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Subcategories from this category: General, Tech Tips

Posted by on in General

Hi All,

I have been told that people have been asking Hayden about a scrimmage waitlist for Auckland. Please do not bother him about this as it is not under his control.

The situation is as follows:

1/ We are still trying to find a solution that will cause the least amount of confusion and be seen as fair to the greatest number of people (the holy grail).

2/ Until we know what will work we are going to go from scrimmage to scrimmage as far as a waitlist is concerned. This will be driven by myself as I get feedback on where the scrimmage system is working and not working.

Our latest idea THAT WE MAY FOLLOW BUT WILL CHANGE was described in this blog http://www.kiwibots.co.nz/kiwiblog/entry/qualifying-for-the-nationals-update.

For the time being please note that we will not create waitlists for any event other than the next one on the list. This will be that case until we see how things go.

Regards

Chris Hamling

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Posted by on in General

Hi All,

In order to answer the multitude of unhappy emails that I have been receiving about VEX aluminium 1x2x1x35 c-channel being out of stock in one go I feel that it is best to do so in a blog. This will keep everyone in the loop.

VEX USA were caught on the hop by the unprecedented demand for this item. No they did not anticipate the demand would be as high as it has been as they design the game not the robots that will play it. They have been doing their best to get stock as soon as possible.

The Kiwibots did have 40 sets of the part in stock but they sold in two days. We cannot hold as much stock as we would like due to financial constraints.

I have been told that USA will have stock again in around two weeks. It will take two weeks for my order to get here after that.

If you are thinking you may need 1x2x1x35 aluminium then please order NOW from our web store and I will add these 'back orders' to my stock order and you will be assured of getting your parts as soon as you possibly can.

Regards

Chris Hamling

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Posted by on in General

Hi All,

The Wellington Regional Competition for the KiwiChallenge is to be held at WelTec on Saturday 7th June from 10am.  The competition will be held in the WelTec Student Hub which is at the foot of the 7 storey high WelTec tower block building on Kensington Ave Petone.

Everyone is welcome to come and have a look at what's going on, so feel free to pass this invitation on to family, friends, colleagues etc.

Teams from Auckland and Palmerston North are coming down to Wellington for this Regional KiwiChallenge Competition.  We also hope to have the elements for the new international competition on display.

If you have any queries about VEX in Wellington generally, or about the Wellington Regional Competition for the KiwiChallenge in particular, you may contact me in the first instance.

Cheers

Adrian

Adrian Ferguson
Senior Lecturer - Mechanical Engineering
School of Engineering Technology
Wellington Institute of Technology
(+64) 04 920 0466 x563
021 134 9275

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Posted by on in General

Following the confirmation of reserved spots for teams in the 1st scrimmage on the 7th of June, a waitlist has been opened for the 1st Auckland Scrimmage. Teams can join this waitlist and they will be accepted in a first come, first served basis. Teams will then be notified if they can attend the scrimmage on the 31st of May based off the numbers on the waitlist.

Teams who want to sign up to be on this waitlist can sign up here.

Reminder also that ALL TEAMS who have reserved spots for this 1st scrimmage and who have not confirmed their registration MUST do this by Friday 30th May, 11:50pm. If they do not confirm their registration by this date, the teams will not be able to compete at the scrimmage. Teams can confirm their attendance here.

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Posted by on in General

As part of our ongoing changes to the way we run things we will be presenting formal Excellence Awards at Auckland scrimmages #10 to #12. This Award will not qualify the winning team for the World Championships and will be judged with a focus on the point matrix in the judges handbook with some modifications. This means that points gained from Robot Skills and Programming skills will count towards the award.

  • Teams will need to have entered two or more on line challenges to be considered for these Excellence Awards.

These Excellence Awards will

  • Allow the winning team to enter the Excellence Award at the World Championships if they qualify for the World Championships.
  • Get teams to seriously think about Robot and Programming skills
  • Get teams to enter on line challenges

We cannot offer these awards in other regions as

  • You need at least 16 teams at an event for the event to qualify
  • We are just testing the water at this point in time

Excellence Award winners will be recorded on RobotEvents.

