fun with driver control...

Hello again everybody…

As we all (hopefully) know, a team is allowed to use 2 joysticks on a single robot. I’ve never used this method because it requires coordinating motion with somebody else (or switching with somebody else), and I prefer having complete control.

The question is this:

Do you use 2 joysticks, and if so, why? What benefits are there? Or is it just personal preference?

You might find this thread helpful.

I personally prefer driving solo, as I have control over everything that I need to do. I find that sometimes with two drivers the robot’s movements become less coordinated. Having one driver also prevents anger and hostility if one driver is not doing what they are supposed to.

However, some teams do prefer two. I will let them explain why they do.

I agree with you comepletely.

Thanks for directing me to this thread. It seems as though the people who use 2 joysticks have sound reasons for doing so.

It is essentially just the person’s/peoples preference. If 2 people work well together then they will do well opposed to 1 driver. I know the driver skills champions at the World Championships had 2 drivers.

Our gateway setup includes a single driver controlling the robot, the secondary “driver” who calls out our score as it changes and loads objects into the robot, and a coach who calls out the opponent’s score as it changes, lifts the gate (if needed), and keeps the driver to the general strategy. This setup allows us to keep controll of the score to max our SP while still keeping a buffer for the worst case doubler/negater situation.

As for Sack Attack tho, I’m not sure yet. We havn’t had a chance to see a field setup or run a match, but for those who have do you think this strategy would be possible? Or is it such a high speed game with descoring that such mental math would be too difficult?

I think the two advantages two dual control is that you have more thumb sticks, allowing you to control more parts of the robot accurately and smoothly, and that there is more than 1 driver sharing the pressure when games get tough. These can be negated by some good code, and a supportive team (or a ballsy driver :p), at which point I would say single driver is better because there is no chance of confusion between drivers. (ps. I know a single driver that beat the worlds score on a practice run.)

the answer is quite simple
ANSWER: it depends

how do you get the answer?

  1. drive with one person
  2. drive with two people
  3. decide which is best for your team

You don’t think its reasonable for new teams or drivers to get a few different points of view before forking out for a second remote? If you have tried both, what you personally preferred and why could help someone make up their mind…

At our first tournament ever (during the mid Round Up season), we had one driver. To be fair, we rotated the driver, but in each match there was only one. Our robots tend to have more moving mechanisms than others, so it became a bit much for one person to control. Ever since then, we’ve used two drivers. We have 3 separate drive teams, so each person gets a chance to drive, and so that one person being sick or gone will not destroy our performance, and the partners are paired by how well they work together in the heat of competition.

A controlling main driver might like to have a “yes-man” as a lift driver, but it’s also useful to have two human brains working the robot instead of one. We tend to keep people on the same job (so people who drive base will always drive base, and people who drive lift will always drive lift) so that they can specialize their skill. I’m usually a base driver, and I’m capable of driving lift, but when I do drive lift, I sometimes find myself waiting for the other person to raise the lift before realizing that it’s now my job.

We plan to stick with this setup for Sack Attack, and this year, both drivers’ jobs are going to get more complex. With two drivers, you can have a very complex robot and have a large number of controllable mechanisms.

We have always preferred to use two drivers, although we do change how the two drivers interact with each other and with the coach. On a typical Techna-PWN Robotics drive team the members (primary driver, secondary driver, coach) have the following responsibilities:
Primary driver

  1. He has primary control of the drive-train of the robot, usually with an arcade control configuration.
  2. He has secondary control of the lift, and has access to and operates the preset lift heights.
  3. He has primary control of the intake mechanism.
  4. He takes orders from the coach and gives orders to the secondary driver.
    Secondary driver
  5. She has primary control of the lift via analog joystick input, giving him more precise control.
  6. She operates all the other appendages such as alignment devices or descoring mechanisms.
  7. She takes direct orders from the primary driver as well is the coach.
  8. He keeps relative track of the scoring on the field.
  9. He relays the strategy to the primary driver.
  10. He communicates with the alliance team during the match.
  11. He operates the robot during autonomous, and enters match loads.
  12. He gets to yell at the primary and secondary driver, and they can’t retaliate until after the match.
    It may not be a perfect system, it may have made changes throughout the years, but it works for us, so there. Basically it’s all a hierarchy on who yells at who, who overrides who, and who gets to push the fun buttons. I hope this gives you an insight on the intricate operational structure of our team.