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Old 11-03-2011, 16:37   #16
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Re: Google Earth Plugin

As internet connections are not always available under way,how about a copy GE screen option,storing it in .kap format or similar for later viewing. Selectable from the setup menu could be an option to 'Read GE image from file'.

Capturing areas at different angles and heights gives a lot of extra information for the navigator.

Tore
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Old 11-03-2011, 21:50   #17
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Re: Google Earth Plugin

Tore,

Quote:
Originally Posted by sinbad7 View Post
1.Do not start the GE as a default when loading up OpenCPN,or let OpenCPN start first.
Actually GE is not started before OpenCPN but as part of the plugin init process, which in turn is part of OCPN bootstrap. The best we can achieve is doing it later in case the plugin window was not shown when you closed OCPN last time, so it doesn't have to be recreated immediately. I've experimented with starting GE just when the window is visible, but it brought a whole lot of new problems and crashes... GE is quite huge and takes a lot of time to become usable (and it's hard to know when it does)
Quote:
2.Could you start the GE screen as 50% as a default,filling ALL the screen.
(There is a blank area at the bottom presently.)
Any further personal adjustment choices could then be done later.
Yes, will investigate on that, but I'm unsure whether I'm able to resize just the earthview - try to start GE and leave the toolbar and sidebar open before exiting it and then use the plugin and you will see what I'm talking about - there will be empty space even on the side... I still don't know what's going to happen if I try to resize just the desirable part of it's window (or if I can do it at all)
Quote:
3. Any possibility to also display all AIS and own ship in the GE screen?
For that matter,duplicate all routes,sea marks,etc. etc.
Plugins don't have access to this data currently. When they will, and I think they will, it looks doable with the GE API. Just the ownship will be weird as we will probably have to display it as a sort of waypoint.
Quote:
Wish list # 4. Could you make the mouse wheel zoom active also in GE?
I actually experienced the opposite - GE plugin refused to "return" the mouse to OCPN. Looks hardly fixable, as there's nothing I could influence in this way.
Quote:
I would prefer,as a default, that the GE Plug-in was disabled upon closing OpenCPN.
Me too, but the last state is persistent by design.
Quote:
As internet connections are not always available under way,how about a copy GE screen option,storing it in .kap format or similar for later viewing. Selectable from the setup menu could be an option to 'Read GE image from file'.
Capturing areas at different angles and heights gives a lot of extra information for the navigator.
The GE API allows to save a screenshot (if I understand the docs correctly - did not try), so adding a button to do it (and storing metadata like geolocation and camera settings is not a big problem). A way to "replay" such a stuff is a suggestion for another plugin though.
I would not misuse KAP (not talking about it not being possible for anything but tilt 0 degrees etc.) and compromise it's reliability as a chart format thought. GE, while being useful at times is still a toy, not a nav package you could rely on. At least in my opinion.

Pavel
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Old 12-03-2011, 03:53   #18
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Re: Google Earth Plugin

Pavel..

Thanks for the detailes explanation. Looking forward to see which other interactions are possible with GE. I very much miss a way to increase the illumination in GE as many of the areas are very dark.

Keep up the good work!!

Tore
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Old 12-03-2011, 06:08   #19
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Re: Google Earth Plugin

Pavel..

Would you be able to write a small script to open GE and OpenCPN in a dual screen?
This could be set up as a simple plug-in to make it quickly accessible.

I can do this manually by first loading both programs and holding down CTRL while clicking the minimized program. Right clicking any of the programs will then create two identical screens.

Placing a marker in the OpenCPN map you can read it's geo location and just copy and paste to GE using the 'Fly to',then you have the required image which you can save from GE in .kml format. These .kml images can then be saved in a special KML library for later access.