These Excellence Awards are not equal to the Nationals Chaiman's Excellence Award and do not carry the status of that supreme National Award.

Chris Hamling

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Posted by on in General

As part of our ongoing changes to the way we run things we will be presenting formal Design Awards at Auckland scrimmages #3 to #9. This Award will not qualify the winning team for the World Championships but will be judged in the same way as the Design Award at the Worlds and the NZ Nationals with ethe exception that the Design Notebooks have to be handed in two weeks before the NZ Nationals.

  • You will hand your design notebooks in at the start of the scrimmage
  • A dedicated and formally trained team of judges will judge the submitted notebooks and mark them according to world standards
  • To enter the National Design Award you must have entered the design award at the scrimmages that are reserved for you (#3 to #9).
  • A formal award will be made and shown on RobotEvents

These Design Awards will

  • Allow the winning team to enter the design award at the World Championships if they qualify for the World Championships.
  • Act as a form of authenticity when it comes to the Design Award at the NZ Nationals
  • help teams prepart for the NZ National Design Award

We cannot offer these awards in other regions as

  • You need at least 16 teams at an event for the event to qualify
  • We are just testing the water at this point in time

Google 'vex design notebook examples' for more info.

Chris Hamling

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Posted by on in General

Hi everyone

Thanks for a great turnout on Sunday. After a few hickups with the system we got underway and the day ended with an exciting close finish.

Congratulations to the alliance team of Christchurch Home Education and Boys High winning the Regional Scrimmage.

We are all grateful to Miranda for her efforts in getting us up and running at CPIT. The time she is spending at the venue helping us and ensuring we have a successful event is really appreciated. All queries about the venue must go through Miranda and be approved by her and Michael. We are hoping that there will be some time during the next school holidays for students to come in and use the field. Dates and times will be sent out prior to the end of term once the dates are confirmed.

The roster is working well with teachers turning up and helping. Our senior students are taking on leadership roles, which is great for them and for the events. A big thanks to the students who ran the event helped set it up and scored for us. Also to those who put up curtains and perservered with the system and managed to get it going. It has also been noted and appreciated that students are willing to help each other with the new game and give advice when needed. This is becoming a very sharing and student led environment which is great to see. Christchurch teams will have received an updated scrimmage roster - please note the change of dates for Term 3.

Thanks again

Diane Atkins

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With the changes to the new season with the creation of the Ladder, teams competing in the Auckland Ladder scrimmages will be required to confirm their attendance/register before hand so that the event organisers know team numbers and also have time to notify teams on the waitlist that they can attendance the scrimmage. A basic overview of how this registration will work has been outlined below

  1. Teams who have reserved spots for the scrimmage MUST confirm their attendance to this scrimmage by the Friday 11:59pm one week before the scrimmage (in the case of Scrimmage #1, this is Friday the 30th May). This confirmation is done via an online form which will be posted on the KIWIBOTS website before each scrimmage on a blog post

  2. Once teams have confirmed their spots by Friday, teams on the waitlist that can attend the upcoming scrimmage will be notified of this and will have until the following Wednesday 11:59pm to confirm their attendance to the scrimmage. Another blog post will be sent out later detailing the waitlist and how it will work

  3. Once all teams have confirmed their attendance, they will be entered onto the online database and then on the Saturday of the event, teams will only need to check into the scrimmage, however we ask that teams turn up before 9:30am so that event organisers can start the scrimmage promptly at 10am

Please note that teams who turn up on the Saturday who have not confirmed their attendance will not be able to compete at the event; it is crucial that teams register and confirm their attendance beforehand and it is required for competition this season!

At this stage, we would like to ask that teams who have reserved spots for the first scrimmage on the 7th of June please confirm their attendance by this Friday by filling out the form located here. This form does not require you to login or use and account and is simple and easy for teams to register. More information about the waitlist will be posted soon and teams will have the chance to register for this later.

If you have any queries with registration/confirmation for the Auckland Ladder, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  and if there are any other queries, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Hi all,

It is finally possible for us to start to get teams to formally register for the 2014-2015 VEX Skyrise season.

