Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Darts wave at the World Matchplay

I trialled my darts wave at the World Matchplay, which finished at the weekend, and I can report the following:
  •  it worked well 
  • it was possible to keep up-to-date with the flow of a match 
  • only when I sneezed or had an itchy foot or something did I miss a couple of darts
  • missing a couple of darts doesn't have too dramatic effect on the whole wave
  •  it was quite fun to do.
Here are a couple of the waves I made.


During the tournament, I also added a macro to my spreadsheet, which basically exported the graph as a JPEG with a unique name (numerically adding +1 to the file name each time). Using these many JPEGs I could then make GIFs of the wave, like this one for the final.

[Blogspot isn't letting me copy the GIF in here, but you can see it here.]

UPDATE (08.08.) here's another stab at entering the GIF:

This is quite fancy and nice.

It was particularly nice that it was so quick and easy – saving the JPEGs really didn't hinder the entry of the data at all – and the GIFs almost made themselves as it was always just "all the images in the folder". And because of the way the file names worked, they were automatically in the right order too. This meant that I could quite comfortably grab an apple and make a GIF everytime there was a break (every 5 legs).

One thing that I have realised, having trialled the wave, is that after a few legs the impact of any 180 or missed double is comparatively less than at the start, which means you have to look quite closely at the graph to see the upturns and downturns. This is fine – it's nice to have an overview of the whole match, but I have also had another great idea.

Based on the same data entered, I have now set up the spreadsheet to generate a second wave which only considers the results for the last 3 legs ish (technically the last 15 visits to the dartboard each). This gives you a much more clear up and down, like this is how it would look for the final.

I only thought of doing this after the final, so I don't have it as a GIF, but I've now also extended the macro so that it saves both waves, meaning that from now on I'll be able to generate both GIFs, one for the trend of the whole match and one for the rapidly chanding 3-leg (ish) momentum. This is pretty exciting. Even having the still images is quite nice but the animations are even more fun.

I have also made a couple of other adjustments to the spreadsheet (which I haven't yet actually put to use in a match situation), which are just the addition of a "break" parameter and a "bullseye/double (not checkout) parameter. Adding and removing parameters is fairly easy, though I haven't made it super clean just yet. In theory I could add 10 placeholder parameters which you could kind of turn off an on as you fancied. This is all fairly small potatoes compared to the 3-leg (ish) wave though and other such innovations like the GIFs.

On the whole, very happy with the results of the first tournament the wave has been used at, which have:
  • confirmed the general functionality of the wave
  • led to cool new features
  • revolutionised darts broadcasting.
See you next week.

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