Nemesis Hosts Another Successful Discovery Day
Smashing pins, flying pucks, robots, and happy faces. That’s what you would have seen if you stepped into the Robbinsville High School Technology Lab on December 2nd and 3rd during Robotics Discovery Day, a half day robotics experience for 2nd through 6th graders run by Nemesis, Robbinsville FIRST robotics competition team FRC 2590, and Nemesis Prime, Robbinsville rookie FIRST technology challenge team, FTC 14020. Campers came to learn and have fun with diverse robotics challenges. By the end of their sessions, the campers had an exhilarating experience building cool robots, playing with their creations in competitive challenges, and watching robotic demonstrations. Campers were left inspired, interested and wanted to keep building.
The campers, started off their day by meeting Nemesis’s humanoid NAO robot. He shot a ball, drew a picture, and danced around as the campers watched with delight. Next, the campers saw a FIRST Lego League (FLL) demonstration put on by Pond Road Students. Teams I.D.K, Shockwave, Electrons, and Nerd Herd awed the campers with their LEGO EV3 NXT robots that completed tasks in a model “Hydroelectric Society” game. The FLL teams showed an in-depth demonstration to the campers to help them understand the different motors and gears used to make the robots work. Additionally, the campers experienced the thrill of driving Nemesis’s own 120 pound, 2017 award winning robot, Eris. They navigated onto a game field like experts and then shot a flurry balls into the high goal to score points.
To moderate the difficulty of the challenges, campers were divided into two age groups. 2nd, through 4th graders, took on the design of using only two motorized gears to create an air hockey striker that could both score goals and defend their area. Through propellers and wheel shooters, the campers brought their creative ideas to fruition. They faced off against each other, high school mentors, and the daunting “fun table” which required pinpoint accuracy to navigate past spinning pieces placed around the table. Even at the younger age, the Nemesis (high school) mentors took a hands-off approach as the campers let their imaginations run wild.
More advanced 4th, 5th, and 6th grade campers put their building skills to the test as they built a robot made out of LEGO MINDSTORMS NXT pieces. Their first goal was to create a robot that could hit a ball and knock down pins. The campers then used the same robot but started at a different position. This would challenge them to create a new program that could move over to the ball before hitting it. In the final and toughest challenge, the campers used an ultrasonic sensor to seek out and topple pins scattered around an area. In this challenge the mentors helped create the programming, but, building the robot was all up to the campers.
The goal of Discovery Day is to heighten campers’ interest towards a STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics) future. Through challenging the campers to see what they could build in a finite time, they were introduced to a pre-engineering environment. Cassidy, a Discovery Day camper, enthusiastically said, “I liked building robots because I’ve always wanted to be an inventor.” We hope that the campers go onto a successful career that started at Discovery Day 2017.
Discovery Day also has a huge impact on the Nemesis team members. Mentoring the campers was a great experience for everyone involved. They created friendships with their campers in a dynamic learning situation. Finance team member and senior Jarelle Boac said, “The campers made my day! They had such raw enthusiasm and curiosity and were so smart. I'm glad I could be a part of such a rewarding experience as a Discovery Day student mentor. It's bittersweet knowing this event was my last.” At Discovery Day, the campers learn that they can all achieve their goals in order to accomplish whatever mission is ahead of them while the mentors learn how to help the campers succeed, fail, and create their own robots.
Discovery Day 2017 was a huge success. Nemesis gives a big thank you to all the campers and can’t wait for next years event. It is always a highlight of the robotics season!
Nemesis also expresses their gratitude to the many sponsors that make community outreach ventures like Robotics Discovery Day possible. Special thanks to Robbinsville High School, NAVAIR, CCL Label, Lockheed Martin, Investor’s Bank, NYSCC, Triangle Copy, Robbinsville Education Association, Robbinsville Education Foundation, RAS, McGraw-Hill Financial, Design Tree, and Knowledgent. Sponsors, family and friends are welcome to come out to Hatboro-Horsham High School for our first District Event on March 2nd through 4th. Admission is free.
Brunswick Eruption Gives New Members a Feeling of Unity
While upbeat dance hits played on the loudspeaker, Nemesis competed at the off-season event Brunswick Eruption, hosted by Raider Robotix, North Brunswick Township High School’s FIRST Robotics Team. With over thirty teams from New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and New York, it was an exciting competition. Members could be seen faithfully scouting other robots, providing crucial data for future alliance decisions. Nemesis furiously cheered and chanted for the drive team as they skillfully advanced Nemesis’ 2017 competition robot, Eris, through the grueling matches.
On the field, the drive team tactfully maneuvered Eris. Brand new team members were fascinated, watching from the edge of their seats. New drivers had the opportunity to test their skills out on the field. Nemesis emerged from the qualification matches ranked 14th. During alliance selections Nemesis was quickly chosen by the third seed alliance captain, FRC 1279, Parallel Universe, and was later joined by FRC 219, Team Impact and FRC 56, ROBBE. Together they made a strong alliance that valiantly fought through the elimination matches.
