XCSoar is a great application (and FREE) for use by the beginner to the experienced contest pilot. Besides their website, which has both a complete manual (170+ pages) and quick start guide (only 15 pages), below are some other video links that may help.
There is another program called Top Hat, but it hasn’t seen any update since 2017.
- Basic setup – People are intimidated by the initial setup. This brief video takes you step-by-step thru the process of getting it setup and running on your cellphone (for simply recording your flight) or on a tablet (for real X-Country flying). It only takes a few minutes to complete and you’ll be able to get .IGC file recordings of all your flights.
- Advanced setup – It has a LOT of options! We found this to be a good video from an experienced contest pilot to take you thru the entire setup process. If you like the presentation, he also has an entire playlist with great tutorials for using XCSoar for cross country and better thermalling.
- Learning how to use it in flight – This is the tricky part. It’s very hard to fly and play with a computer application at the same time. You can do it with two pilots – OR – much easier, you can run Condor 2 on your PC at home and have it send data to XCSoar running on your cellphone/tablet. This is another setup video from the same pilot above.