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  • touching robot at first launch

    In previous years, at the "GO" signal, the technician can only push a button to start the robot, but can not hold up/touch the robot or its attachments in anyway. This year, I don't see that rule any more. Is that allowed now? Thanks

  • #2
    The launch definition is "Whenever you are done handling the robot and then you make it go". This is almost exactly the same wording that has appeared for years in the challenge document. Previous challenge documents also described the launch sequence, including "pressing a button or signalling a sensor to activate a program". I always felt the extra words were unnecessary, "launch" was already defined; these are things you can do to "make it go".

    It has been a long time since launching the robot was limited to pressing a button, and if you thought the rules prevented you touching the robot other than just pressing a button, you were mistaken. However, as soon as you do something to launch the robot (make it go), any further touching is an interruption. Manually holding up an attachment could be challenging, unless releasing the attachment signaled a rotation sensor to activate the program. When designing your launch sequence be sure to take into account how hard it is to get hands out of the way in the heat of a match. Make your launch sequence easy for the operator, not the robot. If an attachment must remain raised, use the robot motors to keep it raised. Better yet, start with the attachment lowered and have the robot raise the attachment while moving out of base. The more things the robot does, and the less things the operator has to do, the better.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by huyton View Post
      In previous years, at the "GO" signal, the technician can only push a button to start the robot, but can not hold up/touch the robot or its attachments in anyway. This year, I don't see that rule any more. Is that allowed now? Thanks
      No, it isn't allowed. Rule 21 says you can't launch the robot until the Referee can see that nothing on the Field is moving or being handled.

      The change from last year's rules is that the language about "touch a button or signal a sensor" was removed.
      FIRST LEGO League Mentor and Referee/Head Referee since 2011.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Tom Mosher View Post

        No, it isn't allowed. Rule 21 says you can't launch the robot until the Referee can see that nothing on the Field is moving or being handled.

        The change from last year's rules is that the language about "touch a button or signal a sensor" was removed.
        It is easy to argue that the "nothing moving or being handled" only affects the first launch. This is another case where too many words in the rule do not help with clarity.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Dean Hystad View Post
          It is easy to argue that the "nothing moving or being handled" only affects the first launch. This is another case where too many words in the rule do not help with clarity.
          I think such an argument would be easily lost. Rule 21 seems to apply to every launch, because the section header says "During the match".

          The two arrowed-items only apply to the first launch, because only the first launch has a countdown.
          FIRST LEGO League Mentor and Referee/Head Referee since 2011.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Tom Mosher View Post

            I think such an argument would be easily lost. Rule 21 seems to apply to every launch, because the section header says "During the match".

            The two arrowed-items only apply to the first launch, because only the first launch has a countdown.
            It is one of the arrowed-items that says only when nothing on the field is moving or being handled will the referee begin the countdown. I don't see those words appearing elsewhere. Using your own logic, the only part of the launch sequence that applies to all launches (no arrows) is everything must be arranged as you (the team members) like, and it must fit completely inside the launch area.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Dean Hystad View Post

              It is one of the arrowed-items that says only when nothing on the field is moving or being handled will the referee begin the countdown. I don't see those words appearing elsewhere. Using your own logic, the only part of the launch sequence that applies to all launches (no arrows) is everything must be arranged as you (the team members) like, and it must fit completely inside the launch area.
              That's not what my logic would conclude. But I'm not going to continue the debate here.
              FIRST LEGO League Mentor and Referee/Head Referee since 2011.

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