Brunswick Eruption had space for more than just robots. Party music kept everyone in high spirits. The Evil Sundae competition included member Emmy D'Amico eating a combination of sardines and whipped cream.
Faltering in the semifinals, Nemesis did not bring home the coveted win. The day was highly memorable for new team members. It gave them their first taste of just what to expect from competitions and a sense of comradery with their teammates. Freshman Kavya Velliangiri exclaimed that: “...seeing everyone as a team made me feel unified -- like a part of something bigger!” A feeling that new members relate to as they eagerly wait for kick-off in January.
Nemesis Springs Into Action
A streak of color burst across the field in a desperate attempt to reach the dangling rope and scale it before the buzzer rang. Seven seconds. The robot couldn’t grip the rope, and the drivers furiously reversed and rushed forward again. Four seconds. Suddenly the rope was snatched into the robot. It jerked sharply upwards and began the ascent. Would it make it? Three seconds...two… The light above the robot blazed red and the crowd erupted in cheers as the buzzer rang.
After learning from their mistakes two weeks prior at the Hatboro-Horsham District Event, Nemesis was back and better than ever. Boasting a newly designed intake, which now featured a ground pick up for gears, the team was determined to rise beyond their last competition.
After an early Saturday morning start, Nemesis joined 31 other local MAR (Mid Atlantic Robotics) teams at the Springside-Chestnut Hill Academy for their second district competition, hosted by FRC 1218, Vulcan. The team was excited to be joined by so many of their friends and alumni, some of which even volunteered their time as robot inspectors, queueing personnel and judges. Nemesis is truly a family, always there supporting each other.
A promising performance in the practice matches resulted in high anticipation among Nemesis members. By midday, spirits were high and the team wasn't far out of the top 8. A resilient team often regarded for their ability to overcome setbacks in gameplay, Nemesis’ team members were still hopeful.
Meanwhile in the pits, both marketing and build members conversed with entrepreneurship and technical judges to compete for awards honoring their world-class business team and first-rate engineering skills. "It was an interesting experience to be able to share our story with these judges and I look forward to doing it again!" remarked first time marketing member Rachel Gillmer.
Back on the field, an aura of suspense filled the air. After 64 tense qualification matches, it was time for alliance selection. Nemesis finished qualifications 6-6-0 in 15th place. Within minutes, Nemesis was chosen by the first ranked seed, FRC 225 TechFire. Not long after, the pair was joined by FRC 423 Simple Machines. With Nemesis’ proficient gear-scoring strategy, Tech Fire’s inconceivably accurate shooter, and Simple Machine’s rope-scaling consistency, the top alliance was ready to take on their first competitors. The six robots lined up against their driver station walls. 3...2...1...GO! The eliminations were underway!
The announcer's voice was drowned out by the deafening cheers of the crowd. Gear after gear, ball after ball, both alliances fought valiantly. TechFire’s shooter brought shouts of delight from the fans, and remarkable communication between pilots and drivers illustrated the beautiful chemistry during the match.
Unfortunately, every competition isn’t without its misfortunes. As a result of a series of hapless moments, the top alliance was not able to start the third rotor on the airship, nor get all three red robots ready for takeoff. Similar performance in the second quarterfinal match made it official: Nemesis would not be moving on to the semifinals.
Although disappointed, Nemesis did not leave empty-handed. The team won the Industrial Design award, a celebration of form and function in an efficiently designed robot that also effectively addresses the game challenge. Team Advisor Peter Wolfe was honored with the Donald Bowers Inspiration Award in recognition of his demonstration of FIRST core values within the team and the community, and finally, juniors Nick Anderson (Director of Marketing) and Mariko McMurtry (Head of Electrical) were Dean's List Semi-finalists, a prestigious FIRST award that identifies exemplary individuals who effectively illustrate the ideals of FIRST, STEAM, and Gracious Professionalism.
At the end of the day, Nemesis knew that it wasn't over yet. Next stop: the Festival de Robotique in Montreal, Canada!
Nemesis would like to thank their sponsors: Robbinsville High School, NAVAIR, CCL Label, DoDStem, Knowledgement, Nordson, Leidos, the Robbinsville Educator Association, Lockheed Martin, Sharbell Development Corp., the New York Society of Cosmetic Chemists, Investors Bank, RAS, the Robbinsville Education Foundation, Triangle Copy, Skylink, Coldwell Banker, Northstar Vets, Princeton Sports and Family Medicine, Designtree, Siemens, SRI, McGraw Hill Financial, and the Friends and Family of Nemesis.
Supporting FIRST, a Nemesis Tradition
The Springside-Chestnut Hill District Competition was filled with volunteers, as every FIRST competition is. However, at this competition these volunteers consisted of 5 Nemesis alumni and 2 Nemesis mentors as judges. Alumnus, Jenna Mollica is the youngest Lead Robot Inspector in FIRST history. The other volunteering Nemesis alumni included Julia Borowski (Yale), Griffin Della Grotte (Carnegie Mellon), Josh Falk (Lafayette), Christian Gavalchin (The College of New Jersey) and Anthony Heulitt (Rutgers). Mr and Mrs.Young, build and marketing mentors, experienced the competition from the other side, volunteering as judges..
