At the sailing club the Race Management System has two computer screens
The “SignOn” PC is a touch-screen computer located in the main clubhouse. Before the race starts sailors select their boat or name to indicate they are racing.
The second is the PRO PC.
As it’s name suggests is used by the race team to start the race, record the finish positions and times for every boat in the race. And finally trigger the scoring of all races.
These two computers are the visible parts of the RMS at the club.
On a race day there is no programming or manual choice selection needed. The PRO/ARO can arrive, start the RMS, and a list of the races with start times is loaded – they simply select and run each race in turn!
A third Server computer is not visible to the sailors, but is the essential “information store” for the system. It holds the system database, scoring code, and the web pages that display the results ( embedded into the club website which is separate to the RMS).
The PRO pc sends commands to hardware which triggers accurate race signals (lights and Klaxon/Bell sounds). It also communicates with the SignOn pc in real-time, sending race details, flight start sequence, real-time countdown for the start and then race elapsed-time during the race. After each race it displays the “on-the-water” finish positions for all boats.
The PRO and SignOn are in constant communication via the database (i.e. they do not talk directly to each other). This way all the “live” race data is safely stored and updated.
Sailors signing on for a race are immediately stored in the database. Commands and responses between the PRO and SignOn are sent via the database.
Both constantly check the database to get current information. Using this technique the system can recover if it crashes due to power outage or loss of network connections, even in the middle of a race.
The final RMS component is a set of web pages. A page displaying all the final race results, and a set of “admin” pages to manage all aspects of the data used by the RMS.
Every club sailor/boat has an entry in the system, which makes race SignOn very quick indeed. Of course guest sailors can also join the race!
The RMS also knows the complete race programme for the current year, including every race in every series, and how to score each series.