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Re: [CQ-Contest] ARRL DX "Leveling, Handicapping, Equalizing"

To: cq-contest@contesting.com
Subject: Re: [CQ-Contest] ARRL DX "Leveling, Handicapping, Equalizing"
From: David Gilbert <xdavid@cis-broadband.com>
Date: Sat, 02 Jul 2011 10:30:55 -0700
List-post: <cq-contest@contesting.com">mailto:cq-contest@contesting.com>
Handicap systems have a lot of problems, especially if part of the goal 
of any potential rule change is to encourage more participation.   Any 
scoring system that says you need to participate for at least X number 
of years before you have a chance of placing high in the rankings sounds 
like a major disincentive to me.  The same would hold for any scoring 
system that discourages participation in different categories (high vs 
low power, single band vs all band, etc) from year to year.

I do find the discussion on distance versus path to be interesting, 
though, and I even tried to come up with a way to use WRTC-type score 
normalization to reference everyone's scores to the highest score in 
their geographical area (state/province/section/country/whatever) but I 
wasn't clever enough to figure out how to translate that to a national 
or world ranking.  And even if I could, do we really want to normalize 
out the random acts of nature that in some years create bad propagation 
for one part of the country (or world) while leaving another part of the 
country (or world) unscathed?

More and more, it seems to me that true USA national rankings of 
operator/station competence are simply rationally unsupportable by 
science or logic.  They are convenient and have historical appeal, but 
they don't seem to mean much beyond that.  Regional rankings would seem 
to warrant more emphasis than they currently get.

Dave   AB7E

On 7/1/2011 7:10 PM, Doug Smith wrote:
> Not that I really think the scoring system needs changing, but to toss out an 
> outside-the-box thought...
> How about a scheme where the winner is the entrant whose score has seen the 
> greatest improvement over the average of their own five previous entries?
> You'd have to limit eligibility to those who've submitted scores greater than 
> some threshold -- don't want someone "gaming the system" by making one
> QSO a year for five years, and then making five QSOs and claiming a 500% 
> improvement(grin!).
> This system would automatically calibrate for geographical variations, among 
> other factors.
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