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Messages - ehansen

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1
Wishlist / Re: GPX Import Extensions
« on: September 23, 2015, 22:22:10 »
Sorry for being silent here, you are on the right track with what you posted last...but I'll clarify better as soon as I can.
As of right now I'm pre-parsing the file and getting all of the results I need.  So, in order to be as certain as possible that I'm not asking you to create a solution just for myself, I've been talking with the two other pilots that I've gotten hooked on Locus, and with my flight instructor (he doesn't use Locus, but has experience with more airplane gps models than I do).  This way when I simplify my reply for you I'll know I've done my best to ensure that the work you do will be useful for any pilots who wish to import this information.  I'll update you once I've gone through the notes and can give you clear direction.

You had noted previously that you have other requests and ideas for pilots.  I'd be happy to help provide clarification/direction if you can point me at forum posts or provide me a list of items you are considering.  Besides being a pilot I am also the head software engineer at my company with over 20 years experience coding in several software languages (mostly MS Windows).

I've also considered creating a Pilot/Flying post which would include note from here and ask for other ideas, but I wasn't really sure if that was appropriate in your forums or not.

-Eric

2
Wishlist / Re: GPX Import Extensions
« on: September 02, 2015, 21:12:02 »
Oops, your reply came in while I was posting my update to you.  Using the existing table is fine, and exactly what I already did (at least for the runway data).  The abbreviation and fuel "*" are best in the name as I have done so they are available without viewing point details.  So I've managed to get all of the data I need for now. 

I would love it if the existing table columns could be re-ordered to Name/Freq/Type so that I could put runway names under name and surface type under type and still have runway names to the left, but maybe I'm being picky.  That and to be able to alter the icon for each point on import (or some other visual difference for points of different types).

In case you prefer to still make similar changes to Locus itself, here is an example of US airport information and following it is my pre-parsed and modified version of the same:
<wpt lat="42.774882" lon="-84.733138">
<ele>256.3368</ele>
<magvar>6.3</magvar>
<name>4D0</name>
<cmt>ABRAMS MUNI,GRAND LEDGE,MI,US</cmt>
<type>AIRPORT</type>
<extensions>
<navaid:name>ABRAMS MUNI</navaid:name>
<navaid:address>GRAND LEDGE</navaid:address>
<navaid:state>MI</navaid:state>
<navaid:country>US</navaid:country>
<navaid:hasfuel>true</navaid:hasfuel>
<navaid:lastupdate>2015-08-18</navaid:lastupdate>
<navaid:frequencies>
<navaid:frequency type="MISC" frequency="118.650" name="APCH/PDEP/P"/>
<navaid:frequency type="OPS" frequency="122.700" name="OPNS"/>
<navaid:frequency type="UNIC" frequency="122.700" name="UNICOM"/>
</navaid:frequencies>
<navaid:runways>
<navaid:runway designation="09/27" length="3199" width="75" surface="ASPH-G">
<navaid:beginning lat="42.775284" lon="-84.735962">
<navaid:heading>85.0</navaid:heading>
<navaid:elev>830.5</navaid:elev>
</navaid:beginning>
<navaid:ending lat="42.775961" lon="-84.724082">
<navaid:heading>265.0</navaid:heading>
<navaid:elev>839.9</navaid:elev>
</navaid:ending>
</navaid:runway>
<navaid:runway designation="18/36" length="2559" width="120" surface="TURF-F">
<navaid:beginning lat="42.777467" lon="-84.737016">
<navaid:heading>180.0</navaid:heading>
<navaid:elev>828.4</navaid:elev>
</navaid:beginning>
<navaid:ending lat="42.770445" lon="-84.737052">
<navaid:heading>0.0</navaid:heading>
<navaid:elev>836.8</navaid:elev>
</navaid:ending>
</navaid:runway>
</navaid:runways>
<navaid:magvar>6.35</navaid:magvar>
</extensions>
</wpt>

Modified version:

