Toledo Workshop PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jamie Diamond   
Tuesday, 31 August 2010 08:24
WHAT: FIRST LEGO League Advanced NXT-G Programming Work

WHEN: 9 October 2010, 9:00 - 4:00

WHO: Presented by the Cougars, of Columbus, OH (who have a
history of AWESOME LEGO robots)

WHO ELSE: All FLL teams welcome, space limited. PLEASE only
bring your lead programmers and one or two coaches
for a maximum of 5 people to represent your team.

WHERE: St. John’s High School
5901 Airport Hwy
Toledo, OH 43615


To learn some tips and tricks that will make your team more
efficient and successful robot prgrammers!

COST: FREE! (RSVP required by October 1 – space is limited)

RSVP: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Greetings FLL Teams!

We hope you have a good start on your FLL creations and are now ready to Take It Up a Notch with an Advanced
Programming Workshop!

The Cougars of Columbus,, have graciously offered to help FLL teams in our area learn
to write better NXT-G programs.

The Cougars are among the very best FLL teams in Ohio and have extensive experience making NXT-G do what
kids want. They will help the rest of us learn some of the great techniques they used to build their robot last year.

The objective of this workshop is to gain awareness and comfort with a few advanced programming techniques and
their practical application in a FIRST LEGO League competition robot.

It is an interactive workshop. We will spend a short amount of time explaining a topic, and then quickly move to dis-
cussion, application, and practice. Our target is 25% instruction and 75% application & practice.

Participant expectations:
Bring your own laptop, preferably bluetooth capable, loaded with Mindstorms NXT-G
Bring your own robot, 2 touch sensors, 2 light sensors, 3 motors, some wheels. It doesn't have
to be working.
Bring a USB cable to transfer programs to your robot (in case Bluetooth isn't working in big
USB thumb drive to share data

RSVP to Diana Pienta, Team 5560 coach, at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it by October 1.

Specific content questions can be directed to:
Jamie Diamond
Technical Coach, Cougar Lego Robotics Team
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Tentative Schedule

9:00 - Meet & Greet, introductions & expectations

9:30 - Icebreaker activity

9:45 - Basic NXT-G programming - a review

10:15 - Design Principles & Strategies

10:30 Basic Techniques Mini-Sessions
Incremental Development using Bluetooth - Where to go from here?
Precise Turns - Left Face!
Debugging Tips - What in the world is it thinking?
Video - What's really going on here?
Sensors - When should I stop?

11:15 - Medium Techniques Mini-Sessions
MyBlocks - good things come in small packages
Multi-threaded programming - walking and chewing gum at the same time
Dependent threads and synchronization - throwing the newspaper while riding your bike

12:00 - Pizza Lunch

1:00 - Advanced Techniques
Position Registration, our favorite subroutines - X marks the spot.
Sensor Calibration - is it night or just cloudy?
Timers - when will this match be over?
Variables - how many times are we going to do this?
Master programs/menus/scripting - your wish is my command
Mini-blocks - how can we squeeze all this stuff into my tiny brain?

2:30 - Development and Practice time

3:30 - Clean up

4:00 - Adjourn
Programming Techniques and Design Principles go hand in hand so, we will also talk about
Mechanical Design Choices
Strength and Power considerations
Tool Design First
Quick attachment switching (magnets or pins)
Leapfrog Development
Competitive Development
Change only 1 thing at a time
Repetitive Testing
Slow Motion Video (show the robot, then show the video)
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