ACBLscore was not used in parallel for any KO start. We have run it this way for a couple of years. It is much faster/easier running by itself than not having ACBLscore running as well. BS+ has started hundreds of KOs in the last 2+ years. Noting this to show that Bridgescore+ is trusted at Gatlinburg. If things don't work, then everything has to start at scratch, even data input. There have been no problems at Gatlinburg.
In previous years, we used a local copy of Bridgescore+. For 2017, we mostly used the Internet version of Bridgescore+. There were no problem with the speed of the Internet connection. This is important, because it was a large scale event. The local copy was available if anything went wrong but it was not needed.
This is the summary table of KO starts. The times are from the log files, the clock was set to the atomic clock before the start of the tournament. BS+ generated approximately 1,000,000 lines of log file data from the week.
There were 1,703 teams in the 13 KO starts (compacts/regular/dinner bells). This is a 15% drop in the number of teams from last year.
There were 71 corrections (4%) after the data was entered into BS+. A small number of these will be corrections by the TD because they misentered the data (from the log file I cannot tell), but the majority will be corrections by the players. Historically it is 2-5%. In 2016, it was over 7%. It is higher for the larger KOs because more teams are pick-up teams.
There were 9 team corrections AFTER the event was supposed to start. These are all corrections by the players, not a TD error. This is lower than last year.
There were 6 sales AFTER the event was supposed to start. These are tracked separately from team masterpoint corrections. Don't blame the DIC for accepting the entries. Without accepting them, we would never have received the money. In some cases, we had entries after the assignments were published. If possible, the DIC added them, in some cases, he sent them away. If it is possible to accept an entry into a non-16 team bracket, he did.
Just so you understand, each time there is a correction or new sale, we have to re-bracket, re-match the teams, re-assign the tables, re-print the bracket sheets (sometimes 20 pages - one per bracket), before we are ready to publish (put assignments on the screen). For Gatlinburg, there were 15 changes (new teams or corrections to existing teams) AFTER the event was supposed to start. We print 3 sets of bracket sheets for each KO start (one for TD on floor, one for caddy, one for DIC). We throw away what is no longer valid. BS+ will get blamed for the late start (players don't see these corrections), but the problem is not with BS+. Using pre-registration would have cut down on many of these problems.
The average KO started 03:52 (minutes:seconds) after the published start time. This is lower than 2016 (06:40). Within this 03:52 delay, BS+ took an average of 02:52 after the last sale/team MP correction/inventory change until the final bracket was published. My stated window for 2-3 minutes from last correction was met. The worse delay was 05:23 for a 25 table dinner bell. I was not there when this happened, I have no idea why this event, which should have been the quickest to start was delayed. Sometimes the TD has problems assigning tables if a previous event is running late.
The range of the last sale/team MP correction after game time was 0:00 to 03:59. This is better than last year (08:34). The range of overall delay for KO starts was 0:00 to 05:23. This is better than last year (13:33). The range of time for BS+ to go from last sale/correction to last bracket published was 0:00 to 5:23. This is better than last year (1:07 to 5:42).
There are some things that are not covered in log files. For example, if there is a buffer section (a set of tables that could be used by 2 or more different events depending on how popular each event is), we have to wait to find the numbers from the other event before the buffer can be used (or released). Players are unaware of this.
These are the raw figures from the log files.
2016 Figures: For the all important five big KOs, the range was 244-312 teams. There were 1,363 teams (272.6 average), 110 total team corrections (8.1%), 20 corrections after game time (1.5% of all teams), 16 sales after game time (1.2%). The average last correction was 04:33 after game time, range was 0:58 to 8:34. The average start was 07:55 after game time. BS+ averaged 03:23 from last correction to last bracked published. For the last three large KOs, the times were 2:35, 1:07, 2:03 after the last correction. Those averaged under two minutes as the TDs became more familiar with the software and the correct process/procedures.
2017 Figures: For the all important five big KOs, the range was 176-283 teams. There were 1,206 teams (241.2 average), 49 total team corrections (7.0%), 9 corrections after game time, 6 sales after game time. The average last correction was 03:04 after game time, range was 1:21 to 5:34. The average start was 06:21 after game time. BS+ averaged 03:07 from last correction to last bracked published. All these numbers are down from last year, i.e. the players and software performed better. For the last large KO, the times was 0:47 after the last correction. Average times went down over the course of the tournament as the TDs became more familiar with the software and the correct process/procedures. For next year, I suggest some pre-tournament training so that we start out where we finished last year.
Note that the 7% figure for total corrections above is correct. There was no log data on this figure for the first couple of big KOs so the numbers need to be adjusted (49/699).