<wpt lat="42.774882" lon="-84.733138">
      <ele>256.3368</ele>
      <magvar>6.3</magvar>
      <name>4D0</name>
      <cmt>ABRAMS MUNI,GRAND LEDGE,MI,US</cmt>
      <type>AIRPORT</type>
      <extensions>
         <navaid:name>ABRAMS MUNI (4D0*)</navaid:name>
         <navaid:address>GRAND LEDGE</navaid:address>
         <navaid:state>MI</navaid:state>
         <navaid:country>US</navaid:country>
         <navaid:hasfuel>true</navaid:hasfuel>
         <navaid:lastupdate>2015-08-18</navaid:lastupdate>
         <navaid:frequencies>
            <navaid:frequency type="MISC" frequency="118.650" name="APCH/PDEP/P"/>
            <navaid:frequency type="OPS" frequency="122.700" name="OPNS"/>
            <navaid:frequency type="UNIC" frequency="122.700" name="UNICOM"/>
            <navaid:frequency type="-" frequency="RunWays" name="-"/>
                                <navaid:frequency type="09/27" frequency="3199ft" name="RW:ASPH-G"/>
                                <navaid:frequency type="18/36" frequency="2559ft" name="RW:TURF"/>
                        </navaid:frequencies>
         <navaid:runways>
            <navaid:runway designation="09/27" length="3199" width="75" surface="ASPH-G">
               <navaid:beginning lat="42.775284" lon="-84.735962">
                  <navaid:heading>85.0</navaid:heading>
                  <navaid:elev>830.5</navaid:elev>
               </navaid:beginning>
               <navaid:ending lat="42.775961" lon="-84.724082">
                  <navaid:heading>265.0</navaid:heading>
                  <navaid:elev>839.9</navaid:elev>
               </navaid:ending>
            </navaid:runway>
            <navaid:runway designation="18/36" length="2559" width="120" surface="TURF-F">
               <navaid:beginning lat="42.777467" lon="-84.737016">
                  <navaid:heading>180.0</navaid:heading>
                  <navaid:elev>828.4</navaid:elev>
               </navaid:beginning>
               <navaid:ending lat="42.770445" lon="-84.737052">
                  <navaid:heading>0.0</navaid:heading>
                  <navaid:elev>836.8</navaid:elev>
               </navaid:ending>
            </navaid:runway>
         </navaid:runways>
         <navaid:magvar>6.35</navaid:magvar>
      </extensions>
   </wpt>




3
Wishlist / Re: GPX Import Extensions
« on: September 02, 2015, 20:58:39 »
I have created pre-parser to help get more info into Locus, details follow question.  Is there anything I can add to each Waypoint to predetermine it's icon in Locus (so that airports with fuel could show up differently than those without for example)?  Is there anywhere I can find more information about your GPX import and option available so that i might see what other features could be useful.

As for the pre-parse, I tried adding a table to the description ("desc") field of each waypoint as you had previously suggested to darkm20, but I could not find a way to embed the html in such a way that it didn't break the import for those items (although I can add simple text and have it show up fine).  So for now I pre-parse the GPX file and do the following:

1. For all NON-Airports I prefix the name of the Waypoint with the navaid type (many airports have a VOR or other navaid of the same name making it difficult to choose the correct point on the map), so nav aids now show up as "VOR: BlahBlah", or "DME: BlahBlah" etc.

2. I append the abbreviation of the item to the NavAid:Name so that the name you show has the abbreviation included.  This gets rid of all duplicates for MI at least, and also makes the abbreviation available in Locus (primary way to identify airports).

3. I append a * to the abbreviation if the airport has fuel available (* is the designation on US FAA Charts for airports with Fuel).

4.  I create entries in the "Frequency" section for each runway so that when you show frequencies you also end up listing runways, lengths, and surface types.

I've attached two screenshots in-case others are interested and haven't ever imported GPX data for airports.  If anyone is interested in my pre-parser I'd be willing to share/extend it.  You could try contacting me through this thread (although I don't know how quickly I'll see it)  you can also email me at ehansen( @pmsi.cc ).

Thanks again for a great App! 





4
Wishlist / Re: GPX Import Extensions
« on: September 01, 2015, 22:52:27 »
Hello!

I just updated my airport list and imported into Locus.  I was a little frustrated with needing to skip duplicates found in the GPX file, which lead me to re-determine why that happens, which led me to install the Android App Avare (an aviation-targeted map app)...and then I remembered how quickly you added the tables for frequencies, and just how much time I've spent in Locus in general (flying, hiking, driving) and didn't want to abandon my favorite mapping app over an import issue. So I thought I should check in with a few questions:

1.  Any progress on importing other fields mainly:
     -Abbreviation, merged with name so that duplicates don't happen
     -Runways
     -Fuel Available

2.  You mentioned a Locus for pilots app, any progress or thoughts there (or anywhere I can look in the future to see progress about it)

3.  If no on the other two items, are there things I can to to the xml in the gpx in a pre-processing sense to create another table with additional info myself....or a way to tell Locus to use particular fields?