To access the previously saved .kml images from GE,just use the 'File/open' command and select from your KML library.
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Old 12-03-2011, 07:59   #20
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Re: Google Earth Plugin

Tore,
there's support in the GE COM API to read KML files and even inject KML into the running program without having to create anything on the disk - it will be used to inject navobjects once they will be available to the plugin.
From the workflow you describe, it seems pretty similar to opening routemanager and clicking the Zoom to button on waypoint or route with the plugin set to follow the chart viewport...
But maybe this kml image is something different, I'm really not a GE user so this stuff is pretty new for me.
If you post one of those files, I will have a look what's inside, it's good old XML and has very good documentation at KML | OGC(R) so we can do quite some magic with it without too much research.

If you want to start separate programs and do stuff, you probably want something like AutoIt | AutoItScript - VERY powerful and free or DeskSoft - WindowManager - Window position and size manager and a two-line batch to run the programs. Not free but needs no learning.
Remember that GE can't be run more than once by design - either you have OpenCPN with the plugin running or you use Google Earth, never both at the same time.

Pavel
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Old 12-03-2011, 09:10   #21
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Re: Google Earth Plugin

Pavel..

For someone who is not a GE user you certainly manage to find your way around ok, he he.

I just want to find a quick way to go to an OpenCPN location and pick a spot to be viewed in GE. I then want the possibility to store the image in a format readable by GE for later access and .kml seems the right format. As you say,GE already have this possibility and the question is how to incorporate these options in your plug-in.

I've had a lot of problems with GE as it seems to disappear at some stage,never to return. When I try to un-install I am told that GE is running and to stop it?
I can not see that GE is running anywhere or how to stop it. My only solution was to remove all files and directories and re-set windowns. The re-install..

Tore
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Old 12-03-2011, 09:35   #22
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Re: Google Earth Plugin

Tore,
you can kill any running process in Windows Task manager - Windows Start menu, click on Run, type in taskmgr and hit Enter. Then on Processes tab find googlearth.exe and kill it with End Process button down to the right.
If you are on Win7 I think you just type taskmgr to the search field in the startmenu and hit enter...
To get your waypoints to GE easily, you can export them as GPX and use GPSBabel to convert the file to KML. The same works in the other direction as well.

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Old 12-03-2011, 10:13   #23
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Re: Google Earth Plugin

Pavel..

I am aware of the Windows Task Manager but the problem is,GE is running but is not shown in the task manager. Seems somehow to be running invisibly in the background.
I un-installed the plug-in from your interface and everything froze up needing a win re-start. After the re-start GE worked as normal again. Seems your un-install does not stop GE. But why does it not show in the Task manager?

The save file in .kml format from GE does not work and is very haphazard..
I make use of the program 'KLM Writer' to create my .kml files and they work perfectly Just clicking the file starts GE and goes to the desired location.

I attach a typical .kml file created.

Tore
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Old 12-03-2011, 10:40   #24
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Re: Google Earth Plugin

Tore,
are you really sure the process is not there? Not on the first tab showing the few running applications, but on the second one with (lots of) processes. Also note that they are not in alphabetical order by default. I would be surprised as it's not at all easy to hide a running process from showing there.
If you can find a reproducible way to get things to this state, it would be very helpful, as I technically know what's up but not where I need to fix it...

The KML file you provided is exactly one waypoint + camera angle and distance - not a problem to implement generation of such stuff as part of the plugin.

Pavel
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Old 12-03-2011, 11:10   #25
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Re: Google Earth Plugin

Pavel..

No,there was definitely nothing visible or running in the Task Manager at the time. All attempts to start GE later failed and when I tried to un-install GE I got the message that GE was running and to stop it before un-installing.

It is essential to be able to quickly disable the GE plug-in similar to the other two plug-ins as I do'nt use GE all the time.

The displayed KML Writer if a very useful tool,simple and free.
Perhaps a similar feature could be included as an option in your plug-in?

I am running Vista by the way...

Tore
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Old 12-03-2011, 11:33   #26
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Re: Google Earth Plugin

Quote:
Originally Posted by sinbad7 View Post
No,there was definitely nothing visible or running in the Task Manager at the time. All attempts to start GE later failed and when I tried to un-install GE I got the message that GE was running and to stop it before un-installing.
Weird, let's observe more and try to figure it out...