Nemesis is beyond proud to see their alumni come back to support them and volunteer for FIRST. Jenna Mollica voiced her experiences on FIRST and why she decided to come back and volunteer. “I loved my time in FIRST during high school and I wanted some way to continue to be involved in something that changed my life. Volunteering allows me to help out and make sure that students now get the same experience I received while on Nemesis and get to meet and work with a ton of great people in the process”. Majoring in engineering, Jenna is currently attending Drexel University.
Nemesis alumni come back to mentor, volunteer, and regale the team with stories of college life and beyond. Being part of the Nemesis family is a lifelong choice. Nemesis would like to express their deepest thanks to their alumni and extended family for all of their gracious support both technical and otherwise.
Bag and Tag 2017
With the clock nearing midnight Nemesis drapes the bag over their hard work to officially end another Build Season. The team is proud of their finished product. Six weeks filled with designing, prototyping, machining, and assembling concludes as they seal up the bag and the Build Season, opening the door to Competition Season. The team celebrates with sparkling cider and a little fun.
The finished robot consists of a compilation of ideas from nearly every member of the team, hopefully forming a force to be reckoned with. With new and innovative ideas constantly being proposed, the robot underwent numerous changes and transformed from a simple concept to a fully functioning robot, eager for Competition Season. Feeling satisfied after facing the many engineering obstacles, Nemesis wipes their brows and lays down their tools.
Now it’s time for Nemesis to make all necessary preparations for the first competition of the season. This includes ensuring that the driver practices extensively with the team’s practice robot in order to master the game, putting the finishing touches on the software for the autonomous routine and teleoperated period, and planning game strategies. But mostly, Nemesis looks forward to showcasing and competing with their robot at the Hatboro Horsham District Event.
Nemesis anticipates the upcoming season with hope and excitement, ready to put their hard work to the test and go FULL STEAM AHEAD!
2017 Week 6: Build Journal
It was the best of times - from prototyping and brainstorming ideas to the creation of a finalized product, but now the inevitable End Build date has arrived. Build Season reached its climax and conclusion this past week with finalizations and tuning across the board. As a team, we feel confident in our creation, and eagerly await the chance to compete.
On the Fabrication and Assembly Subteam, both the practice and competition bots have been completed. Various critical parts were fabricated and added to the finished product. Subsystem testing has been ongoing, and we finally had a breakthrough with our drivetrain maneuverability.
In the Electrical Department, wiring and routing are finished. In addition, the shooter and intake are functioning properly.
With Software, our autonomous routine, with the aid of vision integration, is completed and tested. The accuracy and precision of our shooting routine continued to improve over time, the intake system gathered fuel effectively, and gear retrieval and placement went well.
We look forward to another Competition and Travel Season as the 10th anniversary of our legacy unfolds, but for now, we’ll take time to rest.
Of course, countless hours will be dedicated to refining and improving our design in the Off-Season, because Build Season never “really” ends.
We’ll see you at Hatboro-Horsham, Springside-Chestnut Hill, and Festival de Robotique!
Against all Odds: Nemesis at World Championships
Robbinsville High School FIRST Robotics Team 2590 Nemesis has a long history of overcoming adversity, one way or another. As elimination matches begin on day two of the FIRST World Championship, this big time team from the small time town of Robbinsville, NJ, faced a challenge they had been versed in many times before. A long night of strategic analysis-- and some lengthy debate-- had paid off.The team was prepared to enter the final chapter of another wildly successful season. The mood was mixed; some team members felt goosebumps rise as the thrill of competition seemed to surround them. Others, an ecstatic excitement. But everyone shared a feeling of accomplishment and gratitude just to compete in St. Louis.
Alliance selection. Team 973, in first place, chose team 610, in twelfth place. No one could believe their eyes. Had team 973 just taken themselves and their alliance out of the running for division champions? Surely, there was some clever strategy at play. Team 2590 was up to choose, and invited team 225, as according to plan. The rest of the Alliance selection went mostly as expected, leaving Nemesis as captains of the second seed alliance, their highest-ever elimination round ranking at worlds, with teams 2590, 225, 2067, and team 11, MORT, as the backup player.
In competition, they say, if something can go wrong, it probably will. On Carson field, some of the world’s most resilient robots were succumbing to the constant stress of battle and breaching obstacle after obstacle. There were casualties every match. It wasn’t long before alliance two suffered its own loss, and Nemesis’ best shooting alliance partner, 225, was incapacitated. Nevertheless, the team fought on. Two matches later, team 2067’s robot also took some serious damage. For the first time that day, team 2590 faced a loss. A feeling of dread began to filter through the sea of red Nemesis shirts as deja vu spread over them. Everyone remembered what had happened earlier in the season at the South Florida Regional, when both of Nemesis’ alliance partners broke down, causing the trio to fall in the finals.
