The 2nd World Mind Sports Games will be held in Lille, France, from the 9th till the 23rd of August. Bridge is always a part of the World Mind Games and this year the 14th World Bridge Games (Olympiad) and the 5th World Transnational Mixed Teams are incorporated in the event. The Bridge Card Reader (BCR) will be used to broadcast the 14th World Bridge Games and to provide support for the Tournament Directors. We will be present with 12 BCR’s of the latest version at the Lille Grand Palais. This will be the first large event where we use the new BCR Control Panel and BCR Calibration software. This will make setting up the BCR’s for the tournament an easier task. Additionally the latest version of the recognition software will be used.
Next to the development in the Bridge Card Reader itself Studio diip has also developed two useful pieces of software. This software makes it easier to control and calibrate the Bridge Card Reader.
The first program BCR Calibration is a tool that is able to automatically determine the ideal settings for a BCR by looking at a calibration plate that can be placed on the table. This program sets up camera focus, brightness, camera positioning and it checks for reflections.
The BCR Control Panel is used to start, stop, update and monitor the BCR devices from any Windows computer. With a step by step process it is possible to setup everything that is necessary to control the BCR devices and keep an eye on them during bridge matches. The calibration program can also be accessed through the BCR Control Panel. These programs are important steps towards making it easy enough for anyone to use the Bridge Card Reader systems.
The World Mind Games is an international event that combines bridge, draughts, chess, go and xiangqi. This World Mind Games were held at the Beijing International Convention Center and for bridge consisted of teams, pairs and individual games. This was the first larger international tournament where BCR was used outside of the Netherlands and although this resulted in some issues with static electricity, network and language barriers BCR was able to broadcast the teams matches succesfully on our own website and through the broadcast client of Ourgame. The event was a great way to achieve more experience in broadcasting international tournaments and has supplied us with a lot of information on how to improve the Bridge Card Reader.
The World Bridge Championships in Veldhoven have already started last week with the opening ceremony on Saturday the 22nd. As all Bridge Card Reader systems are working there is now time to report the proceedings in this post. By now we have broadcasted 144 matches, a total of 4608 boards and detected 121.543 playing cards. Overall the systems are running well and by now almost all players have gotten used to the system. Except for missing some biddings due to the enormous spotlights above every table the detection works as expected. Today will be the last day of broadcasting as the quarter finals are currently underway (the Netherlands are doing well against Iceland) so two more matches can be followed on the virtual bridge stadium. The remainder of the matches is held in special rooms and will be broadcasted the traditional way. Tomorrow Studio diip will pack all of the BCR’s again because the next destination is Beijing, China for the World Mind Games. More news about BCR on the World Bridge Championships can be found in the daily bulletins and an article on the dutch computerIdee website. Some pictures can be found below for an impression of the tournament.