As today marked the beginning of a new sprint, we started the day making new stories and assignments. One of these were to finish and testing out prototypes before January 18, our Critical Design Review. There was a lot of research to be done to find measurements for the prototype parts. The business team taught rookies how to use Photoshop and Illustrator; once they got the hang of it, we began to work on the t-shirt designs.

While the mentors completed the building of the low goal, we set to work building our prototypes. One sub-division of the high goal team mounted their motor and wheels onto the three prong design while the other put wheels on the Falling Rake retrieval device. Teammates who were not working on those tasks completed the construction of the Kit Frame. The electrical team focused their energy on programming the drive code for joysticks and learning the program C++.

With half a day ahead of us and the Preliminary Design Review on our minds, we set to work. Designing proof-of-concepts, we continued to rebuild each prototype until they were deemed effective. Using materials such as pipe cleaners, LEGOs, cardboard, plastic pots, and a vacuum, innovative prototypes emerged.

After a yummy dinner provided by our family, we gathered at 7:15 to begin our PDR. Each group presented their ideas to teammates and mentors. Following each presentation, groups were asked questions to clarify their design. We thought about the designs presented to prepare to vote the next day.

On a cold winter morning in Mililani, Team 2853 gathered before the sun rose to greet the new build season. After six months of waiting, we were finally allowed to see the objective of the 2014 FRC game: Aerial Assist.

After stopping to get breakfast and a quick nap in the car, it was off to Mililani High School to begin brainstorming. Newly split into Preliminary Design Review (PDR) teams, we began to discuss possible strategies and robot designs, sharing our ideas with our teammates.