[FRC Blog] 2023 Approved Devices, Rules Preview, and Vision Target Update

we had inspectors measuring and rejecting anything “not close enough” to 2.5, irrelevant of how they were sold and marketed . So a defined tolerance is welcome.


A side note, I really like the idea of a Team Update 0. This way, we can spend some time prior to kickoff teaching students the evergreen rules, then on kickoff day, they can focus on the season specific rules and the update. Should do a lot to improve the student’s kickoff experience.


Probably more fair to say that “more tags would be better” than “it wasn’t enough”.

Yeah, this is going to be frustrating for many. Pool noodles listed on amazon as 2.5” are actually 2.1” when measured. Time to see if those can be returned…


I 100% agree a tolerance is extremely welcome. Makes the rule 100% enforceable and takes away any question as to what a legal noodle size is.

That being said, I think they’ve made the tolerance too tight, especially considering pool noodles aren’t a heavily toleranced/controlled product. I’ll stand by my comment that I have never found a pool noodle off the shelf here in Canada that measures 2.5", and frankly I’m damn confident I’ve never seen one as large as 2.25" either.


I would like to add my thanks. It is very gratifying to see our concerns taken seriously and addressed (timeouts, inspection, and this all come directly to mind). Thank you, HQ.


Have you tried buying the 3” ones? I think those might be more likely to fall into tolerance.

Not that it’s particularly easy to buy pool noodles in January in Canada, but I digress…


I’m a touch annoyed at the change in AprilTag type… I can kind of understand why but this does mean that our work has to be restarted because we were dependent on some libraries that don’t work with this type.*

Slightly annoyed… still wayyyyy better than retro tape.

*Maybe… pending some checks on our end.



Even More Yes!

Haha, in 2012 or so we actually sent a student to ask the LRI if a smart flashlight could count as a a computing device and be battery powered. We were told no.


I’m getting ready to head to all our local hardware and dollar stores after work to search for noodles that meet these new tolerances :crossed_fingers:

There’s still a chance we can get it changed. I’m drafting an email tonight from the “community experts” that aren’t getting paid.


Yeah… I’d rather they put more tags with the original family type… and I’m very much kind of in doubt of the claims here… it also kind of tells me that they aren’t really seeing this as a way to enable localization as is being done with FTC but rather as a straight up replacement for retrotape vision targets since detection distance and an increase in false detections are given…

Though maybe I’ll be wrong.


I’m also a bit wary of the supposedly consulted “experts”. Optitag ( a company that manufactures physical fiducials for robotics and computer vision ) says this

36h11 is recommended for most applications. It is the most robust tag and has the most tag ids available. Pick 25h9 if you need more distance and are willing to sacrifice robustness and the number of tag ids. Pick 16h5 if you need maximum range and are willing to accept a very high false positive rate and limited tag ids. This family is not recommended unless you have a specific application in mind. If you are attempting to increase detection distance it is recommended you increase your camera’s resolution/zoom and increase the tag size before picking 16h5.



Inb4 they use a single id everywhere.


Or like just a handful

I’m hoping you all can convince them to reverse this change… it does not seem like a good one to me.


Same here, just acquired the same product. Will measure some tonight. Can we push back on/ask to expand this tolerance? Other options are both limited and higher in price, with no guarantee of actually meeting the spec.
Editing to add: these are what we’ve been using for years and no one has ever questioned their acceptability.

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Apriltag-a-roo time!


I’m going to make a killing on my knockoff falcons.
Shipping soon!


I’ve tried. Maybe someone else can have better luck. I really don’t like having a tolerance in the rules on a non-toleranced consumer part, especially one that has shown a historically large variation.