Over the weekend I updated the Toolkit material on running an e-tournament. I have to admit, after the fact, that I wonder if we (Kaz and the Paginator and I were the creators of this process through trial and error) were belaboring the obvious, or really setting the standard of how to do it. I just don't know, because the only tournaments I go to are the ones I run, one way or the other, either as tabber or as TD. How do other tournaments do this? Are they maximizing their pairing assignments and moving efficiently and getting the judges to do their job? I have little doubt that a Palmer is doing this, probably not terribly different from how we're doing it, but what about everyone else, especially the people who run one or two tournaments a year? Beats me. I do know that only a handful of people will ever seriously consult the toolkit, but if nothing else I can point tournaments I work with now in that direction, so they'll know where I'm coming from, and eventually I'll leave a legacy of information behind when I finally pass the torch (which, btw, I have no intention of doing any time soon). And, to be honest, I like having it so I can consult it myself, after a long summer break. How did we do all that, I have to ask myself. The toolkit gives me the answers.
Byram Hills, which is a growing tournament, is only two weeks away. I've been in touch with Zach, an alum who is the TD, as we've gotten close. My main worry is that the venue has decent wifi. We're at the middle school rather than the high school, and one doesn't expect the same level of connectivity. On the other hand, I have to wonder if there's better cell service, given that their HS is absolutely the worst I do. (Scarsdale comes in a close second for cell service sucks.) The thing about an e-tournament is, it's only E if it's all E. 99% of the judges being linked in means that 1% of the tournament is just as it was in 2002, and the whole thing runs at the old speed. That's okay for little local events, especially when there's a lot of new parents and whatnot, but not at an invitational that's going into the night over a span of days. This is especially true of college tournaments. Those schedules are wicked tight. One thing goes wrong and we're there till the cows come home.
As I look at it now, the Toolkit is mostly finished this particular upgrade. I just need to readjust a few things and it's ready for its closeup.
And then we can begin.