Sorry but I have another angle on this.
First and foremost it has always been the intention of the associations and the Proctor family to keep the Wayfarer an affordable boat for a broad audience from 8 to 80. I don’t think we disagree on that do we?
That is why we are banning trapezes (not 8 to 80) and carbon poles (too expensive). But to make our beloved boat future proof we must keep an open mind to what attracts (young?) new sailors to the class. If gadgets attract (young) new sailors I would be inclined to allow them, specially if all the other classes allow them and start to draw new sailors away from the Wayfarer class. The same is true for carbon fibre poles and other modernisations. Obviously there is costs to consider but when these gadgets become affordable, why should we not allow them? If that is what it takes to keep the class alive?
I don’t want to be the last sailor to switch off the lights after everyone else has left the class. Just look at what the MK-4 has done for the future of the class. We have all seen numbers decline and without the MK-4 the class would be all but dead by now. Let us not loose the momentum the MK-4 gave us by being conservative about other developments. Whether we think those gadgets are useful or not doesn’t matter, it is something for each individual sailor should decide for himself.
Gadgets don’t win races, sailors win races. But if a sailor believes a gadgets helps him to become a better sailor, by all means use it! I think gadgets are like my young son’s “magic” stone that he carries in his pocket every day for good luck and also to shoo away pixies….. What ever you think of it, it gives him confidence.
So, the main criterions should be, as they always have been:
1: Is it too bloody expensive?
2: Does it prevent the very young or the very old from sailing a Wayfarer?
If none of the above is true, allow the gadget.