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2018 RoboSub Rules & Tasks

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  • #61

    Because gold chip is such an integral part of both Roulette and Cash In, we are a little panicy not being able to fully test it beforehand - especially picking up the ball. Is there any way we can get a solid design for the tray soon so we can test? We really don't like the idea of going to competition without such a large part of the competition still up in the air (especially because we're designing a fully different manipulator for it!)


    • #62
      Random Pinger
      • You need to be able to score points (any points) in each of the tasks (Roulette and Cash In), in order to request the random pinger bonus.
      • If you are in Cash In, and you surface, that counts, since you have scored points for that task.
      • If you, successfully, drop markers into Roulette, that counts, since you have scored points for that task.
      Does that answer your questions?

      Find Casino
      Sorry for any confusion...

      Before the start of your run, you may lay hands on your vehicle to prepare it for it's run (similar to how we've always done it). If you happen to grab a heading to the gate during the time, great. Before you leave the dock, you make request a coin flip. At that point the vehicle will be pointed in the random direction (by either the diver, or the team member on the dock), and you can start your run.

      Hopefully, that answers your question(s).

      Roulette: Did I not confirm that? The scoring says "any", so yes you may use the red/green balls from Cash In for Roulette. There is currently a cap set for: Roulette, Play Slots and Cash In. In each case, the two highest values will be taken per run.

      No limit for surfacing points.

      I'm looking forward to seeing you string all those things together. For many reasons, we placed caps on some of the tasks.


      • #63
        Play Slots

        The latest rendering...
        Attached Files


        • #64

          We have been playing around with Cash In at our pool and we have a few concerns

          With the bins, we are worried about the shape of the bin and where the golf balls are. It does not take much for the balls to leave their little holders - they all moved out from the force of our swimmer moving away from them. This means that our vehicle can't even get close to the bins without the balls moving due to the thrusters. Is there any way we can get the bins in a shallow concave shape? Sort of like this bowl . Then the balls will always re-center themselves when they move. Having them all clumped together also greatly helps because going for the center of the bin right now has very low chance of picking up any balls unless we have a large manipulator and going right for one of the balls makes us hit the edge of the bin because they are so close to the edge (and then all the balls roll out of the bin because we hit it).
          We seem to be at a point where the balls move too easily so we should increase the height of the holes, but then it makes it even harder to pick up the balls. And if we aim for the middle of the bin and want to pick up the balls, we have to make our manipulator bigger, but then it makes it significantly harder to line up and not hit the edge of the bin. And if we aim for each ball individually, we have to make the manipulator smaller, but we still end up hitting the side of the bin. I fear this will be even worse with Buy Chip. We are especially concerned about Buy Chip seeing as we still don't have a solid design for it and it will be harder to pick up than from the bins. We currently don't see Buy Chip as feasible with these constraints.
          Basically, picking up the balls right now with the shape of the bin is very near impossible from our testing - and I promise you, we have been trying.

          When it comes to the square and funnels, we are very uncomfortable even attempting the below water funnels right now because of how close they are to the surface. For the below water funnels, we are trying to use our downward facing camera and our downward facing manipulator (makes sense to us) and use our forward facing camera and forward/upward manipulators for the surface funnels. However, we can't get above the red and yellow funnel without surfacing because of how close they are to the surface of the water. And because they are at the corners, we are very uncomfortable surfacing because of the high chance of ending up outside the square. Can we either have them on little towers anchored to the ground (sort of like the tower that the previous two years recovery object were on) or at least get them lowered at least a further 6-8 feet? Otherwise, this entire task essentially feels like a "surface" task.
          Also, with the "surface" funnels, you said that these would be "just below the surface" - how much below the surface do you mean? If we can get the other two funnels on little "towers", might we recommend having the "surface funnels" modeled 1-2 feet under the water like how you have the current below water funnels? Still very challenging.
          We greatly feel that this would make this task much more reasonable but still greatly challenging. This recovery task in general is significantly harder than any task in the past and we feel it is currently very unapproachable, even to an experienced team.

          We would also like to request pushing back on the 2 balls per funnel limit. Cash In is quite the monster of a mission right now and with such a big limiting factor on the points, it deters from attempting the mission.



          • #65
            Just a few...? I'm glad.
            Thanks for the write up.

