End Task

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End Task

Postby Unome » September 3rd, 2018, 7:20 pm

See rule 4.c

What are the limits on a "perfectly square" platform? (i.e. why wasn't the platform just defined as 5.0 cm to 10.0 cm on each side?)
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Re: End Task

Postby ET2020 » September 6th, 2018, 1:24 pm

Unome wrote:See rule 4.c

What are the limits on a "perfectly square" platform? (i.e. why wasn't the platform just defined as 5.0 cm to 10.0 cm on each side?)

I think it's because they don't want it to be 5x10 cm or 7x8 cm- perfectly square means it must be 5x5 or 10x10 or 7.3x7.3 or anything else in that range, but its length and width must be equal.
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Re: End Task

Postby Unome » September 6th, 2018, 1:39 pm

ET2020 wrote:
Unome wrote:See rule 4.c

What are the limits on a "perfectly square" platform? (i.e. why wasn't the platform just defined as 5.0 cm to 10.0 cm on each side?)

I think it's because they don't want it to be 5x10 cm or 7x8 cm- perfectly square means it must be 5x5 or 10x10 or 7.3x7.3 or anything else in that range, but its length and width must be equal.

The thing is, what would be the problem with a rectangular platform? Any team that doesn't have a perfectly square platform, to whatever degree of specificity the event supervisor uses, doesn't get any of the end task points.
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Re: End Task

Postby Wabbit » September 6th, 2018, 7:17 pm

Unome wrote:
ET2020 wrote:
Unome wrote:See rule 4.c

What are the limits on a "perfectly square" platform? (i.e. why wasn't the platform just defined as 5.0 cm to 10.0 cm on each side?)

I think it's because they don't want it to be 5x10 cm or 7x8 cm- perfectly square means it must be 5x5 or 10x10 or 7.3x7.3 or anything else in that range, but its length and width must be equal.

The thing is, what would be the problem with a rectangular platform? Any team that doesn't have a perfectly square platform, to whatever degree of specificity the event supervisor uses, doesn't get any of the end task points.


Hopefully this will be subject to a rules clarification. Just giving a simple +/- on each dimension would solve the problem. As it is though I doubt any reasonably ES is going to reject someone for having a slightly rectangular platform. As long as it's clear that you made an effort to make the platform into a square, it's hard to imagine anyone giving you trouble for it.

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Re: End Task

Postby nicholasmaurer » September 6th, 2018, 8:26 pm

Wabbit wrote:
Unome wrote:
ET2020 wrote:I think it's because they don't want it to be 5x10 cm or 7x8 cm- perfectly square means it must be 5x5 or 10x10 or 7.3x7.3 or anything else in that range, but its length and width must be equal.

The thing is, what would be the problem with a rectangular platform? Any team that doesn't have a perfectly square platform, to whatever degree of specificity the event supervisor uses, doesn't get any of the end task points.


Hopefully this will be subject to a rules clarification. Just giving a simple +/- on each dimension would solve the problem. As it is though I doubt any reasonably ES is going to reject someone for having a slightly rectangular platform. As long as it's clear that you made an effort to make the platform into a square, it's hard to imagine anyone giving you trouble for it.


This is a stab in the dark - I don't have a definitive answer - but here goes:

There is an incentive for having a smaller device in general, so as a competitor if I could design a rectangular platform, I would likely design a long narrow rectangle. 9V batteries almost always fall along a particular axis, such that the long edge of their base ends up parallel to the ground. They are much more stable along the other axis. Thus, I could design a long narrow platform that is likely to catch the battery if it falls, while minimizing space.

However, my guess is they want to force a trade-off between a small (5cmx5cm) but risky platform that must therefore be much more stable, and being conservative but suffering a 10cmx10cm platform that takes up a lot of space.
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Re: End Task

Postby TheSquaad » September 8th, 2018, 7:34 am

I may be about to make the end task way easier for everyone, but I need to check that this is legal

Could you theoretically place a magnet on the underside of the platform beneath the battery to stabilize it? You could still pull the battery off the platform, so it should qualify as not being attached to anything.

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Re: End Task

Postby LostInTheSauce » September 8th, 2018, 10:07 am

TheSquaad wrote:I may be about to make the end task way easier for everyone, but I need to check that this is legal

Could you theoretically place a magnet on the underside of the platform beneath the battery to stabilize it? You could still pull the battery off the platform, so it should qualify as not being attached to anything.

I don't think so because of the "freestanding" part of the rules.

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Re: End Task

Postby Unome » September 8th, 2018, 10:09 am

TheSquaad wrote:I may be about to make the end task way easier for everyone, but I need to check that this is legal

Could you theoretically place a magnet on the underside of the platform beneath the battery to stabilize it? You could still pull the battery off the platform, so it should qualify as not being attached to anything.

This is a difficult question. After reading over that section of the rules a few times, I can't find a clear answer. It is probably worth a FAQ.
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Re: End Task

Postby TheSquaad » September 8th, 2018, 3:00 pm

LostInTheSauce wrote:
TheSquaad wrote:I may be about to make the end task way easier for everyone, but I need to check that this is legal

Could you theoretically place a magnet on the underside of the platform beneath the battery to stabilize it? You could still pull the battery off the platform, so it should qualify as not being attached to anything.

I don't think so because of the "freestanding" part of the rules.


Freestanding is defined as "not supported by another structure," and support is defined as "bear the weight of."
Since the magnet isn't bearing the battery's weight or even touching it directly, that's why I thought it should be legal.

Is there a flaw with that train of logic?