Quote:
It is essential to be able to quickly disable the GE plug-in similar to the other two plug-ins as I don't use GE all the time.
What do you mean? It works exactly as all the other plugins. The only difference is it's a GE plugin, so it needs GE to do something and GE is huge... Will try to postpone launching GE to the moment when the plugin window will be displayed for the first time in the next beta. I expect that then immediately someone will start to complain that it takes time and makes the whole GUI irresponsive for a while and generally sucks. At least that's what I did when I did the first experiments

Quote:
The displayed KML Writer if a very useful tool,simple and free.
Perhaps a similar feature could be included as an option in your plug-in?
Easy, will be in the next beta.

Pavel
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Old 12-03-2011, 12:16   #27
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Re: Google Earth Plugin

Pavel..

I repeated the excersise and this time I loaded up OpenCPN first and then tried to enable the GE plug-in. Nothing happened,and after a while everything seized up. I had to use Task Manager to stop OpenCPN running. I immediately copied the OpenCPN log file attached and hope you can make something out of it.

It seems that both ENABLING and DISENABLING the plug-in crashes OpenCPN.
The only safe way is to start OpenCPN with the plug-in enabled.

When you add the option to store a selected GM area,you will no doubt also have a further option to select the file again from it's directory and display it in the GE window?

Would also be great if you could manage to get the two displays up in two equal sized screens as a default,allowing the user to change later if he wishes.

Tore

Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
13:16:45: -------Starting opencpn-------
13:16:45: Version 2.4.0 Build 2011-03-10
13:16:45: SData_Locn is D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\
13:16:46: Error: Image file is not of type 9.
13:16:46: Using existing Config_File: C:\ProgramData\opencpn\opencpn.ini
13:16:46: Setting Viewpoint Lat/Lon 9.3458, -79.9082
13:16:46: Setting Ownship Lat/Lon 53.8602, -166.785
13:16:46: System default Language: en_GB
1:16:46 PM: Opencpn language set to: en_US
1:16:46 PM: looking for catalog 'opencpn' in path 'D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\en_US.WINDOWS-1252\LC_MESSAGES;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\en_US.WINDOWS-1252;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\en_US.WINDOWS-1252;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\en_US\LC_MESSAGES;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\en_US;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\en_US;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\en\LC_MESSAGES;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\en;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\en'.
1:16:46 PM: catalog file for domain 'opencpn' not found.
1:16:46 PM: Using s57data in D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\s57data
1:16:46 PM: Using Tide/Current data from: D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\tcdata\
1:16:46 PM: Setting Viewpoint Lat/Lon 9.3458, -79.9082
1:16:46 PM: Setting Ownship Lat/Lon 53.8602, -166.785
1:16:46 PM: NMEA Data Source is....None
1:16:46 PM: AIS Data Source is....Serial:COM7
1:16:48 PM: Using WVSChart datafile: D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\wvsdata\wvs43.dat
1:16:48 PM: NMEA AutoPilot Port is....None
1:16:48 PM: PlugInManager searching for PlugIns in location D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\plugins
1:16:48 PM: PlugInManager: Loading PlugIn: D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\plugins/dashboard_pi.dll
1:16:48 PM: PlugInManager: Loading PlugIn: D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\plugins/grib_pi.dll
1:16:48 PM: Loading chart db version: V016
1:16:48 PM: Chartdb: Chart directory list follows
1:16:48 PM: Chart directory #0: G:\CHARTS
1:16:48 PM: Chart directory #1: D:\CM93
1:16:49 PM: GPS Watchdog Timeout is: 6 sec.
1:16:49 PM: Initializing Chart G:\CHARTS\PANAMA\Cristobal-Colon.kap
1:16:54 PM: Initializing Chart G:\CHARTS\COLOMBIA\ENC CHARTS\CO200008.000
1:17:46 PM: LOGBOOK: 2011-03-12 16:17:46 UTC DR Lat 53.86020 Lon -166.78530
1:25:01 PM: Initializing Chart G:\CHARTS\COLOMBIA\ENC CHARTS\CO200008.000
1:28:11 PM: Initializing Chart G:\CHARTS\CARIBBEAN\Caribbean overview.kap
1:30:00 PM: LOGBOOK: 2011-03-12 16:30:00 UTC DR Lat 53.86020 Lon -166.78530
2:00:00 PM: LOGBOOK: 2011-03-12 17:00:00 UTC DR Lat 53.86020 Lon -166.78530
2:30:00 PM: LOGBOOK: 2011-03-12 17:30:00 UTC DR Lat 53.86020 Lon -166.78530
3:00:00 PM: LOGBOOK: 2011-03-12 18:00:00 UTC DR Lat 53.86020 Lon -166.78530
3:30:00 PM: LOGBOOK: 2011-03-12 18:30:00 UTC DR Lat 53.86020 Lon -166.78530
3:45:33 PM: EnumerateSerialPorts() Found Garmin USB Driver.
3:46:33 PM: PlugInManager: Deactivating PlugIn: D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\plugins/dashboard_pi.dll
3:46:33 PM: PlugInManager: Deactivating PlugIn: D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\plugins/grib_pi.dll
3:46:33 PM: opencpn::MyFrame exiting cleanly.
3:46:34 PM: PlugInManager: UnLoading PlugIn: D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\plugins/dashboard_pi.dll
3:46:34 PM: PlugInManager: UnLoading PlugIn: D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\plugins/grib_pi.dll
3:46:34 PM: LOGBOOK: 2011-03-12 18:46:34 UTC OFF: Lat 53.86020 Lon -166.78530
3:46:34 PM: opencpn::MyApp exiting cleanly...

