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Thread: Vega

  1. #1
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    Vega

    I notice in the recent ACF Newsletter that ACF has approved the purchase of a national Vega licence. Presumably this means that Vega is to be made available to State associations and clubs, and will be the official (or at least recommended) pairing program for tournaments in Australia. Do we know if there is a time scale on rolling out of Vega?

  2. #2
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    As a Vega user (unlicensed version), I was delighted to see this notice. Hopefully it will not take long to roll it out.

    I think the ACF first approved the use of Vega in 2013. Bill Gletsos once told me that rateable tournaments can be submitted either as SP or Vega files, so I guess the ACF rating system can handle both. This communication was at least 1 year ago.

    In SP, it is very easy to import the ACF's player data. I don't know if it is that easy to import this data into Vega. It would be great to have a Vega master file, or at least to know if there is another way of doing this.

    After each tournament, I create a separate Swiss Perfect tournament file, import the players from the ACF SP Master file, then manually copy the pairings and results from Vega into SP. I then submit the SP file for rating purposes.
    Southern Suburbs Chess Club (Perth)
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Hardegen View Post
    As a Vega user (unlicensed version), I was delighted to see this notice. Hopefully it will not take long to roll it out.

    I think the ACF first approved the use of Vega in 2013. Bill Gletsos once told me that rateable tournaments can be submitted either as SP or Vega files, so I guess the ACF rating system can handle both. This communication was at least 1 year ago.

    In SP, it is very easy to import the ACF's player data. I don't know if it is that easy to import this data into Vega. It would be great to have a Vega master file, or at least to know if there is another way of doing this.

    After each tournament, I create a separate Swiss Perfect tournament file, import the players from the ACF SP Master file, then manually copy the pairings and results from Vega into SP. I then submit the SP file for rating purposes.
    Importing names into Vega is easy - ratings are provided as a database or spreadsheet format of some sort (NZCF uses .csv format) and you import them from there.
    IA Craig Hall

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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Craig_Hall View Post
    Importing names into Vega is easy - ratings are provided as a database or spreadsheet format of some sort (NZCF uses .csv format) and you import them from there.
    Thanks, I have found the NZCF Vega-friendly .csv ratings files. It is good to know that it can be done.

    As far as I am aware, the ACF does not publish a ratings list in .csv format. The master lists are not comma-separated; they are published as tab-separated .txt files. There are also SP version of the master lists (.trn) which contain the extra information such as DOB and FIN which is required by FIDE.

    Even if I could import the .txt file into Vega, I think it would not have the necessary information.
    Southern Suburbs Chess Club (Perth)
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Hardegen View Post
    Thanks, I have found the NZCF Vega-friendly .csv ratings files. It is good to know that it can be done. As far as I am aware, the ACF does not publish a ratings list in .csv format. The master lists are not comma-separated; they are published as tab-separated .txt files. There are also SP version of the master lists (.trn) which contain the extra information such as DOB and FIN which is required by FIDE. Even if I could import the .txt file into Vega, I think it would not have the necessary information.
    I've written a program to convert the Swiss Perfect Masterfile, in both text and .trn format, to a csv file which can be imported into SwissMaster. The format seems to be a FIDE standard, so it should work with Vega as well.

    The program can be downloaded here.

    As the ACF provides an Excel file to state rating officers, I'm sure the ACF will soon provide their own csv file.

  6. #6
    Monster of the deep Kevin Bonham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Rout View Post
    I notice in the recent ACF Newsletter that ACF has approved the purchase of a national Vega licence. Presumably this means that Vega is to be made available to State associations and clubs, and will be the official (or at least recommended) pairing program for tournaments in Australia. Do we know if there is a time scale on rolling out of Vega?
    Bill would be the best to advise on how long it might take and we haven't formally set any firm targets but I think completing changeover by the end of next year was discussed. Hopefully we eventually reach a stage where SP is not being used at all because it is so horribly bad as a pairings engine.

  7. #7
    Illuminati Bill Gletsos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Byrom View Post
    I've written a program to convert the Swiss Perfect Masterfile, in both text and .trn format, to a csv file which can be imported into SwissMaster. The format seems to be a FIDE standard, so it should work with Vega as well.
    In which case using the SP master files is in breach of the following that appears on the ACF website ratings page immediately prior to the SP master files:
    The following files are the copyright of the Australian Chess Federation and by downloading them you agree that you may not, and may not permit or aid others to, modify, extract or otherwise reverse engineer the data in these files and import them to any other data file, database, application, program or system without the explicit written permission of the Australian Chess Federation.
    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Byrom View Post
    .....I'm sure the ACF will soon provide their own csv file.
    Or a file in some other format usable by Vega.
    The Force can have a strong influence on the weak-minded.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Gletsos View Post
    In which case using the SP master files is in breach of the following that appears on the ACF website ratings page immediately prior to the SP master files:
    The only data extracted is the following: "3070011,"A'Burrow, Barry", ,VIC,1331, , ," - already available on the Masterlist text file - plus date-of-birth and gender. As only the executable is available, nobody can reverse engineer the .trn file from my program, so I don't see a major problem.