But alas, as fate would have it, history did repeat itself. The alliance won one match in the quarterfinals, then lost one, and lost another. All but alone on the field, there was little team 2590 could do to stop it. They finished their season as quarterfinalists at World Championships. Perhaps not quite what they were expecting, but a performance to be proud of all the same.
After the competition, the team went out to eat and spent the following day at the City Museum of St. Louis, a whimsical establishment where people of all ages can climb through huge, interactive exhibits and sculptures. For these budding engineers, it was quite an enjoyable experience. That night, Nemesis packed their bags and boarded a plane for Newark, NJ, arriving home in the wee hours of the morning. It was an incredible end to an incredible experience. See you next year, FRC!
Nemesis: Otherworldly Robotics
In a dimly lit conference room tucked away in the corner of a Hyatt situated near the St. Louis Arch, a tight-knit group of dedicated team members convened and heatedly debated their next move in the FIRST Robotics World Championship.
From the start, the World Championship, held in St. Louis, MO distinguishes itself from every other competition in the FRC circuit. Besides the obvious notion of its finality, World Championship holds up to its namesake by featuring a plethora of teams from the international community. Teams originate from every region of the United States, not to mention Russia, China, Turkey, Brazil, Australia, France and others.
Drive team leaders Parth Mandrekar and Christian Gavalchin, along with mentors and fellow members of Nemesis sit around a conference table, sifting through data accrued over the qualification matches. With the guidance of a mentor on call from home, the meeting goes late into the night.
Today is Friday, the second of two days comprised of near constant work and difficult challenges. With only a single day remaining, the Robbinsville Robotics Team FRC 2590 Nemesis is selecting its alliance partners for tomorrow’s finalist matches. While the sheer amount of data poses its own host of difficulties, Nemesis also grapples with electing just three teams to its alliance.
Nemesis kicked off World Championships with a rocky start, tying its first match and losing its second. Despite this and in true Nemesis fashion, the team held fast and maintained a positive outlook, as demonstrated by Parth Mandrekar, “...it’s going to be a battle but I’m confident we can come out on top...we’re pumped for the next few matches.” The optimism paid off, with the team sitting comfortably in second place out of all teams at the end of qualification matches for the Carson Division after a considerably extensive winning spree. This series of successes can also be attributed to skilled alliance partners such as fellow MAR team FRC 41 Robo Warriors. Another MAR team, 1089 Mercury, hailing from Hightstown, NJ, also performed exceedingly well.
With qualification matches over, Nemesis faces a greater challenge in the coming days upon entering the elimination rounds. As with yesterday and today, the team will no doubt continue to maintain a thriving optimistic spirit and excitement for each new challenge the FIRST Robotics World Championship offers
Let the games end!
Finalists In Florida
West Palm Beach: seventy-eight degree weather, an ocean view, and robots galore! On Wednesday, March 30th, Robbinsville High School FIRST Robotics Team Nemesis 2590 hopped on a plane and headed to the Sunshine State for the South Florida Regional.
Proudly representing Central Jersey, Nemesis was one of sixty teams to arrive at the Palm Beach County Convention Center early Friday morning. There, an international showing of talent included teams from Turkey, the Dominican Republic, and Columbia. Team 2590 was lucky enough to play in the opening match of the competition. Their alliance scored an impressive 120 points, setting the bar high. The robot's success continued throughout the day, going undefeated throughout qualification matches and holding a strong grasp on the crucial number one ranking. Meanwhile, the Entrepreneurship Team and Pit Crew were busy in the pits conversing with judges about this year’s robot, the team’s award winning business plan, and community outreach.
Friday night, after a long, but successful day of qualification matches, Nemesis returned to the hotel to hold a crucial scouting meeting in which a list of teams was identified as potential alliance partners. Continuing their dominant performance into the final day of competition, Team 2590 held the first seed for the elimination rounds and chose to ally with Team 179, The Children of the Swamp and Team 5472, the Stallions, who had both made names for themselves in the qualification rounds.
Following alliance selection, Finance Team member Jared Glassband represented Nemesis 2590 in a friendly team mascot dodgeball game in the spirit of friendly competition. Clad in a toga to represent the Greek origins of Nemesis, he was supported not only by members of Team 2590, but by many others as well. A cheerful chant of, “Neme-sis! Neme-sis!” rang through the crowd. Of the game, Jared said, “I was impressed by the positive energy and friendly competition that I experienced not only in dodgeball, but all over the South Florida Regional. This place really has a great atmosphere.”
Returning to actual competition, as the matches wore on, Nemesis’ alliance faced some capable competitors, but was able to battle their way to the finals against the third seeded alliance: Team 1065, The Moose, Team 180, S.P.A.M, and Team 3932, The Dirty Mechanics.
