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Old Jul 26, 2013, 10:20 AM
Flying = Falling (Slowly)
dharban's Avatar
Tulsa, OK
Joined May 2004
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I have attached some comments on seeded vs. non-seeded MOM for your consideration. They are not intended in any way to be a criticism of seeded MOM, as much as observations that the substantial difference in possible sizes of flight groups may diminish somewhat the REAL benefits of seeding -- other than the thrilling last round between the real contenders.

I have flown in both seeded and non-seeded MOM contests and they are both very satisfying. I have to say, however, the incredibly smooth operation of the system Randy has used at this year's Nats and the last two Polecats impressed me a lot. Lots of flying -- not so much waiting or having to line up timers at the last minute. I've never been to contests the size of the Nats or the Polecat where I put up more flights with less hassle. And on a really hot day, even a little bit of a hassle wears my old body down.

Happy Landings,

Don
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Old Jul 26, 2013, 10:38 AM
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I guess advatages and disadvatages to each method
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Old Jul 26, 2013, 11:34 AM
Soaring Circuits
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Joined Sep 2001
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Thanks for the compliment Don, but I do have to correct you on one point. It's not "Randy", it's "Randy & Lauren". Or, more precisely, "Lauren & Randy".

I've flown dozens of ALES contests and a few of them were seeded MOM. Most recently, this past weekend at the Atlantic City event. I like both formats. Heck, I just like contests in general. For the most part, they're the only time I get to fly and to do so with a bunch of like minded folks is as good as it gets. I do enjoy the seeded MOM format but there are a few things I don't like about it.

Anyway, there are some things in the works for next year for the standard non-seeded format that we've been using. First, we're working on new algorithms that don't seed the flight matrix purely randomly like is currently done, but will seed it based on how many times pilots fly against each other. This way, you're guaranteed to fly against other pilots a minimum number of times.

Secondly, we'll have new audio files that will announce the round and group at every minute of the countdown, vs. just at the 5 minute warning. We haven't had many guys miss their group at the big contests, but hopefully this will reduce that number to zero.

Randy
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Old Jul 26, 2013, 07:12 PM
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Isn't this supposed to be a thread about not emphasizing the landing??

:-O
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Old Jul 29, 2013, 07:32 AM
Red Merle ALES
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United States, Mt, Helena
Joined Apr 2002
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Seeded Comparison

Threads take on their own life so if the thread owner would like this deleted please advise and I'll gladly do so.

I reworked my Man-on-Man (MoM) scoring spreadsheet to a Seeded MoM one.

We flew a contest Saturday and I scored it using the non-seeded variety. See the first photo for the results. Then I took those scores and put them round by round into the Seeded MoM score sheet; see the second photo for the results.

I'm certain it's not a totally accurate representation because in the copying of the scores over some folks are now being scored in flight groups they actually didn't fly against other folks in. The weather was good and most folks were getting their times, not always but most were. The results are what folks have been talking about. In the end there is not much of a difference other than perhaps the excitement of seeing the winners fly together.

Curtis
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Old Jul 29, 2013, 11:51 AM
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I have been following this thread for awhile and I think that below the surface we are really talking about 2 different things. The first concern is the entry of the "big boys" with sophisticated moldies and higher skill levels turning the typical ALES contest into a "landing contest". The second concern is that flyers of this higher level tend to displace the lower skilled flyers as they feel they have no chance to do well, much less win.

The first concern is - better flyers with better models. Folks, look around, this is true in any sport or competition. Those willing to invest the money for the top equipment and then devote the time necessary to develop the skills needed to win will always rise to the top. That is the way competition works. I think eventually ALES will use seeded MOM and probably reduced launch heights (particularly in flyoff rounds) and most probably single point increment landing scoring. The evolution will be there and nobody will be able to stop this.

I believe that losing the lesser skilled modeler from full blown ALES is going to take away one thing that made the success of ALES assured in the first place - that is that on any given day it was conceivable that almost any entrant could win. Bring what you have and give it a shot.

One idea that has been discussed is the formation of a separate class for "foamies" or sub 100" wingspans or other limiters. This separate class would fly along with the full ALES event but be scored separately. I think this might work in transition but it is not going to work over time.

Let's agree that as ALES becomes even more sophisticated the underlying problems caused by the separation of the best from the "not the best" are not going to go away. The "not the best" are. To that end, let me offer the following suggestions.

First, allow ALES to go in the direction that everyone knew it would take. Incorporate longer tasks, lower launch heights, single point increment landing scoring or whatever else that successful evolution calls for. ALES as we know it is a great event and it will grow to one day rival TD in all it's forms.

For the beginner or sport pilot not interested in spending big $$$ or devoting many, many hours of practice I would suggest a "Radian Rulz" event. This would be the ultimate Radian event, limited to only the original Radian. I would not allow any modification of the wing excepting painting would be OK. The motor must be stock. Any prop could be used and also any battery/ESC combo. You could alter the decalage or stiffen the fuselage or tail surfaces. You would be allowed to change the hardware and fly any CG you wished. NO auxillary controls permitted - rudder servo, elevator servo, and ESC only. There would be no landing task as such the only requirement being that the nose of the airplane must be within a defined area after the landing motion stops (no skids). This might be something so simple as within the established field boundaries or maybe within a 50 foot circle or some such. No points given for landing inside the designated area BUT the flight will receive a ZERO score if the landing is outside the area. Most of contest specific rules would still be at the discretion of the CD such as flight duration, launch altitude, and so on, and would be run very much like the current ALES. Note that this event will not be run with the "standard" ALES event but will be an entirely different contest best run, I think, on a different day.

