I’m NOT going to ask you to review videos of previous matches but I am (and I suppose others) trying to use them to understand the application of the certain rules, so I will at least restrict the basis of my following conclusion on recent youtube videos from state/nationals/country finals.
As we all understand during the 15 second auton (and therefore also true in programming skills) that, while in control of 3 bucky balls a robot is allowed to push a large ball in an attempt to initially knock 3 bucky balls to the middle zone. This is fair as long as the robot is not in control of the large ball. A seemingly very common strategy from the hanging zone.
But if said robot fails in knocking all of the bucky balls off the bump they are allowed to continue to drive over the bump knocking the remaining bucky balls. This seems to be true whether they now make contact with the bucky balls with the robot itself or the large ball that is, by this point, being controlled (held).
In my understanding, this should have been ruled as an egregious (match affecting) offense and the teams should have been disqualified. But in each case, maybe because it was obviously accidental the offending teams were allowed to proceed without repercussion.
To all of the teams that are currently preparing for the worlds (writing and rewriting auton code) this application of the rule does make a difference. A big difference
Although ALL teams should be very very careful when attempting this strategy, (as I’m certain you will tell me) when applied to programming skills, this lackadaisical approach can save precious seconds or score those additional match winning auton points.
So … will teams be disqualified for this offense at the worlds? What level of scrutiny will be applied to this strategy?
If one of the bucky balls falls off the bump (or even just moves a little) are we to conclude that the other two MUST have moved as well (no matter how microscopically small)? Can we assume that they were all touching to begin with and like pendulum balls transfer motion? Are they now no longer in their starting positions, hence considered random?
And at what exact point is an uncontrolled and loose, yet obviously directed large ball considered in-control or held? To make matters worse, all of this can occur in a fraction of second. That’s a lot for a field referee to consider and then apply rulings consistently from match-to-match or even from ref-to-ref.
I know that there have been many questions on the topic but I don’t think that any have addressed just how much a bucky ball must move to be considered random so that an auton robot may make legal unintentional contact. Is this a valid argument or am I simply in-the-dark about something very obvious? If so, I apologise.
If you require more detail I could point out some examples in existing videos.
John (can’t wait to be in Anaheim again )