Previous month:
January 2012
Next month:
March 2012

February 2012

More on Computer Science Night

My presentation was on our robotics team.  I tried to make it very general, as I had a varied audience.  I had people who were doing the next higher level of Robotics, and had people doing the lower levels.  I had elementary students and middle school students.  I had parents.

I had a short Power Point on the Robotics program and brochures for both my computer science program and on the Robotics team.

I also showed a movie of the competition.

We were able to drive the robot the first two presentations and then RobotC stopped working.  I think I’ll probably have to download and install it again.

I asked the audience questions as we went and explained the problems of the competition.  I was talking about negative numbers to a group when we were able to drive the program since you use negative numbers to make the robot back up.


There were lots of other presenters, and unfortunately with the format didn’t get to see them.  Met a few after, Zynga in particular, and they seemed happy with the situation.

DISD Computer Science Night

It rocked!


We had a good representation of colleges and universities, industry and the local high school teachers.

We had over 300 DISD students attend, we ran out of sign-in sheets and door prize tickets. The families that attended were very diverse, and we reached the younger crowd and lots of girls.


The reason I have been quiet lately, is that my Robot Teams recently competed.  I mentor two teams at Hillcrest, Team 4866 and Team 5763. 

Team 5763 was asked to the alliance. The chief building was focusing on the Bowling Ball which got 48 points at least each time, and they were listed as #2 most of the time during the Qualifying Rounds

We have two major sponsors:

Team 4866 is sponsored by the Texas Workforce Commission

Team 5763 is sponsored by the Junior League of Dallas

We have some major work to do if we want to be successful, and I am having the kids work on that now. 

First is the engineering notebook.  I have a kid that likes technical writing, I just need to get him to focus.  I’m helping him a lot with that.

Second is programming.  The kids haven’t gotten enough experience programming and I am planning on getting all the drivers to learn programming well as the builders.  Leaving the robots at home, and learning just the Lego parts has helped.  Everything IS back at school, and I am letting one of the builders build when he comes in at lunch.

Another part is t-shirts, and I am seriously thinking of requiring money from each student to cover t-shirts.  So far, I’ve not asked the kids to contribute financially.

Our next event is the school’s Open House, and I am going to have some of the drivers come and drive.  I also need to get flyers together.

We’re also going to the district’s Computer Science Open House later this month.

There are two ways to help contribute to the team, we have a Café Press fund raiser at and I always have a Donor’s Choose project at