FRC Blog

Event Data Improvements – Don’t be a Dinosaur!

Sep 11, 2017 Written by Alex Herreid and Chuck Harris, FIRST Robotics Competition Software Engineers


Today we wanted to remind you about some features and functionality of the FRC Events website and API. At all official events, the Field Management System (FMS) sends data about the event to FIRST’s servers in real-time and we make that data available on both our webpages and our API. Starting with FIRST STEAMWORKS, Teams running off-season events can also apply to have their results available via these resources as well. There’s lots of other great information on these sites, such as full event listings during the competition season, and details about each registered team. You can even access official event data back to the 2006 season now, using the “Switch Seasons” menu on the homepage. If there is a particular team or event you’re interested in, use the bar on the top middle of the homepage to quickly jump around the site. We’ve also improved the awards listings – it’s now possible to see which awards qualify a team for the FIRST Championship, and the team “nickname” alongside their full sponsor list. Starting today, you’ll be able to see event capacities, and soon you’ll be able to watch match videos from FIRST streamed events, and more. FIRST’s continuing partnership with Twitch means that a richer live event viewing experience will also be coming to the FRC Events website for the 2018 season.

From time to time, for improvements to be made, other things must be retired or left by the wayside. In the coming days, a series of pages known as “lasso” will be disappearing (after all, lassos are for Dinosaurs!*). Many in our community may not know these pages exist, but for others they have served as an additional location to gather registration and event data. These pages, many years ago, we’re used by the FMS to communicate with FIRST HQ. Our transition to cloud-based architecture and APIs eliminates the need for these pages, as all the data that was available via “lasso” pages is accessible via our FRC Events website and/or API. We encourage folks who currently utilize lasso pages to use this opportunity to check out our API for all their data needs. You can read through our API documentation and examples here, and join our TeamForge project to receive a key or ask questions.

One of the most popular requests we receive is to view all events, with their capacity information, in one location. We’ve made a page specifically for this purpose- and you’re welcome to reference that page when selecting events to register for this season. The FRC Events website and API will undergo changes to update registration and event data more quickly than last year- up to several times per day. Please note that event information, especially capacity data, is shown for informational purposes only. Lots of factors, including reserve capacity changes and event layout updates can cause this information to change.

All of our pages are cross-browser and mobile-compatible. iPhone and Android users can even use the “Add to Home Screen” options within Safari/Chrome respectively to save the FRC Events webpages to their home screen for quick access- just like “normal” app icons would appear:

There’s also a number of awesome community created applications that available on the App Store or Google Play. Under the hood many of these apps use the FRC Events API, and it can also serve as a great learning opportunity for students and mentors alike. We love to see what the community develops!

As a reminder, with both District Rankings and Event Results, a steady Internet connection from the venue is necessary in order for FMS data to be sent to FIRST servers. The Engineering team understands our community’s desire for the most up to the minute results information and is dedicated to ensuring this is available with all events. In cases where Internet is not available, or experiences outages, the missing data will be uploaded as soon as possible, either during or after the event.

We invite you to share the links for the FRC Events website (https://frc-events.firstinspires.org) with your friends and family, so they can track your team’s progress through the season. Additionally, we’re always looking for ways to improve your experience with our products, and we welcome feedback at frcteams@firstinspires.org for our future planning!

Best of luck this season- we’ll see you at the events!

* As we learned in Valley of Gwangi, of course:

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Comments

I saw you got rid of the lasso pages. Is possible to add a page that is easy to understand like was the lasso event page? Rigth now is hard for me to see all regionals in one page. And the state+city codes are hard to understand for a outsider (international team). Cheers

Hi Jeser, there's a couple of links we mention in the blog post that you would probably be interested in. You can take a look at https://frc-events.firstinspires.org/2018 for a list of all events by week. Or you can check out https://frc-events.firstinspires.org/2018/events for all events with their capacities. Thanks

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