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Old 21-02-2013, 00:48   #136
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Re: WeatherFax...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Littlechay View Post
Thanks for all who have been developing this! I have been following with interest for some time.

I downloaded the windows plugin this morning to test.

I would like to use the charts available here which I also receive at sea via HF. The current analysis is in polar stereographic projection which I understand is currently not supported but all the forecast maps are in some kind of rectangular projection; the question is which? and is it supported? I have been unable to successfully calibrate one yet.
Do the longitudes but not latitudes line up? I took a quick look at the images.. They are not mercator or polar. At least not the mercator opencpn uses. The latitude and longitude is equally spaced so, this is easy to support, I'll make sure to keep this possibility implemented when I get the polar stuff usable by normal users.
Quote:
One glitch I notice in the calibration dialogue is that when I click on the first calibration point on the map nothing happens except that the selected radio button moves to point 2, a second click (on the first point) enters coordinate data into the second point etc.. so it requires three clicks to enter 2 coordinates and they are out of logical sequence.
Don't get too caught up on this.. it is full of bugs. I fixed a lot of bugs already and it still needs more. I intend to modify the user interface anyway.
Quote:
on my fairly powerful laptop DELL XPS15 i7 things slow to crawl as soon as I hit 'OK' on the new fax dialogue.
Is it very slow when editing a fax? When does it speed up again? Is it slow once the fax is selected and rendered on-screen?

Quote:
Originally Posted by cagney View Post
boat_alexandra

B...dy good!

All this fits nicely into another related scenario.
Calibrate chart pictures directly, bypassing the bsb kap files.
It also opens up the possibility to support other projections, as well as, perhaps, better support for Tmercs (in high latitudes) and Polyconicals.
Exporting the result to a kap file should eventually be possible as well. I would also like to see support in opencpn to be able to render everything in different projections converting charts as needed. It is possible to implement the conversion routing directly on the graphics card as a fragment shader allowing it to work in realtime, but this would take me some time to implement, and only work on supported hardware.
Quote:
Just a test. Right now it's not possible to enter decimal degrees, and larger pictures quickly slows down the process to near a standstill.

Thomas
Which part of the process? Editing and entering coordinates, or rendering the image?
Do you need to enter less than 1 degree increments? Are your images covering a very small area?
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Old 21-02-2013, 03:56   #137
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Re: WeatherFax...

Quote:
One glitch I notice in the calibration dialogue is that when I click on the first calibration point on the map nothing happens except that the selected radio button moves to point 2, a second click (on the first point) enters coordinate data into the second point etc.. so it requires three clicks to enter 2 coordinates and they are out of logical sequence.
I believe your first click entered the first point (Now a confirming mark should appear at that point IMHO). Once you have made that first click, the radio button changes to Set Coord 2 and you click on the opposite corner (need confirming mark here too). Then you enter the long lat for each.

Perhaps some of the prompts requiring response can be dropped to make it faster, with just a Note to "Set opposing diagonal coordinate using cursor." or something like that.
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Old 21-02-2013, 05:08   #138
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Re: WeatherFax...

Quote:
Originally Posted by rgleason View Post
I believe your first click entered the first point (Now a confirming mark should appear at that point IMHO). Once you have made that first click, the radio button changes to Set Coord 2 and you click on the opposite corner (need confirming mark here too). Then you enter the long lat for each
I understand how it's supposed to work, just like calibrating a map in any other mapping software. The first click does nothing except move the radio button.
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Old 21-02-2013, 05:13   #139
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Re: WeatherFax...

Quote:
Originally Posted by boat_alexandra View Post
Is it very slow when editing a fax? When does it speed up again? Is it slow once the fax is selected and rendered on-screen?
Editing the fax initially is not slow, but once it is rendered on the screen that's the end of the session, very slow. It doesn't speed up again you have to kill OpenCPN and restart.

OK on your other points. Thanks
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Old 24-02-2013, 12:25   #140
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Re: WeatherFax...

Taken from another thread:
Quote:
Originally Posted by boat_alexandra View Post
.... I was getting bored of dealing with the weather fax and put it on hold (although I'm back on it again) ....
Boat Alexandra: is there anything you would like us testers to provide, do, give feedback on? I am far from bored with your plug in!

Dirk
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Old 24-02-2013, 14:36   #141
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Re: WeatherFax...

I am wondering if we should be working on suggestions for an interface that
allows the user to store and select:
  1. Email, subject, body queries for various weather faxes, with Text Title, Text Description.
  2. Internet protocol (http, ftp, etc), Internet url, download directory, for downloading various weather faxes etc with Text Title, Text Description.
  3. Interface for storing wav based weather faxes, appropriate settings, with Text Title, Text Description.
  4. Perhaps these settings should be stored in a text or simple database file that can be edited with a text editor and be used for selection of particular weatherfax download or email.
I certainly am ready to learn and help with this effort in any way possible, and I can understand why Sean would be interested in improving other aspects of the plugins, and I think the improvements to the weatherfax plugin are going to be blockbuster for long distance cruisers.