In general there were 6-7 TDs on the main side of the wall for the big KOs. Before BS+ there would be 11-13 TDs on the main side of the wall. The average start time for the large KOs using ACBLscore 4 years ago was 23-27 minutes after published start time. Using Bridgescore+ this is down to under 4 minutes. A third of that delay is team MP corrections. If we had used pre-registration this number would have been much lower.
If we assume that previously the average large KO start was 25:00 after start time, then, assuming only 4 players per team, 40 hour work week, (1206 teams, 4 players per team, 18.5 minutes savings, 40 hour work week), BS+ saved 37 man weeks just on the large KOs.
One of the more important time savings is that there is enough time to finish a KO and be ready for the dinner bells.
How does this compare to ACBL? Wish we knew, ACBL does not keep these metrics, nor can they generate them.
The Sunday Bracketed Swiss was started the old fashioned ACBLscore way. I do not know why they would not run Bridgescore+. This is a good question for the D7 TOC. There were problems in starting that bracketed Swiss. The same happened in 2016. It beggars belief why you have a working system for KOs that you refuse to use it for Bracketed Swiss.
The table is quite wide - I put a lot of data into it. There were some ACBL people questioning the software (there is some bias against Bridgescore+) during the tournament so I thought it best to include all the details and all the metrics. I can publish the 1,000,000 lines of log files if there is any dispute about the numbers. I am missing the log data from the first couple of days. All numbers have been adjusted accordingly.
The time of the last sale is the time that the last sale was entered into Bridgescore+. We typically entered the data as soon as we got masterpoints (MPs) for the last sale. The time of last change is a team masterpoint change from a team, or the time of the last change of inventory (available tables), usually the former. The delay from late sale is the delay caused by late sales. The delay from late change is the delay caused by last change, either a last sale or a change to a team masterpoints or an inventory change.
|Date- April||Event||Type||Teams||Official start time||Time of last sale||Time of last change||First bracket published||Last bracket published||Delay from last sale||Delay from last change||Delay from official start||Delay for first bracket||Delay for last bracket||Delay for BS+||Team changes||Team changes after start time||Sales after start time|
All scores came in electronically.
In 2016, the Swiss finished at 12:10 to 12:20 with a 9:00am start. About 3 hours 10 to 3 hours 20 minutes. I played in the evening Swiss. Finished 11:15 to 11:20 with a 7:30pm start. About 3 hours 45 minutes to 3 hours 50 minutes. Bridgemates make a big difference because the TD knows who is slow while the match is being played and can go to the table and issue a slow play notice (then a warning, then take board away). TDs assigned to the A/X Swiss were very good at going to players half way through a match and giving them a heads-up notice. This did make a difference.
BS+ handles 3 way matches using Bridgemates. I currently refuse to write the code to handle a short (one round) RR because this is a bastardized form of scoring. This was handled manually. Players scored manually. A short RR can be entered into BS+ with no problem.
For some reason, D7 TOC again chose not to run this. This cuts down on lots of player errors for TD entries. I was ready to do this for the first KO, but no TD had been assigned. We did it in 2015. I had spent a lot of time improving the process for 2016 and 2017 but D7 TOC chose not to do it. Very frustrating.
In previous years, I have a 300Gb Wifi router that I have used since early 2015 including Gatlinburg 2015. The router is set up in the middle of the convention center and the signal reaches both ends of the Gatlinburg convention center. There has never been any problems with this router.
Various computers were connected at different times, including TD computers, computers for projectors, printers. At its busiest, we probably had 10+ computers all connected to the same server.
Gatlinburg is always interesting because of the layout. Here's a typical inventory for a KO event:
Head to head: YY1-ZZ20, UU1-XX16, UU17-VV20, WW17-XX19, AA10-BB20, CC1-FF20, QQ1-RR16, SS1-TT9, GG1-HH16, II1-JJ20, AA1-BB8
Round robin:: UU1-WW18
BS+ will assign the tables in the order listed in the inventory.
I think it is important to always document what problems occurred, why, the lessons learned, and remediation put in place to make sure it doesn't happen again.
I am not aware of any problems in 2017. If you look at the 2016 report, you will see that I am not afraid to list any problems. One of the most important things in software is to handle error situations.
Based on some of the issues that happened in 2016, I updated the software. For example, Bridgescore+ now prints a colored table chart showing which tables are in the inventory to prevent data input errors.
On the first Monday, there were insufficient TDs to check the data being entered. Same thing on Tuesday. I asked if it was OK to use the caddies and then asked some caddies to help. The caddies can check the reported team scores on the big screen with the data input by TDs. This is a simple, but important task. I recommend using the caddies for this work going forward for the big KOs. The caddies were all sitting in the break room.
I know some TDs do not like this, but a well trainined caddy knows how to enter data into a web page better than a TD. Something to consider for next year. Much rather pay a caddy's wage than a TD wage. Of course, the TDs need to supervise.