated qualification rounds began with excitement. Texas Torque earned a high score average for the first three matches, but as the day continued our score dropped and Texas Torque ended up ranking 54th out of 76 teams. Every member of the team was thrilled to play with and against some of the best teams in the world.

Upon alliance selection, Texas Torque was chosen to be a part of the 7th seeded alliance, which consisted of FRC Team 364 (Miracle Workerz), FRC Team 494 (Martians), and FRC Team 245 (Adambots). The elimination matches were easily the most intense matches we had played during the 2015 season. In our first match in quarterfinals, we ended with a score of 84, and after a riveting final match against the 1st seeded alliance, our alliance could not bring its average back up and was eliminated with a score of 138.50.

Overall, the team is ecstatic with their performance at the World Championship. We would like to congratulate FRC Team 118, FRC Team 1678, and FRC Team 1671 for their inspiring play on the field and their new status as the FIRST Robotics Competition World Champions. We would also like to congratulate FRC Team 597, the Wolverines, for their induction into the FIRST Hall of Fame and their sustained influence on the FIRST community. Many thanks to our alliance partners for a fantastic run and to all of the hardworking individuals and organizations that made this Championship possible.