A good friend of mine who is a sub captain, and has my respect, writes:

Quote:
My experience with HF is that it is extremely dependent on environmental factors.-SSB with modem to receive synoptic weather charts and transceive email.
For our small coastal cruiser, it might be very useful to be able to have HF at times, (the SSB with pactor modem and gear is a serious commitment needed for long distance cruising) so I still remain very interested in it, with my friends caveat of course! I'd be interested in other people's experience with HF of course.

(I'm still trying to figure out how to git clone Sean's celestial improvements so I can compile and test that, I get a failure when I issue the command. I think I have to go back to some of my notes for git).
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Old 24-02-2013, 15:40   #142
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Re: WeatherFax...

Quote:
Originally Posted by rgleason View Post
For our small coastal cruiser, it might be very useful to be able to have HF at times, (the SSB with pactor modem and gear is a serious commitment needed for long distance cruising) so I still remain very interested in it, with my friends caveat of course! I'd be interested in other people's experience with HF of course.
I do not have a sat phone. I have used HF communications with much success in the past and use my SSB frequently now that I am cruising. Off shore it is my link with the shore email, (including weather forecasts, and grib files), weather fax, weather routing and mobile nets. There are many factors that affect HF propagation so have to be aware of when to use which frequency band. It may not always be crystal clear and some days a fax may not be very easy to read. That said, there have not been many days that I have been unsuccessful at getting the needed information. If I missed a fax run, I would get it on the second run of the day, or the following day. I almost never have went two days without communications. It will continue to be my long range communication tool for the foreseeable future.

I have given the plugin a try and this will be a great tool when planning and when passage making.
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Old 24-02-2013, 15:54   #143
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Re: WeatherFax...

LJH, can you please describe what kind of interface would be useful to you?
You see, you have some real experience with this, and I am just trying to make suggestions.

What is essential and would would make things easier? What parts of what I have suggested above are inconsequential and unnecessary? What have we missed that really should be there? It would be helpful to all of us.

Of course Sean probably has a better idea of the primary things that are needed and the priorities, but thinking and discussing the features helps him too!

Sharing your experience would be appreciated.
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Old 24-02-2013, 17:24   #144
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Re: WeatherFax...

Quote:
Originally Posted by rgleason View Post
LJH, can you please describe what kind of interface would be useful to you?
You see, you have some real experience with this, and I am just trying to make suggestions.

What is essential and would would make things easier? What parts of what I have suggested above are inconsequential and unnecessary? What have we missed that really should be there? It would be helpful to all of us.

Of course Sean probably has a better idea of the primary things that are needed and the priorities, but thinking and discussing the features helps him too!

Sharing your experience would be appreciated.
Off shore, I will be getting my weather fax over SSB. Each fax takes about 10 minutes to receive and they are stored as tif files oncethe page is complete. I have not given any thought to any other interface for requesting files, but I can. Something similar to qtVlm requesting gribs. This would be useful before heading off shore.
  • I would be opening the appropriate file in my fax folder. Current method is good for me.
  • I would prefer that supported image files be the default choice in the open file window.
  • As the North Atlantic surface analysis is often faxed sideways it would be good to have a rotate image button so that I can make north up. It is a bit of a pain to have to open different software to rotate the image.
  • The .tif files are larger than the set coordinate window when it is maximized. Is it possible to be able to scale the image?
  • When setting the coordinates on a black image it is hard to see the black line that marks the boundaries. -can we have a more visible colour (one that is visible under red light).
  • It would be nice if the plug in behaved like the grib plug in and have the fax image toggle on/off with the Weather Fax dialog window.

Being able to have both a fax and a grib open to compare is a great feature.

I will give some thought to your other points and post comments later.
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Old 25-02-2013, 06:55   #145
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Re: WeatherFax...

Just to check, I deleted weatherfax_pi and did git clone with cmake commands.
I got 253 warnings and 1 error after compiling.
It looks like it might be some similar errors from an earlier version...?
Here are screenshots
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Old 25-02-2013, 22:44   #146
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Re: WeatherFax...

I finished some major changes today and pushed to git, please test.
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Old 26-02-2013, 06:47   #147
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Re: WeatherFax...

From MS VC++2010 Loaded Opencpn 3.1.1405 and started Debug Mode
Went to Help (?) and "Copied Log file to clipboard" then pasted clipboard to a text file. Found this line for pluginmanager.
8:08:18 AM: PlugInManager searching for PlugIns in location C:\Data-Dart\Up-Soft\Navigation\opencpn-git\build\plugins

Copied C:\Data-Dart\...\opencpn-git\build\plugins\weatherfax_pi\Debug\weatherfax_p i.dll
To: C:\Data-Dart\...\opencpn-git\build\plugins

Then started MS VC ++2010 and went into Debug Mode
When Opencpn screen eventually loaded the weather fax plugin 0.3 loaded and was in the icons.
Going to Settings > Plugins the plugin is obviously enabled and preferences can be set.

