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SOTALog 2.1 available


#1

A new release of SOTALog(*) is available for download:

http://sota.hb9tvk.org/sotalog

New Features:

  • SSB-Mode: use F8 to toggle between CW and SSB entry
  • Added S2S summit to the remark field in CSV
  • More names in call-sign to first-name lookup table (tnx Hans PB2T)

(*) For those wondering what SOTALog is: It’s a simple computer log software tailored for SOTA activator use. I wrote it initially for myself about 2 years ago and used if for more than 100 activations since. Last week, I presented it during the HB9SOTA event at HamRadio Friedrichshafen and decided to make it available to the public domain. It runs on (presumably) any version of Microsoft Windows, Linux and MacOS-X.

Features:

  • Creates CSV version 2 files for direct upload to the SOTA database (same file can be uploaded for Activator and S2S entry)
  • Creades ADIF file to import in home station log, eQSL etc.
  • Complete list of summits included (shows altitude and points)
  • Displays first name of remote operator (limited list supplied, can be extended)
  • Shows potential matches for registered activator and chaser call signs while typing (~6000 call signs)
  • S2S entry wizard with validation
  • Online update of summit list and SOTA call signs
  • With serial cable to KX3: automatic band change
  • Automatic logging of UTC
  • Runs on Windows, Linux, MacOS-X (no installer needed)
  • Large font for good readability in sunlight

Known limitations:

  • Logged QSO entries cannot be edited
  • It does not run on Android nor does it on iPad/iPhone

Presentation at Ham Radio 2015: http://hb9sota.ch/hb9sota-hamradio/

Bug reports and feature requests are welcome, note however that I have a 100% day job and spend the weekends doing SOTA activations. So don’t expect any fast updates!

Peter, HB9TVK (hb9tvk (at) uska.ch)


The formatting for my Summit Article is horrible. Can it be fixed?
#2

So it cant be used on a tablet unless it is running Windows is that correct?

Glyn


#3

Congratulation Peter!
After first start on my Debian my opinion: Program is SUPER!
TNX vy 73 de Mariusz


#4

Hi Glyn,

as for now, unfortunately yes. It might be possible to get it running under Android using androwish (http://www.androwish.org/), as SOTALog is written in Tcl/Tk. As I don’t own any Android device, I won’t be able to adapt/test that though.

73, Peter


#5

Thanks for adding SSB Peter.
Running fine on my MacBook.
And I like the icon.

73, Hans YO/PB2T


#6

Peter,
Loaded the software on my old EeePC (running Ubuntu) and it works fine.
The problem is, the eee is way to heavy and short lived battery to be of any use taking up a summit!
I’ve had a look at the Pandora, and it seems to be a very versatile platform.
I expect the Classic is the equivalent to the unit you are using?
I’m tempted to purchase one, as there are very few small, light devices around with a keyboard that seem to offer this versatility. Touch screen devices just don’t cut it for logging!

I’ve been tempted to develop a SOTA logger for Psion.
I have both a 3 and 5 just waiting to be reused :smile:

Thanks
Pete


#7

Hi Pete,

my unit has the specs of the ‘rebirth’ edition. It’s identical to the ‘classic’ edition, except that it has double the main memory (512MB vs. 256MB). If you plan to use it for SOTALog only, the ‘classic’ edition will be sufficient (SOTALog needs only about 40MB of main memory). If you want to run other stuff (especially Android), 256MB won’t be enough, though.

Touch screen devices just don’t cut it for logging!

yes, fully agree.

I’ve been tempted to develop a SOTA logger for Psion. I have both a 3 and 5 just waiting to be reused

Yes, why not? They’re definitively very lightweight and portable devices. The CPU is however 30 times slower, and memory 60 times smaller than the Pandora, so it might be a bit of a challenge. Also the development software and tools might be difficult to obtain.

vy73, Peter


#8

You can learn a lot from working on vintage computing equipment, like not writing humungous bloatware apps. Keeping really old kit going such as 60/70s mainframes (system 370/ Decsystem-10 etc.) is a challenge. Then we have the restoration of Colossus and now EDSAC where much of the documentation simple no longer exists.

So whilst you may get huge enjoyment out of developing for an old Psion, in my humble opinion, you’d be better of taking this app and getting it to run on the bazillion Android devices out there either through androwish or by just taking the SOTA logger TCL/Tk source and rewriting it in a scripting language that is supported on Android.

Just my $0.02 worth…


#9

I tried logging on an S5 over a decade ago and found I got quite a lot of QRM from it.

