Friday, September 12, 2008

Brush With Greatness

Our first year was a very difficult one. While we had many builders, we were a young team and Patrick and Clark were the only ones who could program. In the challenges, we actually did pretty well for our lack of experience. We came in under the average in terms of point total on the challenges but not near the bottom. We were thrilled at how well we had done.

This was the 2006 NC State FLL Championship and the powerhouse in our state was Magellan Charter School (see the academics section of the web page for their fll accomplishments). In that championship, we had a friendship round, an opportunity for multiple teams to work together to compete against other teams working together. As we stood side by side with the Magellan team, they all seemed to be six feet tall.

The Microbots met with them before the round started and they shared some of their secrets with us. It was amazing how they were accomplishing multiple missions with a single run. They were much older and they could have brushed us off but they didn't. They let us look at their robot and showed us some of their attachments. Our builders took notes.

They asked us what our best run was and we said "Individual Atom Manipulation". They said "then you will do that". We thought, "these guys are the epitome of gracious professionalism". We spent probably a half an hour talking with them. Our coaches even had to come looking for us. We were going to miss the challenge!

We won the “friendship challenge” with their help or maybe they won it with our help. They also won the NC State Championship and we said we want to be just like them someday.

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