ExcelMate your new friend?

Timing System

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Colin Beck
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Post by Colin Beck » Tue Oct 07, 2008 5:00 am

I finally have this working, but have not plugged a Trakmate in to it yet. It promises to make timing a lot easier.

But I have a few user-interface questions/suggestions.

Why is there both a "Left" and "Right" lane when using the single lane template?

When using the double-lane template it would simplify things if there was only one button to save the results instead of separate buttons for "Save Left" and "Save Right".

In combination with the above, the tab order could be changed so that you can tab directly from Cones (left) to Cones (right) to the "Save" button. These would be the only 3 activities that would need to be done for every run.

And here's the big one - is there any possibility of a new spreadsheet and Excelmate version that can do a head-to-head double-elimination with a single run (instead of each racer having a run on both the red and white courses)? I helped organise a race with this format two days ago, and it was a great success.

Thanks for making this prog Marcus.

Marcus Seyffarth
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Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Tue Oct 07, 2008 10:57 am

Great that you got it to work! Would you like to share what the issue was?

Single lane:
It seems reasonable to only show one lane in single lane, I guess I just kept both in order to make it as transparent as possible and also that you could use any port on the trackmate. Removing one field would mean that you have to use the selected port on the trackmate. Perhaps the best is to only show one lane and add a setting so that you can change which lane that is used (if one port is broken on an excelmate you can still use this).

Dual lane:
I understand that in most cases it is best to have one large button, Dan Gesmer said the same thing. However sometimes there is only one rider going down the hill and then forcing the other lane to be saved would be a problem. I don't have a good answer to how to solve this, perhaps having a big button and then if there are no time/cones/rider selected in one of the lanes then the program just skips this lane.

Don't you think that you would make it harder to use when you have to the info for both riders correct before saving? Please understand that I have only used the program for small single lane races, so I really have no idea of how it is to use it for a whole day of racing...

Single lane elimination:
The Excelmate is just a stupid program that transfers data to an excelsheet so the program would work just fine. Instead of making a whole new spread sheet why don't you just copy the dual racing spread sheet template and fill the first or second round with "DQ". This would perhaps not be as beautiful but would work.

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Post by Colin Beck » Tue Oct 07, 2008 11:17 am

Marcus Seyffarth wrote:Great that you got it to work! Would you like to share what the issue was?
I never solved the problem - I just used a different laptop. Actually, a friend has tried ExcelMate on 3 different laptops and had the same problem as me - instant crash. I was starting to think it must be a southern hemisphere thing (the bytes go around in the wrong direction...:))
Marcus Seyffarth wrote:Single lane:
...
Dual lane:
...
I see your points. I can't really argue for my points with any conviction cos I haven't actually used the program in a race yet. Actually I don't even have a new enough Trakmate yet!
Marcus Seyffarth wrote:Single lane elimination:
The Excelmate is just a stupid program that transfers data to an excelsheet so the program would work just fine. Instead of making a whole new spread sheet why don't you just copy the dual racing spread sheet template and fill the first or second round with "DQ". This would perhaps not be as beautiful but would work.
Yes, actually the big part of the work is not with the change to single-runs, but with the change to double-elimination. And with this, the big part of the work is most likely in creating a new spreadsheet. The changes needed in Excelmate would likely be smaller.

I'm not an Excel wizard, but maybe I'll have to become one :(

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4.0

Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Wed Oct 08, 2008 9:35 pm

I'm listening...

So here is the new 4.0 version with only one save button and only one lane in the single lane stuff. I have made lots of changes under the hood, so thats why this is 4.0 instead of 3.6.

I have not had the time to test it with a trackmate but I hope it works just fine.
http://www.ettsexett.com/200/ExcelMateSetup.msi

If you prefer the old version I kept it here
http://www.ettsexett.com/200/ExcelMateSetup_35.msi

Try it and let me know if its what you wanted it to be.

