Thursday, October 31, 2013

BEST Robotics, Inc. Volunteer Thank You Video #G8KPR

Please watch this video thanking all the volunteers that make BEST Robotics possible across the country. If you look carefully you might even see some Northeast Alabama BEST personnel in the video.

Thanks to BEST Robotics, Inc. for all the support they provide to local hubs.

#G8KPR Open Driving Practice Time Available

Thanks to the kindness of Mike Sweat and the staff at the Northeast Alabama Agribusiness Center in Rainsville, we are able to get in the facility early to set up and prepare for competition on Saturday.

That means that we will be able to offer practice time on Friday, November 1 from 10:00 am until 4:30 pm. Driving time will be allowed in 30 minute increments on a first come, first served basis. Teams who have already had driving practice time will be expected to yield the field to other teams if more than four are on site for practice at a given time. The facility will close promptly at 4:30 pm.

There will be no driving practice on Saturday morning.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

The #G8KPR After Party? UR Nvited!

So what are you doing after the Northeast Alabama BEST Robotics competition Saturday? Sleeping. We understand completely. The last thing most of us want to do is go home and cook dinner.

Consequently, a number of us ended up at The Wing House in Rainsville last year after the competition, prompting us to discuss the possibility of an unofficial after party.

So here's the scoop. The Wing House will have a dining room reserved for BEST participants: teams, volunteers, families, friends, etc. immediately following the competition Saturday night. Please feel free to go over to enjoy a good, relaxing meal after the competition and hang out with some of you BEST friends.

No, we are not picking up the check.

Everyone will be responsible for their own ticket and gratuities will be automatically added to each check.

So before you settle in for your well-deserved nap, enjoy a good meal with your friends. We hope to see you there.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

2013 Northeast Alabama BEST T Shirt Design

We are pleased to announce that through the generosity of our sponsors, all team members and volunteers participating in Northeast Alabama BEST this year will receive free T Shirts. The tan shirts, printed in Northeast Alabama BEST black and orange, will feature the Northeast Alabama BEST logo on the left chest and a listing of sponsors, grantors, and partners on the back.

Thanks to our sponsors for providing funds to purchase T Shirts for each of our participants!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Lots of Awards This Year

Everyone wants to win first place in the robot competition and BEST Award. Unfortunately, only one team can win each of these honors. But don't dismay, there are other great awards that teams may win. Here is a list of some of the awards in store for you this year:
  • Founders' Award for Creative Design
  • Tennessee Valley Authority Most Robust Machine
  • Rainsville Chamber of Commerce Best Rookie Team
  • Berry & Dunn Office Equipment Best T Shirt Design
  • DeKalb County Homebuilders Association Best CAD Design
  • Missile Defense Agency Blood, Sweat and Duct Tape Award
  • Walmart Most Photogenic Robot
  • Governor's Office of Workforce Development Spirit & Sportsmanship Award
  • Tennessee Valley AuthorityTop Gun Award
  • Fort Payne Improvement Authority Most Economical Design
  • Governor's Office of Workforce Development Best Website
  • DeKalb County Homebuilders Association Best Team Theme
  • DeKalb County Development Commission Spirit of BEST Award for Grit
  • DeKalb County Development Commission Spirit of BEST Award for Attitude
In addition, we will award:
  • 1st, 2nd and 3rd place in BEST Award
  • 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th place in Robot Competition
  • 1st, 2nd and 3rd place in Walmart Best Marketing Presentation
  • 1st, 2nd and 3rd place in Farmers Telecommunications Cooperative Team Exhibit & Interview
  • 1st, 2nd and 3rd place in Missile Defense Agency Project Engineering Notebook
We encourage all teams to stay around for the awards ceremony, since each team will receive a certificate of participation, and are eligible for a number of awards.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Game Day to be Streamed Live on Southern Torch

We are pleased to announce that game day will be streamed live on SouthernTorch next Saturday. Please let your friends and relatives who can't be there know to tune in for live coverage throughout the day. Southern Torch

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Thanks for a Great Practice Day Today

Thanks to all the teams who participated in Practice Day today. It was exciting to see everyone and the progress you all have made on your robots. Be sure to check out some of the photos on our photo page.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Engineering Notebooks Due Thursday, October 24

Remember that Engineering Notebooks are due to Nicole Carroll no later than 4:00 pm on Thursday, October 24. Please give Nicole your notebook at practice day and email an electronic copy to her.

