How robotics is increasing interest in STEM careers

Today we are back to the educational/informative posts and I wanted to discuss how kids hat are introduced to robotics are more interested in STEM as a career or just continuing it in the future.

Robotics from my experience has introduced stem, particularly engineering to people from all walks of life who may or may not have done anything like this before. Over the years I have also noticed more and more women at all of the competitions that I go to and even teams from other countries that come to competitions in the states.

This positive reinforcement of STEM at a younger age helps encourage further research and even pursuing a career in a similar field. There are a few main reasons that people don’t pursue STEM careers and I think that robotics helps people get past most of those reasons.

I did research on the topic and these were the 3 main reasons that I found. The first being people feel like STEM is too technical and complex. This is a very common misconception because all people see, are these really complex machines or huge code files. They don’t get that they can start small as they don’t really see anything small in the real world.

This is solved by robotics as you can start with a small robot or even a lego robot before you get into something more complex like a vex or high school level robot that has hydraulics and such. This way people can slowly ease themselves into the complexity in a way so that they understand it.

Next is affordability often times getting into STEM takes money that people just may not have. The average high school level robot costs anywhere from 20,00 to 50,000 US Dollars. Which most people don’t just have lying around. For this reason, there are other robots such as the Romi robot that run the same code and cost a 1000th of the price at 50$.

The final main barrier is accessibility some people just don’t have any way to get to somewhere where they can learn about STEM, nor do they have a computer to learn it off of. Robotics is once again a good solution to this as it is very accessible and there are teams all over the world that people can join.

Finally, there is also one more thing that people can use to learn about STEM and that is free websites like or the concord consortium that offer lessons upon lessons about all sorts of things related to STEM. I would highly recommend that you go check them out.

That’s it for today I hope you enjoyed it and have a good day!

Different Types of Peeking in Valorant and when to use them

This is a different type of blog post but I figured it would be interesting to write something that isn’t necessarily educational or related to robotics/coding once a week just as a nice break. But with that let’s get started.

There are 7 main types of peeking in Valorant. They are as follows: jiggle peeking, jump spot, jump peek, regular peek, crouch peek, Ferrari peek, and double peek. Now, this may seem overwhelming but they aren’t too complicated.

We should start with jiggle peeking which is when you peek out from behind cover with either a or d and immediately after you see around whatever you are behind you press the opposite key and immediately get back behind cover. This type of peeking keeps you safer than slowly peeking out and exposing your player to the enemies. Jiggle peeking makes you harder to see and aim at.

Next up is jump spotting where you are behind cover but if you jump you can see over it. In this situation hold crouch jump and then let go of crouch as soon as you land. And it will make your jump silent and will expose less of your head.

After this is jump peeking which is probably the hardest peek out of all the others on the list and what you do is jump and peek an angle while pushing a and s or d and s. this increases your maneuverability in the air and allows you to peek an angle very quickly and it exposes very little of your player model making it nearly impossible to shoot you.

We go back to the classics which is a regular peek, but it can be enhanced with a counter strafe. First, peek as you normally would, and as you are going to stop instead of letting go of the key you are peeking push the opposite key for example if you are pushing a push d and if you are pushing d push a. This will cause your character to come to an immediate stop and it will reset your gun accuracy faster than just letting go of one key. Which can give you the split-second advantage you need in a gun fight.

Up next is another variation of a classic peek and it is the crouch peek. This peek is used to punish people aiming for the head which makes it more effective in higher ranks. When you are crouching you move slower but your head is considerable lower making your opponent adjust their crosshair. This peek just requires holding crouch and normally swinging at an angle.

This upcoming peek is the riskiest of them all but it is the Ferrari peek. It is called this as you essentially run past an angle and then stop and shoot any enemies you see. The main reason this type of peeking is used is because it requires your opponents to move their crosshair over and track you. But in Valorant many people aren’t great at tracking as movement is not that advanced.

FInally we have double peeking. This is when you and a teammate peek an angle to almost guarantee a trade if one of you dies. This is best to do especially when up players to keep that advantage. If you are doing this type of peek MAKE SURE TO NOT to STAND IN FRONT OF ONE ANOTHER as if you do the opponent will just be able to shoot one of you through the other.

