Volume 2020-09 | September 2020
Rocky Mountain BEST Volunteer Newsletter
How to help BEST make a difference
in the lives of Colorado students
Outbreak ONLINE Game Summary
2020 Game Logo Tag Line
Infected cells are in the body and threaten to spread

DESIGN a Team Robot based on the game rules and available BEST Robot Kit materials that will isolate infected cells from others and apply localized vaccines to slow or stop the spread:
  • Sample, identify and separate individual cells to isolate the infected cells
  • Apply vaccines where needed to immunize groups of cells
The Team Robot is never physically constructed and the team's Team Robot DESIGN is reflected in their judged delivered documents and presentations.

PROGRAM and COMPETE with a Virtual Robot programmed with MathWorks Playground to play the game on a virtual game field with Driver Controlled movement. Also, teams program Autonomous movement so their Virtual Robot can operate on their own to collect cell samples for testing.
ONLINE Competition Overview
RM BEST Outbreak Online 9-Week Competition: 19 September - 22 November
  • No physical contact is required by the teams or volunteers.
  • No game field or robot returnable / and consumable kits are provided as no physical robot is built.
  • NEW BEST National Registry tool for Volunteers: Volunteers create an account to then register as a Rocky Mtn BEST Hub volunteer - instructions below.
  • Volunteer Opportunities: Scheduled Online Judges support an activity via a video conference with students on specific dates. Deliverable Judges support the review of an activity document, video, or website over a 5-day period at their own schedule. Time Trial Judges support the Practice Day and Game Day student Virtual Robot time trials.
  • A variety of familiar and new competition activities are described below with the type volunteers needed and judging dates in green.
  • Future newsletters will explain how volunteers signup for specific judge positions, access team data, and view additional volunteer tasking details.

ONLINE Competition Activity Overview
Familiar and New challenges are available for students.
What is changing from the normal BEST competition?
  • Designing/Building the Robot There are no kits, no physical field and no robot construction. The team WILL STILL design a robot to solve the game "problem". We have a NEW required Critical Design Review Presentation (14 November Scheduled Online Judging). The teams can still locally do prototyping, as permitted by their situation, and any modeling that they desire to help in explaining their robot design.
  • Robots on the Game Field The teams WILL STILL program a robot but this year they program a virtual robot and run it in time-trials on a 3D virtual game field. (Practice - 7 November + Time-Trials Game Day 21 November)
2020 Outbreak
Familiar BEST Activities - The same BEST Robotics activities the teams are familiar with will continue in our Outbreak Online competition.
  • Engineering Notebook (7-12 November Deliverable Judging)
  • Marketing Presentation (7 November Scheduled Online Judging)
  • Virtual Team Exhibit and Interviews - Learn how to turn their exhibit into an online showcase of their publicity and community relations activities. We even have a way for the team to video chat with the public at the times they choose. Student Interviews - we will still do student interviews, but they will be done through an online meeting with judges. (14 -19 November Exhibit website Deliverable Judging and 21 November Team Interview Scheduled Online Judging).
New Online Challenges -There will be several NEW online challenges offered that will test the students' skills and knowledge. Each is an exciting new opportunity to expand the students' education.
  • BESTMania Skills Quiz - Students participate in the online BEST and STEM skills Quiz games during the week. They can also earn points through the MathZing Prep challenges; SAT and Grade8 math prep!  https://www.mathzing.com/bestmania.php 
  • Outbreak Minecraft Challenge (2020 Proof of Concept) - A Minecraft game modeled after our 2020 game, Outbreak! Students get online, compete as a team, beat the clock to score as many points as they can. They solve puzzles and learn more about the game theme and real-world implications as they try to achieve milestones and create new materials. Any student can play, but their game time is limited so students need to play wisely!  Minecraft COVID Challenge Trailer Video Below
  • Robot Modeling Challenge (Offered if sufficient teams interested) - Students model their robot in a 3D environment where they can simulate its movements. Maybe students are skilled enough to demonstrate it in action on the Outbreak virtual game field! Import from CAD tools or model it from scratch in MathWorks Simscape Multibody environment. (21 November Scheduled Online Judging)
  • Engineering Drawings Challenge (Offered if sufficient teams interested) - Use Computer Aided Design (CAD) in the development of their robot. Learning how to produce proper drawings will be an incredible boost to their resume. (14 - 19 November Deliverable Judging)
  • Website Design Challenge (Offered if sufficient teams interested) - The students can learn how to design a website and earn points for the skills they demonstrate. They can use this platform to learn how to program in a variety of languages including HTML, CSS, Java, Python, and others. (14 - 19 November Deliverable Judging)
  • Video Design Challenge (Offered if sufficient teams interested) - There is an art and great skill in creating a good video. Students can learn about the basics of photography and videography as they develop a custom video on one of our select topic areas. (14 - 19 November Deliverable Judging)
LOOKING for More Season Details?

