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Author Topic: Bill's Magic Dot :-)  (Read 5535 times)

Offline BillLee

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Bill's Magic Dot :-)
« on: September 07, 2013, 06:02:51 AM »
For several years (10+ at least) I have thought of and spoken to several about a piece of technology that would be very interesting to have. I labeled it humorously as "Bill's Magic Dot".

The idea: a small piece of electronics that you could easily attach to the model at the CG, and which would measure and record the X, Y and Z coordinates as a function of time. The sample rate would be ... something .... perhaps every tenth/hundredth/thousandth .... of a second. The name came from the idea that this would be about the size of a CR2032 battery, hence a "dot". It would gave a Velcro back, and the matching Velcro would be permanently attached to the model.

Once attached to the model, the flight would be made, the X, Y and Z coordinates recorded. At the conclusion of the flight, the dot would be taken to a computer with appropriate adapter, and the data downloaded for later use.

"Later use":

The first I could envision would be to help a pilot analyze his flight, to help in making his performance better. I know many stunt folks use a coach, and that is all well and good, but a coach suffers from the human frailties of limited perception and memory, as well as .... well, you know! :-) The data from the dot could be an "impartial observer".

The second use (I don't even want to go there! Please don't respond! It's another BOM issue!) would be to actually score the flight! (To repeat: Please don't respond! It's another BOM issue!).

I don't know how to build anything electronic if it requires more than a couple of wires, but it seems that with the current state of the art, micro-stuff controlling motors, gyros controlling flight paths, GPS receivers, etc., that perhaps something like this is now do-able.

Comments?

Regards,

Bill
Bill Lee
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Re: Bill's Magic Dot :-)
« Reply #1 on: September 07, 2013, 09:42:42 AM »
Bill,

I won't respond to the BOM issue. So far, I don't compete, so that issue is something I can only have an opinion about. I'm not actually affected by it, but it does create an issue for those that build. Understandable.

Told you I wouldn't respond.  ;D

Anyway.

Great idea you have! I think?

For what it's worth, not much really, reminds me of 1995.

In 1995, myself and a rocket scientist, no kidding on that, designed a Golf gismo.

Attached to the head of a club and executing a typical golf swing, the device would measure club head velocity.

Simple actually, I had help remember. The thing was based on inercia and the readout in speed was read on a belt or wrist attached LED text display. It was 1995 and we had limitations not to mention neither one of us had any money, isn't that the case?
 
Anyway, with that said, I'm sure there are individuls, in the SH Forum, capable of putting together a device that "Will bring your ideas to life." Is that a tag line?

Good luck with that, let us know.

Charles   
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Offline BillLee

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Re: Bill's Magic Dot :-)
« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2013, 07:06:20 AM »
Any of the electronic gurus out there?
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Offline Tim Wescott

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Re: Bill's Magic Dot :-)
« Reply #3 on: September 20, 2013, 10:24:12 AM »
Hey Bill:

I'm actually toying with doing something just like that.  I'm still trekking through Mathemagic land with it, and my machete arm got tired so I'm giving it a rest, but there's work being done.

It'll be bigger than a coin cell -- if one went and built one as small as possible then it'd be a board about 1.5 square inches.

I don't know how it's going to work out, or if I'm going to maintain my enthusiasm for continuing to flog it.

To make this work you need, at a minimum, a set of gyroscopes and accelerometers that measure motion in each of the three axes (also known as an inertial measurement unit, or IMU), and a processor with enough memory to log their outputs for the whole flight.  It may be necessary to have GPS, too -- it's certainly necessary to have GPS, or at least a compass, if you want to know which way your flight is oriented with respect to the earth.  Fortunately, you can get at least the suitable processor and the IMU on the board I described.  You may have to go up to 2 square inches if you need the GPS unit.

I originally conceived of it as a self-coaching aid, so that you could replay your flights on a PC after the fact.  But I can see a use for having an accurate, relatively high bandwidth, on-board estimate of the airplane's velocity.
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Offline Wynn Robins

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Re: Bill's Magic Dot :-)
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2015, 01:48:36 PM »
the real question is why?

stunt judging is pure and simply subjective - as the eyes of the judges.   yes this would be a cool idea to see how you are flying in regards to the "perfect pattern"  but it has no use in actually judging... unless all models had the same device fitted and were scored against a computer generated pattern path.     

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Offline Tim Wescott

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Re: Bill's Magic Dot :-)
« Reply #5 on: January 15, 2015, 02:00:45 PM »
the real question is why?

stunt judging is pure and simply subjective - as the eyes of the judges.   yes this would be a cool idea to see how you are flying in regards to the "perfect pattern"  but it has no use in actually judging... unless all models had the same device fitted and were scored against a computer generated pattern path.     

Well, as I said, as a self-coaching aid.  I've found that the most persistent problems that I have are the ones that I don't notice, and when I conceived of the thing I had no one to fly with who had the eye and was willing to constantly critique my pattern.  Having a machine point out the issues in your pattern isn't as nice as having a talented human do it, but it's a good bit better than nothing.
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Offline Howard Rush

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Re: Bill's Magic Dot :-)
« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2015, 11:48:44 PM »
For several years (10+ at least) I have thought of and spoken to several about a piece of technology that would be very interesting to have. I labeled it humorously as "Bill's Magic Dot".

The idea: a small piece of electronics that you could easily attach to the model at the CG, and which would measure and record the X, Y and Z coordinates as a function of time. The sample rate would be ... something .... perhaps every tenth/hundredth/thousandth .... of a second. The name came from the idea that this would be about the size of a CR2032 battery, hence a "dot". It would gave a Velcro back, and the matching Velcro would be permanently attached to the model.

Once attached to the model, the flight would be made, the X, Y and Z coordinates recorded. At the conclusion of the flight, the dot would be taken to a computer with appropriate adapter, and the data downloaded for later use.

Some things are easier than they look; some are harder.  This one is harder.
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Offline phil c

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Re: Bill's Magic Dot :-)
« Reply #7 on: January 27, 2015, 08:30:41 PM »
the real question is why?

stunt judging is pure and simply subjective - as the eyes of the judges.   yes this would be a cool idea to see how you are flying in regards to the "perfect pattern"  but it has no use in actually judging... unless all models had the same device fitted and were scored against a computer generated pattern path.     



That's one thing that's still missing from the rules- any kind of specific guidance for the judges as to how to grade the importance of different types of errors, and and how much the score should be for the errors they do see they do see.  You can't really call it judging when one judge mainly looks at the shapes, another looks mainly for smoothness, and a third pays attention mostly to tracking.  They all should be looking for the same specific things.
phil Cartier

Offline Tim Wescott

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Re: Bill's Magic Dot :-)
« Reply #8 on: January 27, 2015, 08:55:59 PM »
Some things are easier than they look; some are harder.  This one is harder.

I actually have software sitting on my computer that would do the job, if you had the sensors from a TUT that recorded at the same time as a high update rate GPS -- and if you flew someplace with good GPS reception all around the circle and no reflections.  For examples of "good GPS reception", Delta park would probably be OK, but I'm not sure if Auburn would work: the fence and passing airplanes may provide enough multipath to screw up the GPS.
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Offline PJ Rowland

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Re: Bill's Magic Dot :-)
« Reply #9 on: July 07, 2021, 12:37:38 AM »
The technology exists already to track your manouvers.

Works great.. provided your camera is setup relatively downwind.  Someone posted a link for the software already, just not sure where.
Converts video file into another video file with the comet tail added tracking the shapes.
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