LP Wireless System

Discussion in 'Armory - Q&A' started by rudd, Jul 28, 2015.

  1. jkormann

    jkormann Podium

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    Respectfully disagree. If FIE owns the protocol and says only equipment that meets this protocol can be used, that'll be that. Who would think a three-wire solution would suffice, but it does and we've made it work so far. A wireless solution would allow many more channels and options. Imagine detecting how hard you hit, if you hit with the flat, or tip? That would be game-changing.
     
  2. mtwieg2

    mtwieg2 DE Bracket

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    I don't see any reason to believe the FIE is technically qualified to draft specs on a secure wireless protocol. Let alone the touch detection algorithms (since both sides must use the same method of sensing touches). Even if a standard was devised for both the wireless communication and touch detection (already in fantasy land), then that would basically mean that the inner workings of the system would have to be published, which is a dubious suggestion in itself.

    I don't see how wireless would allow for things like this any more than the current system. What you're talking about would require modifications to the weapons themselves.
     
  3. DHCJr

    DHCJr Armorer

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    You are right, except for one small problem. How many of those little devices do you have. Let us say you were trying to help a fencer that way. Which piste, which side. Let us say you have one device, you place the device on the side your fencer will be on. Next bout the fencer is on the other side, so you have to move it. I think someone would start to notice, that just before one fencer bout, an 'armorer' is working on something.
     
  4. neevel

    neevel Armorer

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    The usual approach for a standard based on proprietary work is for the standard-setting organization (the FIE in this case) to agree to making it a standard on the condition that the patent holder agree to license the technology using fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory terms to all comers. The fact that the FIE was not stipulating this in the "contest" they held a couple of years back was one of the key things that told me nothing would ever come of it- their expectation that someone would sign over the patent in exchange for a purchase of 1000 units was senseless from a business standpoint.
     
  5. Steve Khinoy

    Steve Khinoy DE Bracket

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    I don't know. If a full-scale FIE unit costs $3000, 1,000 units is a decent hunk of change.
     
  6. DHCJr

    DHCJr Armorer

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    Would the FIE pay full price? In the document they said they would buy the units, but they didn't say how much they would pay. What about the cost of coming up with the prototype in the first place. How much does it cost to make the 1,000 units? The parts cost may not come to a lot, but the man-hours will add up.
     
  7. mtwieg2

    mtwieg2 DE Bracket

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    Even besides the cost, I remember the timeframe was absurd as well. It was less than a year, IIRC.
     
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  8. brtech

    brtech Podium

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    For foil and epee, put a light detector/color filter and pressure sensor in an integrated tip with something that is effectively an RFID responder: encrypted, unique-to-the-tip response. Power it with a super cap charged in a floor outlet at the en guard line. Target is one color, off target is another, ground is another. Hit = pressure for time with correct color. No wires, no connectors, sealed tip, nothing moves.

    Saber is harder. Would need to put the sensors in the handle and build a fiber into the blade.
     
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  9. Purple Fencer

    Purple Fencer Podium

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    OR we could just go back to physical connections via reels and floor cords....unhackable and a HELL of a lot easier to deal with.
     
  10. Alex_Paul

    Alex_Paul Podium

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    I agree with a lot that has been said. The FIE contest was very vague.

    A current three weapon STM wireless set costs over $10,000 usd as there is a base station, transmitters and then different hardware for each weapon. 1000 sets at $10 k eack is interesting, at $1k it is much less so.

    There is close to zero chance of anyone hacking either a wired or wireless system. With wired you might get away with a hit here or there, with wireless you could essentially never spoof the system but you could jam it for some period of time until you were caught.

    At present LP are creating a club system that will cover 99% of fencing. It should be as accurate as a competition "FIE" wired system but we appreciate that getting it approved and used at that level will present challenges.

    RAND and licencing issues are tricky. If we made our system licenced would we trust other manufacturers to pay us fairly for using our technology? Some we might, others we would not. We could get round this by supplying encrypted chips to people etc but it is a lot of cost and headache for what is a tiny market. Samsung or Apple we are not! Legal agreements could cost as much as the annual sales of the product.