  1. ONLINE COMPETITION TEAM OVERVIEW LINK for a 4-page detailed description
  2. A BEST Activities web site with a separate page for each of the season's activities.
  3. Additional Competition Description Documents: So, what does it mean to have BEST Online? / Robot Performance (Driver Controlled) Time Trial Guide / Autonomous Time Trial Guide
  4. The Kickoff Event Presentation 90-minute video link below provides the competition material presented to teachers and students in mid-September.
2020 Outbreak
Minecraft COVID Challenge Trailer Video
Not familiar with the popular Minecraft video game, check out the 2020 Minecraft COVID Challenge developed exclusively for BEST Robotics by our partners at the University of Texas at Dallas.
Kickoff Event Recording Video
Our 19 September 90-minute event recording is available at the left and at this YouTube link.
  • You can easily check out every minute of how we introduced the season to our teams starting with the BEST Robotics Inc Leadership Welcome
  • You can also fast forward to find your areas of interest.
Volunteering Preview
National Registry Tool & Volunteer Roles

BEST Robotics has created a BEST National Registry tool providing a one stop competition repository for Teacher, Student Team, and Hub Volunteers registration, scheduling, workflow management, team management, and file management.

This year each volunteer needs to create an account on the tool to gain access to the judging material and schedules.

Volunteer Registration

To create an account and register, follow these 2 steps.
  1. CREATE A Registry Account: Go to National Registry Home Page and click the RED Create an Account button. On the field asking the following, Which hub do you primarily participate with? select: Rocky Mountain BEST (Denver CO)
  2. REGISTER to Volunteer: Go back to the National Registry Home Page and login with the email and password for the account you just created. On the upper right task bar select REGISTRY, scroll down to find the My Volunteerships Panel. There you will find a pink message with a link to enter EMPLOYER information and then you can click the BLUE Register as a Volunteer button. The registration page again asks What hub do you volunteer at? and again select Rocky Mountain BEST (Denver CO). Select Assist with judging/game day activities to volunteer to help with the competition. You are provided 2 Consent Agreements to review. Finally select the BLUE Register button at the bottom of the page if you agree.

Volunteering Prerequisites

All volunteers will need to have access to the internet through a computer or tablet. Scheduled Online and Time Trial Judges need to have a computer or tablet with a microphone and camera and access to Google Meet Video Conferencing Software.

Volunteer Roles

Time Trial Volunteers - Practice Day 7 November + Competition 21 November ~ 6 hours
  • New Referee Role: Oversees the teams during video conference sessions to manage the time trial configuration files and scoring tasks for both Driver Controlled and Autonomous sessions.
  • New ONLINE Meeting Coordinator Role: Manages team online video conferencing sessions and the schedule. Familiarity with video conferencing tools and good at working with people.

Deliverable Judging - depending on activity 7-12, OR 14-19 November.
  • Judge: A variety of experiences are needed for this position. Each Judge manages their time over the 5-day judging period. More information to come.

Scheduled Online Judging - depending on activity 7, 14 or 21 November
  • Judge: A variety of experiences are needed for this position. More information to come.
  • New ONLINE Meeting Coordinator Role: Manages team online video conferencing sessions and the schedule. Familiarity with video conferencing tools and good at working with people.

Additional Instructions Coming in October

Look in our next newsletter for instructions on how to sign up for specific volunteer roles and how to access student material for judging.
Schools Registered To Compete
We are thrilled to have 12 schools signed up for our fall competition.
1302 Abraham Lincoln HS
1304 Aurora Frontier P-8
1306 Bishop Machebeuf HS  
1307 Broomfield HS

1312 Good Shepherd School
1318 Our Lady of Fatima School
1319 Pinnacle Charter HS
1324 St Therese School
1326 STRIVE Prep - RISE
1328 Valley HS
1331 Blessed Miguel Pro Catholic Academy
1332 Liberty High School
SAVE The Date for Colorado Gives Day
Your Donation Makes it

Help Us Bring Robotics FREE to Area Students

Sunday, November 1
  • Scheduled Donations Begin  

Tuesday, December 8
  • Colorado Gives Day 2020
Additional Ways to Contribute
Other Ways to Participate by Donating
You can donate ANYTIME at Rocky Mountain BEST at ColoradoGives.org.
If your company has gift matching through Benevity, Rocky Mountain BEST is one of the eligible non-profit organizations. Please check with your company about gift matching!
King Soopers/City Market
Thanks to the 15 households who are using their King Soopers / City Market savings cards to donate to Rocky Mountain BEST.
If you used to refill a King Soopers gift cards for us and now need help setting up your savings card, please email lois.walton@bestinc.org. Lois would be glad to talk you through the quick process!
Amazon Smile
Amazon donates 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases to Rocky Mountain BEST whenever you shop on AmazonSmile.
Amazon Smile is the same Amazon you know. Same products, same prices, same service.
Wondering what to do with your used car or truck or boat? 
Donating your old vehicle to ROCKY MOUNTAIN BEST is convenient, easy, and may qualify you for a tax deduction. And best of all, your donation of a used car or truck will make a big difference in supporting ROCKY MOUNTAIN BEST.
Why not donate your vehicle today? All you need to do is to complete our SIMPLE ONLINE FORM or call 1-866-628-2277 and we'll take care of the rest. We will pick up your vehicle, arrange to have your donation towed, and provide you with a tax-deductible receipt, all at no charge to you.
Build a robot in six weeks;
inspire a youth for a lifetime
Don't miss out making it possible!