Please could you URGENTLY download the registration form from here http://kiwibots.co.nz/starthere/2014-2015_team_registration_fo.htm , fill it in and return it to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Registration is especially urgent for teams competing in the first and second Auckland scrimmages.

If you have registered directly with robot events please let me know and I will put you on the list to receive a welcome pack when they arrive. There will be a cost of $15 to cover the cost of shipping the welcome pack to New Zealand and postage to get it to you. We do not know what the postage cost will be until we know how big the welcome packs are.

Thanks

Chris Hamling

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Hi all,

As you will already have seen we have finally received our first order of VEX Skyrise elements. These left the USA 2 weeks before the World Championships by sea and should have been with us two weeks ago but a serious accident on the ship resulted in them being delayed. We did our best but things conspired against us.

We have 5 sets in New Zealand that are allocated as follows:-

• Auckland 2 sets as all of our scrimmages will have more than 30 teams

• Palmerston North - 1 set

• Wellington - 1 set

• Christchurch - 1 set

I have 7 more sets on their way to us by sea and I will let you know when I have a firm eta. If you are interested in getting hold of a set you can order them from our website using the part number 228-3144 http://www.kiwibots.co.nz/vex-store/competition/skyrise-game-elements-detail The size of the kits has blown out the shipping costs compared to previous years. If we had brought them in by air they would cost $2,500 each! When the kits arrive they will be allocated on a first ordered, first shipped basis.

In order to ensure that we have enough sets for the nationals in 2015 we will offer a $500 credit to any team that can guarantee they will bring their full sets to the nationals in 2015. This credit will be made at the time of the nationals and is in effect the Kiwibots paying you to bring the kits to the event.

Best Regards

Chris Hamling

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Posted by on in General

Following the arrival of elements today, there will be the chance for teams to take a look at the new Skyrise elements and field tomorrow (Saturday 24th May) from 8am to 12pm. This will be at Massey University School of Engineering & Advanced Technology; there will also be a TV crew there as well, so a good crowd would be great.

Teams are welcome to bring robots along to test and evaluate the new objects

Time: 8am to 12pm
Location: Massey University School of Engineering & Advanced Technology, Level 1/Ground Level
Date: 24th May (Saturday)

We look forward to seeing you all there

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Posted by on in General

A spare VEXnet joystick has been picked up by Ormiston Senior College from the Auckland Kiwi Challenge Regionals last weekend. It has the number three written on it. If any teams have lost a joystick from the event; can they please contact KIWIBOTS and the return of the controller can be organised

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Posted by on in General

Following yesterday's blog post, there is a very high chance that there will be a set of Skyrise elements at Massey University this weekend. There will also be a TV crew present who will be filming VEX Robotics and it would be great to have teams come along to both be a crowd and take a look at the new elements.

The fields will be in the Ground Floor of Massey University and they will be available from 8am to 12pm this Saturday (24th May). Teams are welcome to bring robots and test them out on the new game in preparation for the first Auckland Ladder Scrimmage on the 6th of June.

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Posted by on in General

There is the possibility that new Skyrise elements will be arriving in New Zealand this weekend and the KIWIBOTS would like to give teams the chance to see and play with the new elements before the first Auckland Ladder scrimmage. This is not confirmed as we are waiting for the objects to arrive; however watch this space as we will announce if it is confirmed. 

This will be held at the Massey University School of Engineering and Advanced Technology on the ground floor and the venue will be open from 9am. There will be a single field with Skyrise objects which teams are welcome to take a look at and get observations or measurements for the first scrimmage in two weeks. 

We will let people know if this event is confirmed by the end of the week but are providing advance warning to ensure teams are aware of it.

 

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After receiving all teams' requests for scrimmages in the Auckland region for the 2014-2015 Skyrise season ladder; the reservations list for teams has now been developed.

Each team should receive an email today with the scrimmages they have been granted reserved slots for. If you have not received an email but have sent in your reservations, please contact Chris Hamling to have this issue sorted. 

