We've made some oft requested improvements to the Cloud Race Editor. This is the place where you set the course and lay marks.
Firstly we've halved the number of clicks you need to lay your marks on the map. A simple change, and intuitive, but it now just feels a whole lot nicer to use.
Secondly, we've added the ability to specify mark location by typing the lat and long coordinates. This is great for fixed marks for which the coordinates are known. You can switch between the map view and coordinates view with one click - so you can see where your marks are being placed.
If you've visited the TackTracker Cloud recently and noticed some things look a little different, you are right - in fact we've given it a major overhaul and upgrade.
For some time, we have believed the TackTracker Cloud and the Web player should become TackTracker's flagship platform for all things live tracking. Recent changes have helped make that reality. Firstly we have given the Web player a thorough working over to improve performance and stability. Secondly we have added two major new features: the VMG Meter and Race Reports.
To accommodate these new capabilites, we've changed up the layout. Underneath the player are three buttons: "VMG Meter", "Leg Analysis" and "Race Reports". Click on one of these buttons to select the feature of your choice.
TackTracker's VMG meter gives you a graphical presentation of a selected boat's speed and VMG in real time with the tracking.
As the tracking proceeds, the VMG meter paints the radial speed profile of the boat, creating an aggregated view.
You can pick another boat and compare performances in real time. For example, you might want to compare your performance with the leader and understand the difference. Viewing the VMG meter will help clarify whether it is speed, height or consistency that is the key.
The VMG meter is by default presented underneath the web player. When you're in fullscreen mode, you can instead show the VMG meter inside the player.
You may notice that the boat in the VMG meter is positioned exactly like the boat on the map. And if you rotate the map, the VMG meter also rotates. Now that is cool! If you prefer, you can check "Pin Boat" to hold the boat facing north and rotate the dial instead.
Race Reports, previously available only on the desktop players, are now available online in the TackTracker Cloud. The full suite of reports are available and you can view the reports online or download them as CSV files.
Race Reports is a licensed feature. The license is a one time purchase available from the TackTracker Shop. If you already have a Race Reports license you can unlock reports in your TackTracker Cloud account from your Accounts page.
With reports unlocked, you can view reports for any race on the TackTracker Cloud and can also choose whether you wish viewers of your published races to access reports, whether or not they have a license.
With TackTrackers growing stable of cloud features including On-Water Tally and Race Reports, it's becoming more and more practical to use the live tracking system as a foundation for automated race management, providing both safety features and results, with a fraction of the person power.
It is true that GPS accuracy is not good enough yet to arbitrate close starts and finishes, so manual oversight is still required. That is, unless you're running a casual race in which the volunteers would prefer to go racing too - then why not?
Things are moving fast in this space and with all the disruption of the pandemic, now is a good time to experiment with new approaches.