That’s it for today’s video if you want some more examples to check out my youtube video on this very topic.


How robotics is being introduced around the world

As I’ve been talking about in my last few posts robotics is an industry that is booming right now and for good reason. Robots are able to do things that humans may not and they can help us further understand the world. However often times robots are extremely inaccessible to the average person. People have been coming up with some unique ways to combat this and in today’s blog, I am going to talk about a program that I have been and still am a part of since 3rd grade.

This may be a familiar name to some of you but I’m highlighting the FLL or the first lego league. Which is an organization that runs international robotics competitions with levels ranging from elementary to high school. These competitions are recognized throughout the world and they are the biggest robotics organization for kids of all ages.

The founder of this organization is a man named Dean Kamen who worked together with lego’s CEO to create this competition. Now after many years, the competition is sponsored by all sorts of companies ranging from Boeing to John Deer. With all these sponsors the competition has been able to spread worldwide and there is even a yearly world championship that takes place.

I was first introduced to this program when I was in 3rd grade because of my school robotics team tryout. I made the team and we went on to qualify for states which were huge for my first time. We, unfortunately, didn’t win but it was a great experience. So I continued with basic FLL and lego robots until 7th grade which is when I got my first experience with a VEX robot.

Lego robot

The VEX robots were massive and made out of real metal parts like aluminum and steel which was a new and interesting experience. They also used real electrical motors and more complex sensors which lead to more advanced coding. This was another great experience however my middle school robotics experience as a whole was cut short due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. However, our school team still made it to states and we would’ve progressed further had it not been for this pandemic.

This may have slightly demotivated me but I continued doing some robotics on my own during lockdown/quarantine and then I was eventually in high school. Where I found another great team that helped do their part to spread robotics worldwide. I’m of course talking about Beach cities team 294.

This is the team that I am currently on and not only has this team led to the creation of almost 25 FLL Lego robotics teams but they also have helped spread robotics internationally all the way to turkey with the help of the Impresa team from turkey.

These are all different ways that people around the world are helping create interest and increase accessibility to robotics worldwide. But that’s it for today’s blog I hope you enjoyed it and see you next time.

The future use of robots from dancing to parkour

This is quite a long and general topic but I figured to mention all the innovative ways robots are being used all around the world for lots of different causes. The inspiration for the title of this video is the company Boston Dynamics who created both robots that can dance and also those that can traverse obstacle courses and take hits.

Link to dancing video:

Link to parkour robot video:

Boston Dynamics isn’t the only company out there working with robots however they are doing it in a very unique way. More mainstream uses of robots is that of workers in factories. A company that is really utilizing these robots is Tesla.

As you can see these massive robots are working on cars that are in production and are helping do these monotonous tasks that are repeated countless times. So that humans are able to do the tasks that require more rationale.

These however are massive companies that employ lots of people so of course, they can afford to buy and create these massive robots. However, there are examples all over the world of how robots are being used to solve problems without being very expensive.

One example of this type of company is Pololu which is based n Las Vegas, Nevada.

They created a robot that is affordable and can run the same programs and languages as a large robot. Which makes them great test dummies. As a company could buy a few of these robots and have their new programmers practice on these small robots that way in case something went wrong the company would lose 50$ instead of thousands.

Romi robot

In fact, these same romi robots are used by our school robotics team to train people who are new and interested in coding. Once they pass all the challenges on these robots they are allowed to work on the main robot.

Another way robots are being used now is as test dummies for car crashes. These dummies are rigged with hundreds of sensors that record the force at which they are hit when a car gets into a crash. This helps people learn just how safe cars are and how that safety can be improved.

The main party that tests cars that come out each year is the NHTSA aka the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. They have tested hundreds of cars and determined which ones are the safest over the years. A few cars have even gotten their coveted 5-star safety rating.

That’s all for today’s blog I hope you enjoyed and stay tuned for the next one! I’ll also be uploading a video today so make sure to check out my youtube channel Drago Gaming.

An introduction to fine dining

I’ve always been interested in fine dining ever since I was a kid and I saw chefs making 12-course meals for customers on TV. I always wondered how someone could possibly eat 12-courses. There are of course other options for fine dining but I’ve always been the most intrigued by these absolutely massive meals so let us start investigating what they’re all about.

