[eDebate] Hanson-Cantrell STA-XL plus

NEIL BERCH berchnorto
Tue Sep 11 21:37:57 CDT 2007

And the start of another season is not a bad time to take note of Gary's amazing service to this community.  Whatever one may think of MPJ, Gary has devoted an amazing amount of time, energy, and talent to giving the community what it asks for in this regard!
--Neil Berch
West Virginia University
  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Jim Hanson<mailto:hansonjb at whitman.edu> 
  To: Edebate<mailto:edebate at ndtceda.com> 
  Sent: Tuesday, September 11, 2007 10:10 PM
  Subject: Re: [eDebate] Hanson-Cantrell STA-XL plus

  and on that point . . .

  I'd like to thank gary for doing coding for several parts of sta-xl plus (eg 
  doubleflighting ld) and for all of his incredible patience in answering my 
  and danny's voluminous questions and help in making sta-xl plus come to 

  jim :)
  hansonjb at whitman.edu<mailto:hansonjb at whitman.edu>

  From: "Gary Larson" <Gary.N.Larson at wheaton.edu<mailto:Gary.N.Larson at wheaton.edu>>
  Sent: Tuesday, September 11, 2007 6:47 PM
  To: "Edebate" <edebate at ndtceda.com<mailto:edebate at ndtceda.com>>
  Subject: [eDebate] Hanson-Cantrell STA-XL plus

  Since I've received a couple of back-channel inquiries, let me explain my 
  relationship to Jim's project.  From the early days when STA was embedded in 
  SmartWare, I've never aggressively marketed my program.  A few brave souls 
  have used it with as much support as I've been able to offer.  As a result, 
  when Jim Hanson and Danny Cantrell approached me regarding their desire to 
  adapt STA into a package that they believe will be more user friendly and 
  one that Danny will fully support, I offered my enthusiastic endorsement. 
  While I continue to work on STA, particularly with respect to the judging 
  algorithm, my role as an academic administrator prevents me from offering 
  the ongoing support to a large cadre of end users who need troubleshooting, 
  development of new features, and customization.  I anticipate that over 
  time, Danny and Jim will gradually move away from the core STA code that 
  still underlies the program.  This is entirely appropriate as I anticipate 
  that a new generation of brighter programmers will advance the project.

  In the meantime, it should be noted that I will continue to develop the 
  algorithms on which STA has been based.  This summer, in response to the 
  opportunity to test the ordinal data compiled at the NDT, I was able to 
  develop a new MPJ algorithm that makes dramatic improvements over the best 
  results I've previously obtained.  While Jim and Danny's program currently 
  contains an older version of my algorithm, it is anticipated that as 
  appropriate, they will incorporate newer versions of my algorithm into their 
  project.  At the same time, I have discussed with Rich Edwards developing a 
  collaboration that would permit my judge assignment algorithms to be 
  incorporated into TRPC.

  Finally, I will continue to use and support those others who currently use 
  my own version of STA-XL.  While fully supportive of Jim and Danny's 
  project, I have my own natural biases about user interfaces and programming 
  strategies.  That said, since I don't have the time and resources to 
  realistically support new users, evidenced by the fact that I don't have an 
  up-to-date manual that keeps pace with the relatively rapid evolution of my 
  program, I don't really recommend that folks use my version of the program 
  at this time (as much as I personally like it).  To promote ongoing 
  innovation, I want to endorse all efforts to move the state of the art 
  forward - e.g. Jim and Danny's project, Rich's current TRPC as well his 
  collaboration with Jon Bruschke to incorporate .NET programming.  I will 
  continue to make my underlying code available to all projects that are 
  willing to give rather than sell their software to the community.


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