15:46:39:


15:46:39: 2011-03-12
15:46:39: -------Starting opencpn-------
15:46:39: Version 2.4.0 Build 2011-03-10
15:46:39: SData_Locn is D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\
15:46:39: Error: Image file is not of type 9.
15:46:39: Using existing Config_File: C:\ProgramData\opencpn\opencpn.ini
15:46:39: Setting Viewpoint Lat/Lon 9.3767, -79.8992
15:46:39: Setting Ownship Lat/Lon 53.8602, -166.785
15:46:39: System default Language: en_GB
3:46:39 PM: Opencpn language set to: en_US
3:46:39 PM: looking for catalog 'opencpn' in path 'D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\en_US.WINDOWS-1252\LC_MESSAGES;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\en_US.WINDOWS-1252;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\en_US.WINDOWS-1252;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\en_US\LC_MESSAGES;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\en_US;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\en_US;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\en\LC_MESSAGES;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\share/locale\en;D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\en'.
3:46:39 PM: catalog file for domain 'opencpn' not found.
3:46:39 PM: Using s57data in D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\s57data
3:46:39 PM: Using Tide/Current data from: D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\tcdata\
3:46:39 PM: Setting Viewpoint Lat/Lon 9.3767, -79.8992
3:46:39 PM: Setting Ownship Lat/Lon 53.8602, -166.785
3:46:39 PM: NMEA Data Source is....None
3:46:39 PM: AIS Data Source is....Serial:COM7
3:46:41 PM: Using WVSChart datafile: D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\wvsdata\wvs43.dat
3:46:41 PM: NMEA AutoPilot Port is....None
3:46:41 PM: PlugInManager searching for PlugIns in location D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\plugins
3:46:41 PM: PlugInManager: Loading PlugIn: D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\plugins/dashboard_pi.dll
3:46:41 PM: PlugInManager: Loading PlugIn: D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\plugins/gecomapi_pi.dll
3:46:41 PM: PlugInManager: Loading PlugIn: D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\plugins/grib_pi.dll
3:46:41 PM: Loading chart db version: V016
3:46:41 PM: Chartdb: Chart directory list follows
3:46:41 PM: Chart directory #0: G:\CHARTS
3:46:41 PM: Chart directory #1: D:\CM93
3:46:42 PM: GPS Watchdog Timeout is: 6 sec.
3:46:42 PM: Initializing Chart G:\CHARTS\PANAMA\Cristobal-Colon.kap
3:46:44 PM: EnumerateSerialPorts() Found Garmin USB Driver.
3:46:51 PM: PlugInManager: Initializing PlugIn: D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\plugins/gecomapi_pi.dll
3:47:11 PM: PlugInManager: Deactivating PlugIn: D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\plugins/gecomapi_pi.dll
3:47:48 PM: PlugInManager: Initializing PlugIn: D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\plugins/gecomapi_pi.dll
3:47:57 PM: PlugInManager: Deactivating PlugIn: D:\PROGRAM FILES\OpenCPN\plugins/gecomapi_pi.dll
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Old 12-03-2011, 12:22   #28
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Re: Google Earth Plugin