The meal starts with what’s called an hors-d’oeuvre. Now, this may sound intimidating but an hors-d’oeuvre is simply a fancy way of saying a small savory appetizer like a few small dumplings.

Example of an appropriately sized hors-d’oeuvre

Next up is an amuse-bouche which is a one-bite appetizer chosen by the chef as there are usually options for each course. These essentially serve as a dish to enjoy while waiting for the rest of the food and are a polite placeholder that indicates that there is more to come.

Amuse-Bouche’s are often made of some kind of mousse with toppings.

Next up to the plate for course 3 is a soup. These soups tend to be light and seasonal to be festive and to prevent guests from filling up too quickly as there is much more to come.

A thing soup like this is often used

Course 4 is when some familiar courses start to show up as this is the appetizer course. These assorted small dishes are often served with meat starch and seasonal veggies. This dish is often used to show creativity and variety in the meal.

A light springtime appetizer

The next course is quite interesting but it makes sense as it is going back to keeping it light just in case the course 4 appetizer was too heavy as it is Salad. Which is made with seasonal greens topped in a light sauce often a vinagrette.

The next part of the meal is probably not one that people think of as its own course. Because it is generally served as an entree but course 6 is fish. It is a way to introduce a light protein to cover all the bases before introducing the main course. It is more often a white meat fish like tilapia but it can also be heavier fish like salmon it all depends on the chef.

Next up is the heavily anticipated main course or course 7, which generally consists of a white/light meat like chicken, duck, or turkey. This once again is almost a tease before the second main course. Yes believe it or not there is a second main course coming up.

Garlic Roasted Duck Breast Recipe | Allrecipes

Before we get to that however we have a palate cleanser for course 8, In between the first and second main courses. This is so that guests can fully enjoy both. It is generally something light but with a strong flavor like lemon or mint to remove any residual flavor before the second main course. A common palate cleanser is a lightly sweetened sorbet.

Course 9 is the more elegant second main course that generally consists of red meat of high quality like Lamb, Venison, or a Wagyu FIlet Mignon. These dishes are often the most complex and the most filling which is why the following courses are lighter.

A common second main course (also Gordon Ramsays signature dish) beef wellington.

Course 10 is similar to a palate cleanser but it can have a extrememly pungent smell and flavor. You might’ve guessed it but it is the cheese course. There is generally a variety of cheeses that vary from soft to hard and smelly to a mild smell. These cheeses are also served with an assortment of crackers or bread and sometimes some sweet fruits or jam.

The next course is a lot of peoples favorite and of course it is dessert. This is often a decadant sweet served with dessert wine or coffe/tea.

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Finally we are at course 12. This course is very similar to the amuse-bouche and it is a small bite sized dessert often served with an aged brandy/scotch or tea/coffe.

We finally reached the end of a very long meal. These meals generally cost anywhere from 150-300$ per person. Which is a heafty tag but it makes sense considering just how much is served.

I hope everyone enjoyed I’ll be back tomorrow with another post!

How to study for tests efficiently

Over the years and especially in high school I’ve had to study for hundreds of tests and my very first AP. And through all that I’ve picked up a few tips and tricks that have helped me get through them all with high scores and less stress.

The first one may seem obvious but take good notes, but what do I mean by “good” notes. What makes good notes? From what I’ve found notes need a couple of main things. To start they need to be concise you don’t need to include every and the or but that you see just write down the important things like “mitochondria powerhouse of cell” instead of “The mitochondria is the powerhouse of the cell” even though its only a few words it will add up over a whole lecture.

Image result for notes on a piece of paper

Now that you have got good notes what do you do with them? They may now be concise however it is not practical to read all of your notes to study. Instead what I recommend doing is taking big vocabulary and making flashcards to study them. Next for big concepts, I recommend writing down the concept and trying to remember a brief description of what it is about. And if you have a quiz before your test make sure to write down the questions you missed to study with.

Sometimes teachers aren’t able to go over all the material in a unit or they may add some challenging problems to a test. Instead of stressing about being unprepared you could look through your textbooks and find a similar question or information pertaining to it that will help you study. If that doesn’t work you can often find PDFs of textbooks that way you are prepared for any possible curveballs that could be on the test.

