Thanks so much @AidenPyle for diving into the CubeSat. What a cool project - would have died if my college had something like that going on.
Since everyone seems to want to pile on my CS claim - that is that VEX doesn’t really teach computer science fundamentals - I guess I will continue to make my argument even though I consider this off-topic for the discussion I’m trying to have here.
First, yes I knew a lot coming in and did not benefit from a lot of the super fundamentals that VEX offers people who are just starting. My brain optimizes out stuff I don’t need to know extremely efficiently, so having come in knowing a lot means my brain ignored a ton of the knowledge pool that a lot of other people probably got exposed to for the first time. To me, it didn’t exist. On the tail end of that, I did VEX when it was a baby. When worlds was 40-ish teams. Guys the hardware back then sucked. You had to use EasyC or RobotC - neither were good back then, and the logic they offered barely went beyond if’s and else’s. So back then the breath of what could be done was really limited. When the Cortex came out and after PROS and others really unlocked it’s potential - only then did things even start to get interesting.
I don’t agree with Tabor about program flow. All the magic in CS comes from algorithms and data structures. All the fancy work in robotics, mapping, SLAM, motion planning, computer vision - all goes FAR beyond making the instruction pointer go where you want it to go. Furthermore, understanding why the IP is where it is isn’t something VEX teaches either.
A first year CS student in university will be espoused to these things, probably in their first real CS course. You know, the 101 class. So if VEX does not teach first semester CS topics, I believe my claim is legit. A good way to prove me wrong would be to find the place (like in a curriculum) where VEX teaches linked lists or trees or binary search. If that’s in scope now - then my experience is outdated and I will capitulate by modifying my claim to read “when I did VEX, it did not teach fundamental CS topics”.
Back on topic, please…
Thanks, I never wanted to leave and was never formally told I could be “back” We’ll see how long I last this time.
You’re going to go far kid.
Yes. Just do them at a very well ranked school with name recognition. CMU, MIT, Stanford, etc. With a PhD in CS or SE you can pretty much enter Google as a manager. You’ll be looking to join Uber, Waymo, or Apple’s secret self-driving car program which I have interviewed for (sadly failed despite a lot of interest from them). Funnily my girlfriend has been hit up by the same recruiter for that role and just ignored it.
You’ll want to know a lot about computer vision, ML, sensor fusion and all the specific self-driving stuff as well as having a very strong background in modern C++ and embedded systems. It’s the exact domain I want to get into. I interviewed with Waymo and did well, was told to come back with 1-2 more years of embedded experience. Now that I’m at Goog, internal transfers are a lot easier so who knows but right now I’m on a team I really like and learning all the datacenter stuff is fun, lots of super talented guys in PCB design and FPGA/IC stuff that I need to mind-meld with before I contemplate jumping ship.
In general though too many people are thinking of self-driving. Not enough jobs, so I would urge you to keep that as a stretch goal. Hope that makes sense.