Two Weeks of Swim Team Registration

It has been about two weeks which our swim team, the MacDolphins, has been using wp-SwimTeam in conjunction with WordPress for swim team registration.  This has been a pretty good testing experience and for the most part, has goine pretty smoothly. 

However, some things which seem obvious to me apparently aren’t so obvious so I will need to rethink those.  For example – when adding a swimmer, the swimmer should be registered for the current season by default as part of the registration process as opposed to making it a separate step.  I also need to add some birth date checking as we had a number of swimmers registered with the current date (the default) which means they were born on the day they were registered.

I also ran into a problem where anyone using Apple’s Safari web browser (either on a Mac or a PC) wasn’t able to do much because the Javascript behavior of any of the buttons on the GUIDataList objects (a nice spreadhseet like widget used extensively to present information to the users) was different than Internet Explorer or Firefox.  It was very odd and took a while to chase down but it is fixed so now Mac users are happy too!

The next thing I am working on is Swimmer numbers for swim meets.  In our area, each swimmer is labeled (usually on their arm or leg with a Sharpie) with their swimmer number.  Some teams number their swimmers sequentially, other clubs, like ours, give each age group a prefix and number the swimmers within the age group.  E.g. the 7-8 girls are numbered 801 – 8xx and the 7-8 boys are numbered 701-7xx.  We will need this capability in the next 2-3 weeks so it is bubbling up the list.  I also need to generate some reports so that is a priority as well.

WordPress updated

I went ahead and upgraded WordPress to 2.5.1 even though I don’t like the new Dashboard.  It turns out I wanted to use the Email Users plugin with the MacDolphins site and since Email Users needed 2.5, I had to upgrade the MacDolphins site in order to use it.  Since the Swim Team plugin exposes the Dashboard pretty extensively to the end user, I decided to see if I could modify the Dashboard so it was more to my liking.

The result of that work is Retro-Dashboard, a WordPress Admin Theme plugin which I released yesterday.  It isn’t anything super fancy but it is waaaaaaay better than the default Dashboard (bleh, who thought that was a good idea).

Golf game progressing?

With the days getting longer I have had a chance to get out and hit a few balls lately.  The cul-de-sac I live on is bordered by three holes so I am fortunate that I can play two or three holes by walking across the street, through the neighbor’s yard and on to the #6 tee.  It may not be a full round but I’d much prefer to hit balls on 2-3 holes than at a driving range.  There usually isn’t anyone on the course late in the day either so it isn’t like I am cutting in on anyone either.

Saturday evening I actually had enough time to get in more than 2-3 holes so I went down and teed off #1 hoping to get in as many as I could.  I was by myself so I played two balls (I called them A & B) and started out well, bogie with my A ball and par with my B ball.  I got off the tee well with both which was encouraging.

I had played two weeks ago with some co-workers and about halfway through the round reailized that I had lapsed into a weak grip again which was causing me to slice.  I really have to concentrate on gripping the club with a strong grip or that slice comes back.  Once I corrected that problem, I finished that round pretty well.

Back to my Saturday night 9 hole round – I continued to play well on #2 and #3 (I always have problems with #3).  By the time I got to #5 I was +3 with my A ball and 0 with my B ball.  Yikes! Of course that had to come to and end and #5, a long up hill par 5 which isn’t that hard, got me.  So-so drives followed by awful fairway shots left me in the woods with both my A and B balls.  After some more hacking I finished with and 7 and an 8.  Bleh.  Played ok on #6, hit an awesome second shot on #7 but missed the birdie put, and had a par with one ball on #8.

By the time I got to #9 it was pretty dark and a storm was rolling in but I was determined to finish.  One good and one so-so tee shot, followed by one awful and one so-so fairway shot left me with a couple tough shots.  I hit an awesome 5 iron which I couldn’t see but it ended up 3 feet from the flag with my B ball but my A ball was up in the pine straw.  Hitting out of pine straw is tricky and I have learned the hard way that my 54 degree wedge is not the club to use.  So I chipped it with my gap wedge and got it to within 15 feet and two putted it for a 7.

This was the first time I really concentrated on playing two separate balls.  A lot of times I will tee off one ball and only hit a second if my first one wasn’t very good or I will drop a second one from the fairway or up near the green.  I ended up eith a 47 for my A ball and a 43 for my B ball.  I was happy because I was keeping the ball in the fairway for the most part and hit my irons well.  In a couple cases, hitting them farther than I normally do.

I am headed to Charlotte to see the Wachovia on Thursday and may play at Pine Needles on Friday.  I went to Pine Needles for the Women’s Open last year, it is a nice course and should be a challenge.  Hopefully I will keep the ball in the fairway!

Retro-Dashboard Admin Theme

Yesterday I received an e-mail letting me know that my WordPress plugin request for Retro-Dashboard h ad been approved so last night I checked all of the code and supporting files into Subversion.  Is it perfect?  Nope.  Does it clean up stuff in the 2.5 Dashboard which I dislike?  Yes.  I imagine I will continue to tweak it and use it as a Admin Theme learning platform.  Maybe I’ll do a Rock Band theme … Hmmm.

You can find Retro-Dashboard on at: