January 24, 2015
Quixilver will be once again hosting its annual “Build a LEGO Robot” Day! Come join us and learn how to build and program a LEGO NXT robot! We will be hosting 2 sessions of the workshop on Saturday January 31st. Look forward to seeing you there!
Workshop is tailored for students ages 6 and up.
January 7, 2015
Even before the crack of dawn, before the sun’s gentle rays even touched the sky, Team 604, up and early, was already gathered at the doors of San Jose State University, in preparation for the kickoff to the season. After several tedious weeks of playing around and brainstorming about the stealthily dropped hints from FIRST, the game was finally released. FIRST was proud to announce the game, Recycle Rush!
The theme behind the game is the idea of recycling, which involves teams, or “Alliances” as the game calls them, of three robots. The game is played on a 27 ft. by 54 ft. field, and divided into two equal sections, distinguishable by the coloring, red or blue. Human stations are located at all four corners. Within the field there is a Landfill Zone, an Auto Zone, and 2 scoring platforms.
Robots score points by stacking boxes, called “totes”, onto scoring platforms, and additional points can be earned by stacking recycling containers on top of the stacks of totes. The next component is the pool noodles, also known as the “litter.” Litter is to be put either in the Landfill Zone or in the recycling bins. Alliances are required to stay on their own respective side.
The first fifteen seconds is the autonomous period, where the robots operate solely on the coding in their system. During this time, robots move the yellow totes and recycling bins into the auto zone. Stacking the yellow totes scores extra points. Additionally, robots may begin to acquire gray totes and recycling bins from the Landfill Zone.
After the autonomous period, is the tele-operated period. Drivers may then take the controls. Alliances earn points by stacking totes on the scoring platforms. Each tote is worth 2 points. Totes and litter can be obtained from humans through the tote chute or the litter chute. Recycling bins stacked on top of totes are worth four points. Litter in the recycling bin on top of the totes is worth 6 points. Litter in the Landfill Zone however is worth only one point. During this time up until the last 20 seconds, opponents can also attempt to throw litter onto the opposite side. This is given relevance by the fact that by the end of the game, litter that is not in either the Landfill or the bins is counted as 4 points each to the opposing Alliance. Alliances can also choose to work together and get a 20 pt cooperative bonus by putting four yellow totes on the step, the area in between each side. Stacking the four earns a twenty-point bonus for both Alliances as well.
A nice addition to this year’s game, the components used in the event—the totes, recycling containers, and litter—will be recycled or reused at the end of the season, either by the teams, or by FIRST.
November 23, 2014
On November 15th, the 2014 FLL Quixiliver Qualifier tournament took place at Leland. It was a great success thanks to the time and effort put in by the volunteers. 24 teams competed in 3 rounds of matches and 3 judging rooms, and several teams will be advancing on to the NorCall FLL Championships. Congratulations! We had a great time hosting the tournament and would like to thank all the volunteers, students, parents, and mentors for making it possible. Looking forward to seeing you again next year!
November 6, 2014
We recently renovated our t-shirt cannon and it was a hit at the football games!
September 5, 2014
On August 30th and 31st, we attended the inaugural Chezy Champs off season tournament, hosted by Team 254, The Cheesy Poofs, at Bellarmine College Preporatory. After a series of unlucky matches with alliance partners losing commincations on the field during the Qualification Matches, we were seeded 28th with a record of 3-7-0. However, we were picked by the 7th alliance captain, Team 5136, Mechapirates, along with Team 2485, WARlords, for Elimination Matches. Although we lost in quarterfinals to the eventual finalists — Teams 846, 971, and 2135 — we had a great time competing throughout the weekend. In addition, we were honored to win the Programming or “Such Controls” Award for demonstrated excellence in our controls system. We would like to extend a big thank you to our students, mentors, and alumni for their continued hard work and support, and to Team 254 for putting on this well-run tournament that we hope will continue for years to come. Congratulations to all the teams who participated at Chezy Champs, and we look forward to competing at CalGames on October 3rd and 4th!
May 2, 2014
After a long season of hard work, 604 attended the 2014 FIRST World Championships in St. Louis, MO from April 23rd-26th. This year, we were in the Galileo division along with several other California teams. Qualifying matches began on Thursday, and despite running into a few problems on Thursday and Friday night, we were able to seed 32nd out of 100 teams in our division, with a record of 6 wins and 4 losses. We would like to thank the NASA machine shop for their assistance so that we were able to repair our robot for matches on Saturday. Although we were not selected to move forward into division elimination rounds, we were still very happy with yet another successful season, and all our members and mentors had a great time. We warmly congratulate Team 27 RUSH on winning the Championship Chairman’s Award and becoming part of the Hall of Fame, as well as Team 254 Cheesy Poofs and their alliance for winning the World Championships and breaking the “Curie Curse”!
