Software Scoring Machine

Discussion in 'Armory - Q&A' started by reawl, Aug 29, 2006.

  1. Bayou Bum

    Bayou Bum Rookie

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    It is definately something I would be interested in. I agree that it would be great to have additional functions like the time and interface with pool sheets.

    Just make sure you include some bugs in it when you sell it so you can charge for upgrades later :)
     
  2. CvilleFencer

    CvilleFencer Podium

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    I think this sounds like a great idea. I have a couple of old laptops laying around (although both are MACs I think...) and I would love to give this a try. I would gladly pay about $50 for it, but I would expect the dongle to be included with the software as with most other software that requires a special cable interface. I strongly encourage you to continue developing this, it sounds like it has really great potential!
     
  3. KD5MDK

    KD5MDK Moderator

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    Well, one thing you could do is cheat. Send the same signal over the B line for sabre that you do for foil. It won't follow the letter of the rules, but in terms of having the same outcome it should be fine.

    The other possibility is to install a mechanical switch in your dongle that changes pin to line matchups.
     
  4. shlepzig

    shlepzig Podium

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    use ports 2-9

    Ports 2-9 can be configured as either input or output.

    Configure for input and use as needed. This can be done in your printer port drivers usually.

    You could set up a Sourceforge page for your development so others can take a look at your code. Also lots of parallel port resources there from DLL's and other libraries you might find useful in development.

    Shlep.
     
  5. reawl

    reawl Rookie

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    shlepzig, I'll have to poke around with the driver I'm using to see if I get 2-9 to go both ways. As for SourceForge, I've used it in the past, but for this project, since there's potential I may be selling the software itself, I'm not ready to open it up to the public. If someone was willing to do a peer review or try it out at their own club I might be more open to that.
     
  6. shlepzig

    shlepzig Podium

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    Pins 2 - 9

    Pins 2-9 don't go both ways. They go either way, but you pick one and go with it. I hunted up one technical reference, in which older refers to 1981 or older PCs(so stone age in computer terms).

    For your software, you will want to configure the ports to work as inputs.

    This can either be set with firmware (if you use development board for the parallel port) or can be set in the software or the bios.

    Source of quoted text

    Her's how you do it in Linux

    Shlep
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2006
  7. reawl

    reawl Rookie

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    Pins 2-9

    Actually I found that I could set/clear the 5th Control (1 to send, 0 to read-default) via software. Using this flip flop method I was able to send the signals I needed then read back the result. This worked for both Foil and Epee, and I'm going to step out on a limb and assume the same will hold true for sabre.

    What I found is that I need to add in some resistors so that the current goes where I want it to when I want it to. Before when I was using separate Data/Signal registers things just magically worked out, with all data registers it seems that the magic is gone (I suspect that one set of registers has some internal resistance).
     
  8. El Chucko

    El Chucko Rookie

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    We would love to try it out here in Buffalo. Let us know. (Plus, since I have absolutely NO skill (see: patience) with computer programming, you wouldn't have to worry about me stealing your idea!)
     
  9. reawl

    reawl Rookie

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    Full Screen Mode? Check!
    Installer? Check!
    Pretty Start Menu Icon? Ehh... Define "pretty"
     
  10. KD5MDK

    KD5MDK Moderator

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    BSODs?
     
  11. gtmac

    gtmac Rookie

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    Is it techonologically possible for this be enhanced with a secured wi-fi network for wireless scoring? Instead of having a single box that connects to the laptop for the reel connection you could have two devices that can be keyed to a specific laptop's network. It might mitigate interference, but I don't know anything about what it would mean to timings.
     
  12. KD5MDK

    KD5MDK Moderator

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    Offhand, the first thing that springs to mind is that there are only 11 channels for Wi-Fi, and only 3 of them do not overlap. So I'd suggest using some other radio frequency. I believe up at 10GHz and above it's pretty much unlicensed, so you can do whatever you want.
     
  13. shlepzig

    shlepzig Podium

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    I don't belive the devices need individual frequencies

    I don't belive the devices each need individual frequencies.

    I think the Wifi (Blue Tooth or other) routing device will negotiate connections for individual devices even if they are on the same frequency if there is a surplus of devices trying to communicate at once.

    Each device needs to be able to identify itself to the central server, and sign in.

    The discussion is moot though until the FIE decides that wireless transmission is OK for scoring, until then you can only devleop a training tool.

    A wireless device could certainly work for scoring and be secure. The devices need to keep their clocks in sync with the central scoring device. Then the signal gets time-stamped and sent in the packet to the scoring (server) the time stamps can be compared and the appropriate lights activated. If the transmissions are encrypted that would keep cheaters from sending a false hit packet. The devices should try to resend packets until they are received by the server, so that should take care of most (but not all) jamming techniques.

    Still a lot of work to develop something that is specifically prohibited by the FIE.

    Shlep
     
  14. Mr Epee

    Mr Epee Rookie

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    But it would save loads of money in a club environment. Not to mention time/expertise spent on reel repair. Consider that even the cheapest reel option is around $700 per strip, and unless you have super tall ceilings bungee systems are very messy.
     
  15. little_old_me

    little_old_me Rookie

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    This looks AWESOME, reawl!!!!! Keep us posted!
     
  16. sabreur

    sabreur Podium

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    Actually, if you developed the system and showed it was secure, and it was cheaper than current reel-based systems, it would probably get adopted widely for non-FIE comps, which would put a lot of pressure on the FIE to adopt it... the FIE prohibition against wireless transmission is based on an assessment of technology that is at least ten years out of date and about as nonsensical as their insistence on plexi-masks and their inane tinkering with sabre timings...

    A workable wireless system that cost less than current reel-based systems also could do a fair amount to help spread fencing--or at least remove one of the barriers to the sport's spread...
     
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2006
  17. KD5MDK

    KD5MDK Moderator

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    It appears that Estoc has a wireless scoring machine they're selling in France. I understand that the SEMI head liked it, but the manufacturer is having enough trouble supplying french clubs that he hasn't bothered submitting it for approval.

    http://www.estoc.com/fr/cyber/index.htm

    I wish I read enough french to understand the page.
     
  18. telkanuru

    telkanuru Podium

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    I also thought the Estoc system requred a modification of the foil or epee tip?
     
  19. reawl

    reawl Rookie

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    Problem Solved?

    Getting back to the parallel port, I was unable to set up in-line resistors that would make all three weapons behave as I wanted. So I'm going to go back to the original plan, but with a new project box that will have a different set of sockets for each weapon (a total of 18 banana jacks). Parts were purchased today, construction and results to be posted tomorrow.
     
  20. Mr Epee

    Mr Epee Rookie

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    This is not a marketable product... plain and simple.

    A nice science product, maybe, but not for regular use.
     

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