    Is there an alternative for anyone using SwissMaster or Vega who wants to import from the ACF Masterfile?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Hardegen View Post
    Thanks, I have found the NZCF Vega-friendly .csv ratings files. It is good to know that it can be done.

    As far as I am aware, the ACF does not publish a ratings list in .csv format. The master lists are not comma-separated; they are published as tab-separated .txt files. There are also SP version of the master lists (.trn) which contain the extra information such as DOB and FIN which is required by FIDE.

    Even if I could import the .txt file into Vega, I think it would not have the necessary information.
    The FIDE files are .txt and Vega doesn't have any trouble with those. Having bought the license, I would be very surprised if ACF did not ensure their rating files met whatever the requirements are.
    IA Craig Hall

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  10. #10
    Illuminati Bill Gletsos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patrick Byrom View Post
    The only data extracted is the following: "3070011,"A'Burrow, Barry", ,VIC,1331, , ," - already available on the Masterlist text file - plus date-of-birth and gender. As only the executable is available, nobody can reverse engineer the .trn file from my program, so I don't see a major problem.
    The executable is clearly in breach of the part
    ... you may not, and may not permit or aid others to, modify, extract ....... the data in these files.
    The Force can have a strong influence on the weak-minded.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Gletsos View Post
    The executable is clearly in breach of the part
    Guilty as charged! In my defence, I never claimed to be innocent, only that my guilt was minor ("I don't see a major problem"). And when I wrote the program over five years ago and put it on the website, I informed the ACF about it, but never received a request to remove it - which I took to be implicit permission from the ACF. (And yes, 'implicit' permission is not the same as 'explicit written' permission, but I don't think there was such a restriction at the time I put it on the website.)

    I don't have a problem removing the program from the website, if the ACF wants me to. Although it's probably a bit late now. But anyone using an ACF-approved program other than Swiss Perfect is going to have to 'extract' data from the Masterlist somehow, so all my program does is provide a way to make the process easier and more reliable.

  12. #12
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    This is good to hear - lots of arbiters around the country are now using Vega. Norths moved to it a while back after doing a comparison between Swiss Perfect and Vega over the course of a few tournaments and seeing how much SP had wrong. Once there is a publicly available master file, there will be no more excuse for using Swiss Perfect in a serious tournament - it is out of date and sometimes comes up with some quite ridiculous pairings, especially in the later rounds of small tournaments.

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    I tried to import Classic ACF Master File marmst16.txt as "national archive with Fixed Length" using the following filter - no luck.
    acfmast.flt:
    Code:
    1  28
    1  13
    0  0
    0  0
    1  21
    0  0
    1  4
    0  0
    0  0
    The filter looks good, so I think there might be a bug in Vega. I even tried to replace the leading tab character with 4 spaces in the master file.

    Then I created an gawk script to convert a master file to a CSV file.
    I don't know why I may need this x, !!, ??, New, Unr, etc stuff in the ratings, so the script just deletes everything but numbers. It also deletes 1g, 2g, ...

    acfmast2vegacsv.awk:
    Code:
    function ltrim(s) { sub(/^[ \t\r\n]+/, "", s); return s }
    function rtrim(s) { sub(/[ \t\r\n]+$/, "", s); return s }
    function trim(s)  { return rtrim(ltrim(s)); }
    
    function getRating(s) {
        if(s ~ /^[0-9]g/)
    	return "";
        else {
    	match(s, /(^[0-9]+)/, arr);
    	return arr[1];
        }
    }
    
    {
        if (NR == 1)
    	printf("ID;Rating;State;Name\r\n");
        else {
    	id = $1;
    	rawRating =$2;
    	state = $3;
    	$1 = ""; $2 = ""; $3 = "";
    	name = trim($0);
    	printf("%s;%s;%s;\"%s\"\r\n", id, getRating(rawRating), state, name);
        }
    }
    How to use:

    1. Convert
    gawk -f acfmast2vegacsv.awk marmst16.txt > marmst16.csv

    2. Create acfmast_csv.flt in "filter" directory with this code:
    Code:
    1  3
    1  2
    0  0
    0  0
    0  0
    0  0
    0  0
    0  0
    1  0
    1  1
    0  0
    0  0
    3. In Vega, import marmst16.csv as "generic CSV archive" using the filter.

  14. #14
    Illuminati Bill Gletsos's Avatar
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    Using the text master file leaves out details like sex, DOB, FIDE is number and FIDE title.
    Official Vega import files will appear on the ACF website with the June 2016 ratings.
    These files won't require a filter.
    The Force can have a strong influence on the weak-minded.

  15. #15
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    Just looked at the ACF website and it doesn't appear to have the official Vega import files mention? Also has the ACF purchased a national licence of the program at this stage?

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