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  1. #61  
    Quote Originally Posted by luau joe View Post
    Does your geocaching software give compass reading even if you are not moving?
    Eventually got around to testing this -- "moving" is relative; with a good GPS signal, merely rotating with the Pre at arm's length can be adequate; a pace or two generally does the trick if not -- certainly no more than walking around my tripod is required.
  2. #62  

    It's been a couple of months since we heard anything -- any update on progress?
  3.    #63  
    Quote Originally Posted by Tetenterre View Post

    It's been a couple of months since we heard anything -- any update on progress?
    Hi Tenenterre,

    I have posted a few things to my blog in regards to this, but I was working on a new post. The highlights are that I now have some working knowledge of both SDL and OpenGL, and work is now quickly progressing on the PDK port. The stars, sun, and planets have been ported from Javascript to C++, the moon is progressing. I am able to draw the different objects to the screen using OpenGL, and I have some framework for how to respond to input.

    Like I had said a few months ago, this is a long, hard process of learning a new system (in this case OpenGL and SDL). The one thing that I don't know yet is how to handle menus and other screens. Most astronomy programs on other platforms, and the current released version of JdiSky involve lots of controls and menus. But there is no good way to create this in OpenGL.

    I'm hoping that WebOS 2.0 will come to the general public soon, in which case I can just do this as a hybrid app, with native menus and fast drawing. But I'm not counting on it. I'm just stacking my development such that I won't waste time on such menus if it does come out soon.

    I hope to have something presentable (no menus, but everything drawing and some user interaction) in the next few weeks. I am going to have some vacation time around the end of the year, so that might give me some time to work.

    For now, check the screenshot attached.
    Attached Images Attached Images
  4.    #64  
    I just submitted an early beta for the PDK version to the Beta List. The URL is below. Please provide feedback here or on my site at JdiSoft.

    Currently, it will get your location from the GPS, calculate the positions of everything (and phase of the moon), and render it. It will also allow zooming (although I haven't gotten Panning to work yet).

    There are no settings or menus yet. I am hopping that WebOS 2.0 will be out sooner rather than later to help with that.

    Please let me know how/if it works. This was a lot of code to re-work from the ground up.
    Last edited by jdiwnab; 01/06/2011 at 10:19 AM. Reason: Link now active
  5. #65  
    D/L'd this a few days back. Obviously in its early stage of development and little to test so far, but:

    Centre of zoomed image is a bit random; it is possible, for example, to attempt to zoom in on an object near the horizon, and end up with a zoomed image of the zenith.
    Zooming usually ends up with a rapid oscillation between two zoom scale-factors, i.e. a rapidly flickering image. A tap gets it to stop at one of them.
    The zoomed image also zooms the sizes of stars; it is only necessary to zoom the space between them, not the star sizes themselves.

    Other issues:
    The sky is still E-W reversed from the PoV of a ground-based observer.
    Is there a reason for the sky background to be blue? Black would offer more contrast.

    SkyOrb gives the sort of sky images and zooming that I'd like to see. Unfortunately it is cluttered with a load of (to me) useless glitzy bells and whistles that I'll never use and which just get in the way. It also has a broken search function.
  6.    #66  
    Thank you for your reply. I was starting to get worried after not hearing much since the release.

    Regarding zooming, in the version that is up there, it was only zooming in on the zenith. It doesn't matter where you tried to pinch/zoom, only the ratio of how you pinched. This was simply because I hadn't worked in the rest of the controls. I figured a simple zoom would suffice to say if things where being interactive. Basically, this release was did the basics work on other people's phones.

    Regarding the flicker, that was a bug that I have fixed. Double buffering is weird in OpenGL, and not what I expected.

    Regarding the size of the stars, Now that I have established some level of control over when to draw and such, I can easily compensate and adjust the star size as a ratio of zoom factor. This was previously impossible in Javascript because of speed limitations, but now should be easy to implement.

    E-W sky is a personal preference. When I get menus (please, hybrid apps, come quickly!), this will be controllable. I also realize that I haven't put the labels on it yet, which can be confusing.

    The sky is blue because I think it looks nice. It also makes a clear distinction between the background and the sky. Night vision mode (again, when I have menus), as I currently do in the Javascript version, will be black. Maybe I'll have some configs for this. But, again, I need menus.

    Now, on to what I currently have, and what I have planned in the near future for this. First, I have adding panning and improved zooming. It will zoom in on whatever is in the "top-center" (where the zenith is when zoomed all the way out) of the screen. You can zoom in, and pan to what you want to see. Because the two finger pan/zoom is tricky to control, I wanted to limit the pinch gesture to zoom, and one finger to panning. I can change this in the future, depending on feedback. This addresses one of your issues.

    Second, I have fixed the flicker, as I had previously mentioned. It was a matter of when I should redraw vs refresh. As a part of this, I also reduced the number of polygons I draw to make it faster. If you zoom way in on a star, you can see some triangles now, but you have to zoom in a whole lot. Between resizing the stars and how big they are, I figured that I could reduce that by half and still have it look nice, and it worked.

    I plan on first adding constellations. This is how many people navigate the sky, and something I want for myself. I have the data this time, but I have to parse it (which was automatic in Javascript). Shouldn't be too bad. Then I plan on resizing the stars and such as a factor of zoom. Finally, I might go ahead and make it a hybrid app now. If I do so, it would probably be released as a homebrew app for now, possibly with some things removed (less than 3000 stars, or something), and bide my time until they greenlight such apps.
  7. #67  
    Stellarium and Astromist (available for PalmOS) are two good measures of functional astronomy programs.

    I looked at porting Stellarium to WebOS since it's open source but the lack of Qt support makes it more tedious. I am hoping the Astromist developer moves to WebOS 3.0 in the near future.

    One important item is BT serial port for the telescope mount (if you decide to include telescope control.) Apple closely regulates the devices that can connect to the iPad and right now everyone is stuck with hardwared serial or wi-fi (which is stupid unless the mount has wi-fi built in which few do.) If BT serial can't be used, it will be a big disadvantage. I am crossing my fingers that the Touchpad isn't locked down like the iPad.
  8. #68  
    Hey, thanks for working on this! It's definitely a cool idea. I've installed the beta:

    good - fast
    bad - screen jiggle is very disturbing visually. I've noticed that taping the screen once gets rid of the jiggle, but it would be good not to see it at all.

    I look forward to seeing the final hybridized product.
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