/Marcus

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Excelmate works on intelbased Mac computers

Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Wed Jan 21, 2009 11:10 pm

Hey, great news!

I got myself one of these new fine sweet little macbook computers for christmas. I haven't used it that much yet but I'm getting there. Just now I ran Excelmate 4.0 on it using WMWare Fusion. Its an excellent program that cost you about 79$ (usd) and let you run windows based programs without rebooting or doing anything. Its really magic how it works, but thats not my problem and for 79$ its pretty cheap for the amount of magic that you get.

What you need to do is:
- install this Fusion program,
- create a virtual machine that runs windows XP,
- install XP on this virtual machine,
- install Excel on the virtual machine
- install drivers for your USB/RS232 converter (the connector from computer to trackmate)
- install ExcelMate
Run the program as normal!

I haven't tested the connectivity yet but I have installed a bluetooth driver and Nokia PC suite that is able to connect my cellphone to the computer so I believe that it won't be a problem.

If everything works out we will runs some smaller events during the spring and I will report how it works.

The Fusion program is available as a 30 day trial.

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Re: Excelmate works on intelbased Mac computers

Post by Toby Warg » Thu Jan 22, 2009 6:18 pm

Marcus Seyffarth wrote:I got myself one of these new fine sweet little macbook computers for christmas.
Dude..

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Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Tue Feb 03, 2009 1:07 pm

Version 4.1 is out there. The new thing is that reaction times are added to single lane spread sheets as well and of course added by the excelmate. This since we have strated using the reaction start in sinlge lane as well.

Also the tab does not stop in the reaction/rawtime areas anymore. This to make it even more easy to use the program without a mouse, just using tab/arrows/enter.

We tried the Mac/WMWare/Excelmate combo last tuesday and it was a success. Only thing was that there wasn't any column for reaction times in the excelsheet.

Same place as always.

Colin, about your previous problem starting the program. Did you have Excel installed on the computer. I got the same error some time ago and realized excel was not installed. I have added a check for that in 4.1 as well.

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4.2

Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Fri Mar 20, 2009 8:55 pm

Found a bug in the singlelane template in the third round during our last race. I have now fixed it and bundled it to version 4.2 of the excelmate. There is no difference in the program from 4.1 but since the spreadsheet was wrong and there is no version to them I figured it was easier to upgrade and upload the whole combo.

http://www.ettsexett.com/200/ExcelMateSetup.msi

Enjoy!

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Post by Ricardo Damborenea » Mon Mar 23, 2009 1:43 pm

Marcus,

Could you be so kind to provide a link to download just the excel templates? We use them to record by hand the times we obtain with other chrono than trackmate.

Thanks!
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Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Tue Mar 24, 2009 11:39 pm

Since the spreadsheets must match the version of the program in order to work, I don't want to put the spreadsheets in a separate part because then people that do use the program might use the incorrect version and things stop working.

So my suggestion is that you download the program, install it and copy the spreadsheets. If you don't want the program simply uninstall once you have copied the spreadsheets.

What timer are you using?

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Post by Wesley Tucker » Tue Mar 24, 2009 11:53 pm

Marcus,

Microsoft System Installer (.msi) files don't work on Macintosh. Excel files are translatable to either platform but not if its truncated in some way for Windows only.

So, my Mac has no clue what to do with a .msi file. (Took me a while to look around and figure out what that suffix was meant to do.)
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Post by Ricardo Damborenea » Wed Mar 25, 2009 1:46 pm

Installation process stops with a message that it can not find the device (I guess trying to find the Trackmate), so spreadsheets do not download. I have the previous versions, though, but you mentioned a bug in the single lane spreadsheet.

We use a home made system with ribbon sensors, currently single line. Good for training, as no pc required. We are building a module to connect two of this systems and trigger simultaneous two lane starts. But no pc interface in the pipeline and/or 750usd to buy a trackmate ;-)
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Post by Toby Warg » Wed Mar 25, 2009 2:44 pm

Ricardo Damborenea wrote:Installation process stops with a message that it can not find the device (I guess trying to find the Trackmate), so spreadsheets do not download. I have the previous versions, though, but you mentioned a bug in the single lane spreadsheet.

