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September 2012

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From:
VA/DC Referee Advisor <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
VA/DC Referee Advisor <[log in to unmask]>
Date:
Tue, 25 Sep 2012 18:49:00 -0400
Content-Type:
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  First the easy part.  Yes, when Rules 3 and 29 mention "intent",
they are speaking about the guessing the intent of the Challenge and
not the intent of the team.  I was attempting to emphasize that the
"intent of the team" is not mentioned in the Robot Game.

  Second, I guess that I could have just stopped with "the mission
requires impact," and not tried to qualify it or give a rationale.  As
your team notes, it is less plausible to make the case that ballistic
bowling balls would not be expected to cause damage to fragile mission
models.  Rather than state my opinion and run the risk of having it be
applied inconsistently, I've sent the question on to Scott Evans.

  I wouldn't ask a team to rely on the missing/inconsistent
information approach this far in advance of tournament season, as
there's the opportunity to get an official response in plenty of time
to react.

Steve Scherr
VA/DC FLL Referee Advisor

On Tue, Sep 25, 2012 at 11:31 AM, Brian Hardy <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> Thanks Steve,
>
> Since any approach that uses more than a very small amount of force may "damage" the bowling pin mission models, it sounds like the kids will need to be forearmed with an argument that the model was not assembled correctly (i.e. not straight and tightened to the degree necessary to prevent damage) or defective (too loose/worn to handle their intended purpose).
>
> As we went around the table analyzing each mission, I explained the bowling mission update (which states that the ball can be launched from any distance - from within millimeters to across the table). The kids took that concept to the extreme and started building a base launched catapult. I know there are issues about accuracy and precision with such an approach and it may well not work, but they're exploring it. They have no intention of breaking the pins, but the approach does nothing to prevent or avoid it.
>
> Am I correct in interpreting that this would be very hard for the kids to defend with a "poor setup or lack of maintenance" argument? (although they may have a case, albeit a week one, with the rule 29 "confusing/conflicting information" clause since the mission and update requires that they hit fragile objects from any distance and rule 22 says they can't break).
>
>
>
> Also, just to clarify, aren't the rule 3 references to intention in regards to the intention of the rules and/or mission, not to the team's intention. Wouldn't team intention would be covered under rule 29, "benefit of the doubt"?
>
> Thanks for your response
>
> Brian
>
>
> On Sep 25, 2012, at 9:06 AM, VA/DC Referee Advisor wrote:
>
>> Brian,
>>  thanks for bringing up this question.  I don't always think about
>> all the kinetic effects of the game until I see the robots in action.
>>
>>  There are a couple of pertinent bullets in Rule 22, Model Damage:
>> *  If a model is manipulated into a scoring condition, but gets
>> damaged during the process, the condition is marked scoreless.
>> *  Any model damage obviously due to poor setup or lack of maintenance
>> is treated with benefit of the doubt.
>>
>>  More importantly, Rule 32, Precedence/Authority, says that the
>> information in the Missions document takes priority over the Rules.
>> The Bowling mission requires that the pins be knocked down by impact
>> from a ball.  If the bowling pins were not correctly set up straight
>> and tightened, then it's quite possible that they would be damaged
>> because of the impact.  So, as long as the robot is not using a
>> bazooka-like effect to launch the bowling ball, my ruling would be
>> that damage to the pins would NOT cause the Bowling mission to be
>> marked scoreless.
>>
>>  Although I sympathize strongly with the distinction between
>> "deliberate mission model damage" and "accidental mission model
>> damage", this year's rules don't include wording about intention
>> (except to say that you aren't allowed to assume it [Rule 3]).  That
>> doesn't really affect teams, because teams that intended to do
>> something that could damage mission models shouldn't be able to argue
>> that it was unintentional.  So be careful, if the robot delivers the
>> garden upside down or on its side and one of the flowers breaks off,
>> then the Gardening mission is likely to be marked scoreless.
>>
>>  Lastly, recent Virginia/DC FLL policy has been that tournament
>> models will not be glued together, so your teams shouldn't expect to
>> see unbreakable models during a competition.
>>
>> Steve Scherr
>> VA/DC FLL Referee Advisor
>>
>> On Tue, Sep 25, 2012 at 12:43 AM, Bdh612-ess <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>>> Rule 25 says that mission models broken in the process of being moved into
>>> scoring position are scoreless. This seems obvious, but the bowling pins
>>> have me concerned - they're long, spindly, easily separated, and they're
>>> having a ball launched at them. I've had to put them back together so many
>>> times, I can't count.
>>>
>>> Does this mean the robot has to throw/launch/project/whatever the ball at
>>> the pins gently?
>>>
>>> Brian
>>>
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>
>

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