Then was able to load first weatherfax successfully, entering the coordinates with the new red and green coordinate indicators (very nice) thank you without doing much with the various popup settings other than getting the fax positioned and entering "Atlantic Surface Analysis" for the coord name. Then when the fax came up nicely on the Opencpn screen tested the sliders background and contrast which worked well. Also was able to set background to fullly transparent and click inverse and all the black text and contours changed to white! Very nice.

Then tried loading another weather fax and tested the popup slider for phasing which seemed to work fine and then tested the slider for skew and I got a breakpoint in dbgheap.c

Code:
}
                else
                {
                    _RPT3(_CRT_ERROR, "HEAP CORRUPTION DETECTED: after %hs block (#%d) at 0x%p.\n"
                        "CRT detected that the application wrote to memory after end of heap buffer.\n",
                        szBlockUseName[_BLOCK_TYPE(pHead->nBlockUse)],
                        pHead->lRequest,
                        (BYTE *) pbData(pHead));
                }
            }
        }

        RTCCALLBACK(_RTC_FuncCheckSet_hook,(0));

        if (pHead->nBlockUse == _IGNORE_BLOCK)
See attached image of the MS VC++ screen please.

I then ended the breakpoint and tried opening Opencpn and it seemed to create another instance of Opencpn, so I just continued testing with that.
Attached Thumbnails
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Name:	Weatherfax-debug-break-1.jpg
Views:	89
Size:	378.1 KB
ID:	55757  
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Old 26-02-2013, 07:41   #148
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Re: WeatherFax...

Continuing with second instance of opencpn 3.1.1405 Debug Mode with weatherfax plugin.

Opened up another weather fax file. Image appears.
Image Correction Popup

Tried various filters to see what happens, on Lowpass 1 filter makes background grey and slightly grainer lines, and Lowpass2 white background and slightly grainer lines. Set it back on no filter. Seems to work, but I may not have a bad enough weatherfax to really test it.

Rotation works well. I like your approach. [None, CCW, CW, 180] which are set with respect to the original image.
Very nice.

Temporary Scaling to allow increase and decrease size of fax to fit in the popup window might be very useful, Or maybe a , a check box to Fit to window, although the sliders work well too.
On this popup screen is the Phasing and Skew. I've tried both and the Skew had a breakpoint, so I am moving to the next screen, hit Next

Coordinate Mapping Correction

I tried the Mercator Size multiplier and it calculated and seemed to work. Is this the temporary scaling feature I was asking for, looks like it might be. --Then I put it back to 1. I set it on flat-mapping and polar and see that there are points to set and a "Get mapping" button which has prompts. I have set it back to mercator and will try this neat warping feature with a polar fax. I hit Next.

Configure Image Coordinates

Hit the back button and set Scale to .7 to make setting coords easier. Then hit Next to get back to Config Image Coord.
Set coords and picked Finish.
Image came up in correct location in Opencpn.
Scrolled around to get chart centered on fax image.
Right clicked and picked "Center view"
There was an immediate error message - (I tried to get an image of this but it did not copy to the clipboard.)

With first weatherfax file loaded and showing, Then tried loading next (same) weatherfax file (Atlantic 24hr-500mb and set coords, and finished with 2 files showing. Computer started slowing down, and second file did not show on the charts. Went back to Edit it because I thought I had done something wrong. Edited coordinates again. Picked Finish. Still did not show. Highlighted first fax, and it showed. Highlighted second fax and it did not show. Picked Edit again. Slide skew by mistake, got computer speed up, bogged down, then error message.
Hope I captured the screen below. (Note: I did notice after I captured the screen that the weather fax image had finally been skewed a lot, appearing behind the message, so the skew did work, but I got a message for some reason...computer was working hard).

Instance of Opencpn is not responding now.
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ID:	55758  
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Old 26-02-2013, 07:53   #149
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Re: WeatherFax...

Restarted Debugging. Loaded a weatherfax. Noted that the previously saved and named "Atlantic-Surface-Analyis" Coordinate file did not show up, but there are blanks in the list. There appears to be needed some changes in this area of the code. Are we allowed to use "spaces" in the label? It accepted spaces but the name did not show up, so I tried hypens and the name did not show up. I think this is going to be a very useful feature when it works.
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Old 26-02-2013, 08:08   #150
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Re: WeatherFax...

I was trying/testing weatherfax again, and for some reason ended up with two instances of opencpn each loading a weatherfax (because the first one was loading so slowly, I did not think it was working). So I tried to shutdown or stop the second one, after getting each instance of opencpn to show its respective fax OK. After trying to close one instance I got this erroe in the attached.

I am sorry, I don't seem to be getting much in the way of errors with lines enumerated. What should I do to get that? Note that when I compiled weatherfax I got 1 failure, after doing cmake .. and cmake --build . from cmd line, but I did not copy the errors and warnings because I found a new weatherfax_pi.dll in the
C:\Data-Dart\...\opencpn-git\build\plugins\weatherfax_pi\Debug\weatherfax_p i.dll
directory, but not in the respective "Release" directory. --So I thought you would want me to run that and get errors instead. Which I have been doing.

Sean this is really looking great and very promising. Do you have any requests for testing? any quidance? Should I recompile and give you those messages from the command prompt? Or should I just keep doing what I am doing?
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