To address the end of section 4c which says that only the battery may be supported by the platform, I'd probably connect the magnet to the superstructure that is lifting the platform instead of, say, gluing a magnet to the bottom of the platform. Theoretically, this could make the magnet not even directly touch the platform.

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Re: End Task

Postby nicholasmaurer » September 8th, 2018, 5:14 pm

TheSquaad wrote:
LostInTheSauce wrote:
TheSquaad wrote:I may be about to make the end task way easier for everyone, but I need to check that this is legal

Could you theoretically place a magnet on the underside of the platform beneath the battery to stabilize it? You could still pull the battery off the platform, so it should qualify as not being attached to anything.

I don't think so because of the "freestanding" part of the rules.


Freestanding is defined as "not supported by another structure," and support is defined as "bear the weight of."
Since the magnet isn't bearing the battery's weight or even touching it directly, that's why I thought it should be legal.

Is there a flaw with that train of logic?

To address the end of section 4c which says that only the battery may be supported by the platform, I'd probably connect the magnet to the superstructure that is lifting the platform instead of, say, gluing a magnet to the bottom of the platform. Theoretically, this could make the magnet not even directly touch the platform.


My primary concern is not with "freestanding" but with "not attached." It hinges on whether you deem the magnetic force to qualify as attachment. You can make a strong case either way - an FAQ will be needed.
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Re: End Task

Postby ET2020 » September 9th, 2018, 7:03 am

nicholasmaurer wrote:My primary concern is not with "freestanding" but with "not attached." It hinges on whether you deem the magnetic force to qualify as attachment. You can make a strong case either way - an FAQ will be needed.

I think they would have a very tough time saying a magnetic field counts as attachment. Technically, the battery is constantly being influenced by magnetic forces, since the Earth emits a magnetic field (not to mention the magnet task that requires you to have a magnet somewhere within the same device as the battery).
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Re: End Task

Postby nicholasmaurer » September 9th, 2018, 7:47 am

ET2020 wrote:
nicholasmaurer wrote:My primary concern is not with "freestanding" but with "not attached." It hinges on whether you deem the magnetic force to qualify as attachment. You can make a strong case either way - an FAQ will be needed.

I think they would have a very tough time saying a magnetic field counts as attachment. Technically, the battery is constantly being influenced by magnetic forces, since the Earth emits a magnetic field (not to mention the magnet task that requires you to have a magnet somewhere within the same device as the battery).


You are talking about magnetic forces on the battery that differ by several orders of magnitude - those are not fair comparisons in my opinion. How do you define attachment? How is a strong magnetic force practically different from other methods of attachment?
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Re: End Task

Postby ET2020 » September 9th, 2018, 8:31 am

nicholasmaurer wrote:
ET2020 wrote:
nicholasmaurer wrote:My primary concern is not with "freestanding" but with "not attached." It hinges on whether you deem the magnetic force to qualify as attachment. You can make a strong case either way - an FAQ will be needed.

I think they would have a very tough time saying a magnetic field counts as attachment. Technically, the battery is constantly being influenced by magnetic forces, since the Earth emits a magnetic field (not to mention the magnet task that requires you to have a magnet somewhere within the same device as the battery).

You are talking about magnetic forces on the battery that differ by several orders of magnitude - those are not fair comparisons in my opinion. How do you define attachment? How is a strong magnetic force practically different from other methods of attachment?


A strong magnetic force is different because there is no physical connection between the atoms in the battery with any atoms of the magnetic source. Attaching is defined as "fastening, joining or connecting"- a magnetic field does none of those things.

If the ES want to ban this, they will have to specify either a maximum allowed strength of magnetic field that can be exerted on a battery (very difficult to measure) or a minimum distance that all sources of a magnetic force must be from the battery. Either one is clunky and difficult to enforce.
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Re: End Task

Postby nicholasmaurer » September 9th, 2018, 8:56 am

ET2020 wrote:
nicholasmaurer wrote:
ET2020 wrote:I think they would have a very tough time saying a magnetic field counts as attachment. Technically, the battery is constantly being influenced by magnetic forces, since the Earth emits a magnetic field (not to mention the magnet task that requires you to have a magnet somewhere within the same device as the battery).

You are talking about magnetic forces on the battery that differ by several orders of magnitude - those are not fair comparisons in my opinion. How do you define attachment? How is a strong magnetic force practically different from other methods of attachment?


A strong magnetic force is different because there is no physical connection between the atoms in the battery with any atoms of the magnetic source. Attaching is defined as "fastening, joining or connecting"- a magnetic field does none of those things.

If the ES want to ban this, they will have to specify either a maximum allowed strength of magnetic field that can be exerted on a battery (very difficult to measure) or a minimum distance that all sources of a magnetic force must be from the battery. Either one is clunky and difficult to enforce.


I agree that is one valid interpretation of attachment. I am of a similar opinion personally.

However, I have also spoken with experienced ES in this event who strongly disagree with you. They have a different, and (in my opinion) equally valid interpretation: if they attempt to remove the battery from the platform, are they going to have to overcome more than gravity (and negligible forces such as the Earth's magnetic field) to do so? If they face added resistance in removing/moving the battery, they would argue it is attached (although perhaps poorly). While I agree with you on the physics, I think their argument is more in line with the spirit of the rules here.

If you want to use a magnet be my guest. But without an FAQ I expect it to be hit or miss with supervisors.
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Re: End Task

Postby saathvik02 » September 9th, 2018, 2:43 pm

How are you guys planning on raising the platform?


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