If something like my "Radian Rulz" event was to be started it would provide a place where anybody could come and enter and fly. The basic Radian would be the only choice so the cost is fixed at reasonable levels. Changes are allowed to make the airplane fly better or more to the pilot's taste but no alterations are allowed that would create a different airplane. Basically you now have each entrant on a level playing field with every other entrant - the only difference being the ability of the pilot. That seems to be what everybody is saying, make the playing field even. This could work.

Let me be clear here - ALES continues to grow and evolve on it's own. "Radian Rulz" is a new event made specially for the "newbie" or sport flyer who wants to get into contest flying at a low key level. If some day you find you have outgrown "Radian Rulz" you simply go find an ALES event to enter and the best of luck to you.
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Old Aug 01, 2013, 02:30 AM
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Last weekend I was a CD in FAI F5J contest. (My e-fuse is still on oder...)

In the slightly tricky weather typical motor altitudes were between 100-200 meters. There is 50 points difference between these altitudes - which is exactly the same as maximum landing points!

Wave to go into WC level flying to make FAI F5J an event where landing skills make the difference. Right now it seems that using the motor and reading air while climbing with motor are the crucial aspects of flying.
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Old Aug 01, 2013, 09:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tuomo View Post
Last weekend I was a CD in FAI F5J contest. (My e-fuse is still on oder...)

In the slightly tricky weather typical motor altitudes were between 100-200 meters. There is 50 points difference between these altitudes - which is exactly the same as maximum landing points!

Wave to go into WC level flying to make FAI F5J an event where landing skills make the difference. Right now it seems that using the motor and reading air while climbing with motor are the crucial aspects of flying.
+1 here
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Old Aug 01, 2013, 09:12 AM
Red Merle ALES
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United States, Mt, Helena
Joined Apr 2002
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Here is our latest contest with and without landings. I just went in and zeroed everyone's landing scores.

Is it really a landing contest as is? It's only 5% of the total score. We used 10 meter tapes 50 points max. I was surprised of this, as in this contest most folks were making their task times so I thought it would have become a landing contest.
However, only 4th and 5th place swapped out of the entire group.

Curtis
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Last edited by Curtis Suter; Aug 01, 2013 at 11:43 AM.
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Old Aug 01, 2013, 10:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Curtis Suter View Post
Here is our latest contest with and without landings. I just went in and zeroed everyone's landing scores.

Is it really a landing contest as is? It's only 5% of the total score. We used 10 meter tapes 50 points max. I was surprised of this as in this contest most folks were making their task times so I thought it would have become a landing contest.
However, only 4th and 5th place swapped out of the entire group.

Curtis
So there you go!!
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Old Aug 01, 2013, 07:55 PM
Flying = Falling (Slowly)
dharban's Avatar
Tulsa, OK
Joined May 2004
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Curtis Suter View Post
Here is our latest contest with and without landings. I just went in and zeroed everyone's landing scores.

Is it really a landing contest as is? It's only 5% of the total score. We used 10 meter tapes 50 points max. I was surprised of this, as in this contest most folks were making their task times so I thought it would have become a landing contest.
However, only 4th and 5th place swapped out of the entire group.

Curtis
Curtis,

I am not sure that your analysis really demonstrates anything in particular.

First, it can be demonstrated by examining contest results that there is a very strong correlation between contestants who are skilled at flying and contestants that are skilled at landing. To really give this a look, you have to measure the correlation between finish placement and landing performance separately from the correlation between between finish placement and flying performance.

It is possible (I have done it on occasion) to determine the correlation coefficient between flight times and final placements. If, for example, everyone maxes all of their flights, the correlation coefficient will be zero -- there is no correlation between outcome and flight times. The way we fly, correlation coefficients should properly be determined for NORMALIZED flight scores. Similarly, if everyone maxes their landings, there would be no correlation between outcomes and landings. My experience in looking at contest data suggests that this is far less likely under any circumstances. Generally, there is a wider distribution of landing scores than of flight scores. So, while landings may only count for 5 percent of the total score, they actually account for more (sometimes much more) of the total points in play. In the extreme case where everyone maxes (or where everyone's normalized scores are equal) there are NO flight points in play with regard to the final outcome. Obviously, the extreme case does not happen. But when you consider the competition among the top 1/3 to top 1/5 of competitors, it is very common that the total number of points in play for flying can be very small. In these cases, the landing points are more of a determining factor in the outcome than the flight points.

I have been fascinated with how our events "game out" for many years now. One of the best indicators of how many "points are in play" can be measured by the percentage of flights in a contest that are maxed out. One of my favorite examples is the original Masters contest which was flown with 12 minute tasks under very difficult conditions. Less than 5 percent of all of the flights put up maxed and the distribution of the non-maxers followed a very linear trend to some pretty humbling values. While landings ultimately made a difference in the standings, flying was much more important. On the other hand, I looked at a large contest where nearly 70 percent of the flights put up were maxed. Among the top 20 percent or so of final placements, there was virtually no correlation between normalized flight points and placement. It was a landing contest.

It is not unreasonable to look at your contest results and conclude that it was not settled by landings. But one cannot really tell without studying the correlation between flying and final outcomes and the correlation between landing and final outcomes. At any rate, it is a mistake to conclude that just because landings only account for 5 percent of the possible score that landings represent 5 percent of the points that are really in play.

Happy Landings,

Don
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Old Aug 01, 2013, 09:56 PM
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United States, PA, Harrisburg
Joined May 2012
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Great idea.

Secondly, we'll have new audio files that will announce the round and group at every minute of the countdown, vs. just at the 5 minute warning. We haven't had many guys miss their group at the big contests, but hopefully this will reduce that number to zero.

Randy[/QUOTE]

Think this is a great idea for those who are flying/timing/charging or otherwise
occupied and not paying enough attention to "where there at".
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