Re: Home position

Joe Zeglinski

    It would be nice if there was just one “Universal” program to do everything, or you could hire a small staff of friends to be responsible operating various parts and keep on top of updates ... but then we would be unemployed :-)
    Actually, you don’t really need any software with some of the good computerized mounts these days. The mount could be entirely controlled using its Keypad, which has a star and major object database to get you to the target. Cameras can use basic vendor provided operating software. Many people just use their scopes for visual observations, or enjoyment of the skies – no need for software. Packaging all the extra software would turn the thing into a “government project”, and we know how well that works. Prices would have to rise to cover everything, just like their budgets – so nobody could afford to buy software more expensive than the mount and telescope
    Besides, you would lose the option to choose among many “competitive software makers” – The Sky-X is just one of many planetarium programs for example – some are free and just as good at the basics. If one company forced you to use their universal components package, then there would be no room for different new ideas, in some function, and certainly no time for them to improve or add something, based on a user's suggestions. Keeping software independent, but compatible, following some universal standard like e.g. ASCOM, is ideal, and has worked well for decades.
    But ... would you really like to put all your “software eggs” in one software basket?
If one function has a problem e.g. planetarium program, then you might not trust the interdependence of other functions, of the same program. Likewise, if you need a software update or fix for one problem, of some functionality, then the entire program update is delayed until everything has been tested for every possible conflict within itself – usually by the same small staff, who get tired and stressed. It would require a larger staff to stay fully knowledgeable and experienced from all the history of “little problems” in past experiences.
    Yes it would be nice to have centralized collection of functions. APCC does an excellent job on what it is responsible for – telescope control – leaving the remainder of support like Sky Modelling to other experts who have the time to concentrate on just one aspect. Perhaps auto guiding could be added, since that is also telescope control, but there are so many “guiders” out there and more coming along, that even this is a huge field, and could only be limited to bare basics, if it were incorporated. Soon. new guiders, and technology like differential guiders, comes along, requiring specialty drivers for unique and different electronics, most users can’t afford or would buy – more things to break and cause field problems.
    You have to consider how to divide the tasks, so they are manageable – for both the developers, and for the user. Agreed, with so many different components and needs or desires of the amateur astronomer, the learning curve can become steep, even overwhelming. But, part of the enjoyment is learning a bit at a time, rather than swallowing everything at once. Imagine the thickness of the User Guide – never mind weight to carry with you in the field, if everything were just one all-encompassing software package.
    Simplest approach is to stay with the basics, learn each functional software, gradually and fully, before attacking another new interest in this hobby. Otherwise, both you and the software support staff will be overwhelmed with the complexity of questions, and required clear and detailed responses to the users like us.
    If you consider the alternatives, you might consider how fortunate we are to have so many compatible choices in our hobby.
The software load balance is just fine, as it is. The day of the “one room school house” is in the past – astronomy is more of  a series of class lectures, not based  just on one lecturer with a narrow field of knowledge or opinion. So, it is with astronomy and telescope software
From: gc.iaffaldano@... [ap-gto]
Sent: Saturday, August 26, 2017 12:48 PM
To: ap-gto@...
Subject: RE: [ap-gto] Home position
I don't know the meaning of cycles power...; i want speak more easy: if the mount for a problem of cable, power, connection, has an error on pointing so that apcc shows certain coordinates but they are not true , the parking at home position will be with the same errors ; this is always happen to me with park 4 and i think that it will be the same with the home position....
I have also a 10 Micron mount and if the mount loses power the memory card inside the mount  preserves the position and the mount is alway synchronized.....
I think that to use an AP mount in remote are necessary: Apcc, SkyX, acp or sgp, pinpoint engine, and all sky plate solving....too many softwares; i think that it should be better to have a single software that works for all the singles softwares ....
Is Apcc able to do? At the moment not and your attention is taken for little problems on limits , on parking positions and others that i see on this forum...
I want say that the architecture of the software is not right.

Posted by: gc.iaffaldano@...

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