            As always, I appreciate everyone's feedback.

            I'm a bit surprised by this. They _seemed_ stable when I shook them around while sitting in their holes, but that's the problem living in the desert and not testing things in the water, where everything changes.

            Since all I have invested in the task so far is a drawing, I'm happy to entertain other alternatives. I can draw up an even more shallow funnel (similar to the ones at the corners), so that the balls will clump together in the middle. I don't think I can make those circular, so they will be a 9" square.

            I don't believe I ever said the surface funnels would be below the surface. They are intended to be on, or very close to, the surface.

            If we drop the sub-surface funnels to be ~10ft below the surface, at that point, it makes more sense to place them on 5-6 ft towers. I'm ok with that.

            I'm open to allowing more than 2 balls.

            Buy Chips:
            Since the ball is contained within the "narrow" tray (and the hole), it hopefully shouldn't move around too much, and if it is dislodged, it should settle back into it's holder. Aside from not knowing the final design, what are your other concerns? Is the small area to shoot for a concern?

            I'd like to get, at least, one other team to comment on these changes. So don't be shy.


            • #66
              Thanks for understanding Daveman ! We really appreciate your understanding of how difficult this task is.

              A much shallower funnel would work well. We basically lost all the balls to the bottom of the pool each time we got close to the bins so hopefully the funnel will prevent this. Can we get a mockup soon so we can start testing? We can also make a version of a shallow funnel and give feedback

              For the surface funnels, because they sit on top of the PVC, we find they sit about 3-4" (at least) above the water level. This is quite high for a vehicle that is underwater to reach.

              We would love love love if the other two funnels could be dropped onto towers

              Please and thank you. Makes the point breakdown to the difficulty of the task much more balanced in our opinion.

              Buy Chips:
              Our biggest worry with testing with the Cash In bins is that once you hit the edge of the bin, because the border is so small, the ball(s) easily leave the bin and from there, they can't be recovered by the vehicle. The balls aren't particularly "sinky" underwater so it doesn't take all that much to bounce them out of the bin.
              Because the design of the tray hasn't been discussed largely and we definitely do not want the design to only be confirmed at competition, would it be reasonable for the same shallow funnel (if we decide to do that for Cash In) is used as the tray at Buy Chip?

              Thanks again!


              • #67
                Here's our two cents worth of opinions on the changes:

                Firstly, we think the changes are too drastic at this current junction of testing and we had already earlier iterated on several of the tasks. For international teams like ours, this period is going to be the ship off period for us to the States. This would mean that we would not have sufficient time to test and develop the new mechanisms to adapt to the changes in the tasks. We find this unfair at be changing so much at this time and would hope a lesser solution be made.

                So our comments specifically by tasks:

                Bins (For cash-in to not confuse with roulette)
                We have already designed a grabber that can optimal pick up the balls based on Daveman's latest posted layout(read #42), previously suggested by cuauv (read #36). If the arrangement were to change to bunch together now, we would have to design a different manipulator for it which we do not have the time to test at the moment due to shipping.

                We feel that attaching the sub surface funnels to underwater towers changes the entire gameplan as this greatly decreases the difficulty of the original task. Especially since it is already this close to the competition, changing the funnels position significantly will prove to be disadvantages to teams that had to design their manipulators to complete the original task or had originally chosen to give up on the funnel task to due its difficulty.

                Considering the fact that dropping the balls into the sub surface funnels is a difficult task (only if the sub surface funnels are NOT placed onto towers), increasing the limit for the balls per funnel is agreeable.

                Daveman can you confirm on whether you have decided if the dice can be further spaced out?
                Last edited by bumblebee; 07-09-2018, 08:47 AM.


                • #68
                  If bumblebee has successfully been able to use the existing bins, then we can keep the existing design. However, would it be possible to make the bins more stable? They are currently only held up by the post and we find hitting the bin off center at all makes it bend and the balls to fall out. Our main concern are the balls falling out of the bin.

                  We don't think that moving the two funnels further down in the water changes the original task drastically. The two subsurface funnels are intended to be below the water and with them currently being only 2' below the surface, not many vehicles would be able to take advantage of these funnels if you are even close to 2' in height (which more vehicles are). Moving the funnels further down in the water makes this task, in our opinion, more along the lines of how it was originally intended - of keeping aspects of the underwater recovery task while also making it challenging with the additional funnels on the top. Moving these funnels further down is not that much different that, say, moving the dice further apart.

