Needs of psychobots
February 16, 2017
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The suspense builds. Will they be able to beat the clock and make their robot accomplish all of the tasks they want it to? The clock ticks down and the buzzer sounds. Then the whole Robotics team breathes a sigh of release from the suspense.
Every year, the Psychobots, the school’s robotics team, participates in a robotics competition called the First Tech Challenge, or FTC. In order to be able to compete at FTC, each team must build and program a robot that can complete certain tasks. When it comes to competition day, they must complete as many of the tasks as they can in a time span of two minutes.
According to Doctor Wells, the supervisor of the Robotics team, “Most teams spend two to three thousand dollars a year on their robot. This year, we’ve spent about four hundred dollars.” Because the size and capability of a team’s robot depends on their money usage, the Psychobots’ robot tends to be smaller than those of most of the other teams.
There has already been action taken to try to improve the Psychobots’ situation. “We have talked to Doctor Wells and Mr. Garza about getting sponsors from outside of the school, which is something that many of the other teams do,” said, senior Taylor Mackin, president of the Tech Club.
According to Mackin, the team would benefit from the extra money in many ways. More money could help the team get better parts and a computer that would be just for the club to use. “It’ll stay there with everybody’s programs always on it, and we wouldn’t have to worry about getting information back each year,” said Mackin.
Educational books could be another way that the extra money could be used. Elizabeth Medina, a freshman on the robotics team, is planning to become an engineer and wants to learn as much as she can from being a part of the robotics team. “I think some books on programming would be nice, or a mentor that knows some things about the topic so that I can learn more about how to program,” said Medina.
The Robotics team is always open to expand their family. “Anyone who is even just a little bit curious about what we do or what robotics is about is always welcome to come and join us,” said Mackin.