I had a hard time reading all the walls on the run (crossable/uncrossable).
Definitely not your fault, as unfortunately the map wasn't printed to ISSOM spec. The thicknesses of a lot of the black features are wrong. The purple course lines look okay, and the gray passable walls look okay.
Looking at your map print, the following all appear to have the same thicknesses of black, all of which look to be about 0.3 mm thick.
Building outline (supposed to be 0.14 mm)
Passable fence (supposed to be 0.21 mm)
Impassable fence (supposed to be 0.4 mm)
Impassable wall (supposed to be 0.4 mm)
And then there's the rock face symbol over by #12 and #18. That also looks printed at 0.3 mm thick. That would be correct for the passable rock face in ISSOM (symbol #203, 0.30 mm), but incorrect for the impassable rock face in ISSOM (symbol #201, 0.50 mm). Judging by your comments and your route, looks like it was an uncrossable rock face mapped at the thickness of a crossable one.
The building outlines and passable fence symbols were printed too thick, and the uncrossable walls and fences were printed too thin. So I'm not surprised that you had trouble figuring this out on the run. I certainly would have!
#9 is an example of what looks to be a passable fence right next to an uncrossable wall, yet both are the same thickness.
As an urban sprint aficionado, I'm annoyed with this map, because these are easily avoidable issues. It's a brand new map! And instances like these are what turn a lot of people off to urban sprints (I'm not saying that you were turned off, but there's a sentiment out there that urban sprint maps can be hard to read, and people don't like to be trapped because they made a bad assumption).
I'll admit, I've been spoiled with 10 years of excellent, excellent, excellent ISSOM maps in Vancouver.
Just looked at the map -- it's weird. It sort of looks like all the buildings are surrounded by impassable walls. Pink Socks, have you passed on these comments to the club? It seems like something worth fixing.
The walls around 9-10 and 12 are impassable. The areas inside are accessible only by the stairs. I'm not an expert on ISSOM drafting. I can only say that I didn't have any trouble with the area around Mary's 9-10. However, the area around 12 confused me as I tried to plan my approach. Also, I had to go from Mary's 12 to Mary's 18 and, as it turns out, you can go underneath the stairs that are at 7 o'clock.
Mike Minium made the map (and set the course) for the urban sprint.
I admit to taking some liberty with line thickness. In the interest of clarity, I did increase the thickness of the building outline to equal the impassable walls, wanted to make sure that the distinction between passable lines (Pavement edges, pass-thrus) and uncrossable lines (walls, fences) was large enough and consistent enough to be crystal clear, since this is a common complaint about sprint maps. There were not intended to be any crossable fences or crossable rock faces on the map (mistakenly a couple fences with single tag lines got left on, but the thick line should have indicated that they were not permitted to be crossed); if it was mapped with a thick black line it was uncrossable; if it was a very thin black line it was uncrossable. In retrospect, the building walls were unnecessarily thick. And while I tried to show that there was a passage under the steps between 12 and 18, I see that the symbol comes out looking more like a one-tag fence. Obviously not perfect.
Mapping 3D to 2D looses 1D and so will often not be perfect. C'est la vie. I didn't mind and had a blast. Perhaps if it was a WOC sprint then the potential ambiguity prevents this feature from being used. I thought it was cool.
I'm on the verge of needing a magnifier these days, and I'm not ISSOM- or sprint-savvy enough to notice those types of subtle symbol variations. So I didn't have any issues with the map, and I actually think the urban sprint might have been my most favorite race of the weekend!
I wanted to make sure that the distinction between passable lines and uncrossable lines was large enough and consistent enough to be crystal clear, since this is a common complaint about sprint maps.
The building outline thickness isn't that big of deal. Buildings are uncrossable, anyway. And the passable fence isn't that big of deal, since there aren't that many on the map (and per Mike's comment, there shouldn't have been any).
If the intent was to be crystal clear on the distinction between crossable and uncrossable, I don't see how making the linear uncrossable symbols all at least 25% thinner than spec accomplishes this. We have at least one instance of a competitor having trouble distinguishing the symbols during the race.
Fortunately, it doesn't look like anyone got burned by getting trapped by these symbols!
I tried to show that there was a passage under the steps between 12 and 18, I see that the symbol comes out looking more like a one-tag fence.
I think not following ISSOM is what makes this the case. I thought it was a passable fence symbol, too. Now that I know what's going on, I assume that it's a bridge symbol.
Within the circle at #18, we have lots of 0.3 mm thick black lines: uncrossable wall (too thin), uncrossable rock face (too thin), building outline (too thick). And because the crossable fences are mapped as 0.3 mm elsewhere (too thick), this just looks like another fence. The bridge symbol uses .25mm black lines, so it's indistinguishable from the others here. The bridge symbol might look more passable if the others are thickened and thinned properly.
Taking a step outside this particular map, I don't really like the bridge symbol in ISSOM for really complex multi-level terrain. At 0.25mm, it's looks too similar to uncrossable walls, so it's really hard to make a bridge stand out as a bridge. In the complex maps I've made, I've avoided using the bridge symbol, instead using uncrossable wall and pairing it with the passageway symbol underneath. (I'm not sure if this solution would have worked with the passageway between #12 and #18, since there's not much real estate there for the passageway dots).
I actually think the urban sprint might have been my most favorite race of the weekend!
I would have definitely said the same thing!
I noticed the thinner lines for walls, but had no trouble interpreting the map. The course setting was good - no unfair traps.
instances like these are what turn a lot of people off to urban sprints
Actually, I don't agree with this. If the course had been unfair, if the course had trapped you or tricked you, that would be off putting.
As slow as I am I still try to jog, and also love urban/campus sprints, probably because of the quick decision-making and route finding (I also prefer middle to long). I loved the course and had no troubles with the map, though I wasn't sure what was going on at the Cummins building. I just assumed it was better to run around the pond on my way to Brown's 1&2 (south of the pond) and not see whether the stairs allowed me to pass under the walkway going out to the brick building (as Brooke said, there's a glass wall in the way, which I heard about later).
Spike, I probably should have said some people instead of a lot of people.
I think it depends on who you talk to. We just had a local event on a sprint map, and beforehand, I was chatting with some folks who attend national meets sometimes, and for those two, they shared that they get frustrated by not being able to tell where you can go, and where you can't, what's crossable, and what's not.
I guess my concern is that there's a map specification that we're supposed to use, and we're not always using it.
It'd be like me saying, "You know, I think I'll make the basketball hoop 10 feet, 4 inches high. But since the hoop is slightly higher, I'll also make the ball 4 ounces lighter."
Some players may not notice at all. Some may notice and still make most of their shots. Some may notice and miss more shots. And some may not notice and miss more shots and wonder why.
This discussion thread is closed.