PointControl: a new fencing rating system

Discussion in 'Fencing Discussion' started by David Ma, Sep 15, 2015.

  1. jdude97

    jdude97 Podium

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    Vets can fence senior. Senior can't fence vets. Thus senior NRPS should be used to seed an event with both seniors (fencers aged 13+) and seniors (veterans).*
    *not so veiled reference to the other ongoing thread about changing the names of age groups.

    This is the reasoning by which we seed Y14 by Y14 points and not Y12 points because all Y12's can fence Y14 but not vice versa.

    But what I think you're saying is what I've been saying about how not enough of the fencing populace is on the NRPS.

    This is somewhat similar to the discussion of whether or not all A's are created equal. Theoretically, a fencer who earns their A in a mixed vetcombined event is of a similar level to a fencer who wins a Y12 men's NAC and to a fencer who finishes 8th in a competitive A4 men's ROC and to a fencer who wins their local 15-man A1 event. The idea of ratings is they transcend genders and age groups. A 12-year-old A is similar enough to an 18yo A is similar enough to a 29yo A is similar enough to a 45yo A is similar enough to a 70yo A, and for each age, a male A is similar enough to a female A.

    The question then is what is our definition of "similar enough." If we were to define "similar enough" as "exactly the same," then pretty much everyone would have to have their own unique ranking (i.e. a national ranking system that includes everyone, or an Elo-esque system), or we say "similar enough" means two fencers of the same rating are more likely than not to fence a close DE, or what have you. We seem to be content to say that "similar enough" means that an Olympic champion has the same rating as someone fencing for one-year and gets their A due to some raw talent in an A1 event to a Y12 prodigee to a vet60 NAC medalist. People just need to realize when we're discussing the ratings and rankings system that this is what's going on, and then make a personal determination if they're happy with this definition of "similar enough" or not.
     
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  2. Inquartata

    Inquartata Podium

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    Yeah.

    If you're that 12 YO ( well, let's say 13 YO ) or 70 YO A, you enter opens and ROCs and such for fun and training and sundry reasons which are not "to increase my rating" or "to win".

    Under a single encompassing point system, do you still do that if it means that you will likely see a precipitous and steady drop in your rating as you go up against Junior and Senior A-equivalent fencers?

    And can we really still have youth and vet events when it means some fencers are excluded from the chance at gaining points by virtue of being the wrong age? Or do we have such events and, practically speaking, artificially inflate the ratings of the members of the age group vis-a-vis all fencers?

    Do you try to equalize all this with strength factors and the like? Who sets those strength factors, and will they be accused of gaming them in order to favor certain fencers/groups of fencers, as some have been regarding the setting of current strength factors??

    And do you trust the NO's data entry and computer calculations of your points and changes in them after each competition, or do you have to go and check their work?
     
  3. dberke

    dberke Podium

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    One big reason why local evens rarely use points for seeding is because, up until just a few months ago, it was nearly impossible to get the current point rankings in a consumable format. The rankings lived in PDF documents on the USFA website, which are largely useless. If you wanted the current rankings in CSV format so that they could easily be imported into Fencing Time, you had to email someone at the National Office to get the file.

    I pestered the USFA for years about posting the CSV files with the latest point ranks so that anyone could download them and use them. I never understood the reluctance to do that, and after some staff changes at the NO, the posting finally became a reality earlier this year. So now it's much easier to seed events using NRPS, while before it was extremely difficult and time-consuming at best.

    Dan
     
  4. DeanG

    DeanG Made the Cut

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    Remember that the A rating as the highest "at the limit" rating simply means that the fencer is similar to all the other fencers that are better than B rated fencers. It is somewhat different for the "at the limit" E rating. Similar enough means that the granularity is good enough. There is probably a greater disparity in the level of fencing of A rated fencers than any other rating.

    Is the current rating system good enough? It is for me. The new system is very interesting and will provide a load of fun and frustration to the fencing community.
     
  5. David Ma

    David Ma Rookie

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    Is it possible to edit my first post?

    I've launched a new feature: Rate Events. Users can easily look up an upcoming tournament event and see everybody's latest rating.
     
