Programming Subteam – The programming subteam uses Eclipse (an Integrated Development Environment) to write code for the robot in Java. They cooperate with electrical to create a user interface for the robot which allows the driver and operator to control it. They also have a secret handshake and love Tropical Skittles.


Electrical Subteam – The electrical subteam wires the robot. This means connecting motors and other components to either the RoboRIO or the power distribution board . The power distribution board is a hub for the wires on the robot, ensuring that there is a balance of current running through the wires. They have an overwhelming infatuation with LEDs.


If you want to learn more about the electrical skills used in FIRST, use these links:


Computer Aided Design (CAD) Subteam – CAD designs and models the robot using the  computer program, Autodesk Inventor. They work closely with the Mechanical Subteam by prototyping and trading off information about the robot. Their primary purpose is to create a 3D model of the robot. The CAD team likes to play the JEOPARDY! theme song every time Autodesk Inventor refuses to work.


Mechanical Subteam – The mechanical subteam uses CAD’s designs to fabricate the parts and build the robot. They prototype all the designs for the robot. They’re a big help for outreach events, when the future members want to know about the robot, or if anyone has a question about a part on the robot. They like to use their hands to build anything, and hate the robot drive-trains.


The mechanical sub-team is composed of much more than a measly paragraph, so for more information check out these resources:


Public Relations (PR) and Media Subteam – The PR subteam has the responsibility of creating a ‘look’ for the team. From contacting sponsors, creating T-Shirt designs, to organizing outreach events. This sub-team makes sure the team has the funds and looks to do their best. They make sure that everything is set up the best way possible. Unlike other subteams, all members are expected to help with PR at some point throughout the year. It could be making plaques for sponsors, or helping out with chairman’s essay.