VEX Forum Upgrade 2019

Let me know where you’re seeing these issues and I’ll take a look. One thing that may be causing confusion is this: The links work, but you unfortunately have to open them in a new tab.

The thread you linked originally was from a very old (~2004) whitepaper from before CD-Media existed in its last state, and may not have been covered by the mass import into Discourse. VEX Forum doesn’t have these custom add-ons, so that shouldn’t be as much of an issue.

Brandon, I understand that this is very old content, but every time new students get excited about building two input planetary transmissions (1) (2) I try to show them one of vf threads explaining planetary transmissions as well as the Thunder Chickens CCT as one of the few working examples.

In the CD-51506 thread most of the links now work, except for “64’s 2003 CVT”. Also on the Thunder Chicken CCT thread the white paper is now downloadable again (Thanks!) but the link in the post body is still broken.

And staying on the topic of CVTs, in this thread the link in the first post is also broken, and the picture in the second post is missing, while the link behind it would go to the correct image on site.

I am not trying to be extra nitpicky, but I believe that a lot of value of the sites like and is contained in the links to the related topics, which take the information and opinions in the separate threads to the next level in the knowledge hierarchy when they are properly interlinked.

If you already have a script that could detect broken links and recover most of them, that would be a great and relatively easy way to preserve the value of the site that was accumulating over the years.

There already are multiple unofficial VEX discords

And none of them are worth the electrons they slaughter putting pixels up on the page. The advantage here is the heavy mod fingers on slowing the nonsense down.

The problem I have is these dis-discords get all balled up in some hot topic (B05!!). I’m hoping that this keeps the VIQ feel.

I disagree. I’ve learned way more from the unofficial vex discord than here. It has quicker responses and from people who are generally more involved in the program. It’s quicker, more personal interactions than here. That just the benefit of a live text chatting platform. It’s less professional, but not really in bad way. Nobody really talks about BO3 on there anymore.


I disagree as well. In my opinion it’s easier for more experienced teams to help younger teams on discord if they ask for help because it’s a livechat rather than a forum. It’s also easier to find answers on the discord because of this because you have sectioned chats and many many hours of conversation that you don’t see on here. Yes there is a lot of junk on there, but the amount of learning gained from personalized help I’ve had on there is still far greater than anything that I’ve had in the past on here.

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I use PMs to do the same on here. The Discord “junk” (as you put it) is kind of hard to wallow through for me.

The point of a forum is that it is a structured archive of information. Anyone in search of information can easily search the forum and often find a satisfactory and coherent answer. Messages in a chatroom are often short and meaningless; you must pore through a long chain of messages to be able to glean any meaning from old messages.

Yes, sectioned… It pales in comparison to the highly structured and sectioned nature of a forum. And I genuinely don’t understand how you consider finding answers on Discord at all a reasonable thing to do.

Seriously people…
You need to get used to doing your own research. You will never get a job if you always rely on others to spoon-feed you the answers.

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Don’t get me wrong, this forum definitely has its purpose. It’s useful as an official, regulated, archive of information. All of this said, it still doesn’t have the same feel as Discord. It’s a personal preference. Nobody expect it to have the same feel, because it’s not the same platform. To me, it’s essentially the same as talking to someone at a competition. You won’t write down everything they say, and keep it to be searched through later, you just learn from it. That’s all that matters to me.

Do you seriously consider using Discord being “spoonfed”? It’s just as much “research” as asking another team, or going on the VEX Forums for information. Admitting your designs may not be the best, and taking inspiration from others is an important life skill, and will get you a job. Nobody is “relying” on anyone else. The discord is a different type of community. but that doesn’t make it less of one. People have different ways to learn, and instantaneous interaction is one of them. You don’t have to be condescending about it just because you prefer a different style of learning.


So let me get this straight if I have a reference at a job I should just ignore that and find a job elsewhere… Because that’s what your saying.


I completely agree. The point I was getting at is that learning from chatroom conversations after the fact is often challenging. Obviously you will learn if you’re directly involved in the conversation in the first place.

I have no idea what actual conversations occur on the Unofficial VEX Discord. But the implication I gathered from your post and @Will_Xu’s post suggests that people asking questions are simply getting prompt answers, rather than necessarily being encouraged to methodically think about their questions and drive their own independent research. If that is an incorrect impression, so be it. Either way, I never said there was a lack of learning potential, or that the Discord community is necessarily lesser than the forum community.

