FIBA Europe Techno Centre
|FIBA Europe Head of Operations Miguel Betancor takes Sergey Formin through the DSS during the EuroChallenge Final Four|
The more complicated a software package is, the thicker a manual the user usually needs to work with it.
Theory is all well and good, however there is nothing like a practical demonstration and a university professor like FIBA Europe Head of Operations Miguel Betancor knows this only too well.
It then goes without saying that there can hardly be a better opportunity for a demonstration of a basketball-related software system than during some top-level basketball games.
To that effect, the FIBA Europe Techno Centre invited representatives of the Russian and German Basketball Federations to Ostend, in Belgium, to watch the Digital ScoreSheet system and the Observer software in action at the EuroChallenge Final Four at the weekend.
Both Federations were already familiar with the two software systems on a theoretical level and had expressed a strong interest in witnessing a ‘real-life' demonstration.
"The DSS and the Observer software that representatives of our Federation and I myself had the chance to see in operation during various events is very interesting to us," Russian Federation Secretary General Natalia Galkina told fibaeurope.com.
"We consider these devices to be useful in the future work of our Federation and would love to use the chance to study the software system. We do hope that the software will be successfully used in Europe and worldwide," she added.
Former international referee Sergey Formin and two IT experts travelled to Ostend to watch the systems in action during the Final Four games on behalf of the Russian Basketball Federation, while the technically-inclined German Federation Secretary General Wolfgang Brenscheidt was also at hand to examine the systems from up close.
|Sergey Formin and the IT specialist of the Russian Basketball Federation with Antonio Ojeda of the FIBA Europe Techno Centre|
In particular the Observer software, which was set up at the Final Four to focus specifically on the actions of the referees, provided a veteran of officiating like Miguel Betancor with the perfect opportunity to showcase it to both Sergey Formin and Wolfgang Brenscheidt.
The Observer software system monitors and evaluates actions of not only the referees but also the coaches and players during the game, making use of the live video broadcast.
All actions are categorised and filed in a system that makes it easy to retrieve them at a later stage or can be stored in any kind of removable media, such as USB sticks, DVDs or external hard drives.
The biggest advantage to the system however is probably its ability to instantly transmit all stored information via internet to a central platform, providing the chance to evaluate simultaneously games that can be taking place several kilometres apart at the same time, without the need for actual physical presence at all locations.
This feature that can come in handy everywhere, but one appreciates better its significance when thinking of a country where distances can be as huge as in Russia, for example.
On the other hand, the Digital ScoreSheet system was put under scrutiny by the two IT experts from Russia, who had the chance to watch it in action during the very demanding games of the EuroChallenge Final Four.
The DSS is linked to the scorers table and collects all actions that take place during the game to serve as instant video replay on court in case of disputes, but also files these actions and can be reviewed after the end of the game.
In between games, when the Observer and DSS solutions were not seeing action on court, the representatives of both the Russian and German federations had the opportunity to be briefed on several other solutions that the FIBA Europe Techno Centre has already developed, as part of its mission statement to explore and make use of technological advances for the benefit of basketball as a sport.