At the end of 2007, a national USA Dance official informed me that USA Dance required all regional competitions to use O2CM. That was one of the reasons the Fort Wayne chapter chose to use O2CM for its first competition this July -- it had aspirations of hosting a regional and wanted to become familiar with the required software.
Now that "regionals" have been replaced with "NQEs" I haven't seen or heard anything regarding whether USA Dance will require all NQEs to use O2CM.
But then, the national official to whom I refer above admitted at the time that USA Dance had done little to inform people of its decision to require O2CM for regionals. Apparently such decisions are made in committee meetings and reflected in meeting minutes, but often not elsewhere. And the minutes are not readily available to people who are not members of the committee.
On the face of it, it doesn't seem unreasonable that all the USAD sanctioned regionals be calculated and listed by the same software. It ensures a uniform set of displayed results, generated with similar circumstances.
The right way to do it is to specify the reporting format in an appendix to the rulebook. Establishing a common format will also be important given the new need to officially import results from NDCA comps.
Even if it's the format o2cm currently uses, that's fine. But it should be specified by description, not "whatever o2cm does"... (which for example is the problem with microsoft's phony ISO standard)
I've written custom per-competition translators from compmngr to other formats in the past - it's not bad if you know what you are going to; and a lot easier if what you are coming from is you own software, as opposed to whatever you found on the disk the scruitineer left behind.
This is exactly what the Fort Wayne chapter is doing for its first competition in July, with an exception. Because it has a member who has the ability to set up a WIFI network, it will use a PDA for on-deck, but not for judging (too many PDAs to acquire). The chapter also plans to network the registrar, scrutineer, and possibly a couple other computers on site.
Guys, I understand your ideas about establishing a reporting protocol. Keep in mind that I am not the software developer for o2cm, nor am I the rules committee for USA Dance who said first you must use compmanager and now you must use o2cm. I lobbied for Wendi being able to use any program she desired as long as I don't have to spend hours taking the information and converting it into a usable format for me.
I bring your valid points to the attention of the rest of the DSC at our next meeting that I can attend. The actual next meeting is while I'm in Blackpool, so I don't think I'll be phoning in!
Those of you who are interested in learning o2cm, please pm me with your emails and I'll starting a group training thing via email. Could be fun, and it's certainly important for more people to be conversant with the software.
I strongly disagree that USAD should dictate the choice of scrutineering software for their events. I feel that that was a mistake caused by having the author of O2CM on the USAD board.
a) establish a standardized test for certifying scrutineering software as "correct" implementation of the skating system.
b) establish a standardized format for reporting results to USAD's point tracking system
(At present neither USAD nor NDCA tracks point a... people have hedged my seeing if their software would pass the exam, however its impossible to actually have the computer take the exam as written)
Sorry, avab, my point wasn't clear. I said neither NDCA nor USAD tracks my "point a" -- ie there is no official process for certifying scrutineering software. Their is the NDCA exam which certifies a human who takes the test, but there is no official or formal process for "qualifying" or certifying scurtineering software.
My point b was implicitly saying that I'm aware that USAD is now tracking points, but they are only accepting points form O2CM...
I am tracking points, and I accept points from any conceivable scrutineering system, not just o2cm. It is easier from o2cm, but not impossible from other sources.
Every system that is accepted by the NDCA is carefully vetted by the scrutineering committee for correct results in accordance to the skating system. As of right now, compmanager is the only NDCA approved computer system, although it is only one of three currently on my computer.