I happened to mention to our regional FTC Affiliate Partner that I had attended a PTC Hands-On Workshop, and now somehow find myself signed up to give a brief overview of the PTC software at an upcoming short after-school season kickoff. It will be a very short event (4:00 pm to 6:00 pm on a Friday afternoon), so I would expect I would only need to fill an hour or so of time.
Jordan Cox was gracious enough to point out some pieces of the workshop agenda that could be used in the context of a short overview, but I wanted to reach out to the the PTC FIRST community to ask for more suggestions.
In your experience, what do you think would be the most fruitful things to show which might trigger an "aha" moment among other FIRST teams and mentors? What sold you on the idea of using Creo, Mathcad, and Windchill with your team?
Mentor, Bionic Gaels FTC Team #5602
From the Mathcad perspective, one of the Aha's is the realization that a Mathcad worksheet makes it easy to communicate simple calculations to the entire team. For example, in last year's FRC competition, a simple worksheet calculating the moment required to lower the ramp drew a lot of OMGs at World Championships when teams realized how much time they might have saved. Once the worksheet is created, everyone can use it.
Using Newton's laws to calculate the height of the basketball after launch was another popular worksheet last season. I ran into a couple of teams that had redone this calculation by hand for every design modification of their launch mechanism. While I am not opposed to hand calculations, the practice seems very 1970s.
We've got Mathcad webinars every Wednesday evening this month. I'll be posting Mathcad tutorials in the Video Library of this FIRST Community, so they will be available to all.
Good luck with the presentation!
there's no telling what's going to be the big "AHA!" moment. I've done a lot of presentations for FIRST teams and H.S. classes, and more often than not, it's just sitting there and playing with the software (Creo).
I've done simple things like create a ball or a block with a hole in it on the fly, and their imaginations just went all over the place.
Sheetmetal is always great if you make a few walls and then flatten it. That's especially an "aha" moment if the team had tried to create something out of sheetmetal and then wanted it laser cut.
Mechanism in Creo is also a big hit, especially if you have motor that moves gears, wheels, etc.