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Author Topic: Logging Software  (Read 1860 times)
AA6YQ
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« Reply #15 on: May 07, 2007, 07:22:23 PM »

GM4AHW wrote

"Your definition of "easily update these stop times" is at the centre of my argument. I just disagree that a system which calls up a popup which contains data I don't want to update is not as user-friendly as clicking on the actual datum that I DO want to update. You have to agree that the popup necessarily contains data that I am not actually interested in at that point, ie. the point at which I want to close the QSO, even though the data contained therein may be of great interest to me at another time."

AA6YQ response

DXKeeper does not display a popup, much less a popup containing data you don't want to update. Rather than repeat my description of how it works, I encourage you to download DXKeeper and give it a try; its entirely free. If you then have concrete suggestions for improvement, join us at

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/dxlab

   73,

       Dave, AA6YQ
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GM4AHW
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« Reply #16 on: May 07, 2007, 07:53:10 PM »

Dave,

Yes, I have downloaded and installed DXKeeper, and I tried it for some time before posting. Please note that I'm not targetting DXKeeper here: I simply mentioned it in my original post as an example of software which is modular, as a way of counteracting the bloatware tendency of this type of software.

However, I take issue with your last post. You said:

"DXKeeper does not display a popup, much less a popup containing data you don't want to update."

and that's quite misleading. You don't have a popup, but you DO have a panel containing all the data I referred to, one of which is end time. This panel is populated when the required line in the log is clicked on. There is simply no functional difference here between that and a popup. And if you think there is, then there is nothing more I can contribute to this thread. I have said all I want to, and I will not repeat myself.
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AA6YQ
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« Reply #17 on: May 07, 2007, 09:54:10 PM »

GM4AHW wrote:

"You don't have a popup, but you DO have a panel containing all the data I referred to, one of which is end time. This panel is populated when the required line in the log is clicked on. There is simply no functional difference here between that and a popup. And if you think there is, then there is nothing more I can contribute to this thread. I have said all I want to, and I will not repeat myself."

AA6YQ response:

A static set of panels whose contents display the details of the currently-selected QSO is not a pop-up. All it has in common with a pop-up is that it displays information -- which can be said of most any two user interface mechanisms.

Since you're familiar with DXKeeper, let's review your "burst in" scenario step-by-step:

1. You're working W1ABC, and have created a new entry in DXKeeper to capture the information from this QSO. The information you capture is shown in a set of detail panels, each of which collects related information -- QSL information, Award information, Contest information, etc. You've previously configured DXKeeper to display only those panels whose information you care about. Below these panels, DXKeeper displays a list of your most recent QSOs, with your current QSO with W1ABC shown as "selected".

2. W2DEF bursts in. You click DXKeeper's New button, which creates a new entry to capture W2DEF's information; the frequency, mode, and start-time are automatically captured and displayed in the detail panels. Below the detail panels, a new entry for your QSO with W2DEF appears on the "recent QSOs" list and is designated as "selected"; the entry for your QSO with W1ABC is right above it.

3. While working both stations, you can quickly display, modify, or add information in the W1ABC and W2DEF entries; you need only click on the appropriate entry in the "recent QSOs" list to select it, and then view, modify, or add information in the detail panels.

4. Your three-way QSO with W1ABC and W2DEF ends. You click DXKeeper's Log button, which automatically captures the end-time for the W2DEF QSO. You then click on the W1ABC entry in the "recent QSOs" list to select it, causing the detail panels to display the information for that QSO; you double-click on the end-time, thereby updating it to reflect the actual end time with W1ABC, and click the Log button.

With the above as context, please help me understand how you'd like DXKeeper to better support this scenario. Thanks...

This sort of interaction occurs 5 to 10 times each week on

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/dxlab

Sometimes, the application in question already provides a way to do what the user wants. Sometimes, I create a new release that provides the desired functionality. Sometimes, I decline to provide the requested functionality because its out-of-scope (e.g. real-time contest scoring) or would add user-perceived complexity not justified by its value.

    73,

        Dave, AA6YQ
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GM4AHW
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« Reply #18 on: May 08, 2007, 09:21:07 AM »

Dave,

Since you said "With the above as context, please help me understand how you'd like DXKeeper to better support this scenario", I'll try to convince you that what you have is functionally no different from a popup:

1. The data area is remote from the area which calls it up, just like a popup;

2. The input focus needs to be changed from the area which calls up the data to the area which holds the data, just like a popup;

3. The data in the data area changes when a different item in selected, just like ... well, you get the idea.

If the methods of access to your data area are different from those of a popup, I'd be keen to hear what these differences are.