We use a home made system with ribbon sensors, currently single line. Good for training, as no pc required. We are building a module to connect two of this systems and trigger simultaneous two lane starts. But no pc interface in the pipeline and/or 750usd to buy a trackmate ;-)
The program should install properly, without a Trackmate.
PM me for the files.

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Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Wed Mar 25, 2009 7:49 pm

Wesley, if you've read the thread then you know by now that the program runs under microsoft windows. However as I mentioned a few posts up you can run the program on a Mac if (and this is a pretty important if) you run Fusion or Parallels with a MS windows image. Otherwise it will not work. Simple as that.

However using Fusion it works sweet, and as late as yesterday we ran a small race using my Macbook, a trackmate, excelmate and also hooked my cellphone (Nokia N95) up using bluetooth to the computer to get internet access, and I was able to report the runs to the web - live. All from a garage 4 levels below ground since its still snowing in this part of the world...

Ricardo, The installation does not search for any devices so you must have choosen to install on a disk that didn't exist, haven't enough space or you didn't have access. Or something like that.

However I really can't see why you need the updated version if you are going to print it a and write with a pencil. The bug was that the totaltime in the third run was not calculated in a correct way, and since you write with a pen, well I just don't think that macro will affect you anyways...

But thanks Toby for helping! :)

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Post by Wesley Tucker » Wed Mar 25, 2009 8:42 pm

Marcus,

You said you brought ExcelMate to a Mac using the Fusion software. Am I to understand you own Excel for Mac and Excel for Windows?

I don't have fusion but I do have Virtual PC. The problem is I don't have Excel for Windows so it's all for naught.
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Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Wed Mar 25, 2009 8:58 pm

As I wrote above:
- install some virtual PC software,
- install XP (or win2000 or similar) on this virtual machine,
- install Excel on the virtual machine
- install drivers for your USB/RS232 converter (the connector from computer to trackmate)
- install ExcelMate
Run the program as normal!

Saying that I brought the program to Mac is a perhaps not all true. I didn't do jackshit, the people that brought us the possibility to run an instance of MS XP or similar operating system on Intel based Macs made it possible to use Excelmate on Macs (or any other computer that have this possibility).

So - Yes I do have Excel for windows (I don't have excel for mac), its a must to get it to run.

On another note. 750usd seems pretty heavy. I thought it was more like 250, perhaps the newer with a larger display are more expensive.

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Post by Toby Warg » Wed Mar 25, 2009 10:52 pm

Marcus Seyffarth wrote:Wesley, if you've read the thread then you know by now that the program runs under microsoft windows. However as I mentioned a few posts up you can run the program on a Mac if (and this is a pretty important if) you run Fusion or Parallels with a MS windows image. Otherwise it will not work. Simple as that.

However using Fusion it works sweet, and as late as yesterday we ran a small race using my Macbook, a trackmate, excelmate and also hooked my cellphone (Nokia N95) up using bluetooth to the computer to get internet access, and I was able to report the runs to the web - live. All from a garage 4 levels below ground since its still snowing in this part of the world...

Ricardo, The installation does not search for any devices so you must have choosen to install on a disk that didn't exist, haven't enough space or you didn't have access. Or something like that.

However I really can't see why you need the updated version if you are going to print it a and write with a pencil. The bug was that the totaltime in the third run was not calculated in a correct way, and since you write with a pen, well I just don't think that macro will affect you anyways...

But thanks Toby for helping! :)
NP Marcus. This cost me 0 secs of energy.

Expect me to show up in Sthlm on around June 25. Heading out to friends in the US on the 26th.

Peace.

