Ohio 2014

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Re: Ohio 2014

Postby lovescience » April 26th, 2014, 10:42 pm

Complete results are available at tiny.cc/ohso

Regarding the helicopters as a trial event, the decision to do so was made in unanimous consultation with the event supervisors, arbitrators and tournament director. There were a lot of issues and several arbitrations regarding judgment calls over helicopters being hung up. We did NOT grant any appeals regarding specific team times. Medals were still given out to the top six competitors.

At the time the decision was made, none of us involved in it had any idea what the final team rankings were shaping up to be, nor should that have mattered. However, as you can verify yourself from the results link above, even if we had kept it as a full event, none of the top 6 team ranks would have changed, hence it essentially had no impact on who got team trophies.
It may not have impacted the top 6 but it did impact those teams above that and that mattered to those kids. To those kids, and many there, it was not all about the trophy, but about the spirit of the event. It is sad for them and those teams, even if they weren't the top teams. Several kids were crying because an entire year of the hard work did not count for their teams. That should be appreciated and respected and in my opinion deserves an apology regardless of how right you may feel the decision was.

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Re: Ohio 2014

Postby lovescience » April 26th, 2014, 10:47 pm

Also, it would have been nice if the coaches could have notified the kids ahead of time so they could have prepared their teams. Everyone was very blindsided, which was not a good tone to set for the start of the award ceremony when emotions were very high. This could have been done through the same form of communication used for other updates, such as text and email.

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Re: Ohio 2014

Postby EastStroudsburg13 » April 27th, 2014, 5:26 am

Complete results are available at tiny.cc/ohso

Regarding the helicopters as a trial event, the decision to do so was made in unanimous consultation with the event supervisors, arbitrators and tournament director. There were a lot of issues and several arbitrations regarding judgment calls over helicopters being hung up. We did NOT grant any appeals regarding specific team times. Medals were still given out to the top six competitors.

At the time the decision was made, none of us involved in it had any idea what the final team rankings were shaping up to be, nor should that have mattered. However, as you can verify yourself from the results link above, even if we had kept it as a full event, none of the top 6 team ranks would have changed, hence it essentially had no impact on who got team trophies.
It may not have impacted the top 6 but it did impact those teams above that and that mattered to those kids. To those kids, and many there, it was not all about the trophy, but about the spirit of the event. It is sad for them and those teams, even if they weren't the top teams. Several kids were crying because an entire year of the hard work did not count for their teams. That should be appreciated and respected and in my opinion deserves an apology regardless of how right you may feel the decision was.
No offense, but if the top teams still got medals, then, in the grand scheme of things, how much of a difference does it really make? If it meant a difference in the top six then I can see how it would affect teams, but since it did not, there are no real lasting effects. If teams want, they can just add the scores for Helicopters to the overall scores and see what they would have placed then, thus giving them a contribution to the final score. If medals had not been given out I would see where this would be controversial, but they weren't, and the top places were not affected. It is really unfortunate, but the event supervisors probably handled it in the best way possible, considering the circumstances.

Also by my understanding this was a decision made the day of the competition as a response to conditions during some Helicopter runs, so it would have been impossible for them to make the decision beforehand.
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Re: Ohio 2014

Postby chalker » April 27th, 2014, 7:47 am

Wanted to share a couple more thoughts / comments on the helicopter trial event situation:

First off, as I mentioned above, the team ranks absolutely did NOT factor into this decision, nor did we have any idea what they were at the time of the decision. I've now gone and looked at the complete team rankings for all 40 teams, with and without helicopters as a trial event. In the vast majority of cases teams final rank was identical. In a handful of cases teams move up or down 1 rank as a result. In 2 cases teams moved 2 ranks.

As I'm sure everyone noticed, scoring was a bit delayed in getting final results. There were a LOT of issues we had to deal with, far more than I've ever encountered in my many years of helping run tournaments. Nothing could be attributed to any one person or cause, it was rather just the perfect storm of lots of diverse smaller things occurring, each of which took time and attention.

Could we potentially have notified everyone a bit earlier about helicopters? Yes, if we had thought about it at the time. I don't know the exact time the decision was finalized, but I'm sure it was within about an hour of the awards ceremony starting. So our natural thought was just to announce it at the ceremony and then move on to the next problem to be dealt with. Would sending out an text or email have given coaches times to 'prepare their kids'? I don't know, but I suspect that it generally would have had the same impact and people would have been upset, albeit about an hour earlier.

I'm sure there is going to be a lot of 'Monday morning' quarterbacking on this, but I'd like to emphasize this was a group decision made after significant discussion and we all agreed it was in the best interest of everyone in general, while admitting some people would of course be upset about it.

Also please keep in mind that in this very thread a week or so ago there was a big debate about the location of the event. The tournament director tried very hard to move it to another location, but ultimately was unable to due to various issues, including the fact that 2 other large events were going on on campus yesterday at the same time.