Thanks in advance!


5
Wishlist / Re: GPX Import Extensions
« on: August 26, 2013, 17:05:22 »
Thanks for the update, of what I documented I feel that the most helpful (and probably easy) short term changes would be the combining the of two names such that they are NavAid:Name (Name). So: "ABRAMS MUNI (4D0)" for the data below:
<name>4D0</name>
<cmt>ABRAMS MUNI,GRAND LEDGE,MI,US</cmt>
<type>AIRPORT</type>
<extensions>
<navaid:name>ABRAMS MUNI</navaid:name>

So if you have a priority queue for items I'd ask that that happen before the other items I suggested.  Also, is there a thread I've missed about Locus AIR?

Cheers,

Eric

6
Wishlist / Re: GPX Import Extensions
« on: August 21, 2013, 17:42:49 »
Sorry for so many typos above, lots to describe and I was low on time.  I worked with Locus a bit more this morning comparing it again to a dedicated Aviation GPS.  Typical usage for many pilots is a "Go to Airport" type of entry.  Most of the GPS's allow typing the 3-digit airport identifier and then routing to it. What I noticed was that you are now displaying the "navAid:Name" not the "name".  This also leads to another problem with this data-set, which is that multiple items have the same "navAid:Name", resulting in needing to ignore some of the items and not knowing which one you get (the duplicates are that some airports have a VOR nearby with the same name).

What I was thinking was perhaps combining the two such that they are NavAid:Name (Name).  So: "ABRAMS MUNI (4D0)" for the data below:
<name>4D0</name>
<cmt>ABRAMS MUNI,GRAND LEDGE,MI,US</cmt>
<type>AIRPORT</type>
<extensions>
<navaid:name>ABRAMS MUNI</navaid:name>

This would eliminate all 26 duplicates found in my 1034 item import from the test-case I'm verifying your new import with.  It would also (I think) allow your search option to find airports and VORs by their identifier.

Notes:
A VOR (VHF omnidirectional radio range) if you aren't familiar is a radio transmitter which basically rotates and sends out the radial it's at on a particular freq as it rotates.  Airplane equipment can then pick these up and tell you what radial you are "from" or "to" with relation to the VOR you are reading.  Using two or more VORs a pilot can then fairly accurately determine their position.


Thanks again for your interest and willingness to adapt Locus for pilots!

7
Wishlist / Re: GPX Import Extensions
« on: August 21, 2013, 00:03:55 »
Actually, you're fast!  I just happened to notice that I had a new version as of yesterday so I re-imported my old data to see if it included you're new work , and it did.  And then I actually just logged back in to mention the other data which I just found time to investigate and find missing, and to which you've already responded!  (I wasn't sure if I lead you to believe that I only wanted the frequencies earlier, I actually just included the snippet for them because darkm20 had included the whole thing). So:
I cannot speak for all pilots of course, but I can give you some basic info and you can maybe tell me what works from your side.  I've just started trying to use Locus in place of a full Aviation GPS in some of the smaller aircraft I fly (I think your interface is hands-down better than what the older GPS offerings have, and I can use it for hiking etc).  I have several comments about interface items in general, but I'm not very familiar with Locus yet and I feel that you may have covered many of them in features I've not yet explored so I'll stick with this importing for now.  

Looks like you have this already:
<navaid:name>ABRAMS MUNI</navaid:name>  


These two would be very useful:
<navaid:hasfuel>true</navaid:hasfuel>
One of the nicest things this data is gaining us is the ability to tell if an airport is an option to land at and get fuel.  If a pilot is using the aviation charts Locus can read they'll already know if fuel services are available, but it's also nice to overlay these points on a cleaner (Mapquest roads) map at times.  If you find in-flight that your fuel gauges are somehow inaccurate, or you've had to alter your flight plan, knowing where you can get fuel is quite convenient (especially since landing to find out wastes so much time and fuel).

Again, useful:
<navaid:lastupdate>2013-04-30</navaid:lastupdate>
Pilots in the us are required to have a current (annual) airport directory with them, the database that we download from for this data is at least nice enough to tell us when something was last updated.  This won't meet standards to allow us not to carry the Airport Directory, but knowing that the info is over a year old would be quite helpful (and extra nice if there were some way to highlight the date in red if it were old, but I think this is probably not so useful for generic data importing so may not work so well unless you are converting the data to HTML or similar as you import it).