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Post by Ricardo Damborenea » Thu Mar 26, 2009 1:38 pm

Marcus Seyffarth wrote: Ricardo, The installation does not search for any devices so you must have choosen to install on a disk that didn't exist, haven't enough space or you didn't have access. Or something like that.

However I really can't see why you need the updated version if you are going to print it a and write with a pencil. The bug was that the totaltime in the third run was not calculated in a correct way, and since you write with a pen, well I just don't think that macro will affect you anyways...

But thanks Toby for helping! :)
We don't use it for print outs. We input manually the times and cones in the excel sheet and benefit from its functionalities to create both rider's clasifications & final round "pairs" automatically, which can be a mess done by hand if you have a lot of riders.

I've PMed Toby already.

Thanks for the help and regards.
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Post by Colin Beck » Fri Apr 03, 2009 9:05 am

Marcus Seyffarth wrote:Colin, about your previous problem starting the program. Did you have Excel installed on the computer. I got the same error some time ago and realized excel was not installed. I have added a check for that in 4.1 as well.
Sorry for the delay in responding, but yes, the problem is now fixed. Thank you!

(The PC I was using had a "non-activated" copy of Excel installed.)

But we are using double-elimination for all out head-to-head races here, so sadly we can only use Excelmate for single lane races.

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Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Fri Apr 03, 2009 7:38 pm

Ok, but if you send me the Excel sheet that you use (with some explanation, if it ain't obvious how it works) I could probably make it work for that as well. I mean why not? Typing is boring and it's asking for errors.

/Marcus

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Post by Wesley Tucker » Fri Apr 03, 2009 8:05 pm

Marcus,

IF Colin is using the newly-authorized ISSA double elimination format, here's what it needs to do: fastest adjusted time advances after one run. There is no second run in each heat needing to be combined and averaged with the first run.

If you can do this, the loser is put into another bracket immediately and the winner advances. The racing in the losing bracket is treated just like the winners except the loser is eliminated.

Another matter to consider with double-elimination is in each heat the higher seeded racer has lane choice. That would involve possibly having to "flip" names when racing. If racer "A" is automatically advanced to the white lane but chooses to run in the red then those name have to be rearranged. I know that adds an element of manual manipulation but that's the rules: high seed offers the advantage of always getting lane choice.

I will tell you this, also: Jack Smith found off-the-shelf software to run his double elimination event in California last year. Whether or not it ports directly to the computer I do not know. Perhaps contacting him and getting that software and adapting it may be easier than adapting Excelmate to DE?
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Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Fri Apr 03, 2009 8:29 pm

Thanks Wesley!

For Excelmate it would be pretty easy to just have a checkbox on the "settings page" where you select double elimination and then the program would just DQ both riders in the second run, making the winner of the first advance. The problem is that the Excelsheet must know where to move the loser and that should probably be on a separate sheet. How do you run this? First the heat of 16, heat of 8, heat of 4 and so on until you have 1 person left, and then losers heat of 16, losers heat of 8 and so on until you have one person left and these two meet in a final?

For the program the changing of position of names is not a problem, each time you save a time it will look up the current "heat section", and then look up the selected name in the dropdown in that section. So if you want you could move them around all the time. But really its not of any use other than statistics (which lane was fastest) and to more easily remember who went down which course, so from my point of view it's not really necessary to move them around, but if you do, its not a problem. Biggest problem seems to get/program an excelsheet that moves the losers to their correct round.

/Marcus

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Post by Wesley Tucker » Fri Apr 03, 2009 8:44 pm

Marcus,

No. It's run like this:

Round of winners
Matching round of losers.
Round of winners
Matching round of losers

And so on.

Remember: EVERYBODY races in the first round of winners with half falling to the loser's bracket. Half of those losing advance to the next round of the losers' and half are eliminated. The second-round loser's bracket is now only half full.

Now, the winners must skate next. Why? Because half of them are eliminated and fall to the loser's bracket and fill it out. They then race in the loser's bracket and half advance and half eliminated.

