High School FIRST FRC team. I wrote software and pretended to build things.


August 2011-May 2012


Bunch of people at high school


Walton High School


Building robots to play games is fun


Ahh, high school. I mostly catalogue this project for the nostalgia, honestly. I started on the robotics team in my junior year of high school, which is also when I settled on programming/engineering as The Thing I Will Do With My Life. It was quite the revelation, actually.

But yes, high school robotics. A game is announced in a big ceremony, and then there are six weeks to design and build a robot for it. As with college, I found this project much, much more educational than most classes in the school, and the people doing it much more skilled.

What did I do? It’s hard to say, in retrospect - really I don’t think I accomplished much, to be honest. I wrote software and designed some things, and built some things, but as it goes most ended up being unused or not working. Looking back, it’s easy to see myself as being incredibely unimpressive back then in many respects. But hey, I was young. And the experience was fantastic - this team introduced me to the Big Challenges of large team projects: long unproductive meetings, ambiguous leadership, the fragility of deadlines, the cold hard truth that it is possible to invest incredible amounts of energy and get nothing back, and so on. Though, it must be said I was introduced to the Great Joys of large team projects as well: working alongside cool people, periods of solid cooperation, the exhilaration of things working after countless failed attempts, the tireless drive as deadlines approach and the excitement as the competition dawns. It was a good time.


  • I was so young...