[EMS Discuss] Punkin' Chunkin' Questions?

Sat Nov 16 16:10:37 PST 2013

Guess this is a good time to share team LEOs catastrophic part failure.  
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Sent from my iPhone

> On Nov 16, 2013, at 4:00 PM, Bob Miller <EMAIL HIDDEN> wrote:
> On a more mundane level, I have all kinds of annoying questions about
> the timing of the event.
> First, the official start time is 11:00.  Should teams arrive and
> start setting up at 11:00?  Or is 11:00 the time of the first
> competition launch? Or something else?
> When can/should contestants arrive, and when will we know where we are
> launching from?  Team LEO will definitely need some time to set up on
> the firing line.  Not less than 30 minutes, possibly more.
> Also, you mentioned three minutes per turn, and that a contestant
> can't have energy stored in the chucker before their turn starts.  Can
> they have a pumpkin loaded in the machine before the turn starts?
> Does the pumpkin just have to launch in three minutes or does it also
> have to land?
> I'm a little worried that this event won't go on very long.  3 turns *
> 3 minutes * 4 teams = 36 minutes.  That's not a full afternoon.  Maybe
> we could do some unstructured pumpkin lobbing after the contest is
> over.  (Assuming that any of us still have working chuckers, that
> is... (-: )
>> On Thu, Nov 14, 2013 at 10:38 AM, Rick Osgood <EMAIL HIDDEN> wrote:
>> I will note that it's interesting to see how it played out since there was
>> no rule about having to keep things secret or having to disclose
>> information.  I suppose the secrecy aspect is a natural response because as
>> Ben said, you feel like you might lose a competitive advantage by allowing
>> the other teams to try and one up your design.
>> You know, for a contest like this, I imagine that most teams couldn't look
>> at a completed chunker and really know how far it will launch a pumpkin
>> without actually testing it.  So you can always leave those numbers a
>> secret, which might make the competition day more fun.  You can still work
>> together on the design but if you don't know how well the other team's
>> design actually works then you won't know whether or not you need to worry
>> about it.
>>> On Thu, Nov 14, 2013 at 10:30 AM, Bob Miller <EMAIL HIDDEN> wrote:
>>> I hear you, Ben.  The whole secrecy thing is largely my fault, I
>>> think.  I thought it would make the contest more fun to be in "stealth
>>> mode" and let people guess what Team LEO was up to.  But we're also
>>> unable to tap into the rest of the group's expertise, and it's hurting
>>> us.  And the secrecy is not turning out to be as much fun as I
>>> expected.
>>> I'd favor some kind of disclosure rules for next year, too.  I'd be
>>> okay with mutual disclosure right now, too, but I'd have to check with
>>> my teammates first.
>>> On Thu, Nov 14, 2013 at 9:46 AM, Rick Osgood <EMAIL HIDDEN>
>>> wrote:
>>>> This is good stuff.  I'm not sure what the answer is.  We can try to do
>>>> larger group projects as a whole group but those tend to have a problem
>>>> where there is no set deadline and the project can get stale.  The near
>>>> space balloon comes to mind.  The competition creates a real solid
>>>> deadline
>>>> that must be met so work has to get done.  I agree though that it might
>>>> be a
>>>> more overall positive experience if everyone could openly work together
>>>> and
>>>> help each other in a friendly way.
>>>> Perhaps for future competitions we can require some level of openness or
>>>> something.  Like maybe you can keep your design secret until 2 weeks
>>>> before
>>>> the contest or something like that.  This way most teams will be
>>>> committed
>>>> to a design and they won't have enough time to really change what they
>>>> are
>>>> doing based on other teams designs.  That way there is less worry about
>>>> the
>>>> secrecy aspect and teams might be able to help each other out.
>>>> Another idea would be to hold smaller scale contests at EMS where teams
>>>> must
>>>> build their contest entries at the shop during designated times.  For
>>>> example we could have a weekend "hackathon" where you have to build some
>>>> contraption from Friday - Sunday and you must do it at EMS.  That way
>>>> the
>>>> shop is bustling and there's no way to keep it a secret.  But the
>>>> contest is
>>>> so fast paced that people won't have time to be concerned with what
>>>> others
>>>> are doing.  Not sure if that would work but it's an idea at least.
>>>> I do intend to share information about each team's entry on the EMS blog
>>>> once the competition is over assuming the teams work with me on it.  I'm
>>>> happy to publish that information sooner if any teams are willing to
>>>> give up
>>>> some parts of their design plans and open up to the others.  I think
>>>> progress posts would be awesome.
>>>> On Thu, Nov 14, 2013 at 9:37 AM, Benjamin Hallert <EMAIL HIDDEN>
>>>> wrote:
>>>>> I've been thinking about something lately, I thought I'd give it a shot
>>>>> of
>>>>> putting it down on paper here. In the past we've had group projects
>>>>> that
>>>>> really fostered cooperation and teamwork and that's some of the stuff I
>>>>> like
>>>>> the most about being part of the maker space. While I really like the
>>>>> idea
>>>>> of having a friendly competition, the air of absolute secrecy that has
>>>>> surrounded this contest has felt a little deflationary. I understand
>>>>> the
>>>>> reasoning behind it (giving up a competitive advantage is alien to us)
>>>>> but I
>>>>> still feel like there's something missing.
>>>>> I'm guilty of this too, don't get me wrong. I'm not sending out a bunch
>>>>> of
>>>>> pictures of the project that I'm working on either, and I suppose it's
>>>>> probably not reasonable to expect everyone else to change how they're
>>>>> approaching this either. I guess I'm just saying that I miss working on
>>>>> projects collaboratively without seeing fellow EMS members as "the
>>>>> enemy".
>>>>> Is there any sort of halfway point between friendly competition and
>>>>> teamwork
>>>>> on a group widescale? I don't know, so I guess I'm throwing it out to
>>>>> the
>>>>> group for consideration for the future.
>>>>> For example, I absolutely know that the members of team LEO would be
>>>>> able
>>>>> to offer insight into the launcher team kerbalnauts is working on. It's
>>>>> a
>>>>> bunch of really smart, great problem solvers whom I enjoy speaking with
>>>>> and
>>>>> working with. I like to imagine that I might be able to assist in
>>>>> someway to
>>>>> someone else too, of course, but whatevs.
>>>>> I'm not trying to advocate for a change to future contests or this. I
>>>>> guess I'm just trying to capture some thoughts I've been having in text
>>>>> to
>>>>> see if I'm alone in this or if it has any value to anyone else.
>>>>> That said, I'm really looking forward to the big event!  Hopefully we
>>>>> can
>>>>> put on a fun show for our families and maybe even drive some membership
>>>>> expansion. Are we reaching out to any local media?
>>>>> - Ben
>>>>> On Thu, Nov 14, 2013 at 9:26 AM, Rick Osgood <EMAIL HIDDEN>
>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>> Any one running into any problems?  Any more questions about the
>>>>>> contest
>>>>>> to help you design your creation?  I know the whole thing is kind of
>>>>>> vague
>>>>>> but that's mostly because this is the first time we've done it and we
>>>>>> don't
>>>>>> really know exactly what rules we need or want.  Let me know!
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>>> --
>>> Bob Miller                              K<bob>
>>>                                        EMAIL HIDDEN
> -- 
> Bob Miller                              K<bob>
>                                        EMAIL HIDDEN
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