The last three matches were among the most intense of the weekend. Vigorous play led to the field being damaged, which required the gameplay to stop, and the match to be discarded and reset-- not once, but twice! The third repeated match spelled disaster for our heroes. Team 5472’s robot, who played defense for the red alliance, took too many hits to its frame, and became so bent out of shape it was crippled for the remainder of the competition. Worse still, the Children of the Swamp’s robot succumbed to the increased stress of playing without a full alliance, and the sensory system fried itself completely. The game was paused while Nemesis and Swamp team members worked feverishly to repair the smoking robot. In the end, power was restored to the systems, but the dead sensors rendered the Swamp Machine blind during autonomous mode, and practically eliminated its shooting ability. As the match began, the Swamp Machine rolled to a dead stop on the field, and it didn’t move again. Battered and alone, Daedalus stood against the third seeded alliance, and were only able to score 94 points against their opponents’ combined score of 159. While Nemesis’ alliance managed to overcome adversity to take the second finals match, further technical difficulties in the deciding third finals match meant a disappointing end to Nemesis’ time in Florida.
Nevertheless, Robbinsville was ecstatic to receive a wild card slot at World Championships, as the finalists. The team also took home the Industrial Design Award recognizing a team with an efficiently designed machine that addresses the challenge of the game effectively.
Drive Coach Parth Mandrekar reflected, “All else aside, our performance here in South Florida has been our best by far. Our high goal shooting has improved drastically, as has our autonomous mode. We will certainly be a force to be reckoned with at FIRST Mid-Atlantic Regionals and at the World Championships!”
From the opportunity to meet and compete with teams from all over the world to the chance to escape the bitter cold of the Northeast for a few days, All members of Nemesis thoroughly enjoyed the competition in Florida. Despite losing the finals, everyone is incredibly excited to compete at the World Championship in St. Louis on April 28th-30th, 2016!
Nemesis would like to thank its generous sponsors for their continued support: Robbinsville Board of Education, NAVAIR, Bristol-Myers Squibb, CCL Label, NY Society of Cosmetic Chemists, Siemens, Lockheed Martin, Investors Bank, RAS, Robbinsville Education Association, EAG, Princeton Sports & Family Medicine, McGraw-Hill Financials, Robbinsville Education Foundation, Gilbane, Coldwell Banker, Carfaro Fencing, DesignTree, Triangle Copy, & GrabCad. For additional information, please contact FRC 2590 at email@example.com.
Nemesis Sweeps the Seneca District
After another exciting two days of competition, Robbinsville High School FIRST Robotics Team 2590 Nemesis emerged as victors at the Seneca District Event, and as proud recipients of the Engineering Inspiration Award… for the “FIRST” time in Nemesis’ eight year history! The Seneca District Event is an annual competition hosted by Team 1647, the Iron Devils, at Seneca High School. After a tough win at Hatboro-Horsham two weeks prior, the team was anxious to see if their repairs to the robot’s battered frame and intake would hold out. And they certainly did, as Nemesis’ robot, Daedalus, maintained a number one ranking throughout the Qualifying Rounds.
Meanwhile, back in the pits, the Business and Build Team members fielded questions in numerous interviews with their respective judges, seeking to win awards for their creative engineering, world-class marketing and finance strategies, and extensive community outreach efforts. The judges, who returned to speak to the team multiple times, showed a great deal of interest in Nemesis.
Of the experience, first-time Marketing Team member Sophie Billings said, “It’s not every day that you get to be a part of a team like this. Being able to say that I helped win a prestigious award like the Engineering Inspiration Award is incredible.”
During Alliance Selection, Nemesis had their pick of teams, being ranked first during qualifications. They chose FRC teams 365 and 1626, the Miracle Workerz (MOE Robotics) and Falcon Robotics, who had both demonstrated innovative designs and clever gameplay strategies earlier in the event. MOE’s robot had a remarkable high goal shooting ability, even in autonomous mode, while Falcon Robotics’ robot was capable of scaling the tower and earning a major bonus at the end of the match.
Skillfully overcoming the two alliances faced in the quarterfinals and semifinals, Nemesis’ alliance looked ahead to a tough matchup in the finals where they stood against FRC 1640 SaBOTage and their alliance partners the Titanium Knights (FRC 6203) and SRNJ Rambotics (FRC 4573). SaBOTage and their allies made a formidable trio, twice setting a new high score in the semifinal rounds. It looked to be a nail-biting finale! In the finals, which are best of three, Nemesis and the red alliance rose to the challenge and won the first round, but the blue alliance came back in round two with a win of their own. Neck and neck, the teams prepared for the tiebreaker as the spectators watched with bated breath. The red alliance triumphed! Nemesis and their partners set a new high score of 179 points in the final match of the day to take the win.
“When the final match score was displayed and finalized, I was overflowing with emotions from the excitement and anticipation of our victory to the joy of our success, and finally the pride of knowing I was involved with such a wonderful team,” enthused junior Build Team member Charlie D’Amico.
