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Stackmat Pro Timers and the WCA

Daniel Wu

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As far as I am aware, the gen 2 timers are no longer available for purchase from the Speedstack website because they are only selling gen 3 timers. Also, at US Nationals this year, there were gen 3 timers that were used. So I have several questions.

Is the WCA going to eventually have to make the transition from gen 2 to gen 3 timers? Does the WCA prefer one type of timer over another? If the WCA prefers the gen 2 timer, is there still a way to purchase new gen 2 timers?

What is the procedure for recording times off of a gen 3 timer? For example, a time of 12.348. Is that recorded as 12.348 (actual time), 12.34 (time on external display, truncated), or 12.35 (time to the hundredths (rounded)? How exactly are averages calculated using this system? Assuming times are recorded in full to the thousandth, does one round the times (to the hundredth) before calculating the average or after calculating the average? While often negligible, this could make a difference in someones average if only by a hundredth. And of course, having some kind of standardization (possibly outlined in the WCA Regulations?) is good for keeping consistency as far as calculating the results.

Another question/problem I have is stopping the timer. Sometimes, when stopping the gen 3 timers, it resets to 0 despite the reset button never being pressed (at least in my experience with 3 gen 3 timers). This happens significantly more frequently than with the gen 2 timers. Is the competitor awarded another solve? I believe this is the case based on Article 11 of the WCA Regulations. However, if this is a common occurrence, it could cause major problems. In a way, it's similar to the POP rule where people could potentially make their cube POP on a bad solve in order to get a new scramble. I notice that the timer only resets when hit with a good bit of force, even though it is not stopped unreasonably forcefully. So, people could realize that they are having a bad solve and intentionally stop the timer with unnecessary force in the hopes of getting a new scramble.

Basically, I'm just confused about what exactly the procedures are for the new gen 3 timers and also bringing up some problems that they pose.

(Sorry if there are typos, it's like 2:30 in the morning haha)
 

ardi4nto

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Is the WCA going to eventually have to make the transition from gen 2 to gen 3 timers? Does the WCA prefer one type of timer over another? If the WCA prefers the gen 2 timer, is there still a way to purchase new gen 2 timers?

What is the procedure for recording times off of a gen 3 timer? For example, a time of 12.348. Is that recorded as 12.348 (actual time), 12.34 (time on external display, truncated), or 12.35 (time to the hundredths (rounded)? How exactly are averages calculated using this system? Assuming times are recorded in full to the thousandth, does one round the times (to the hundredth) before calculating the average or after calculating the average? While often negligible, this could make a difference in someones average if only by a hundredth. And of course, having some kind of standardization (possibly outlined in the WCA Regulations?) is good for keeping consistency as far as calculating the results.
The times is truncated in the last US Nationals before calculating average.
Can only answer this question though.
 

Dene

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I can assure you the delegates have been addressing everything regarding the gen3 timers. I am not making an official statement, but this is the general consensus:

We will not use thousandths of a second at any time in the forseeable future. The thousandth of a second digit will be truncated, not rounded. I don't think there was any agreement as to when is the best time to truncate during a competition, but all averages will be worked out with the truncated times (I think the best thing is for the judge to write down the whole time, including thousandths of a second, and the person doing data entry can truncate).

At some stage in the future the generation 2 timers will be phased out, but no date has been set for that. For now both timers are acceptable, and I suspect it will stay this way for at least 2 or 3 years.

Naturally, due to the issues that became obvious at USnats with the timers resetting, there is a big problem that has to be dealt with. At this stage I believe we are waiting on advice from Speedstacks as to what's going on with the timers resetting, as it will be a major problem for them too. If it happens during a competition the only thing that can be done is a resolve.
 

tx789

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the winning single time is one two people have wouldn't going to the 1/1000th a good idea thoose the only event that may happen often is magic and it is getting removed
 

Stefan

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I think the best thing is for the judge to write down the whole time, including thousandths of a second, and the person doing data entry can truncate
Or put opaque tape on the timer over the last digit so it isn't seen in the first place, so the judge can't mistakenly round up.

the winning single time is one two people have wouldn't going to the 1/1000th a good idea thoose the only event that may happen often is magic and it is getting removed
Don't drink and post.
 

Blake4512

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Is there a difference between the Gen3 and the Pro? Do they both have resetting issues?
Gen 3 is the new one that doesn't have the save buttons and it doesn't have the third decimal place. It also doesn't have the port to connect to the tournament display. The pro timer is the one used at nationals, which is pretty much completely blue and has the save buttons and 3rd decimal place. I'm not sure if the gen 3 has reseting issues since I've never tried one, but there is a major downfall having no data port.
 

Dene

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Or put opaque tape on the timer over the last digit so it isn't seen in the first place, so the judge can't mistakenly round up.
Another solution, but certainly not worthy of being enforced as a rule. There are plenty of ways to do it, and I'm sure the owner of the equipment, along with the delegate (who is probably often the owner as well) can come to a decision as to how they will manage it. I think the most important thing is that it *isn't* left to the judges, as that will only cause problems.
 

Pedro

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Gen 3 is the new one that doesn't have the save buttons and it doesn't have the third decimal place. It also doesn't have the port to connect to the tournament display. The pro timer is the one used at nationals, which is pretty much completely blue and has the save buttons and 3rd decimal place. I'm not sure if the gen 3 has reseting issues since I've never tried one, but there is a major downfall having no data port.
I thought the Pro timer was this one: http://www.speedstacks.com/store3/retail/speed-stacks-stackmat-pro/

Also, the one in this video http://www.speedsolving.com/forum/showthread.php?25907-US-Nationals-2012-(Las-Vegas)&p=772020&viewfull=1#post772020 doesn't look like that one in the link, but people who were there are saying it was a Pro timer.

I never actually saw a gen3 or pro, so I know nothing, but I'm confused :)
 
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Stefan

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Correct. And you agree with Blake4512 (who you responded to).

Also, the one in this video http://www.speedsolving.com/forum/showthread.php?25907-US-Nationals-2012-(Las-Vegas)&p=772020&viewfull=1#post772020 doesn't look like that one in the link, but people who were there are saying it was a Pro timer.
Those in the video are Gen 2. We switched back from Pro to Gen 2 because of the problems.
 
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