One of the key components of FIRST is the collaboration between teams to share knowledge. Unlike traditional sports, in which one only cares about his or her own team, FIRST stresses gracious professionalism among teams. In order to help other FIRST teams, our students and mentors have written several articles and white papers to assist other teams. In addition to the white papers that were written by our team, we have included links to a few "must-read" white papers that encompass everything from people's experiences in FIRST to digital copies of newspaper articles that have featured our team. Finally, we have also included many older archived FIRST documents here as well.
Here's how you can create a "Gus Ball", an interwoven, spandex-covered ball that it functionally identical to the moon rock and fuel cell balls used in the 2009 FIRST Robotics Competition Game, Lunacy. This white paper and corresponding video has now been downloaded over 2000 times since 7 Jan, 2009!
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FIRST was founded in 1989 by the renowned inventor Dean Kamen. The aim of FIRST is to inspire students to careers in math, science, and technology through a fun and engaging robotics competition, which provides students with the ability to meet one-on-one with industry leaders and engineers.
The initial FIRST Robotics Competition comprised of 28 teams competing in a New Hampshire high school gymnasium. The ensuing years brought rapid growth to the program, to include over 35,000 students, 2,000 teams from 11 countries, competing at over 50 District and Regional Events, culminating with the World Championship Event in St. Louis, Mo.