In the awards ceremony, the team was honored with the prestigious Engineering Inspiration Award by the judges that had interviewed them in the pits, to commend their success and outreach efforts in spreading engineering throughout the community. Furthermore, Team Advisor Joy Wolfe, who has been the backbone of Team 2590 since its inception, was awarded the Woodie Flowers Nomination in recognition of her work with the team and the FIRST Community. Nemesis enjoyed a joyous team dinner after the event, and looks forward to competing at their next competition, the South Florida Regional in West Palm Beach, Florida, on March 31st-April 2nd. Wish them luck!
Nemesis would like to thank their sponsors: Robbinsville Board of Education, NAVAIR, Bristol-Myers Squibb, CCL Label, NY Society of Cosmetic Chemists, Siemens, Lockheed Martin, Investors Bank, RAS, Robbinsville Education Association, EAG, Princeton Sports & Family Medicine, McGraw-Hill Financials, Robbinsville Education Foundation, Gilbane, Coldwell Banker, Carfaro Fencing, DesignTree, Triangle Copy, & GrabCad. For additional information, please contact FRC 2590 at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Murphy’s Law Debunked: Nemesis Wins Hatboro-Horsham Again!
A swift pass through the portcullis. A goal scored. The screeching of the drive train. The roar of the crowd. Robbinsville’s champion, Daedalus, scores a goal and starts to breach another defense when suddenly, it stops in its tracks. Team members in the stands are shocked. This is the final match of the Hatboro-Horsham District event, after two days of perseverance over countless challenges for the Robbinsville High School FIRST Robotics Team 2590 Nemesis. Narrowly surviving into the quarter-finals, fiercely overcoming the first seeded alliance in the semi-finals, and splitting the first two final matches until this ultimate battle for the crown, the team isn’t prepared to surrender easily. 10 seconds left. Still no activity. The Drive Team is pursuing all options to revitalize the robot. Refreshing the code, resetting the encoders, healing potions, nothing works. 5 seconds. Just as suddenly as its stagnation, Daedalus springs back to life and smoothly drifts onto the batter, earning last-minute points, shaking the gymnasium with applause. Nemesis, along with its alliance partners Captain FRC Team 1218 Vulcan Robotics and FRC Team 5407 Wolfpack, has won the Hatboro-Horsham District Event for the 4th consecutive year. Inconceivable!
FIRST’s game for the 2016 season, Stronghold, basing itself on heavy medieval influences, splits a field in half for each alliance of three teams and features motif-fitting game pieces. Teams breach portcullises, gates, and moats to enter their opponent’s courtyard and launch 10-inch diameter foam balls into either low or high goals to capture the enemy tower and win the match. Alliances earn increased points when scoring a high goal due to its heightened difficulty. Each match starts with a 15-second autonomous period, wherein robots are solely controlled by pre-programmed code rather than remote human operation.
Daedalus, Nemesis’s latest robot, was designed to address as many aspects of Stronghold as possible while retaining a focused plan. Build Team members opted to construct this year’s robot with an offensive strategy in mind.
Grappling with Daedalus’s main feature- its articulating shooter and intake- falling apart after nearly every match, it appeared that everything that could go wrong, went wrong. In an attempt to repair the multitude of small yet collectively destructive problems, the Build Team completely dismantled and reassembled Daedalus in under two hours.
With time running low, Nemesis put Humpty Daedalus back together and out on the field, hoping to recover from the previous losses. The impromptu repair session yielded positive results almost immediately, increasing the point output and number of high goals scored, yet not enough to pick up the distance between Nemesis and the top eight teams who would later become alliance captains. Unfortunately, instead, the team fell from 13th place to 15th place to 22nd place just in time for alliance selection. The team remained optimistic, a sentiment paying off when they were the first pick of the fourth-seeded alliance.
Behind the scenes, the Software Team entered a frenzy from the first match, attempting to reform the glitch-prone code in time for Daedalus’s next showing. During the autonomous period, the robot consistently crossed into the opponent’s courtyard successfully under the low bar obstacle, but failed to score with similar consistency. Upon resolving one problem, another promptly appeared in the ensuing match. However, much like the Build Team, Nemesis’ Software Team executed a complete overhaul of the code. By quarter-finals, within the autonomous period, Daedalus not only swept the enemy defenses, but also scored the coveted and punishing high goal, effectively laying the groundwork for the Drive Team’s triumphs later in each match. The revised code played an essential role in establishing a strong point lead over opponents early.
Although the Build and Software Teams may have experienced a much more exhilarating event, the business side of Nemesis did not walk away empty-handed. The team’s Chief Financial Officer Colin Riley became a Dean’s List Finalist, recognizing his efforts in exemplifying the core values of FIRST and STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics). Additionally, the team was honored with the Quality Award, recognizing their robust robot design and construction.
Few times in Nemesis’s admittedly short history have there been such an emotional rollercoaster as this past weekend at the annual FIRST Mid-Atlantic Hatboro-Horsham District Event. A story befitting the medieval legends its central game was based on, Nemesis rose to the challenge and overcame considerable obstacles on and off the field, despite facing difficulty at nearly every turn. While it seemed that every facet of the event possible of going wrong did, in fact go wrong, Nemesis and its alliance partners stuck the battle out to its victorious end.
