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Scorekeeping Software


History  •  Description  •  Requirements  •  Source Code
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Dart Marker 3 - Cricket Scoreboard
  - requires .NET Framework
Original Dart Marker Software
 
- DOS application

As you may guess from the name, Dart Marker is scorekeeping software for darts. The current version is called "Dart Marker 3 - Cricket Scoreboard", and only scores for Cricket.

The original Dart Marker Software was designed for DOS, and although text-based, it supports a variety of fun games.




HISTORY OF DART MARKER

In late 1989, the original Dart Marker program was created as a scorekeeping mechanism for my friend Darcy and I to play Cricket and 301. We worked at this little software company called Data Control Technology, and played darts daily. Creating the software was first just a hobby, but quickly grew until Dart Marker was a full-fledged suite of scorekeeping software for a variety of dart games.

Sensing something beyond a hobby, another friend and I thought to market Dart Marker as commercial software, and actually sold a few hundred copies. We had advertising in Bulls-Eye News Magazine, as well as consignment and direct sales to a number of dart equipment retailers throughout the country. In 1990, the Buffalo Brew Pub actually installed a computer and ceiling mounted monitor in their main dart throwing room for customer and league use. Every now and then I would drive to Williamsville just to experience that. Man, I was busting!

Unfortunately, Dart Marker was a product in search of a market. 1990 was much too early for computers as a common household device, specially portables or laptops. And rarely would you find a PC near the dart board! Truth be told, we spent more money on Dart Marker than we made. But it sure was fun trying, this short-lived brush with entrepreneurship.

Enter June 2002 and some unplanned downtime between projects with my employer, Idea Integration. As a personal project to develop some familiarity with the new Microsoft .NET Development Environment, I've re-created the scorekeeping objective as Dart Marker 3 - Cricket Scoreboard. This time, Cricket is the only game I've coded scorekeeping for, and the development language is Microsoft's new Visual C#.

Why only Cricket? Because it's just a simple exercise, nothing more.

Why Visual C#? No special reason, just curiosity.

In July of 2002, I made Dart Marker 3 available as a freeware download on CNET's www.download.com. After exactly one year, there have been 2,273 downloads.  Not exactly a record-breaking number of downloads, but it's neat none the less knowing that there are a few thousand people using the software.




Click for a larger screenshot DESCRIPTION OF DART MARKER 3

Although created primarily as a programming experiment, Dart Marker 3 is very functional and incredibly easy to use. There's even a Windows Help File as part of the game, explaining how to play Cricket and how to use the software. Visually, I've given Full-Screen consideration to the software, so it can be interpreted at a glance from across the room.

Don't take my word for it - download the software and try it out for yourself. In fact, search the internet for other scorekeeping software and compare. You'll find most programs are needlessly bogged down with silly graphics and complex scorekeeping techniques.


the right-mouse popup menuIn Dart Marker 3, all operations, from scoring to corrections, can be made with single-key entries, or a simple mouse-click. It is very intuitive. If a monkey could play darts, he could certainly use Dart Marker 3 to keep score. Click on the screenshot to get an idea of how clean and simple the interface is.

By my thinking, there should be two primary objectives - at a glance readability from across the room, and single-key or single-click scorekeeping that's completely intuitive. Just think how convenient this would be if you had a wireless mouse or keyboard?




SOFTWARE REQUIREMENTS

Dart Marker 3 requires the Microsoft .NET Framework be installed on your workstation. The .NET Framework Redistributable can be downloaded from Microsoft at http://www.microsoft.com/net, and is available for Windows 98, Windows NT 4.0 SP6, Windows 2000, Windows ME, and Windows XP. There is no setup program for Dart Marker 3; it doesn't need one. The only components of this very tiny ZIP file are the executable and a simple windows help file.

As to the original Dart Marker Software, there really are no requirements per se. It was designed to fit on a 360k, low-density, 5.25" floppy boot disk for DOS 3.3, and function just fine on a monochrome monitor. Considering the number of scorekeeping games, and the included APL runtime, that's a pretty small footprint!




SOURCE CODE FOR DART MARKER 3

For whatever your reasons: curiosity, customization, what-have-you; here's all the source code for Dart Marker 3, bundled together into this ZIP file. Once again, this is a Visual C# application, so you would need the Visual Studio .NET development environment to work with this code.

If you're looking for the APL source code to Dart Marker II, you're out of luck. It's been over a decade, and it's lost.

Click here for Dart Marker 3 Source Code