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  6. David Ma

    David Ma Rookie

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    Ugh.. I think askFred is throttling the API calls when they come from different IP addresses. Sorry fencers.

    Edit: Actually, the whole AskFred site is down...

    Edit2: Ok, seems to be working fine now. What a bad coincidence!
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2015
  7. Nakita

    Nakita Made the Cut

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    I thought this tread was about, why I'm aiming for someone's shoulder and I completely miss them. :(
     
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  8. K O'N

    K O'N Podium

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    Neat! Seems pretty predictive, too.
     
  9. abouttothunder

    abouttothunder Made the Cut

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    Thanks for this! Very useful tool. I'm able to see my progress as my skills improve. The ratings have proved fairly predictive for the last four tournaments I've fenced.
     
  10. Relampago

    Relampago Made the Cut

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    Your rating mechanism puts me a half a point ahead of Eli Dershwitz for sabre. I'll take it. :rolleyes:
     
  11. wwalkerjr

    wwalkerjr Made the Cut

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    David,
    I understand that I'm late to this party (first time on F-net in a while), but I think that this is a useful exercise and certainly a nice start. I certainly felt that there was some validity to the relative scores of fencers that I know.
    I agree with many of the commenters that national results (NACs and Summer Nationals) should be included as that is the only place where some of the best fencers compete in the US (i.e. Massialas, Imboden, Zagunis). It seems logical that there should be some "results weighting" based upon the size and level of the event. For example, I believe it is pretty intuitive that the Div 1 National Championships should have a higher significance than a local A4, A2 or B3 competition.
    At the end of the day, the true test is how predictive the number rating becomes: for example, in a given bout does a 41.87 truly defeat a 36.23 92% of the time?
    Thank you for the start. I will follow the improvements that you bring in the future.
     
  12. fencer-dad-of-fencer

    fencer-dad-of-fencer Made the Cut

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    It doesn't seem obviously logical or intuitive to me, so I think I don't understand what model of fencing performance you are using when you say that. It seems to me that the whole idea of this type of rating is to provide a numeric summary of a fencer's bout results independent of the context of tournaments, as opposed to regular USFA classifications or points which are entirely dependent on tournament placement. I'm interested why you think event size or importance would affect the head-to-head results. I can think of reasons, but the ones I can think of don't seem compelling.
     
  13. mfp

    mfp Podium

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    Seems odd to object that possibly adding various arbitrary "intuitive" weighting factors to PointControl rating calculations might somehow ruin the whole idea when PointControl ratings already include several "intuitive", somewhat arbitrary selected weight factors :)
     
  14. fencer-dad-of-fencer

    fencer-dad-of-fencer Made the Cut

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    I don't think actually think I said anything like that. I asked why one would think those particular factors were in fact "intuitive" or appropriate in the context of this kind of rating. I certainly didn't say anything implying that such an inclusion would "ruin" them.
     
  15. Privateer

    Privateer Podium

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    I thought we'd asked before, but how frequently does it pull in result info?


    And I couldn't get 'rate events' search to find anything, even when I copy/paste the tournament name. Is there a trick to it?
     
  16. wgreen

    wgreen Rookie

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    I have been using Point Control for several months as a coach. Any system can be improved, but I have found it to be a valuable scouting tool, a help to tournament planning for coach and fencer, and a good way to make assessments of where one of my fencers stands against others. I work primarily with fencers who compete in Division events, and in that environment it is worth considering as part of your coaching tool kit.
     
  17. PointFirst

    PointFirst Rookie

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    Great system! Very useful for training, tracking, coaching, scouting. Love it. Question, couldn't tell from the tech articles, how does this system weight recent results vs past results if at all? Or is each pointcontrol rating only for the last tournament? I assume it is an accumulation of results, but for someone who is improving or new, does this mean they carry along their "early, bad" results indefinitely? How does that work? Thanks!
     
  18. Craig

    Craig Administrator Staff Member

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    Any updates on the site and program?

    More use cases for this?
     
  19. Eledex

    Eledex Made the Cut

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    I just got permission from the tournament committee chair to use PointControl to seed an E & Under event. As far as I know this is the first use of PointControl to seed a USFA event.
     
  20. jkormann

    jkormann Podium

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    How often is PointControl updated?
     

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