Important Notes:

1/ Your ranking will be calculated from your results for all 5 scrimmages that are reserved for you. If we need to use rankings to qualify your team for the Nationals missing a reserved scrimmage will not work in your favour if you cannot make it up.

2/ If you cannot make a scrimmage that has been reserved for you for any reason then you will have to try to make it up by going on the waitlist. We cannot guarantee you will get a waitlist spot.

3/ We have not been able to come up with any acceptable excuse for a team to miss a scrimmage that would result in special consideration from us. There may be one but as with any sporting series it is those that perform 100% of the time that win.

4/ Drivers being ill will not be an excuse for missing a scrimmage as you can use a substitute driver.

5/ Space is limited and we will try to be as accommodating and fair as possible if you miss a scrimmage but our hands may be tied.

6/ Reserved space swapping will have to be approved by the Kiwibots WELL IN ADVANCE and will only be allowed in exceptional circumstances as it will cause vast amounts of work to be done in the backend. The Kiwibots will not be able to do any work to help you arrange swaps we will have to focus on the series.

7/ At this point in time you should consider all scrimmages at capacity as we need to keep some headroom for new teams etc.

Remember there is the Auckland Kiwi Challenge regionals on this weekend! - Please make sure you have registered if your team plans on attending!

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Posted by on in General

The Auckland Kiwi Challenge regionals will be held on the 17th of May at the Massey University (Albany) Recreation Centre. This will be the final event for the 2014 Tic Tac Topple season and is open to all teams that wish to compete and have a robot ready for competition. There is free parking available right next to the recreation center and it is located across the road from Albany mall and shops.

Date: 17th May
Times: 9am (Doors Open) -> 4pm (Venue Closes)
Location: Massey University Recreation Center

It has been requested that teams please bring their own tables or surface to work on and that ALL teams interested in attending this scrimmage, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  to let the event organisers know so that we can accommodate the right number of teams.

For those teams wanting final practice; there is a scrimmage tomorrow (10th May) at Kristin School which all teams are welcome to attend and get ready for the regionals

We look forward to seeing you all there!

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Posted by on in General

There have been a couple of changes to the location of scrimmages for the 2014-2015 Skyrise season in the Auckland region. These changes have been shown below

  • 5th of July - Scrimmage is now at Kristin School
  • 19th of July - Scrimmage is now at Ormiston Senior College


All other venues have remained the same and the full list of scrimmage dates and location is available below

• #1 - 7th June @ Whangaparoa College
• #2 - 5th July @ Kristin School
• #3 - 19th July @ Ormiston Senior College
• #4 - 2nd Aug @ Whangaparoa College
• #5 - 16th Aug @ Onehunga High School
• #6 - 6th Sept @ Whangaparoa College
• #7 removed due to General Election
• #8 - 11th Oct @ Glenfield College
• #9 - 13th Dec @ Onehunga High School
• #10 - 7th Feb 2015 @ Glenfield College
• #11 - 14th Feb 2015 @ Pinehurst
• #12 - 21st Feb 2015 @ Onehunga High School

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A map for the Kiwi Challenge Scrimmage at the Kristin School Science and Technology Block on the 10th May.  Could people please park in the Bass Road car park at the back of the school  and only vehicles delivering fields access the building via the Gate 2 car park.  This will be busy with sports and a considerable amount of school production activity so the school management has asked us to use Bass Road as much as possible.

Thanks

Martin Allen

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Posted by on in General

Hi all,

We are looking for locations for the 5th July and the 19th of July for Auckland scrimmages.

If you can host a scrimmage on these dates please let me know.

Thanks

Chris Hamling

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Hi everyone,

This Saturday's Auckland Kiwi Challenge scrimmage will be held at Long Bay College between 9am and 3pm. There will be volunteers there to help teams get robots working if they aren't finished, so please don't let that stop you from coming.

Here are the rules again:
http://www.kiwibots.co.nz/KIWICHALLENGEFILEs/tic-tac-topple_release2-hl.pdf

Thank you to Long Bay for offering to host.

The scrimmage next week will be at Kristin and the regionals the following week will be at Massey University.

Cheers,
AURA

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