Your browser is not Java capable or Java has been disabled.
High Tech in the Hills
A competitor using the punching post

Electronic Punching

A relatively new system developed for orienteering and known as 'electronic punching', will help record the progress of teams as they rove over the mountains this weekend.

The old fashioned way is to issue a paper 'control card' with a serious of boxes on it, which is then punched at each control (checkpoint) - with something resembling a stapler. With the new system an electronic 'key' is given to each team. This identifies their team number and is pushed into a control box at the checkpoint to record the fact they were there, and also to record their time.

The big advantage, apart from avoiding the problem of control cards crumbling in wet weather, is that for each day the team will have a record of all their 'split times'. They can then compare each leg of the route with other teams, and work out where they made a good or bad route choice.

The results will show a time at each control point. This can be done with a quick download into a laptop, which is a lot easier than manually checking the cards and then working out the difference between start and finish times.

Competition Kit

Though they may not always think about it, every competitor will benefit from technological improvements in the equipment and clothing they use.

This is most obvious in the use of wrist worn altimeters. These function as watches, but also have barometric pressure sensors and once they have been calibrated at a known height can give reasonably accurate readings. If the cloud is low and you are trying to contour round a hillside or find a control point they can be invaluable. (These are allowed, but GPS systems are not.)

Other high tech developments are not so apparent. Better fabric coatings, tent poles which are stronger but lighter, more efficient stoves, or sleeping bags with more warmth but less weight, all help. In fact competitions like the LAMM, which demand lighter weight, high performance gear have pushed the development of outdoor equipment over the years, and continue to do so.

Digital Downloads

Without the use of digital cameras and laptop computers we would not be able to bring you this 9feet webcast of the LAMM. We will have 3 photographers and a team of reporters on the hills taking digital images, which will be brought back to HQ and put onto 'LAMM Live'. (Reception in the area is not good enough to allow direct downloads by mobile phone - so the reporting team will spend a fair bit of time going up and down hills too.)

click here to return to the race reports page
This webcast has been sponsored by 9FEET.COM, one of the many outdoor events we cover. Why not register to receive news of further 9feet events and webcasts?

Please input your email address in the box below
please note - Due to server dificulties we may not have received your registration if you registered on Thursday. If you registered on Thursday, please re-submit your address to ensure you receive notification of other exciting events brought to you by!
click here to return to the home page
Webcast design and implementation by Tickweb Internet Consultants