RoboHerd. It’s a name many have heard, or maybe seen while walking down the tech ed hallway. But not many really know what it is. So what is the robotics team, and what does it do?
In early March, the RoboHerd had their first and only competition, the Lake Superior Regional in Duluth. At competitions, the teams work to complete challenges outlined in the “game,” the list of challenges which is released at the beginning of the season. The competitions are scored individually, but each group works together with other teams to complete challenges, which didn’t work out well for the RoboHerd. “You get put into an ‘alliance’ of two other teams and then compete against another alliance, so there are six robots out on the field at a time,” said instructor and metal shop teacher Ben Wandmacher. “Unfortunately, our teams didn’t really match up. Most of the time, we scored at least half of the points for our alliance, if not more.” Considering this, the team does better than many other teams. “We got ranked according to how well we did with our alliances,” said team captain David Putz. “Even though that was kind of bad, according to points, we were still in probably the top fifteen [out of sixty-four] teams.”
The RoboHerd also had some technical difficulties during their practice rounds, which freshman Jared Schultz thought may have thrown them off a little as well. “Our robot has to be configured to the place’s internet, and ours wasn’t configured [by the hosts] right, so we couldn’t connect,” Schultz said. “Because of that, we only got two of our five practice rounds, which wasn’t enough to really be ready.”
However, the team still had fun. “The Duluth trip is my favorite part of Robotics,” said David Putz. “Duluth is really fun and it’s definitely a key part of the robotics season.”