We were also lucky to meet FRC Director Frank Merrick and Dr. Woodie Flowers at the airport and were excited to be on the same flight home with our friends from Team 846 The Funky Monkeys and Team 1678 Citrus Circuits.
Congratulations to everyone on the completion of their 2014 season, and we look forward to seeing some teams at our off-season competitions!
April 21, 2014
On April 4th and 5th, we attended our second tournament of the year, the Silicon Valley Regional. After 11 qualifying matches on Friday and Saturday, we were seeded 14th and picked by the 4th alliance captain, Team 1280 The Ragin’ C-Bicuits, along with Team 100 The WildHats. We advanced to semifinals after two close quarterfinal matches. However, our alliance partner’s robot ran into some technical issues, and a back-up robot was called from Team 2489 The Insomniacs to play in our second semifinal match. Although we lost to the eventual Regional Finalists, we had a great time playing with all the teams.
We were happy to congratulate Mrs. Lane from Team 3256 WarriorBorgs for winning Woodie Flowers Finalist Award, and in addition, we were ecstatic to hear that Team 5027 Event Horizon, a rookie team we have mentored this year, won the Judges Award at their very first competition. We hope they will continue to grow stronger as a team and to be a model for future rookie teams. Congratulations to both teams!
As for 604, our safety captain received recognition for #1 in pit safety, and after two long days of competition, we were honored to receive the Silicon Valley Regional Chairman’s Award, marking our 7th RCA. As a result, we will be heading to St. Louis to compete with at the FIRST Championship event in just a few days. We will playing in the Galileo Division this year along with several other California teams.
Finally, we want to thank our sponsors, mentors, alumni, and parents. We could not be where we are today without their continued support and guidance.
March 9, 2014
Marking our first year of participation at the event, FIRST Team 604 kicked off our competition season at the 2014 San Diego Regional at the Valley View Casino Center. While initially faced with problems with shooter calibration and reliability, our team utilized our trussing abilities to our advantage, eventually seeding 8th at the end of qualification matches. We were fortunate to be on the 4th seed alliance with FIRST Team 3009, the High Scalers, and FIRST Team 3881, WHEA Robotics, and we persevered to semifinals to be defeated by the finalist alliance of FIRST Teams 987, 2485, and 3250. Ending our first day of the San Diego Regional, Quixilver auspiciously received the Entrepreneurship Award sponsored by Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers. We congratulate all the teams who participated in San Diego, and look forward to competing again at the 2014 Silicon Valley Regional!
February 19, 2014
Well, here we are — Bag and Tag day! After 6 weeks of hard work, Quixilver had one final day of preparation starting at 9:30 AM. Drivers and programmers had the entire day to practice shooting, passing, catching, picking up, and self-catching before sealing the robot and preparing it for shipping to our first regional: San Diego! We celebrated with a special dinner and recognized all of our wonderful mentors for their assistance and guidance. Finally, the robot was officially bagged at 10:46 PM and members left campus for the night at 11:30 PM. We are all excited for competition, but for now, we look forward to a good night of sleep!
At long last, we present our 2014 robot: Skyhammer!
January 6, 2014
Let the games begin!
This morning, even before sunrise, Team 604 was up and ready at San Jose State University to kickoff the new season. After several weeks of toying with game hints from FIRST, the broadcast for the 2014 game was finally released, and this year’s game is called Aerial Assist!
The game is played on a 25’x 54′ carpeted field with a truss that extends 6′ above the center and spans the width of the field. Two alliances — one red, one blue — each consisting of three teams compete against each other during each match, and robots on the same alliance must work together to move a 2′ diameter exercise ball from one end of the field to the other. Then robots will shoot the ball into either one of two 11’x 3′ goals located 7′ high, or robots may roll the ball into goals located on the lower corners of the field. Each match begins with 10 seconds of autonomous competition where robots each attempt to shoot one ball and drive forward to gain extra points. After that time, human players take control and teams will earn large bonuses if they successfully pass the ball over the truss and or catch the ball thrown by another robot before it hits the ground.
After the presentation, Team 604 headed out to the courtyard to distribute the Kit of Parts to 60 FRC teams, including 8 rookie teams. This year’s distribution took under 12 minutes, a new record! We were also thankful to see many of our alumni and to have their help at kickoff and our subsequent brainstorming session back at school. We’re looking forward to a great season, and we wish everyone the best of luck!