Also, to be clear, this spoon-feeding happens far too often here on the forums for my liking. And there are tons of duplicate questions asked because many people don’t bother trying to see if their question has already been answered somewhere.

I’m not comparing the communities here and on Discord. I’m only commenting on their separate strengths and weaknesses as different tools that both accomplish some of the same goals. And the spoon-feeding is often both the fault and detriment of the person asking a question without doing any prior research.

I disagree. The forum and the discord both have their own place, both being far from worthless.

Have you spent any length of time in any of these servers? They are quite useful for fast-paced discussions. What would take days on the forum can happen in an hour on the discord. Hundreds of people (including myself) have had programming questions answered in minutes or seconds rather than hours or days. Surely this must have some value?

While I still visit the forum for its better signal to noise ratio, its slower nature means much important discussion simply isn’t possible.

As for the tendency to get fired up about a topic, that is true, but it is far from the most talked about thing. Most discussions are constructive and I have learned a lot from my time on the unofficial discord.

Finally, these discords that you call worthless have allowed me to keep up with my friends from vex much more consistently than would have been possible otherwise. It has formed a tighter community here in arizona that I value very much. What would you have us do? Resort to the USPS or E-Mail? And for what reason?


No, that’s not what I’m saying at all.

I’m saying there’s no incentive or value to a company in hiring someone if that someone cannot or will not independently apply a methodical process to solving problems. If you resort to consulting someone else at the first sign of difficulty, what value do you really bring to the table?

I disagree, asking for help doesn’t mean your completely incompetent it just means you’re willing to admit your faults.

Asking for help is perfectly fine.
Asking for help without putting in any effort to figure out the answer on one’s own is… less fine.


Those are magik words to the engineers ears’ :slight_smile:

I agree with many of @sazrocks’ and @Barin’s points about forums being more structured than discord which, while being noisy, has a quick access to very good subject matter experts…

You really need to have multiple levels, from a fast paced chat, to more structured topic threads, all the way to the more permanent wiki-style persistent knowledge repository.

What is killing me about current system is the high level of fragmentation and very poor discoverability of information. There are tons of closed discord vex related servers, there are closed coach facebook groups, there are individual teams’ and clubs’ blogs, …

(See this thread: Great Resources for VEX)

It is not easy googling anything vex specific as it is. And, although new built-in vexforum search is a big improvement, it doesn’t have google auto-complete / search-as-you-type wizardry.

We live in the era of the knowledge economy and the world is flooded with terabytes of newly generated information everyday.

Students who do VEX today may dream of building robots when they grow up, but I am pretty certain that many of them will have to tackle the problems associated with overproduction of information in the future.

There will, probably, be as many jobs in trying to harness the power of AI to make sense of all the chaotic information being generated and stored worldwide, as in all the industrial manufacturing combined.

We might just as well start learning about this problem now, using VEX online ecosystem as an relatively easy to understand example…


So anyone who wants to go into mechanical engineering should go into AI instead as mechanical engineering will be replaced with ai? You said I’m just repeating what you said.

Respectfully, I think you are reading too deeply into the posts here.

No one said mechanical engineering would be replaced by AI.
No one said mechanical engineers should necessarily go into AI instead.

@technik3k only stated that AI as a means of processing information is likely to be a large field in the future. And you most definitely do not need to “go into AI” to start exploring the problems of information overload and fragmentation of information.

Not really. There will always be demand for a small number of good Mechanical Engineers to develop hardware/mechanical side of things, but, I think, the demand for software side jobs will be much larger.

Mechanical Engineers are now much more efficient than 100 years ago, thanks to all the Automation (CAD) software. But somebody has to develop that software in the first place.

When I started the college, majoring in Electrical Engineering, I was all hyped about designing mechanical and electrical automation hardware. By the time I graduated there was significantly reduced demand for EEs, but there was very big demand for software engineers. Out of the group of about 30 students, that graduated from the program same year as me, only 4 work as EEs, about half (including me) do programming, and the rest is doing something completely unrelated, as far as I know.

This trend will only accelerate going into future. You can read some very interesting insights on Wikipedia: Knowledge Economy