Overview of COMPMNGR's judge's marking device system

COMPMNGR provides an interface for judge's handheld marking devices which transfer information back and forth with COMPMNGR over a wireless local area network. A judge's handheld marking device is a  PDA (personal digital assistant) which runs the standalone HandheldMarker program and into which judges enter their placements directly as they stand around the dance floor. The PDAs then send the marks via the wireless network to the COMPMNGR computer.

The HandheldMarker program is included in the setup for COMPMNGR options which can be downloaded from this site. The program is designed to operate on PDAs  running Microsoft's Windows Mobile operating system, such as the HP iPAQ Pocket PC.  HandHeldMarker has its own help system which can be displayed on the PDA screens and also has a training mode to allow judges to experiment with marking different kinds of competitions (skating system, solos, etc.) without being connected to a network.

COMPMNGR communicates via the wireless network with the PDAs using a built-in logic module called MarkerServer which runs in the background so that the COMPMNGR user can continue to perform normal tasks like doing write-ins and scratches. The MarkerServer interface is a optional, extra cost feature obtained when you register COMPMNGR. The option does not include any hardware or support for setting the hardware up in a wireless network.

The hardware equipment required for the judge's marking system includes, at a minimum:
a Windows based computer for the scrutineer
a wireless router which connects to the computer by either a wired connection or a wireless connection
a set of Windows Mobile based PDAs with wireless connection capability
spare batteries and battery chargers for the PDAs

Douglass Associates provides the software for the scrutineer's computer and the PDAs but no hardware or on-site support services. Setting up and maintaining the hardware system requires the services of someone who is familiar with wireless networking. To download and install the COMPMNGR program on your computer go to Download SetupCompmngrV3 now and follow the instructions.

Installing the HandheldMarker program on the PDAs is a two step process. First you must get the file named 'HandheldMarker.exe' on your computer. To do this go to Download SetupCompmngrOptions now and follow the instructions. Second you must get the 'HandheldMarker.exe' file onto the PDAs. This requires a special program which runs on your computer, recognizes the PDA when it is connected to the computer via a USB port, and allows you to copy files from the computer hard disk to the PDA. The special program normally comes on a CD along with the purchase of the PDA. The program that comes with HP PDAs is named ActiveSync. There are several versions, and you will need to read the instructions for your particular version. The Windows Vista operating system comes with its own version of ActiveSync so you won't need to install the one that came with your PDA.

To learn more about the Handheld marker program for the PDAs, complete with screen shots of the PDA screens for all modes, click on HandheldMarker Documentation.

To learn more about the MarkerServer module of the COMPMNGR program, complete with screenshots for its operating modes, click on MarkerServer documentation.

Would you like to read a report on the use of COMPMNGR's  handheld marking devices in competitions? Click here