Next, Nemesis will be competing at the Seneca District Event on March 19-20th. Nemesis would like to thank their sponsors: Robbinsville Board of Education, NAVAIR, Bristol-Myers Squibb, CCL Label, NY Society of Cosmetic Chemists, Siemens, Lockheed Martin, Investors Bank, RAS, Robbinsville Education Association, EAG, Princeton Sports & Family Medicine, McGraw-Hill Financials, Robbinsville Education Foundation, Gilbane, Coldwell Banker, Carfaro Fencing, DesignTree, Triangle Copy, & GrabCad. For additional information please contact Team Advisor Joy Wolfe at email@example.com.
2016 Week 6: Build Journal
Wow! It seems like it was just yesterday that the team was brainstorming, yet here we are at week 6. This week, the Build Team worked tirelessly around the clock to finish assembling the final competition robot.
Week 6 went by in a flash without a single dull moment. Whether it was cleaning the lab to prepare for inspections or picking up last minute orders, everyone from freshmen to seniors had something important to do.
Luckily, the final assembly was completed without too many issues. However, we are close to the weight limit at 116.5 pounds. After assembling the robot, the team got right to work creating the technical documentation. While sections of the Build Team wrote documentation, the Drive Team began testing the competition robot. We are happy to say that we can conquer most of the obstacles and shoot from both the outer works and the batter.
We are sad to have finished build season, but are all incredibly excited for the upcoming competition season. Finally, we would like to thank the mentors and Executive Team for all their support and everything they have taught us over these 6 short weeks.
"Investing" in the Future
On Tuesday, February 23, Nemesis members proudly accepted a generous $2,500 donation from the local branch of Investors Bank, who were eager to support the team. As competition season rapidly approaches, FRC Team 2590 continues to search near and far for financial cooperation in their ambitious venture. Finance Team member Jarelle Boac recently cold-called Investors Bank and CFO Colin Riley followed up by applying directly for a grant from Investors Foundation. After this, the team was ecstatic to see an email from Investors, promising sponsorship and asking to arrange an official check presentation with the team.
The team sprung into action, quickly arranging the meeting. With the help of dedicated parents and mentors, four team members (Marketing Director Laura Quon, CFO Colin Riley, Jarelle, and Marketing Team member Nick Anderson) met at Investor’s Bank promptly after school. The group received a warm welcome and met with the team’s new sponsors. The people of Investors Bank were more than happy to offer support to Nemesis.
While it is often unmentioned, this process of reaching out to sponsors and quickly reacting to positive responses, no matter when they may arrive, is something the Marketing and Finance Teams must do regularly. Similar to the real world of business, team members must rely on their own sense of judgment and initiative to make quick decisions, a skill that many members have refined greatly in their time with the team. It certainly pays to “run the team like a business!”
2016 Week 6: Marketing Journal
While week six included a surge of red, heart shaped Valentine’s Day purchases, the Marketing Team managed an outpouring of orders for red, Nemesis-branded apparel. Marketing members also continued working on Nemesis’ competition standard, which will be raised proudly at upcoming competitions. In a collective effort, the business subteams made edits to the business plan including adding new graphics, writing and editing, and updating financials.
Shadowing Chief Financial Officer Colin Riley and finance mentor Peter Barlis, rookie Finance Team members looked over the business plan and learned accounting tricks of the trade. Meanwhile, the Finance Team evaluated Nemesis Cares and Shares applications and maintained Nemesis’ financial well being. In conjunction with emails reaching out to local businesses, select marketing and finance members conducted an array of cold calls in hopes for potential sponsorship.
Throughout the upcoming weeks, the Business Team plans to continue preparing for the Entrepreneurship Award, the Chairman’s Award, and the Media & Technology Innovation Award. Competition season is just 14 short days away. With this in mind, Nemesis team members intend to hone their soft skills, by rehearsing for the upcoming competition season.
Hatboro-Horsham… Here We Come!
2016 Week 5: Build Journal
With Build Season coming to a close, the Build Team is working around the clock to finalize designs and finish fabricating parts. All of the designs have been finished and the team is working to assemble and test the robot mechanisms.
For week 5 the team was focused on fabricating the drivetrain, shooter, and intake parts. All pieces of the robot were machined by students using the school’s CNC Mill and CNC Router. Not only was this week spent advancing robot production, but also teaching underclassman how to use these machines. Upon completion of fabricating the parts, the practice robot began to be assembled. With testing, the team began tweaking and further improving the design.
The Software Team is working diligently to tackle various autonomous routines and better understand vision processing. Meanwhile, the Electronics Team fitted the assembled drive train with electronics.
For week 6, our team hopes to finish assembling and fine tune the robot. Everyone is looking forward to the final push before the bag and tag.