                  Even if the funnels are placed lower down, this is still a very difficult task.


                  • #69
                    Yes, we did test on the bins. The balls may come off after we pick up but we don't see this as a big problem. Grabbing generally does not knock the ball off.

                    For funnels and balls I guess let Daveman decide (or tie breaker from another team) And we don't think its the same as the dice since the funnel affects manipulator design which takes weeks to develop and fine tune and runs the risk of surfacing + requires a more complicated manipulator that can drop the ball forward(potentially multi DOF manipulator), whilst spacing out the dice task is mostly movement.


                    • #70
                      Can we potentially make a second layer of the holes that hold the balls? This would make them more stable. And/or would it be possible to keep the balls in the same location but make the overall bin a bit larger so it's harder to hit the edge when going for the balls? This would also help with vision and shouldn't affect any existing manipulators teams have.
                      We have been experimenting with the bins not on the stand but instead held up by block weights. Not having the stand, we found, makes the bin a lot more stable as the bin is supported from underneath at all points.

                      We just feel that the above surface funnels were meant for the challenging and complicated manipulator while the subsurface ones were meant to more similar to previous years and not as challenging. If you can do the funnels where they are now, moving them downwards shouldn't affect whether or not you can do them further down. Currently the number of points you get for placing the balls in below water and surface funnels are the same - perhaps we can increase the points of above water funnels to better represent how they are more challenging.

                      We would also very much like to get Gold Chip figured out before competition.
                      Last edited by cuauv; 07-09-2018, 10:21 PM.


                      • #71
                        Funnel :I agree with the cuauv's idea and drop the sub-surface funnel deeper sounds great .we also try the sub-surface funnel task,it's uncomfortable with the distance between sub-surface funnel and surface is only 60cm(or 2ft),So 5~6ft or deeper(not deeper than 10ft) is great ,but we don't suggest the funnel drop on the low tower(it's too low) just like the table last year ,we use the front camera to find the funnel and we have finish this task,it's a bad news for us if the funnel drop on the low tower.
                        Balls: we are worry about the circle hole left after we grasp the ball,it will confuse the vision system ,2 ball or more it's ok.
                        Last edited by HEU-AUV; 07-10-2018, 09:04 PM.


                        • #72

                          How would you feel about putting the funnels on taller towers? If the funnels are lowered 5-6 feet, these poles will be about 7-8 feet long and we are worried about running into them. How about towers that are 7-8 feet tall, which places the funnels at the same place as lowering them.


                          • #73
                            Originally posted by cuauv View Post

                            How would you feel about putting the funnels on taller towers? If the funnels are lowered 5-6 feet, these poles will be about 7-8 feet long and we are worried about running into them. How about towers that are 7-8 feet tall, which places the funnels at the same place as lowering them.
                            We just worried about the deadroom of our DVL(2ft) when we use the front camera.Taller tower with 7ft~8ft is ok.
                            Last edited by HEU-AUV; 07-10-2018, 09:08 PM.


                            • #74
                              I've been giving this one a lot (and a lot) of thought, and here is my decision. I very much appreciate all of this discussion.

                              What would be the most fair, at this stage of the competition, I'm not going to make any changes. The tasks will stay as they have been described.
                              • The funnels will stay where they are: On the surface and ~2 ft (~60cm) below the surface.
                              • The bins will stay as designed, but I will look into making them more stable. cuauv , can you describe more about the block weights?
                              • I will remove the cap of 2 balls for Cash In. Go wild!
                              • The area for the dice will stay as defined in the Mission and Scoring.


                              • #75

                                Even moving the funnels down from 2ft to 3-4ft would help significantly. This entire task feels like a surface challenge with them so close to the surface. We can't even get above the funnels.

                                Also, at this stage in the game, without Gold Chip having been designed, we can't test it and it is unfair for us to only be able to see the final design at competition. Can we either get a design in the next day or two or can this element of the competition be removed? We can't really compete with something we don't know.
                                Last edited by cuauv; 07-11-2018, 01:35 AM.