    We aim to release a product that will transform club fencing especially where a club has no fixed venue. If we achieve that then I will be happy.
     
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  11. bobb121

    bobb121 Podium

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    Any update on a possible release date Alex?
     
  12. DHCJr

    DHCJr Armorer

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    But then the fencers would have to give up their matching color vest and jacket and Alexander Massialas would have to give up his shoes.
     
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  13. brtech

    brtech Podium

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    Yeah, to make things work a lot better, some other changes would be needed. It's possible to learn the color pattern of the uniform, so if we allowed some variation, we could have a learning session prior to the bout. Tradeoff of simplicity with fashion statements.
     
  14. DHCJr

    DHCJr Armorer

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    That won't work. Remember I said 'matching color vest and jacket'. If you have on and off-target the same color. Also, the rules have changed they no longer need to be one color. You could have a tie-die outfit are you going to have it 'learn' every color on the uniform?
     
  15. jkormann

    jkormann Podium

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    Foil, learn the color of the lame and the strip.
    Epee, learn the color of the strip.
     
  16. brtech

    brtech Podium

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    It's pretty trivial to point a full frame camera at the fencer and extract the colors. If there is enough color differentiation between on and off target, it should work fine. Humans are extremely good at detecting color differences if they are adjacent, and lousy if they are separated. Image systems are better than humans when samples are separated, and not as good as humans when they are adjacent unless lighting is unusually good.
     
  17. DHCJr

    DHCJr Armorer

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    You didn't get my point. Let us just go over Foil. First you learn the color of the lamé. They hit the jacket or the breaches which are 'matching' (i.e. the exact same color), TOUCH! Second, which color. It could be multicolored.

    Let us go over Epee, every piste has at least 3 colors. Suppose a fencer is wearing one of those colors?
     
  18. jkormann

    jkormann Podium

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    Make the strips and lames black. Uniforms aren't allowed to be black.
    Do I have to do all the thinking here? :)
     
  19. DHCJr

    DHCJr Armorer

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    No, but I do expect you to do the reading. I will repeat, what I said, 'Let us go over Epee, every piste has at least 3 colors.' So the 3 colors are Black, Black and Black?

    This is the problem, many people come up with ideas and don't think what problem those changes will cause. The person who started Keurig, now says he wish he didn't because of all those K-cups ending up in the landfill. In fencing, they wanted to get rid of the flicks in Foil. SEMI came up with a solution. The problem is the FIE only used half the solution, so it didn't solve the problem. You mentioned the Uniforms aren't allowed to be black, but they are allowed to be Dark Blue. When they changed from the 'light' colors, they didn't think what problems that would cause. In a way, while the FIE does not ban Dark Blue uniforms, they are illegal in US Fencing competitions. In Sabre, they came up with Electric, but they didn't consider how whippy the blade was. So they stiffened the blade, but they didn't camfer the blade and they didn't consider what problems that would cause, so they came up with new gloves and we go on.

    Before this using color sensors, you have to consider what problems it will cause. Brtech has already admitted that the same color side by side would not work. I was baiting someone to make the statement that because of the different material, colors on the lamé or piste would be different than the jacket. I didn't think Brtech would fall for it, but I was looking for someone. Of course that is a falacy, because since they no longer need to conduct, they could be the same materiel as the jacket, lamé and piste.

    This is a nice idea, but technology is not up to the task, unless we go back to solid colors and restricting colors of uniforms, lamé and piste.

    I have thought of problems, I just gave the most simple. Even your answer black has another problem. The rules say the uniform can't be black, but does that mean you can have no black on your uniform. No! Suppose you are a fencer from Belgium, Benin, Egypt, Estonia, France, you would have an area on your legs that no one could get a touch on. Why because they have Black in their logos and there are many others.
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2016
  20. Privateer

    Privateer Podium

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    is there something besides color the tip sensor could be programmed to look/feel/sense for?
     

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