2016 Week 5: Marketing Journal
Week five of the 2016 build season was yet another great week of accomplishments for Nemesis! Emerging from yet another very successful Sponsor Networking Night -- that the entire team spent the first four weeks of build season preparing for-- the business team felt a well deserved wave of relief immediately followed by an increased concentration and focus on the upcoming competition season. The Finance Team worked on finishing the business plan which will be presented to judges at competitions and will serve as the basis for our team to compete the Entrepreneurship Award. Meanwhile, the Marketing Team wrote and mailed thank you notes to the generous parents and sponsors who supported the team with donations and “sorry we missed you cards” with information about Sponsor Networking Night to those who missed the event.
Marketing also worked on designing apparel for the team to wear throughout the upcoming competition season, as well as writing articles to promote the team's community outreach programs. The Logistics Team is still hard at work continuing to arrange travel for our upcoming trips to South Florida, and hopefully St. Louis.
Another exciting development in the Robbinsville High School Tech Lab was the creation of the first 3-D printed hand for our partnership with e-NABLE. With them, Nemesis plans to donate prosthetic hands to those in need.
The Marketing and Finance Teams are very excited to see the robot that the Build Team has been working on for the past six long weeks and that the Marketing Team will be writing, promoting, and talking about for the next year.
Nemesis Lends a Hand
By: Melinda Beyer & Nicholas Began
In a heart-warming fusion of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) and charity, FIRST Robotics Team Nemesis 2590 has partnered with e-NABLE, an organization of countless volunteers whose mission is to build and distribute 3D-printed prosthetic hands to those in need.
Ivan Owan founded e-NABLE in 2011, after he posted a video on Youtube about his cosplay metal hand for a science-fiction convention. The video reached a South African carpenter named Richard Van As, who had lost his fingers in a woodworking accident. Despite the 10,000 miles between them, the pair began to communicate, sending each other prototypes constructed from materials found around their houses over the internet. Enabling The Future gathered a following and the organization was born.
The 3D-printed hands provide an affordable option for many families for whom prosthetics are financially out of reach.
Harrison Young, a Nemesis alumnus, spearheaded the initiative to use the team's skills in MakerBot technology to create 3D-printed hands for the life-changing organization. Exuberance flooded the Technology Lab when our first hand was finally complete. Word of the prosthetic hand spread like wildfire and many students not involved with Nemesis visited the Technology Lab to see the source of all the excitement. The entire Robbinsville High School community was delighted to see one of their own creating such an impact.
Through this partnership with e-NABLE, the team spreads the STEAM message while emphasizing the importance of altruism and service. Nemesis plans to continue working with e-NABLE to better the lives of those in need.
If you are interested in supporting Nemesis or e-NABLE, please contact our Team Advisor Joy Wolfe at firstname.lastname@example.org.
2016 Week 4: Build Journal
As week 4 is coming to a close and the competition season is just around the corner, the build team's productivity levels are still going strong. As prototyping is officially over, most of the build team has started to work on the final robot. We are working wholeheartedly to make sure that the robot will be completed in time to ensure our drivers get to practice before bag and tag.
This week we worked on milling the final parts of the drivetrain. The exec team is evaluating their options for the electrical board and requirements for the drivetrain.
The complex game obstacles are giving us a run for our money. The intake and shooter have final designs and have been tested on a practice bot.
During Week 4, everyone, from freshmen to seniors, was hard at work developing the robot.
2016 Competition Dates
Build season is coming to a close, and competition season is right around the corner. Nemesis invites you to come to any of the free high energy tournaments the team will be competing in...
Hatboro-Horsham District Competition: March 5 - 6, 2016
Hatboro-Horsham High School
899 Horsham Rd, Horsham, PA 19044
Seneca District Competition: March 19 - 20, 2016
Seneca High School
110 Carranza Rd, Tabernacle, NJ 08088
2016 South Florida Regional: April 1 - 2, 2016
Palm Beach Convention Center
650 Okeechobee Blvd, West Palm Beach, FL 33401
We hope to qualify for:
FIRST Mid-Atlantic District Championship: April 14 – 16, 2016
Stabler Arena, Lehigh University
124 Goodman Dr, Bethlehem, PA 18015
2016 FIRST Championship: April 28 - 30, 2016
Edward Jones Dome
901 N Broadway, St. Louis, MO 63101
2016 Week 4: Marketing Journal
Week 4 of Build Season can be described by one word for the Business Team: Perfection! Nemesis’ Annual Sponsor Networking Night was held on Wednesday, February 3rd. Weeks of preparation went into ensuring this evening was a huge success. This week Business Team members mentored the Build Team members in public speaking and presenting, ensuring that they would uphold Nemesis’ reputation for excellence.
Nemesis presented their successful 2015 season and this year’s progress to the team's previous and potential sponsors along with team parents. Assemblyman and avid Nemesis supporter Dan Benson tweeted, “Great job by everyone tonight! Awesome challenge ahead, confident you're up to the task!” Many of the sponsors and parents complimented team members for their organization, professionalism, and poise. Nemesis is incredibly grateful to all of their sponsors.
In other news, the week was spent finishing up the Chairman’s Award, the Woodie Flowers Award, and the Entrepreneurship Award. The team really came together to get it all done!