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ACRO E-mail Archive Thread: [Acro] Re: Contest Scoring Program

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ACRO E-mail Archive Thread: [Acro] Re: Contest Scoring Program


Thread: [Acro] Re: Contest Scoring Program

Message: [Acro] Re: Contest Scoring Program

Follow-Up To: ACRO Email list (for List Members only)

From: George Norris <gbnv35b at>

Date: Thu, 23 May 2002 17:24:23 UTC


  For what it's worth, I created a contest registration
spreadsheet in Excel for our last contest that
automates some of the things listed below (creating
random orders of flight with provisions for multiple
pilot aircraft detection, boundary judge/chief judge
forms, special award computations, and, of course,
income reconcilation and deposit slips).  The idea was
to simplfy the registrar's job, since we ended up
being CD's/resgistrar's at our last contest.  Overall
it worked out pretty well and I updated it after the
contest to cover the rougher spots.

It could be made significantly more functional if it
linked to/from the IAC scoring program data files
(currently manual).  Adding the volunteer sheets with
pilot conflict detection is another good area for
future development.

If anyone is interested, it is on the web at:

Feedback is encouraged ... however, all of the usual
disclaimers apply, "use at your own risk", "no
warranty expresed or implied as to suitability...",
"your milage may vary", ...

--- Steve Pennypacker <spenny at> wrote:
> Thanks, Dick.
> I guess I'll chime in now.
> I've been in software all my life, and have also run
> a few contests.  So in 
> some sense, I think I understand the intellectual
> property concerns, and 
> certainly the lack of recognition for large
> volunteer efforts.  Those are 
> very real.  I, for one, do appreciate the huge time
> investments that have 
> been made in the current software.  Thank you to all
> who have been 
> involved.  Though we did find a major bug in it a
> few years back, overall 
> the software has been quite stable and does what
> it's intended to do.
> The other side of the argument is that it's a bit
> limited.  The user 
> interface sorely needs to be brought up to date.  I
> understand Rudy is 
> nearing completion on that now, so it should soon no
> longer be the burning 
> issue it has been.
> But the bigger issue, to me, is not score
> calculation.  It's that running a 
> contest involves an enormous amount of repetitive,
> mechanical paperwork 
> that could/should be automated.  The burning need is
> now for one end to end 
> system that automates and integrates all of the
> administrative stuff.
> Why?
> 1- Faster paperwork processing at a contest results
> in more flying and less 
> downtime.
> 2- Lower workload for the registrar means it's
> easier to find registrars 
> and scorers.
> 3- Automation means fewer human errors.  Again more
> flying time, and also 
> happier people.
> The nice thing is that it can all be done without
> any changes to the 
> current scoring system, because most or all of the
> data files are currently 
> stored in text format so are easy to understand and
> hook into.  I suspect 
> that if his ownership rights weren't being
> threatened, Rudy might even help 
> out with the interfaces to the current program.
> How many contests out there have trouble finding and
> retaining good 
> registrars and scorers?  How many have had the
> flying interrupted, for even 
> a few minutes, because the paperwork wasn't ready? 
> Close to 100% I bet.
> A preregistration system like Guenther's
> (  
> re_reg_contest.html) should feed pilot information
> directly into the 
> scoring program.  That can then develop and print
> out a randomized (fair) 
> Order of Flight for each category.  Could also
> effectively and quickly 
> space multiple pilots flying the same airplane and
> preventing people from 
> flying first/last if they're a key volunteer in the
> previous/next category 
> to fly.
> The scores in Form A (the judge's score sheet) could
> be a scannable form 
> like a standardized test.  Faster and more accurate
> than the current 
> system.
> All that stuff is now done manually and is time
> consuming and error prone.
> Hangar signups, judges certification forms, grass
> roots, achievement 
> awards, boundary judge forms, parts of the
> registrar's checklist, and 
> probably all of the other myriad of forms can all be
> automated.  It can 
> help the volunteer coordinator more quickly & easily
> figure out how to 
> assign volunteers, and fill out the volunteer logs
> for him/her.
> I challenge someone to come up with a system that
> can really make a 
> difference, rather than reinventing a complex wheel.
> Steve
> On Thursday, May 23, 2002 8:53 AM, RIHNAIRCO at
> [SMTP:RIHNAIRCO at] wrote:
> > Perhaps some history would leaven this
> conversation.
> >
> > This program (TBLP) has been created and modified
> over the years at 
> virtually
> > no cost to IAC.  Very early on we attempted to
> hire someone to program 
> the
> > software to accomplish our goals.  That didn't
> work.  Our then President, 
> > Mike Heuer spent countless hours attempting to do
> the same thing to 
> assist in
> > making the costs within reach.  The recently
> deceased Sheldon Klotz also
> > spent many hours creating a program for IAC, again
> at no cost to IAC.
> >
> > Dr. Tarasof,  a Russian aeronautical engineer,
> produced the first of the
> > number crunching systems at no cost to IAC.  Can
> you imagine the guts it 
> took
> > for a russian space scientest to create a program
> that would thwart the
> > flagrant juding bias rampant in the USSR at world
> contests?  Remember the 
> > cold war?
> >
> > Dr. Bauer, a German mathematician, then improved
> the program, at no cost 
> to
> > IAC.
> >
> > Dr. Long, a US mathmetician, then added another
> round of modifications, 
> at no
> > cost to IAC.
> >
> > Rudy Penteado, a Brazilian computer programmer and
> aerobatic competitor, 
> then
> > made the current version.  He has spent many long
> sessions improving the
> > program.  He does not receive payment for his
> efforts from IAC.  However, 
> the
> > product does have value as intellectual property. 
> He therefore retains 
> that
> > value by offering the program to some countrys for
> modest cost and to IAC 
> at
> > no cost.
> >
> > If someone were to reinvent the wheel by
> developing  something better AND 
> > give it to IAC I can imagine that it would be
> received and used. 
>  However, I
> > don't expect a long line of volunteers to scramble
> for that opportunity
> > considering the magnitude of the task and the lack
> of appreciation for 
> the
> > efforts of those who have given so generously of
> their time and talents.
> >
> > The forgoing is a summary of my recollections. 
> There may be errors in 
> some
> > minor details.  Mike Heuer is probably the only
> person that has the 
> complete
> > story.  In summary, IAC is a group of volunteers
> who provide saleable 
> talents
> > to IAC at no charge.  However, they reserve the
> right to sell such 
> saleable
> > items to others at market price.
> >
> > Dick Rihn, Past Pres. IAC
> >  << File: ATT00006.html >> 

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