Another reason to do this is a matter of fairness. With your suggestion of running all the winners down to one and then starting over, you'll have a final with one skater who's rested for an hour or more and another who's skated non-stop for the same amount of time. When they meet the racing can be very advantageous for one. (The winner could be well rested and ready or the other way and be stone cold going up against a skater that's warm with several recent runs) It's really more competitive if both the winner and the loser reach the final after both have had a comparable amount of racing and resting.

And again, don't forget: even in the loser's bracket the high seed always has lane choice. Every single heat, winner or loser, involves asking the high seed which lane.
Last edited by Wesley Tucker on Sat Apr 04, 2009 12:00 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Colin Beck » Fri Apr 03, 2009 11:31 pm

We've been running our double elim races with pen and paper. Here's a copy of the double-elimination draw I've been using:
http://www.skateboardracing.org.au/foru ... 38%3A48938

It's pretty much as Wesley says.

Modifying the Excel sheet to cope with this draw would be a fairly major undertaking I imagine!

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Post by Bernie Griffiths » Tue Jun 02, 2009 11:09 am

Here is a link to the ASRA Double Elimination worksheet, which is based on Pat Chewning's Chronocone worksheet.
It should work with Excelmate.

It works out who races who, if the repecharge race is required, and has a progress chart.

Double elimination is a great format, as the possibility of a come back via the repecharge round makes the finals very interesting, and ensures that the level of competition remains high throughout the event, even if the top seeds get beaten in an early round.

http://www.skateboardracing.org.au/prof ... limination

I read above that you dont the second run, so on this sheet simply don't use it, the formula's don't need "DQ" data in the second run to work out the result. Have left the second run columns in instead of spending hours adjusting formulas.

As to switching names around for lanes, not sure that it is a big deal. If you use chronocone, it puts that data next to the racer that was selected, and notes the lane in the data. Pretty sure that excelmate will put the data in next to the name also.

In qualifying there is a formula that works out cone penalties for those using manual entry. DQ = 999 second, and DNF is for no shows, and you guessed it DNF's.
Cell AU2 to AU4 is where you can set the cone penalty, and DQ thresholds for qualifying.
Have not put that function into the race section as we expect to use chronocone to handle that stuff. If you want that formula in the race section, just copy it, from qualifying, and add the data in cells AU2 to Au4.

The sheet is setup so that the top seed or winner of previous round is always in the upper cell of each race, so no one needs to remember who gets the pick of lane.

Cheers!

PS: Got Pat Chewning's chronocone running with minimal effort, using off the shelf bits, and almost zero knowledge of electronics, and best of all it costs less than my DIY wireless timer!
Let it go.

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Connection Failed

Post by Vasya Batareykin » Mon Jul 27, 2009 11:50 pm

Marcus,

I tried to set up PC-Trackmate(5.2) connection via different serial cables without any success. Excelmate(4.2)' Start/Reset button doesn't actually restart the timer.
Port debugger utility called Portmon.exe shows read timeouts. Cables (Serial-Serial and USB-Serial) and COM-port are functioning properly.

Is there a way to test serial port in trackmate? Do you have any information about the protocol used in it?

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Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Tue Jul 28, 2009 3:42 pm

Hmm, seems like you know what you are doing and have the rigth tools and still don't get it to work. Strange!

This is what I do when I set it up for a session:
1 start pc, log in and wait until everything has started properly.
2 insert the USB->Serial converter to the computer and check what COM port it got (click "Start"->"Run" type "devmgmt.msc" and click "Ok" and then click the plus sign next to where it says "ports" and find your device)
3 insert the other part of the Serial cable to the trackmate, start the trackmate and reset it once
4 start excelmate, select the comport that your USB-> serial converter got assigned and click connect.
5 open the excel file that you have already prepared with rider names and then select the tab by selecting in the drop down menues. This way the excel file should show up and you can then switch to the execlmate and select a rider and hit "start/reset"

I know that it is possilble to check if a USB port is connected but, I have not found a good way to check if the serial connector is really connected. So the only way to know if it does not work is to try and use it and then we get an error if it does not answer. The protocol is just a string that is sent from the trackmate that looks like "@nnLxTmmm[CR+LF]" nn is the type (start or finish) Lx is the lane (00 or 01) Txxxxx is the time in milliseconds. If you send a "R[CR+LF]" then you reset the timer.

