Saturday 17  October

Thanks Betty! Good morning Kate and Bill and Mary and Glenn and Eric and Chad and Amy and everybody, what a beautiful morning here in Lake Wales, Florida. We're pouring down some coffee and continuing with setup operations.

Regarding the webcam, I had some mixed results with it last night and I'm going to try a few more things today, but I'll be surprised if I can get it working right, we'll see.

The DZ just finished up with a very nice opening ceremony, complete with some nice music and demos by the U.S. CRW team "Clean Leap" and the U.S. Army Golden Knights. Photos coming soon. Meanwhile, I'm looking for more feedback on the webcam, I'd like to hear if anyone can see it at all. I've looked at it from several outside sources since last night and I could see it. If you can't see a picture of some sorts on it, make sure you have the Flash plugin installed, that should be your only browser requirement. Thanks for the help.

A very nice opening ceremony, topped off by the Golden Knights demo and the traditional way-cool flyby.

Not visible: The hangar is *PACKED* with people going through registration.

Photo by Soreyrith Um

Clean Leap and the Golden Knights:

Photo by Soreyrith Um Photo by Soreyrith Um
Photo by Soreyrith Um Photo by Soreyrith Um
Photo by Soreyrith Um Photo by Soreyrith Um
Photo by Soreyrith Um Photo by Soreyrith Um
Photo by Soreyrith Um Photo by Soreyrith Um

Above is a hasty panoramic shot of the hangar, you can see there's a whole lot of people getting registered.

A notice to all teams, before I start fat-fingering in all these team pages. Your team name will appear on your team page exactly as it appears on your registration paperwork. So if your team is Perris Potato Heads and your paperwork says just Potato Heads, it will cost you a bottle of wine to change it. Allrighty? ;-)...

...just spent the last hour hanging out around registration, it is just so great to see all these faces...the nationals experience seems as much a reunion as a competition, no? Hey look, there's my ex-boss, bookended by skygoddesses Arianna De Benedetti and Lisa Aune:

The 4-way briefing & draw is at 1930 and competition is supposed to begin under sunny skies at 0800 tomorrow. I'll have the 4-way draw posted as soon as it's made official.

2230 [T1 chimes in -- pickin' and sippin']
*Slurp* thank you, Betty, for the wine delivery this morning! Pure delish. This one is an Australian Shiraz under the label Black Swan. Your hospitality is unsurpassed!

T2 is busy hacking away at the team info pages, what you'll get when you klicken-Sie-hier-bitte on the team numbers on the results pages. I don't see how he can read some of those team member names. One's propensity to skydive seems to be directly proportional to the obscurity of one's family name. Sure, the Meat [sic] Direktor is Scott Smith, and the most experienced team from the Ranch is named Guy Mike Billy Joe Fred or something like that, but everyone else runs the gamut from Pilcher to Inabette to Oczkowski (hi Oscar!) to Brodsky-Chenfeld (hi Dan! Tell Kindsvater I said hello). This year's meet hosted by a Hill, but not The Larry, and she (the host, Betty) only recently a ring-them-Kabeller. Only in America!!!

Yours Truly spent most of the day hacking OmniCode, in particular upgrading the software that displays the team photos automatically when one of the scoring processors cues said team to be judged (like, uhm, you care). The Crisis of the Day yesterday was much more entertaining: after all the equipment was set up and turned on, we were distressed to discover that the main OmniSkore interface software (what the Event Judge operates to control the Scoring Processor) was completely, utterly b0rken. All the control buttons were missing! Panicked, I fired up the development environment on my Sony laptop. Worked great. Copied the program over to the event judges' laptops. Still b0rken. Wtf?! Three hours of hacking and grinding later, still no luck. The software no w0rkie on the IBM ThinkPad 240Z laptops. But works great on my Sony VAOI. Valium, please.

Then I got to thinking. This exact same software was working great in France barely a month ago. And boom, without changing a thing, it's completely autistic in Florida. What changed? The only thing I did was change the time zone from Paris to EST .... Naw, that couldn't be it. Still, I changed one of the laptop's times back to GMT+1 (Paris). Software worked great. Back to EST, b0rken again. Reboot all the laptops. Software works great again. Go figure. Any clues out there? (Please: hold the get-a-Mac digs. When Mac joins the universe of open architecture, we can go there. Until then, I invite those of ewe who disagree to build a real-time scoring system with nothing but apple slices. Or cores, whatever.)

T2 now reminds me I need to test NetPost. Darn responsibility. Okay...

(p.s. if you see bizarre data in the results pages today, relax, I'm training NetPost how to handle results that may or may not have a jump-off round ... World Meet aftermath ... the results tables will be reset before Round 1 begins ...)


Ted "T1" Wagner, Chief Engineer | Tim "T2" Wagner, Webmaster