Sunday, February 8, 2015

Nebulosity Feeder continues development

My little project continues. A lot of changes have been made since last time, thanks to suggestions from a club member who tried it out.

For the most part, the changes are intended to make the program a little smarter about how it does things. The program keeps track of the last download image folder used and the last folder used to save or load a script. The default filter wheel information is now stored in the Windows Registry. (Non-default filter wheel sets can be saved as text files.)

Scripts now allow for external filter wheels. And thanks to a suggestion from the program tester the program now lets you know more about capture status: Which filter is being used, which frame is being captured, and about how much time the frame has remaining. Nebulosity does this, but only in small print on the status bar. Look just above the script:

The box showing the script now automatically scrolls to keep the current command in sight. The status even indicates when the latest image is being downloaded.

The Script Editor now looks like this:

A big change is that the duration and frames can be selected using drop-down lists (you can still enter other values manually.) 

Because it's possible to manually edit the created script (and thereby introduce errors), the script gets parsed and error-checked as it's sent to the Feeder screen.

Lastly, the Filterset Editor is now a part of the main program instead of being a pop-up dialog:

It's been simplified to emphasize working with the default set. On the left is something new: Preferences. There's only one setting at this point, but I've left room for more. A new object I call the Preference Manager is now running nicely and ready for more work. Preferences are stored in the Registry.

Speaking of the Registry, I've made sure that an uninstall of NFeeder removes everything it put into the Registry.

Still to come (if there's interest) are
  • Options for using a larger set of Nebulosity script commands.
  • Night vision ability, which I'm finding difficult because it will require using Qt's stylesheets.
  • Better help files.

Want to try it out? The Download is HERE

There was actually a nice night a little over a week ago and I managed to sneak in a couple of images using my 135mm Olympus lens. It captured three more images toward my AL Bright Nebula list!

The latest images were post-processed with the aid of Imagenomic's NoiseWare Professional Edition standalone noise reduction software. It's almost too inexpensive to not purchase. There's also a Photoshop plugin available at a higher price.

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