We look forward to seeing everyone at Practice Day tomorrow.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Game Week Schedule Posted

The schedule for the 2013 Game Week has been posted on the Team Resources section of this site. This includes vital information regarding:
  • Sales and Marketing Presentations on October 30
  • Exhibit Booth Set Up and Driving Practice on November 1
  • Game Day on November 2
Please play close attention to the information included in this document. Any changes will be listed on this site.

Friday, October 18, 2013

There's an App for That!

Did you know that BEST Robotics has an app?

BEST Scoreboard 5.0 is available for both IOS and Android devices and may be accessed through the Internet. Check out details here.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Practice Day Time Slots Announced!

Times slots for Practice Day at Northeast Alabama BEST Robotics have been announced!

Practice day will be held in conjunction with the Made in DeKalb Expo on October 24 in the Northeast Alabama Agribusiness Center in Rainsville. Each team will receive 2 hours of practice time. Since the event lasts all day, teams are encouraged to come early or stay late to enjoy the event. Lunch is not provided, but a concession stand will be open. Made in DeKalb Expo is open to the pubic from 3-6 pm.

Time slots for practice day are:
  •  8:00 - 10:00 am - Bridgeport Middle School and DeKalb County Technology Center
  • 10:00 am - noon - Fort Payne High School and Ider High School
  • 12:00 - 2:00 pm - Woodville High School and Crossville High School
  • 2:00 - 4:00 pm - Brindlee Mountain Middle School and Marshall Technical School
  • 4:00 - 6:00 pm - Fyffe High School and Pisgah High School.

Time slots were chosen by entering every team name into a randomizer. In the first randomization, we selected the order for teams to select practice times. In the second randomization, time slots for marketing presentations were selected. Marketing presentation time slots will be announced later this week. Look for the game day schedule soon also.

Remember that Engineering Notebooks are due no later than 4:00 pm on October 24. The team Demographic Form (located in your manual) is required to be attached to your Engineering Notebook. Each team must submit one hard copy an done electronic copy (via email to

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Engineering Notebook Due October 24

Engineering notebooks are due at practice day, October 24, no later than 4:00 pm. Each team must email to Nicole Carroll ( an electronic copy of their notebook and turn in the completed printed copy on practice day. Be sure to include the Team Demographic Form. Notebooks will be judged and returned to teams for Game Day.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Check BEST websites daily!

Teams should check and daily throughout the BEST season to assure that they don't miss any important news.  

Marketing Presentation Time Slots Announced

Time slots for marketing presentations for Northeast Alabama BEST Robotics have been announced. These slots were selected by placing each team name and number in a randomizer to select an order in which times could be chosen.

Marketing presentations will be held in room 110 of the Health Education Building on the NACC campus. Teams should arrive at least 15 minutes prior to their presentation time. A minimum of 4 and a maximum of 8 students may actively participate in the presentation. Only those who are on the marketing presentation team should attend. Adults are not allowed to participate in any way, including set up and take down.

A silent audience of no more than 4 adults/coaches may view the presentation at the discretion of the team and Northeast Alabama BEST officials. Video recording and photography is allowed. Flash photography is not allowed. Members of the audience are NOT ALLOWED to interact or communicate with the team in any way. Any interaction between the audience and the team will result in a deduction from the team's score. Be sure to check the marketing presentation score sheets for specific scoring information. No feedback or scores will be given until the awards presentation at game day.

The lecture hall used for marketing presentations is equipped with a computer, projector and smart board system. Teams may plug their presentation into the existing computer or may hook up their own laptop computer.

The schedule for Wednesday, October 30, 2013 is as follows:
  • 9:30 am - Pisgah High School
  • 10:00 am - Fort Payne High School
  • 10:30 am - Fyffe High School
  • 11:00 am - Brindlee Mountain Middle School
  • 11:30 am - Marshall Technical School
  • 12:30 pm - Woodville High School
  • 1:00 pm - Bridgeport Middle School
  • 1:30 pm - Ider High School
  • 2:00 pm - DeKalb County Technology Center
Remember that besides judging for marketing presentations on October 30, judges will also be making notes regarding spirit and sportsmanship, grit, attitude, and team theme. We are looking forward to seeing you on October 30.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Jubilee BEST Hosts First Game Day of 2013

2013 Gatekeeper game creators, Jubilee BEST, hosted the first game day of 2013 last Saturday. As game creators, the Mobile, Alabama-area hub tested all the systems before other hubs start their game days in the coming weeks. The excitement of the first game day of the year has given your Northeast Alabama BEST staff game day fever. We are excited to see what you will do with this year's challenge!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Thanks to Mississippi BEST!