It is also a good idea to quickly review or quiz yourself before a test and if it is on paper then write down what you saw in your brief glance. As often you are studying hours or days before a test and may not remember everything. For example, if you are about to have a math test I’ve found it can be beneficial to quickly look over notes to remember any formulas and then write them down on the test so that you don’t forget them.

June 4 2014 – Review for Test | Mr. Bloch WWMS Room 312

My final tip is one that is quite common but extremely effective. This tip applies when you are actually taking a test, which is to go past any questions that are taking you too long. Then continue through the test and come back to the question. In my experience, this helps me understand the question better and I often catch things I would miss. The main reason this is helpful is that oftentimes tests are timed and you are limited and wasting x amount of minutes on a question is not an option.

Thank you all for reading I hope you enjoyed and stick around for the next post!

How to: AP Tests

I just took my first AP test today in school for AP computer science principles. There were quite a few things I did right, however, there were almost as many things that I did wrong and that’s the reason I’m writing about this today.

Advanced Placement / AP

Though I may have little experience in terms of APs I have learned quite a bit about them even from just one. Let’s start with things that I did well, firstly it is important to pace yourself during the 2-3 hour exam. I personally think that you should finish the test with about 20-30 minutes left to allow yourself to check and revise your answers. I personally finished with 26 minutes left after answering all 70 questions, this leads me to my next point which is DONT LEAVE ANYTHING blank. Even if there is a 1% chance that its right points are not deducted for incorrect answers. So you might as well take an educated guess and fill out an answer.

Do THIS, Not THAT When Writing Multiple-Choice Questions - eLearning  Industry

Nextly it is always a good idea to write down things so that you don’t forget little notes. Because as far as I’m aware there aren’t any rules against that. For example in my test, I wrote down the first 8 bits of binary as I figured it would be useful to know. Another thing that is important to do is to read each question a few times if possible to fully understand what it is asking. As sometimes the wording can be confusing and complex.

Daily MindMeld #76 – Scrambled Words - KewlActiveMinds

Now there is of course something that I would recommend that will help you . The first thing though it seems obvious as well is to study for the weekend coming up to the test if not earlier. This test is an essential part of an AP class and as such it is imperative that you do well on it. This being the case studying for this test should take quite a while but it is necessary as there can be a lot of material that you need to cover.

This next tip has to do with right before the test as in the night before. Getting at least 10 hours of sleep is what is recommended before a huge test like this as well as a filling and nutritious breakfast and lunch. Also if you have other classes before the test it is best to take them easy and not stress as the test will be mentally draining.

Quick healthy breakfast | Recipe | Kitchen Stories

This final tip is for those of you who may have more than 1 AP test in a day. First off good luck and secondly. After you complete your first test I recommend taking a 30 minute break to decompress before studying for your second test. This way you will be refreshed and ready to go once again

Symptoms and Signs of a Nervous (Mental) Breakdown

Thank you all for reading this post I hope you enjoyed it. And make sure to stick around for another post coming soon!

How to create thorough and complete Research.

The first step of this process may seem obvious but first, pick a topic that interests you, for example, I’ve always been fascinated by engineering as well as math so I reached out to some people that understand these subjects better than me to get some guidance on where to start. For example, some people I reached out to are my Highschool AP Physics teacher and my brother who is an aeronautical engineer. I figured these would be the perfect people as they would obviously know lots about these subjects considering it is literally their job.

Another helpful tip before you start is that you should collect your ideas. The way I like to do it is 3 main points each with 2 or 3 sub-points. In the case of a research paper, I would structure it like this: The hypothesis with 2 -3 explanatory subpoints as to why you chose it and why it is relevant. The actual experiment and what happened and what u found and finally the conclusion and closing statements.

Structure | The New Yorker

Now that we have a structure for this research paper we can start actually getting to the experiment it will be different for everyone but an example of a good experiment would be comparing the tensile strength of different types of metal wire. This would just require a hook and weights and it would have a definitive result.

This is just one of the many things that can be made into a research paper but stay tuned for more in the next few weeks.