The event supervisors assigned to this event were very experienced and have run flying events such as helicopters and wright stuff numerous times. They readily admitted that there was far more subjectiveness in their timing decisions over helicopters getting hung up than normally occurs - nearly every flight required them to note a contingency time via the lap functionality of the stopwatches.

TDLR version: I'm sorry some people are upset about this, but hopefully after learning all the details, in particular the minimal impact on team results, and thinking about it they'll understand we made the best choice possible given the situation.

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Re: Ohio 2014

Postby Sciwizkid » April 27th, 2014, 8:46 am

How was the Meteorology test in Columbus?
I can't wait to see how all the teams will stack up this year. It's going to be a close one. Good luck to everyone competing in their final preparations!

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Re: Ohio 2014

Postby lovescience » April 27th, 2014, 9:18 am

Thank you for the explanation and acknowledgement of some of the unfortunate components of what took place with Helicopters. It really is appreciated.

I have a question I would like to understand, though I realize I should just let this go.

Why was a false ceiling not introduced when a change a venue was not possible? If it was being looked into being moved, the venue was clearly determined to not be good for Helicopters. False ceilings have been done in schools, why not in the field house when a change of venue could not be made?

Also, I think I heard times were being adjusted when a device became hung up, which was atypical of previous years, which could have been the cause of more arbitration. Again, if that was a decision that was being made, a better form of communication about the timing decision ahead of time would have been appreciated. Some schools that have are seasoned and have competed often in this venue, design their devices based on the conditions - i.e to get hung-up and still come down on its own with the longest time possible. If they don't adapt the device in some way, some look at launch points with one device, hedging their bets. Get one caught and get a long time and hope the other device has a decent flight time just to cover your bases. Sometimes you get unlucky and both get hung up. In the past, no big deal - two chances at a long time, but not yesterday. That meant two very low times in many cases. I imagine the schools were probably caught off guard when that exact situation occurred but they went from times of over four minutes to times of 50 seconds or so. I am sure that was surprising and not embraced. Especially if they were looking at a shot at Nationals.

I do not point this out to be difficult but rather to share that communication could have been given ahead of time about the timing change unless it was a last minute decision made that day. I do think you did the right thing throwing out the event when you met about the arbitration issues given the many factors involved.

That being said, it is easy to look back and point out all the places something could have been done differently. It is over. It is done. Kids will move on. The handful of affected teams will learn from this and take their lump and hopefully be better for it.

It sounds like the National Venue for this event is not good either based on the past threads. Maybe this experience will help that venue be adapted to be more appropriate. Although we missed that chance for this year, it would still be good for all the teams competing if that were to happen. It would be unfortunate if it does not. Live and learn and make it better next time. Nationals is the next time. Hopefully you can use this experience for good for that event.

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Re: Ohio 2014

Postby chalker » April 27th, 2014, 10:26 am

Why was a false ceiling not introduced when a change a venue was not possible? If it was being looked into being moved, the venue was clearly determined to not be good for Helicopters. False ceilings have been done in schools, why not in the field house when a change of venue could not be made?
Can you provide more details of this? I don't fully understand what it would look like, the costs involved, etc. etc.

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lovescience
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Re: Ohio 2014

Postby lovescience » April 27th, 2014, 11:29 am

Why was a false ceiling not introduced when a change a venue was not possible? If it was being looked into being moved, the venue was clearly determined to not be good for Helicopters. False ceilings have been done in schools, why not in the field house when a change of venue could not be made?
Can you provide more details of this? I don't fully understand what it would look like, the costs involved, etc. etc.
I can get more info on this. I know I have seen it done but think others on my team would know more about the specifics. I will get back to you soon on that.

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Re: Ohio 2014

Postby curiouscrab » April 27th, 2014, 11:39 am

Why was a false ceiling not introduced when a change a venue was not possible? If it was being looked into being moved, the venue was clearly determined to not be good for Helicopters. False ceilings have been done in schools, why not in the field house when a change of venue could not be made?
Can you provide more details of this? I don't fully understand what it would look like, the costs involved, etc. etc.
I can get more info on this. I know I have seen it done but think others on my team would know more about the specifics. I will get back to you soon on that.
They don't have an infinite budget you know. But yeah, you ought to drop it. Helicopters is going bye bye now. I wonder what will replace it...maybe some sort of landing craft event or an airplane with propeller.
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Re: Ohio 2014

Postby Astroknight » April 27th, 2014, 11:48 am

Why was a false ceiling not introduced when a change a venue was not possible? If it was being looked into being moved, the venue was clearly determined to not be good for Helicopters. False ceilings have been done in schools, why not in the field house when a change of venue could not be made?


Can you provide more details of this? I don't fully understand what it would look like, the costs involved, etc. etc.
I can get more info on this. I know I have seen it done but think others on my team would know more about the specifics. I will get back to you soon on that.
They don't have an infinite budget you know. But yeah, you ought to drop it. Helicopters is going bye bye now. I wonder what will replace it...maybe some sort of landing craft event or an airplane with propeller.
Elastic Launch Glider will replace Helicopters in B div. next year, and Wright Stuff will replace Elastic Launch Glider in C div.
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