Year Book 2019-20 Contents
(Click on underlined link) \/ to end of list \/
on new ECF rating website
I thought I would look to see how results were presented on the new rating website, searching the list of 2019/20 for “Mann”, to show events for which I had submitted the result files. Panic! Where was the Bradford League. There are just two lamely and identically named “Bradford & DCA Individual” events. Had I forgotten to send off the Bradford League results? Closer scrutiny revealed that the first Bradford “Individual” event was the standard play team competition or “league”.
In the submitted Excel file, downloaded from LMS, cell B3 of the header sheet said “Bradford and DCA League”, and column “H” of the results sheets contains things such as “Division One : South Bradford B v College Graduates”, or “Division Two : Keighley v Ilkley C” or “Division Three : Undercliffe C v Shipley A”. The word “Individual” appears nowhere in the workbook! This “Individual epithet clearly arises from misguided human intervention.
Instead of listing Bradford league results in the form of matches, the new website simply lists the games in chronological order, without breaking them down into matches in the usual way.
There is a problem that the old BCF (as it was) result submission file format did not originally cater for all the nuances necessary for traditional visual presentation of results, but the system was adapted long ago by using column H (originally “Comments”), and the new ECF rating website clearly does not “know” how that column is being used for team events. The “:” and “ v “ in the middle of the text to the right of the colon are the relevant diagnostics.
Nevertheless, probing further we find that the Harrogate and Huddersfield League results are correctly displayed in matches, despite their results being similarly derived from LMS and using the same format. The York and Yorkshire league, however, also have their results wrongly presented, like the Bradford ones.
Of Yorkshire-based leagues not processed by the YCA grader, Hull and Sheffield league results are presented in team format (though I notice the Sheffield team knock-out is not properly presented), but the Calderdale, Doncaster and Leeds league results are not presented in match format.
For congresses, column H contains simple section names like “Open”, “Major” and so on, and the website seem to correctly represent congress submission data created and submitted by me.
My inference is that, to meet the politically driven desire to launch the new website now rather than when the site was ready, some degree of manual intervention was used to identify result files as being either for “team” or “individual” events, with a misdiagnosis affecting Bradford, Calderdale, Doncaster, Leeds, York and Yorkshire leagues. So the ECF website gets only 4 out of 10 for league‑result presentation!
Though described as a “beta” version, the new ECF rating website is currently more of a “gamma” version at best! That said a lot of work has been put in with broadly very impressive results, but the political pressure to go live has resulted in it doing so before it was really ready, and it would be wrong to “blame” those doing the work for things not yet being wholly right. Patient punters will doubtless be rewarded in time.