Re-sight Tracking, More theodolite and bino features, Entry Sheet Import!

New version (1.7.0.82) is up on http://www.mysticetus.com

The big news with this release is the ability to re-sight your animals and track their progress.

With this update, animal sightings take on a whole new look, including a track of where you saw the sighting back into the past, as well as speed and direction calculations. In this (very simple, contrived for the screenshot) example, I followed sighting 1 for a few re-sights, and then saw sighting 2, then got another fix on sighting 1:

There are no limits to how many individual sighting events and re-sight chains you can create. Simply make the Sighting Id the same as a previous sighting, and it will be included in a re-sight chain.

Of course, you can configure colors and such. What? You don’t like “Dark Salmon” for your re-sight track lines? Ok, like everything in Mysticetus, you can right click on the sighting (or its track) and choose Properties and change to what you want – that is how I changed the track color in the above example to “Lime Green” – or you can change the setting for all sightings/re-sights: open up System Options -> Map, and look for (new!) items that start with “Sighting – “:

Future updates will include probability circles and such (that is, where the animal could possibly be based on previous speed), but I figured I’d get the core re-sight feature out as soon as possible, and then add to it as I have time.

To enable re-sights, you need to tell Mysticetus which column in your sighting table is a “Sighting Id”. This is done by specifying that a particular column has a Sighting (or SightingCopyId) formula. These are new formulas specifically designed to manage re-sights.

For example, select your Sgt Id column in the Entry Manager (or whatever your column name is)

Note the red highlight…change the formula to Sighting (or SightingCopyId), and tell Mysticetus which other columns are used to specify Time and Sighting Position (Mysticetus uses these to draw the lines between re-sights, as well as calculate speed and heading information).

The Sighting formula will automatically try to increment your sighting ID for each new row. This is useful if you typically have multiple different sightings, but a few re-sights. You can replace the auto-generated sighting ID with one previously entered and Mysticetus will recognize the entry as a re-sight.

The SightingCopyId formula will copy the previous id, automatically making the new row a resight. This tends to be more useful when doing, for example, behavioral focal follows on a single sighting.

Anyways, let me know what else you’d like to see along these lines. I think the options are infinite and look forward to creating more cool features around this.

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The previous release saw the first real crack at the theodolite space. This release adds one more feature: a Position Assistant.

This assistant continuously reads your GPS and provides average position and altitude, as well as letting you know the standard deviation of all your readings. In the above example, my GPS was partially obscured from the sky and, with a standard deviation of 1.3 meters, I don’t think we want to trust this particular GPS altitude very much. This gives you one more tool to help figure out where your ground station is located, and/or double check other calculation mechanisms.

Let me know what tools you’d like to see here – I have plans to implement various trig helper functions for figuring out ground station location and altitude. These will roll into the product over time…what would you like to see?

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On the downloads page, http://www.mysticetus.com/downloads, I’ve now included Sample Templates.Mysticetus. This file contains a number of sample sheets (including ones using the new Sighting formula). To access these, click on the Ball -> Configure -> Entry Sheets and you’ll find a new icon for Import Entry Sheet. The function will ask which file, and which sheet, you want to import and, bam!, into your Mysticetus configuration it will go.

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As always, I love feedback and constructive criticism. Swear words, I like not so much…unless they are part of a dirty limerick, of course. 🙂

Take care,

    Dave

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