Pavel..

Assuming we have saved up several .kml files of selected ports and later want to view them when we are out of internet reach. Will GE still display them? or do you have another off-line facility that will?

Tore
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Old 12-03-2011, 12:42   #29
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Re: Google Earth Plugin

Quote:
Originally Posted by sinbad7 View Post
I repeated the excersise and this time I loaded up OpenCPN first and then tried to enable the GE plug-in. Nothing happened,and after a while everything seized up. I had to use Task Manager to stop OpenCPN running. I immediately copied the OpenCPN log file attached and hope you can make something out of it.

It seems that both ENABLING and DISENABLING the plug-in crashes OpenCPN.
The only safe way is to start OpenCPN with the plug-in enabled.
This scenario works for me without problems... I will add some debug stuff to the next version to track it down
Quote:
When you add the option to store a selected GM area,you will no doubt also have a further option to select the file again from it's directory and display it in the GE window?
But what will it be good for? That's what you use GE's own GUI for, no? I'm doing an OpenCPN plugin that helps you have different view on the stuff you see on the chart in OpenCPN, not a new GUI for Google Earth
While I can see a good reason for saving the view as KML, I really don't see any for loading it. What I see reason for is making it possible to import KML into OpenCPN, that's why I wrote a patch integrating gpsbabel into the Route Manager's import functionality. It still needs more work and Dave's approval though.

Quote:
Would also be great if you could manage to get the two displays up in two equal sized screens as a default,allowing the user to change later if he wishes.
That's the plan: make it docked and 50% of the screen wide as a default.

Quote:
Assuming we have saved up several .kml files of selected ports and later want to view them when we are out of internet reach. Will GE still display them? or do you have another off-line facility that will?
Good question, mariner The answer is I have no idea what GE is going to do though...
As far as I can tell:
  • It's true that GE has some cache (don't know how big etc.)
  • If there's no internet connection GE still shows *something*
  • If GE looses the connection or there's no connection at startup, it stalls for a significant amount of time
  • There is nothing I can do about it
The docs say in the description of Login function:
If unsuccessful, IsOnline becomes FALSE and application uses local cached Layer databases.
That's all I know.

Pavel
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Old 12-03-2011, 13:53   #30
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Re: Google Earth Plugin

Pavel..

I do'nt know if the crashing upon enabling and disabling the plug-in is a Vista thing but it does it very consistently.
I can now disable GE using the Task manager provided I go to the second option where ALL running services are listed. I previously only checked the first displayed option where current programs are running.

The main reason for saving a GE display of,say, a port,is so you will be able to view it when you are approaching that port where you presumably have no internet access and therefore no GE access. If GE is unable to do this without internet connection,we must have an alternate way of displaying this information before we reach port. Perhaps you could test this with internet disconnected? The present GE plug-in has no facilities to access GE's ability to open .kml files

Tore
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