But actually, I don't care if you call it a popup, or a panel, or a frizbee: it's the method of use which I don't like. I want to modify the data IN THE LOG, not in a separate area which becomes available once I have clicked on the log entry.

Your software needs two changes before this will be possible (and please, I'm not asking you to make these changes):

1. Don't close a QSO just because another one has started;

2. Allow me to double-click the end time entry IN THE LOG to close the contact.

And if you extend that principle, that would mean that when I click NEW, the cursor would sit in the callsign column of a new log entry, with tabs passing input to the right. As you have said, I will have already configured the log to just display those data that I want; if I need to modify data not displayed, then I'm sure I will have access to a frizbee to do that, but for routine operations like starting and closing a contact, I want it right there, in the log, as above.

And harking back to an earlier comment, I certainly don't want to have to fudge an entry by using exclamation marks to try to convince the software that this log entry isn't a QSO. So if I type "Test", or anything else not recognised as a callsign in the call column, I don't expect the software to be sick all over the carpet. :-0)
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AA6YQ
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« Reply #19 on: May 08, 2007, 11:06:52 PM »

GM4AHW wrote:

"...I'll try to convince you that what you have is functionally no different from a popup:

1. The data area is remote from the area which calls it up, just like a popup;

2. The input focus needs to be changed from the area which calls up the data to the area which holds the data, just like a popup;

3. The data in the data area changes when a different item in selected, just like ... well, you get the idea.

If the methods of access to your data area are different from those of a popup, I'd be keen to hear what these differences are."

AA6YQ response:

The distinguishing characteristic of a popup is that it has two states: invisible, and visible; the transition between these two states is what gives a popup its name. None of the panels that DXKeeper uses to display the details of the selected QSO ever "pop up" -- they are always visible. Yes, they display information. Yes, a popup displays information too. But declaring DXKeeper's detail panels to be a popup on that basis would be like saying "a jet plane is the same as a bicycle because they both have rubber wheels". Your logic is simply erroneous.

GM4AHW wrote:

"But actually, I don't care if you call it a popup, or a panel, or a frizbee..."

AA6YQ reponse:

Then why are you devoting so much energy to advocating a position that is so clearly incorrect?

GM4AHW wrote:

"...it's the method of use which I don't like. I want to modify the data IN THE LOG, not in a separate area which becomes available once I have clicked on the log entry.

AA6YQ response:

It would be trivial to implement this; all that would be required would be changing the "allow updates" property value on the grid control from "no" to "yes". However, experience shows this will result in a lot more unintentional mutations of logged QSOs when a user inadvertently types a character with the cursor focus in the list of QSOs. DXKeeper requires users to make the one additional mouse click needed to select a QSO so that its contents become editable in the detail panels -- a good tradeoff, in my view. If this one mouse click is more than you can bear, so be it; choose a logging application that lets you directly edit within the QSO list.

GM4AHW wrote:

Your software needs two changes before this will be possible (and please, I'm not asking you to make these changes):

1. Don't close a QSO just because another one has started;

AA6YQ response:

Requiring users to manually set a QSO's end time when its saved so another can be started would be suboptimal for the vast majority of DXKeeper users. The only way I'd do this would be to provide an option to disable the current automation.

GM4AHW wrote:

"2. Allow me to double-click the end time entry IN THE LOG to close the contact.

And if you extend that principle, that would mean that when I click NEW, the cursor would sit in the callsign column of a new log entry, with tabs passing input to the right. As you have said, I will have already configured the log to just display those data that I want; if I need to modify data not displayed, then I'm sure I will have access to a frizbee to do that, but for routine operations like starting and closing a contact, I want it right there, in the log, as above."

AA6YQ response:

I understand what you want, but think its a bad idea as explained above.

GM4AHW wrote:

And harking back to an earlier comment, I certainly don't want to have to fudge an entry by using exclamation marks to try to convince the software that this log entry isn't a QSO. So if I type "Test", or anything else not recognised as a callsign in the call column, I don't expect the software to be sick all over the carpet. :-0)

AA6YQ response:

DXKeeper won't "be sick all over the carpet" if you log a QSO whose callsign is TEST -- it will conclude that you worked a station in Costa Rica and update your award progress accordingly. If you don't care about award progress, then by all means log the QSO with a callsign of TEST. But for those users who do chase awards, its important to distinguish between a bona fide QSO with a station in Costa Rica and a test transmission; for such users, the ability to log a QSO whose callsign is !TEST is quite useful.