Martyn


#10

Yes but where’s the fun in that!
I have a bazillion Android devices but none of them match the battery life and versatility of the Psion keyboards.
Psion were 15-20 years too early to the show! A modern day android machine, in the same form factor, would be a killer today IMHO :smile:
In fact, the Pandora looks to be almost there, and what’s not to like, having a new Linux toy…


#11

Well you could use a Raspberry Pi to run the TCL/Tk and your Android/iPhone as the display via a wifi/bluetooth link. I take a Pi with me for my satellite modem when I go to really wild places and do the same. Pi runs the modem program, modem control and acts as a wifi access point. My phone connects to the Wifi AP and you look at a local webpage for the satellite data.


#12

It works fine on my rPi running Wheezy/Raspbian. I only had to install tcl and tk and away it went.


#13

Thanks Martyn.
Just tried my ATS4 sitting next to my 5mx.
Not a squeak across any of the bands I use :smile:

As it happens, the Pandora Classic became available briefly yesterday (in fact there were 2 left last time I checked)
https://www.dragonbox.de/en/224-pandora-classic.html
so for a mere €150, I decided to take a punt and order one.
I’ll report on my findings :smile:
73
Pete


#14

Well the Pandora is in my grubby hands but I’m darned if I can get the tcl script to run! It’s fine on my Ubuntu machine. Tried all sorts, like chmod -x, but fails to do anything. Not sure whether Angstrom has the tcl interpreter. Any suggestions?


#15

Peter, thanks again for your fine log i use for long time on my old "EeePC 1015"with windows7 and i hope i could use the new version in next future on next summits. After each activation i added also new names to name-list, so i have a lot of chaser-names i now have to compare with the list of PB2T in your new version.
73 de Peter/HB9CMI


#16

Hi Pete,

you’re right, tcl/tk is not pre-installed on the pandora (sorry, I set this up about 3 years ago and didn’t remember).

I put a .tar file with the necessary tcl/tk stuff on my SOTALog page:

http://sota.hb9tvk.org/?page_id=744 (see downloads).

To install (use terminal window):

Copy pandora_tcl_usr_local.tgz to the SD-Card and insert it in the pandora
Become root (you have to enter your password):

sudo /bin/su -  
mkdir -p /usr/local
cd /usr/local
tar zxf /media/mmcblk0p1/pandora_tcl_usr_local.tgz

After that, you should have a working Tcl/TK installation in /usr/local.

I recommend to create a Launcher for SOTALog and also put it in Autostart. This way, you just have to turn on the Pandora on the summit and 1-2 minutes later you can start logging. I also recommend to install SOTALog on the SD Card. This way, you can put the SD card in your PC after the activation and access/upload the .csv file to the sotadb without having to turn on the Pandora.

Launcher: Right-Click on the Desktop -> Create Launcher.
Use e.g. SOTALog as Name, and the following as Command:

/usr/local/bin/wish8.5 /media/mmcblk0p1/SOTALog-2.2/sotalog.tcl

You may choose also an Icon you like.

For Autostart, go to the main menu (pandora symbol), then Settings->Desktop->Session and Startup. Then click the ‘Application Autostart’ tab.
With a ‘right click’ you can choose ‘Add’, then enter the same Name/Command as before in the Launcher.

Good luck and I hope you find the Pandora/SOTALog usful (I certainly do…).
Let me know If you need additional support.

vy73, Peter


#17

If you want send me your name list. I will combine with my newest list.

73, Hans PB2T pb2t-at-me.com


#18

Peter,
Many thanks for the info and providing the tar file.
I’ve now loaded the tcl/tk and it works a treat.

Look forward to trying it out in earnest soon.
Thanks again.
Pete


#19

Grüezi Peter,

indeed your SOTALog application also does run on Android devices. You’ve just to install androwish and unpack your SOTALog.zip file into your home directory. Then it is possible to start your application. Here is a photo running SOTALog 2.2 on an Android tablet:

Necessary tweaks to your tcl/tk script were (at least on my device):

  • setting the $cwd variable statically to the installation directory of SOTALog
  • decreasing the font size to at least the half of the defaults
  • adapting the windows size and position to fit onto the display

An external keyboard would be helpful, otherwise an on-screen keyboard covers a considerable part of the application window:

The generated log files can be found then in the installation directory.

Up to now, I didn’t test any advanced features, like e.g. online update of summit/chasers files or remote access of an kx3. So I cannot confirm any of those features.

73 Stephan, DM1LE


#20

Peter,
I gave it a whirl this moring on a very wet and windy GI/AH-010.
It will take me a bit of time to get into the swing of computer logging, but I’m sure I’ll get there.

Nice to come home and not have to create the CSV file :smile:
Thanks again.
Pete