Monday, January 30, 2017

Robots and Learning

This weekend I took my FTC team to their local competition.  For those who do not know FTC is a competition where the kids 7th to 12th grade build 18 inch by 18 inch by 18 inch  robot (which may expand) to do certain challenges in 2 and 1/2 minutes.  Part of it is driving, but part of it is programming the robot to work on its own for 30 seconds.  It's a long haul to build the robot and get it up and running, especially when you are working with teenagers, but it is fun as well.  They learn about gear ratios, wiring, torque, all sorts of engineering stuff as well as how to present themselves.  Our team was doing great (some where between 2nd and 6th out of 26 teams for most of the game), but on our 5th and last run the robot decided it didn't want to talk to the drive brain and we fell flat our face.  Though the kids were disappointed, (understandably so), we took it as a learning moment.  What needed to be checked before we went on the field?  Who should have been in charge of that? What could we have done differently?  We encouraged them not to blame anyone, because crud happens and insisted they did way better then in the past.  At the very least, we lost nothing on the playing field during play.... there is a long tradition of leaper bots in our competitions.  But the take away we wanted them to see was they had fun at the competition and they learned not only from their mistakes and things that went well, but they learned from the other teams as well.  My girls are chatty, as are some of my boys, and they were talking it up with a lot of kids.  Which is the other point of these competitions.  Getting kids who like the same things to get together, talk over their ideas, and realize that being a "nerd" is not only fun, but are cool, as well!

Have a great day and pass on the fun!

Monday, January 23, 2017

Exciting Times

I'm taking this week off for preparations for our Robot Team going to their FTC competition.  It's taking a bit of my time, for some reason, and I'll be back to my fun writing next week.  Have a great week!

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Expanded Timeline For After Chaos (AC) Part 163

Year 163 AC
A council of priests is called in Gathering to decide on common rules, such as behavior between orders and if there will be any reciprocal help between orders.  Hundreds come, along with many mercenaries to protect the priests. There are some scuffles and a few deaths, but many rules are hammered out.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Expanded Timeline For After Chaos (AC) Part 162

Year 162 AC
Rumors of an underground school for wizards spread.  Though mages are tolerated, or even loved, in areas, since they revere the Gods of Light and Neutrality, wizards are reviled for revering the Dark Gods and casting spells of necromancy and other dark magics.  Wizard hunters and small groups of adventurers go in search of this "school".

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Expanded Timeline For After Chaos (AC) Part 161

Year 161 AC
A lost city is found underground far north of Karoon.  Many adventurers go forth in hopes of treasure and knowledge, many being hired by scholars.  Few leave the city alive, if at all.  There are rumors of monsters and demons, but no concrete information on what kills so many.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Expanded Timeline For After Chaos (AC) Part 160

Year 160 AC
A meteor falls near Sunvale, leaving a huge crater and debris which covers miles around. In the center adventurers find a special metal that is dubbed "Star Metal" and makes fine magic weapons.  Many go to the site to discover it's secrets.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Expanded Timeline For After Chaos (AC) Part 159

Year 159 AC
The richer people around Taina start sending their youngsters to the Dragon's Fire college on more regular basis to learn history, writing, and accounting so they can help their cities better.

Strange wind creatures are spotted on the plains of Ariella.  Many scholars and adventurers go to see what they may be or what they may mean.

Monday, January 9, 2017

Expanded Timeline For After Chaos (AC) Part 158

Year 158 AC
The water ways of the oceans of Northern Taina actually freeze over.  Adventurous souls explore the frozen waste land, some finding some quite extraordinary finds, such as unknown islands, animals, and a type of crystal found no where else. Some make a fortune scouring the frozen wastes for such finds.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Expanded Timeline For After Chaos (AC) Part 157

Year 157 AC
Dragon's Fire starts a school for Adventurers.  The school simply teaches wilderness survival, small magics to the slightly inclined toward the arcane, and how to bargain for supplies. Though slow to take off, the school is accepted world wide as useful and a good addition to the starting of an adventuring career.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Expanded Timeline For After Chaos (AC) Part 156

Year 156 AC
Snow sweeps through Taina, burying many of the small villages near the Tsalagi Mountains. Mages and priests go out and try to help and the call for adventurers to bring in supplies for these small villages go outs.  Many die, but people come together to help each other through the mess.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Expanded Timeline For After Chaos (AC) Part 155

Year 155 AC
A group of mercenaries, named the Thunder Spears, takes it upon themselves to police the eastern half of Taina.  For the most part they are fair, but they do take a heavy hand in some areas and take property when they have no right.  Some of the area leaders want them put down or out of the area.