Useful:
<navaid:runways>
<navaid:runway designation="09/27" length="3199" width="75" surface="ASPH-G">
Knowing you can get fuel etc is nice, but knowing the length of the runway is just as important in deciding if you should/can land and take back off safely.


Less useful, lower priority from my standpoint:
<navaid:beginning lat="42.775284" lon="-84.735962">
<navaid:heading>85.0</navaid:heading>
<navaid:elev>830.5</navaid:elev>
</navaid:beginning>
<navaid:ending lat="42.775961" lon="-84.724082">
<navaid:heading>265.0</navaid:heading>
<navaid:elev>839.9</navaid:elev>
</navaid:ending>
</navaid:runway>
The problem is that this data is included for the beginning and ending of each runway, useful, but sort of makes you import all of it for only small gains (headings are approximated by runway numbers 09 = approx 90, 27 = approx 270 etc). I suppose if you're willing to import it that's great, but its' not as important as the other stuff.  Knowing that a runway has a large slope is nice, but I'm not sure that seeing these numbers will help that be easily noticed anyway.


Useful:
<navaid:frequencies>
<navaid:frequency type="MISC" frequency="118.650" name="APCH/PDEP/P"/>
<navaid:frequency type="OPS" frequency="122.700" name="OPNS"/>
<navaid:frequency type="UNIC" frequency="122.700" name="UNICOM"/>
</navaid:frequencies>
You've already done these (thanks again!).  Before landing, and really when in the vicinity, it's customery for VFR pilots to announce their positions on the CTAF or unicom frequency.  Airport tend to have more planes around than areas without airports and it help everyone to find eachother.  The other frequencies are useful too and I can explain them if you're interested, but you've already imported them in a very useful way so I won't go further for now.


Okay, that' sit for now, out of time.  As I get better with Locus I'll try to give you more information about my other ideas where they apply to flying and other hobbies for which maps are useful. I don't see where darkm20 gave you general thought about Locus for aviation, if he's done so already and there is somewhere I can see it I'd be interested to way in and also not to duplicate his work.

As a side note I'm the head of a small software team (3 of us, mostly windows development and our own PLC-like hardware for controls) we'll be working on Android apps for our customers within the next year or so.  At which that I become more familiar with Android I'd be happy to help on this project if there is anyway I can be of use.  I had actually planned on writing a mapping application which would allow taking a photo of a topo or any to-scale map and then mapping it to gps coordinates, which it appears Locus already does so you've already saved me some work on 1 hobby project anyway!

Best Regards.

8
Wishlist / Re: GPX Import Extensions
« on: August 20, 2013, 21:33:37 »
Have the new version and the import looks great!  Thanks!

9
Wishlist / Re: GPX Import Extensions
« on: August 19, 2013, 17:03:52 »
Hello Menion!

Yes sir, that would be awesome!  Is this version update coming sometime fairly soon? (if you let me know when it's out I can try an import right away with it).

Out of curiosity are you a primary developer on Locus?  

Thanks!

10
Wishlist / Re: GPX Import Extensions
« on: August 06, 2013, 20:06:15 »
Hi guys,
Very new Locus Pro user here! (In fact I purchased it last week, set settings the way I liked for starters, and then my SD card on my Note II decided to no longer respond to any machine.  New card installed but it appears the backup I made was also on the SD so I'm re-setting up...hopefully this second go will be better since I did learn some things...)

My question is regarding GPX import, like Darkm20 I am a private pilot and am also trying to import data from NavAid.com and found this discussion when I was trying to solve the same issue of getting all of the extra data like:

<navaid:frequency type="APP" frequency="120.125M" name="APP"/>
<navaid:frequency type="CLD" frequency="122.100M" name="CLNC DEL"/>
<navaid:frequency type="GND" frequency="122.100M" name="GND"/>
<navaid:frequency type="ATIS" frequency="129.300M" name="ATIS"/>

I see that you suggest modifying the XML to contain a table, but am not very familiar with XML so I wondered if perhaps one of you could give an example and perhaps suggest something with which to do the pre-processing (maybe DarkM20 has already solved this in some way?).

Any help would be appreciated!

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