Thats about it. Normal 9600 None 8 1 None connection. Hope it helps.

About making the excelmate working for double elimination, its just about making a excelsheet that supports it. It is some time to create that, and since I don't have the time and we don't use it in sweden (or europe I think) I'm not gonna do it. But if someone else makes the execlsheet I will adapt the program to make use of it. Deal?

/Marcus

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Post by Jani Soderhall » Wed Jul 29, 2009 11:03 pm

I think the PC connection came only with 6.3 as indicated by this topic:

http://www.slalomskateboarder.com/phpBB ... 5221#45221

/Jani

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Re: 4.2

Post by Peter Harnischmacher » Fri Oct 23, 2009 9:18 pm

Marcus Seyffarth wrote:Found a bug in the singlelane template in the third round during our last race. I have now fixed it and bundled it to version 4.2 of the excelmate. There is no difference in the program from 4.1 but since the spreadsheet was wrong and there is no version to them I figured it was easier to upgrade and upload the whole combo.

http://www.ettsexett.com/200/ExcelMateSetup.msi

Enjoy!
Hello. has anybody tested this version with Windows 7 and can tell if it works?
cheers prikel

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Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Fri Oct 23, 2009 9:21 pm

For christ sake, windows 7 was released yesterday!

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Post by Peter Harnischmacher » Fri Oct 23, 2009 9:25 pm

Wow what a fast reply... like youre Slalom style...I'm stoked ;)

thx, so I'll install it on my netbook with serial... and report how it works next time!

cheers prikel

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Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Fri Oct 23, 2009 10:18 pm

Great, thanks! Keep us posted. My guess is that it will work just fine, but you never know...

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Post by Miguel Marco » Fri Oct 23, 2009 11:01 pm

Marcus,

I used the latest version at the Antrim Can/Am Slalom Championship last month and ran into a bug in the round of 4, conso, and finals. I forgot to talk to you about it. I will explain it next week. No time now, I'm leaving for the weekend...

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Post by Ricardo Damborenea » Fri Oct 23, 2009 11:48 pm

What bug, Miguel? We use it all the time and no problem. Only issue is if you have "no shows" at any round, you have to make sure you enter "DQ" all through for those that didn't come or you get strange outcomes.
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Post by Miguel Marco » Sat Oct 24, 2009 12:08 am

Do you use it with the direct input from the Trackmate? That's what we seemed to have problems with. Only one name and time (right lane) appeared in Excelmate, and didn't want to save to the spreadsheet anyway, no matter what I tried (including a total reboot of all the system PC + Trackmate). We had to input the times and cones directly into the spreadsheet by hand to finish the dual races. But everything else worked flawlessly, including all the new features.

I'm out for the weekend! Bye!

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Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Sat Oct 24, 2009 12:47 pm

hmm I will look into that. It sounds strange though since all rounds use the same logic. Did you run round of 8 without problems? Thanks for the feedback!

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Post by Ricardo Damborenea » Sat Oct 24, 2009 4:28 pm

If you run dual lane races you have to make sure you don't change in the excel tabs (bottom left) the words "qualis" and "elims". We did at some time and then the program assumes a single lane race. Is that the issue?
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Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Sun Oct 25, 2009 12:08 pm

True! That could be the problem...

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Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Mon Nov 02, 2009 11:05 pm

I just tried to run the program using windows 7 and it seems to work ok. Two things though:
1) I do seem to get an message saying that the excelfile is read only every time I press save. The times are saved and everything is ok, its just that you get a very long message with an 'OK' button each time you hit save. I'll look into that, I heard Corky had a similar problem using Vista. Perhaps its just a configuration thing in Excel.
2) I did not get my usb-seriall converter to work so I haven't really had the opportunity to try with the trackmate. But I'm sure that as soon as I get a driver from the converter manufacturer it will run smooth.


