Laptop Operator

Paul JoyceFeb 3, 10:02pmSam Scriven mentioned in another volunteer thread: "is it possible that one could be 'trained in' for the laptop operator pre- & post-race rather than needing to commit a non-volunteering role provided one is confident enough to use a laptop for data entry / printing / recording of numbers? Apologies if I am underestimating the complexities."

In the absence of there being enough trained laptop operators to go around all the races, is this in any way possible? Or, if the complexities aren't too difficult, would it be possible to publish a flowchart of what operations are needed to host the laptop on raceday? A week to go to my race and I'm fretting over who will do laptop operator on the day- even though I've had several generous offers from IT computer ubergeeks who are more than happy to not run and work their magic with the laptop task, if only they knew what the basic operations were. Any chance a printout of tasks on the day could be published on the forum?

Mick HanneyFeb 3, 11:26pmTry this.
Sheet 1 is the laptop main entry menu which is essentially the workflow you need to follow.
Sheet 2 is summary instructions.

The laptop system will always be backed up by pencil and paper in any event :-)
Mick HanneyFeb 3, 11:27pmThose instructions should be editable by anyone else there with more laptop savvy.

An FAQ of what can go wrong and how to fix would be good to have.
Paul JoyceFeb 3, 11:36pmBrilliant Mick, thanks for that. If no-one qualified steps forward before Annagh Hill, we'll put it into practice.
Dermot MurphyFeb 4, 12:39pmPaul, I will be running at Annagh Hill but will help anyone out on the lap top before the race and also when I finish.
Paul JoyceFeb 4, 12:54pm
Thanks for the offer Dermot, but Donal has now volunteered for the spot. He's been on the training course, and is willing to show Jeff (Assistant laptop) the ropes, so I reckon that's a win-win. You concentrate on enjoying the race and post-race, El Presidente does more than enough volunteering for imra as it is ;)

This might be a decent model to bed in new Laptop Operators though. With all the IT talent in imra's ranks, an Assistant Laptop Operator could learn on the job, and then be able to volunteer for full laptop at future races.
Richie McLFeb 4, 4:28pmLaptop battery lasts say 90 mins. If a registration is prolonged the battery could be fading soon into a race. Is a new battery swapable in at that time without screwing things up?

Yes. If laptop is running well i.e. doesn't take long to start up, the shut down, replace battery, and restart process should take max 5 minutes. If it's a slow one (c.f. msconfig) 10+ mins.
Donal TroddynFeb 4, 4:38pmRitchie

You can swap the battery during a race without issue. The race time is the number of minutes and seconds since a specific clock time, so cycling the laptop doesn't affect it. There is no need to shut down; hibernation works fine. It still takes five or so minutes, so best to do it well in advance of the expected first finisher, especially when juniors are running a short course.

If something happens, and you need to swap batteries when the runners have already started coming in, ask the guys taking the manual finish order to jot down the time of every fifth or tenth finisher while you're offline. That way runners still get a relatively accurate time.

There's also an inverter so that you can power it from a 12V car cigarette lighter.
Richie McLFeb 5, 2:45pmhi donal,

i didn't make it clear but that question is left unanswered (it says "answer anyone?" or something like that) on the google document re laptop training - you might put it in? hibernate definitely ok? hibernate still requires a bit of power but regardless - the cigarette charger overrides all of that.

i'll volunteer as assistant for a couple of spl races, i'll be more clued in then.
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