   73,

        Dave, AA6YQ
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N8UZE
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« Reply #20 on: May 09, 2007, 05:35:48 AM »

To: GM4AHW

It sounds to me like your needs could best be met with a plain old Excel spreadsheet.  Since you are not interested in awards, etc. but just a plain old duplicate of a paper log, this will do exactly what you want.  You can click on any cell and change it.  You can leave any cell blank (e.g. end time) until you are ready to enter a value.
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GM4AHW
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« Reply #21 on: May 09, 2007, 06:56:45 AM »

N8UZE said "It sounds to me like your needs could best be met with a plain old Excel spreadsheet."

No. I've worked with and developed all kinds of software both recreationally and professionally over the past 30 years, and if I thought that a spreadsheet woud do what I wanted, I would not have got involved in this thread. For example one thing on my wish list is autocompletion from previous entries - and I don't mean QRZ lookup, I mean from my own log. Yes, I know, there are loggers which do that, but they come with their own baggage.

And I'd rather not have to write my own application if something suitable already exists. I'm testing lots at the moment, in the hope that I'll find the right one. They all have very similar functionaslity, but in many cases the user interface is counter-intuitive (read "sucks").

AA6YQ, I give up. You just don't get it.
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N8UZE
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« Reply #22 on: May 09, 2007, 08:30:15 AM »

I think that you will find that NONE of the available products simply let you click on and change the single bit of data that you want in the log display.  All of them will bring up a panel, popup, or something like that, which will show you all the QSO data and then allow you to change whatever you want to there.
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GM4AHW
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« Reply #23 on: May 09, 2007, 01:16:33 PM »

N8UZE said "I think that you will find that NONE of the available products simply let you click on and change the single bit of data that you want in the log display. All of them will bring up a panel, popup, or something like that, which will show you all the QSO data and then allow you to change whatever you want to there."

Actually, Logger32 does. Every single field is directly editable, right there in the log entry. I obviously haven't checked ALL loggers, but I guess there will be others like that.

But for some reason, Logger32 also insists on closing the contact as soon as the contact is logged, and then I have to edit the end time if I'm in a net. Bizarrely, it allows you to specify that the start time occurs when the contact is logged too, so that both start and end are the same time.

So I'm still looking.
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K8ELR
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« Reply #24 on: May 16, 2007, 06:07:24 PM »

Hi,

I use Ham Radio Deluxe for everyday logging. During our lsst QSO party I used n3fjp. I think that was a very good way to log the entries for the QSO party and other contests. I like HRD for the control of my rig and the features of that program. The best thing about HRD is it's free.
I'll probably get quite a bit of experience with n1mm. Thats the software my club has decided to use to log field day contacts. We plan on using it networked over a wireless lan.


73!
Jim  K8ELR
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N8UZE
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« Reply #25 on: May 17, 2007, 10:31:47 AM »

N1MM is primarily intended for contest logging rather than general logging. As a result, it doesn't have award tracking features, etc as far as I know.  After a contest, one typically exports the data in adif format for importation into a general logging program.
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W8JWA
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« Reply #26 on: June 03, 2007, 07:48:33 AM »

Yes,I agree,I've been using this software for a few years now and it's easy to understand and use,you can't go wrong with this software.
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K4FX
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« Reply #27 on: August 09, 2007, 06:37:49 AM »

I have used every one mentioned here plus several not mentioned,

Winlog32 is the hands down best for general logging, 100% freeware, tracks all awards, the most user friendly, you can tell any stat in about 2 mouse clicks, great program.

N1MM is the best hands down for contesting. Nothing else comes close 100% free.

I am NOT basing my choices on these 2 being free, it just turned out that way, it seems the ones I paid for were the lamest of the bunch, go figure.....

Try them. You won't regret it. The 2nd best general logger is Logger 32, but it doesn't gather solar data from the cluster like Winlog, so I prefer G0CUZ's Winlog 32. It has the best Winkey interface I have ever used, including K1EL's apps! Great support from Colin too!

Good luck

K4FX

 
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G4TUG
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« Reply #28 on: December 02, 2007, 03:48:58 AM »

Unable to find exactly that which I wanted, a friend and I developed a simple Access database that could be used in the same way as a paper log but could also rapidly show almost any statistics required. It has been in constant use for about six years without any hiccups.
To try it click on the link below:
http://www.zone5.plus.com/g4tug/rodlog.htm

73
Rod
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WA9YSD
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« Reply #29 on: December 14, 2007, 04:03:34 AM »

I noticed that when I ran my list for DXCC submission, for the same country I have only 2 confirmations by two different call signs. One was from LOTW and the other was CARD confirmations. For some reason one time I run the list one call shows up. The other time I run it the other call shows up.

When I go to Output-Awards-DXCC In the Select Records From I have QSO Log ticked and Both Ticked.

Am I doing something wrong?
What can I do to keep this from happening?
Any one else experience this?
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