Northeast Alabama BEST Robotics would like to express a heartfelt thanks to Eric Heiselt and Mississippi BEST Robotics for sharing their playing field with us this year. Playing fields are expensive to produce and take a good deal of time to build. This year's field was especially expensive and time consuming. Through a partnership with Mississippi BEST, hosted at Mississippi State University, we were able to share resources and minimize the number of fields that were built.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Thanks to Statewide Partners

Northeast Alabama BEST Robotics wishes to thank the following statewide partners:

  • Governor's Office of Workforce Development
  • Alabama Technology Network
  • Friends of BEST in Alabama
The Alabama Technology Network coordinated a statewide grant through the Governor's Office of Workforce Development and administered by Friends of BEST in Alabama that benefits local BEST hubs in Alabama. 

Our local Alabama Technology Network center also works as part of our leadership team year round to assure that Northeast Alabama BEST is the best it can be. 

We thank these partners for being a part of Northeast Alabama BEST. 

Friday, October 4, 2013

Happy Manufacturing Day!

Today is manufacturing day across the United States. 

Sponsored by the Fabricators and Manufacturers Association (FMA), National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) , and the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), Manufacturing Day provides an opportunity for manufacturers to open their doors and show what 21st Century manufacturing looks like. 

Locally, GH Metal Solutions in Fort Payne is opening their doors for tours. Northeast Alabama Community College will have their mobile training unit on site to allow visitors to try their hand at welding using their virtual reality welder

Thursday, October 3, 2013

2013 BEST Sponsor: Walmart Foundation

We are pleased to welcome the Walmart Foundation as a 2013 sponsor of Northeast Alabama BEST Robotics. Walmart truly is a household word so no introduction is really necessary for this sponsor. We appreciate the support of the Walmart Foundation and our local Walmart stores.

Sponsors like Walmart are the reason that we can continue to host a BEST Robotics hub in our area.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Advancing to South's BEST

There are 274 teams competing in the 18 hubs in 6 states that comprise South's BEST. Fifty-six (56) of these teams will advance to Auburn to compete in South's BEST.

Based on the number of teams competing in Northeast Alabama BEST this year, we will send 2 teams to South's BEST, with the sequence of advancing teams being as follows:
  1. First Place BEST Award
  2. First Place Robot
  3. Second Place BEST Award

If (as it occurred last year) a team wins first place in both the BEST Award and the robot competition, the second place BEST Award will advance to South's BEST. As it stands currently, only our First Place BEST Award team will be able to compete in BEST Award at South's BEST. The second entry will be able to compete in the Robot competition only, even if they advance as a second place BEST award winner.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Time Slots for Practice Day and Marketing Presentations Opened

Attention Teams:

Nicole Carroll will be contacting each coach to arrange time slots for practice day (October 24) and marketing presentations (October 30). Please respond to her email quickly so that we can fill in the schedule.

To select the order for which you will select time slots all team numbers were placed in an online randomizer. The first selection was for time slots for practice day. The second selection was for time slots for marketing presentations. Once all teams make their selections (in order of selection by the randomizer), we will post those times online.

Practice Day will take place on Thursday, October 24, 2013 at the Northeast Alabama Agri Business Center in Rainsville, Alabama. We will invite two teams to be on the field at a time, in the following time slots:
  • 8:00 am until 10:00 am
  • 10:00 am until 12:00 noon
  • 12:00 noon until 2:00 pm
  • 2:00 pm until 4:00 pm
  • 4:00 pm until 6:00 pm 
Marketing Presentations will take place in the Workforce Development Building on the NACC campus at the following times on Wednesday, October 30, 2013:
  • 9:30 am
  • 10:00 am
  • 10:30 am
  • 11:00 am
  • 11:30 am
  • 12:30 pm
  • 1:00 pm
  • 1:30 pm
  • 2:00 pm
  • 2:30 pm