BAA Summer Meeting Notes

Hello all you Buggy Fans! It’s about time we shared with yinz what we’ve been up to and what we’re planning for next year. Since our last post like this was quite a while ago, this’ll be a bit of a recap of last year and then also our plans going into the 2017-2018 season.

Summary of 2016-2017 Season:

Continuing of primary goals and expansion new projects during Rolls.

  • Rolls Reports went well this year while increasing the average number of contributors. Thanks to these additional hands, we were frequently able to add more detail and information to these reports.
  • Timing Systems exploded this year as we are now up to at least 4 or 5 different ones. Ben Brown has continued his initial speed trap system and added a version 2.o into the mix. Mark Estes worked on applying his soap box networked timing system to the odd shape of the course to some success. Shafeeq and Tom Wood also continue their camera and stopwatch traps that have helped confirm some of the success from the automated systems.

On Raceday we experimented with some new strategies to varying success.

  • We brought on and mixed in some new broadcasters with our regulars and heard many positive remarks on our picks.
  • Team interviews were attempted, but due to the reduced heat schedule, we were unable to fit them in.
  • The BAA had our own team of volunteers for the races this year which generally went well, despite a bit of disorganization.
  • The Table and Tent for the BAA at the top of the hill was useful if also a bit disorganized.
  • Sweepstakes came up significantly short on their fundraising this year and we were able to step in and cover the costs of one of the Jumbotrons as well as the additional camera that was used on the course this year.

Plans for 2017-2018 Season:

We have some ambitious goals for the upcoming season. Some more administrative, others that we hope will improve the buggy experience for everyone.

  • Our membership period will be adjusted to line up with CMU’s fiscal calendar. For the transition, anyone that donated after This year’s raceday will still be considered a member through this season. All memberships going forward will end at the end of June.
  • Work is already begun on revamping this site and updating some of its tools to the more recent versions. Our current focuses will be:
    • Security Updates
    • Making the site more mobile friendly
    • Better usability for Raceday
    • Fixing and consolidating logins
    • Finding a better long-term solution for our gallery hosting
  • We have a somewhat disorganized google drive folder that we will be cleaning up so we can more easily find & search all of its great information.
  • Last year’s Sweepstakes committee did a great job reaching out to potential groups that would be willing to support a buggy team and we plan to follow up on the list that they generated to get an idea of what challenges they run into the most.
  • Externally, we have some goals for the larger CMU and Pittsburgh Communities.
    • Most of what we are looking to do is increase awareness of buggy and potentially interest.
    • We will be working with students and the administration on the best methods for this outreach.
    • In the larger Pittsburgh community, we will be reaching out to local news and radio programs, which we used to be covered by in years past.
  • Raceday itself is its own beast where we have some specific goals for 2018.
    • We will be talking with cmuTV and work with them closely to find ways of displaying our speed trap data as live as possible on the feed.
    • Reading off the pusher names has been a great addition to the broadcast, but we are working to find a way of introducing them more directly prior to the race starting that will not adversely affect the timing.
    • As the primary people affected by any changes, everything will be run past the current students with a focus on taking their input and interests above our own.

Current Projects

Over the summer we don’t usually have much going on. Aside from the previously mentioned website upgrades that are being looked into, we do have a Raceday Recap newsletter in the works that we plan to release before the start of Rolls this year. If you have any desire to contribute, please email¬†¬†for more information.

We will be meeting again in August just before Volunteer forum and will post an update on our progress so far. Summers are often slow, but we are optimistic with our new team.


2 thoughts on “BAA Summer Meeting Notes”

  • Team interviews, especially during raceday, would be awesome. Especially pre or post heats. Would love to have heard th SDC perspective shattering the boys and girls records, or hear the comments from CIA and PiKA teams after that crazy finish on day 2. Really would want more insight into what the teams’ mindset is these days.

    • Who would you like to have heard from in these instances? Pushers? Chair? Driver? Anyone?

      Totally agree that this would be awesome to have if we have time to fit it in between races.

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