About the problem with only one lane being able to save; I did try to save times in round of 4 and final and it worked just fine. I also tried to rename the tabs in order to see if that was the problem in head 2 head, but when I did that all the rider names just went down the drain and the rider names dropdown boxes was just filled with "Round of 16", "Round of 8" and so on so I'm not sure what the problem could be. Any ideas? Can you recreate the problem?

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Post by Miguel Marco » Tue Nov 03, 2009 1:17 am

Marcus Seyffarth wrote:Can you recreate the problem?
I will try as soon as I have some free time but i don't have the same computer we used at the race...

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Post by Neil Orta » Mon Apr 12, 2010 1:56 am

I have been using Excelmate with Windows 7 and Trackmate 6.3 set up on kitchen table. had problems getting the spreadsheet to open kept getting error messages "...I guess you couldn't open the spreadsheet....server not found..." as well as others. After many tries I got it working with no problems. Ran quals and round of 16 several times, everything fine, then took it outside and tried to set a course and found same problems. Back to the kitchen table for more testing and everything was fine again!

Anyone want to race on my kitchen table?LOL

I'll keep trying, must be just getting time with the system and learning.

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Post by Pat Chewning » Mon Apr 12, 2010 5:41 am

Neil Orta wrote:I have been using Excelmate with Windows 7 and Trackmate 6.3 set up on kitchen table.

I highly suggest doing this (running at home well before the race) for anyone using any timing system with an automated entry into a spreadsheet.

None of the systems are user-friendly enough to just gather the SW and hardware the day before the race and put it together on the hill.

You should really try all of these systems at home, several times, introducing normal race-day errors. Then you are ready to take it to the race.

Things you should try:

Can you correct data after auto-entry? (e.g. Change a DQ into a real run -- preserving the original time? Can you change the cone counts? Can you fix a wrong-lane entry?
Can you run racers out of order? etc. etc.) All of these things, and more can happen on race day.

Do you understand your system's sensitivity to changes of mode, single-dual lane, effects of "start penalties", cone-counts, DQ's, and other options?

I use Excelmate, Trackmate, Seismic spreadsheet, my own spreadsheet, and Chronocone at races. All of them have some great features, but none of them is "as easy to use as a toaster". (Especially applies when something goes wrong. When everything is set-up and going right, these systems can be easy to use.)

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Post by Neil Orta » Tue Apr 13, 2010 4:32 am

It seems as though Excelmate opening the spreadsheet is hit or miss for me, would hate for this happen on race day, trying to figure if it is me or the software/hardware causing the problem. On the "Sunday" attempts the error messages came from the onset and through the session I closed out of the software and tried re-opening and the error messages appeared. On "Monday" I was able to boot the Trackmate,computer & then Excelmate-connect the com port and click "Select Excel File" and double click on the file and everything opened fine first try. I then exited out of the spreadsheet and Excelmate and tried to re-start and got the message listed below.

Anyone have any ideas?

My machine is:
Intel Core Duo 2 T6400@ 2.00GHz
4GB Ram
64-Bit OS (Windows 7)
Trackmate 6.3

The error messages that have appreared are:

Sunday 4/11/10

1) Open Excelmate
2) Choose Com Port
3) Click “Connect”, once connected click OK
4) Click “Select Excel File”
“I guess you were not able to open the workbook. Please make sure it is available and not read only. The RPC server is unavailable. (Exception from HRESULT: 0x800706BA)”

1. Open Excelmate
2. Choose Com Port
3. Click “Connect”, once connected click OK
4. Open Excel File Stored on my laptop.
5. Click “Select Excel File”
6. Double Click on file
“I guess you were not able to open the workbook. Please make sure it is available and not read only. Exception from HRESULT: 0x800A03EC”

