Driver Station making sound

This is going to sound like a weird question: but is there anything in the rules against the Laptop controlling the robot making sound? Our driver wants there to be a sound that plays whenever the auto routine to pick up or shoot game pieces is activated. Would this be allowed?

Also, regardless would teams be annoyed by an alliance partner’s laptop making sound?

Probably couldn’t even hear it. I would recommend something visual or tactile(controller rumble)


Ours will most definitely be making sounds via a website the rio hosts.

We have exactly zero hope it will be audible to anyone. But our drivers will know it’s there. And they will smile.

+1 for controller vibration. Alternately, use a really big flashy light on the robot itself (just not one that looks like the RSL).


We did this last year: What features are the programmers adding to the robot

We’ll be doing this again this year. Last year this feature wasn’t really used during competition, probably because it wasn’t that useful. I’m still thinking of sounds to communicate useful information to the driver. Currently it will say “red”, “green”, “yellow”, or “blue” when the FMS gives us the color we need to spin the control panel to.

Don’t rely on this though. As mentioned above, you probably won’t be able to hear it. If we decide this is really useful, we’ll turn our volume to 100% and hope we can hear the useful information it gives us.

This is legal. I don’t think your alliance partners will be annoyed. I mean, there are going to be coaches that yell a lot louder at their driver and operator than a laptop computer speaker could ever be.

If you’re really wanting audio feedback, I think you could use earbuds or the like and have the driver put one in one ear as they take control at the start of Teleop. You couldn’t use it during Auto, and there may be safety concerns if you put something in or over both ears that would keep you from hearing your surroundings like a set of fancy noise-cancelling headphones. Always possible I’m missing something, though. And as others are saying, it may not be the best driver feedback solution for any specific problem.

Could you clarify why it couldn’t be used during Auto?

Our reasoning:
In teleop, we have a semi-autonomous ball pickup where the computer will take over control when it detects a ball, so I design the audio clue to inform drivers that drivetrain is not under their control. And since the first driver is always looking at the field, we can’t have the flag displayed in the dashboard.
The reason against rumbling is simply that our stick doesn’t support it. We have thought about LED light but that requires additional wiring (1 day before competition), and that it may not be visible to the driver on the other end of the field.

Contact with the Operator Console would be the most likely reason.

i’m preetty sure drive teams are not allowed to wear anything in their ears during their matches. There’s the no phones in the driver station unless you’re taking a picture and it’s on airplane mode. But you also need the head ref to confirm that you’re allowed to do that. Otherwise, i think the penalty is a card (this was at the drivers’ meeting)

It’d be wired into and part of your OPERATOR CONSOLE, so you couldn’t use it in Auto just like you can’t use the rest of your console and need to pick up the controllers only after Auto ends. You either need to have the earbud in your ear but disconnected at the start of the match and only plug it into the console after Auto ends, or you need to have it start the match plugged in and only put it into your ear after Auto ends. See G4, G5, and H2.

You certainly couldn’t have anything wireless in your ears. (I guess I should have specified wired earbuds, but I’m old-fashioned I guess and that’s what I was thinking.) But a wired attachment to the Operator Console should work similarly whether it’s a controller or an earpiece of some sort. As it would be a part of the Operator Console then H1 allows for bringing it to the Arena as long as it’s safe. The main obstacle (which I tried to mention) would be if the HR or LRI deemed it to be a safety hazard due to you not being as able to hear what’s around you as easily. That’s certainly within their purview, and while I’m not aware of any general guidance of “anything within an ear is automatically unsafe” it’s possible I’ve missed it or that some HRs/LRIs have that as a general policy to err on the side of caution. Definitely bring it up with them (just like anything you’re unsure about) to see what they think.

You might also be able to mount a speaker as part of your console rather than relying on a laptop’s speakers, which again I don’t see any rules against as long as it’s not unsafe and not going to be blasting noises at a level that would be a distraction to other people or the like.

Even with all that, no matter what events are LOUD and I wouldn’t recommend relying solely on audio cues for anything.

Thanks for the reply, we will probably just go with built in speaker at the highest volume, at events, it should be just loud enough for the two drivers to hear without too much distraction to other teams.

If you think you’re going to be able to hear your computer speakers during Finals 3 in a crowded gym with the crowd cheering in the background. I wouldn’t trust that