Althea and Mary pose with the founding members of Team KAOS
On Sunday November 18th, 2018, the KAOS business team interviewed some of the founding members of KAOS to find out how the program has grown, and to understand what advantages we have over rookie teams. We sat down with high-schoolers (and current S.C.O.T.S. Bots team members) Drake S., Michael R., Delaney F., Ashlin N., Alex D., and Morgan C. to figure this out.
Our first question was, “What was KAOS like in the very beginning?” The members agreed that it was, as our name suggests, chaotic, and that they needed to figure out what they were doing before they could start getting things done. Delaney told us that the robot only moved twice at the first qualifier. Also, the team agreed that everyone messed around. After all, what else could they really do?
The next thing we asked was what KAOS focused on in the early years. We found out that the main goals were to figure what they were doing, have fun, and to get the robot to move. People also tried to get to know one another, which was helped along by the names of every team member being on the backs of the shirts. The third question had to do with how KAOS has changed. Two things that were brought up by everyone were that robotics is more organized now (“classy,” according to Drake), and that the program has definitely grown.
Some mistakes made were: over-reaching, making the programming on a virus-infected
computer, and not trying to do outreach. The high-schoolers’ thoughts on our sister teams were completely positive, with Michael talking about how it means that FIRST® is going from a niche, under-recognized club to something that has really advanced in our local culture. Our home schools talk about us over the P.A.! Morgan also spoke about how she thinks that KRASH and KUDOS are almost like KAOS in the early years, with a “sense of curiosity” that more experienced members lack.
The next topic of conversation was unplanned, but it really provided insight on how the
sympathy gained from other teams affected the team members’ attitude. We learned that the team got a lot of help from older teams like the Miners and Lightning Robotics, and because of this, Morgan started another FTC team, and mentors the students there to this day. Also, every original member used to jump at the chance to help somebody when at competition, and has the same attitude now. One example of this is a team whose robot had a milk jug for a part. The high-schoolers built a whole new part for the team, using their own supplies, and gave it to the team, who ended up beating KAOS.
The culture of FRC is different than the culture of FTC because FRC is more competitive, less mentor-driven, and people have better social skills, which helps them relate to their team members and to other teams as well. The kids in FRC can also tell when it’s time to be serious, and when they can mess around.
We asked the members what their advice for the current and future members of KAOS would be, and their answers were to explore new opportunities, not to put a limit on themselves, to have fun, to set standards low and then overachieve, to push themselves, to have a good work ethic, and to not care what other people think. The high-schoolers were also prompted to complete the sentence for the promote award, which was “If every student participated in FIRST, the world would be more…” Their answers were, “Open-minded to change,” “Better,” “Wooooo!!!,” which was in the words of Delaney, “Educated,” “Professional,” and “Filled with purpose.”
Finally, we asked the founding members to describe their legacy with one word. Their answers were: “Family,” “United,” “Growth,” “Forward-thinking,” “Impactful,” and “Surreal,” which all prove true when you think about just how far KAOS, this wonderful, beautiful family, has really come.
Want to hear more? Listen to the full audio interview, Click Here!
The Evolution of KAOS Team