Monday 4/12/10
1. Open Excelmate
2. Choose Com Port
3. Click “Connect”
4. Open Excel File Stored on my laptop.
5. Click “Select Excel File”
6. Double Click on file
“I guess you were not able to open the workbook. Please make sure it is available and not read only. Call was rejected by callee. (Exception from HRESULT: 0x80010001 (RPC_E_CALL_REJECTED))

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Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Tue Apr 13, 2010 9:35 am

perhaps you need an older and cheaper computer? ;)

Honestly I have not had the time to look into this, perhaps I should do it now that there is at least one user out there :) I know windows 7 will ask you each time you save if the file is read only but since I haven't gotten a win7 machine at home I have not put any effort into understanding why. Perhaps this is related to the problems you are having. The file you try to open is always stored locally on your computer I guess.

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Post by Jani Soderhall » Tue Apr 13, 2010 9:52 am

Marcus,

Don't say there is only one user out there. I use it at least once or twice every year - if there is a bigger event. It always works very well. At least with Corky or Jean Sebastien at the keyboard as they know of any possible hickups and their workarounds (I think there's occasionally a stray message, but nother serious!). It would be good to be sure to have a new version for Grenoble, if really there is a need.

Thanks!

/Jani

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Post by Rick Floyd » Tue Apr 13, 2010 5:19 pm

This may seem overly obvious, but Neil's machine is 64-bit...an issue with 32-bit version of the proggy?

Just an idea.

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Post by Marcus Seyffarth » Wed Apr 14, 2010 12:06 am

Jani, you are not a user - you are my beta tester ;-)

I really don't know what the issue seems to be, but I did recompile the stuff on a windows 7 machine and uploaded that version to ftp.ettsexett.com/200/ExcelMateSetup.msi

The version should read todays date and 4.2.1

Please try it and let me know if there is any difference. Its hard to find the issue if its random.

About the 64 bit thing, sure it could be a problem but the excelmate is compiled with "any platform" as target. In the installer that option does not exist, so the actual installer program is targeted for x86 processors. I'm not sure what that affects though. Probably more likely that if the excel version that is installed on the machine is x64 then it will cause a problem.

Anyways, please try it and let me know. Best regards /Marcus

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Post by Neil Orta » Wed Apr 14, 2010 12:58 am

After my sessions last night I tried to eliminate the problem being a software issue and uninstalled Excelmate and then reinstalled it. Same issues. I will load the newer and give that a try. Excel loaded onto the machine is 32 bit.

Sorry Marcus no way in hell I am going back to my older, slower machine :)
(can't actually, I gained pleasure in tossing it into the trash!!!)

Rick I know there is a way to ask Windows 7 to treat a program as 32 bit, could this be a fix and if so do you know how it is done?

Still waiting for competition as I am the fastest on my kitchen table!
Last edited by Neil Orta on Wed Apr 14, 2010 1:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Neil Orta » Wed Apr 14, 2010 1:01 am

Marcus, getting a 404 page not found message.

Thank You, I appreciate the assistance and all the work you and other have put into this technology!

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Post by willy demis » Wed Apr 14, 2010 3:51 am

One thing you can try is:

Right click the program -> Properties -> Compatiblity tab -> enable "Run this program in compatibility mode for: Windows XP (Service Pack 3)" -> OK

Another thing to check- When running the application, open the Task Manager. The application name should end in "*32" if it is running as 32 bit. (I believe this should be expected. If not- that could be a problem.) If the installer is 32 bit only, then I would think that Marcas would want to compile for 32 bit only.

--edit--
Some of the apps I've written have given odd results running in 64 bit windows when using the "Any Processor" option. In those cases, changing to 32 bit only did correct the problem. As to what causes this to sometimes be a problem is unknown to me.

All that said- I've not had an issue running ExcelMate on 64 bit Win7.

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