Archive of Questions and Answers From Compass Users

Background. This page contains questions and answers that appeared on the Compass Users Group from 2000 to 2005. For some reason, Yahoo Groups "lost" the Compass Group and so I have had to reconstitute it. Once Yahoo closes a group, all the messages are lost. However, with help of some very kind Compass users, I was able to recover all the old postings and they are presented here. Many the thanks to the Roger Schuster and Paul R. Jorgenson for sending me their archived material.

Content.  There are about 180 messages covering an extremely wide range of topics. I have pulled out all the extraneous header information, advertising and signature blocks so it is less cluttered. I have also formatted it so it is easy to pick out each letter and easier to browse through. One nice thing about the archive, is that since all the messages are on one page, it is very easy to search the messages using "Find" option in your browser. You can also download the whole file so you can keep it handy.

Joining The Group. Click here for information about how to join the Compass User Group.


 



To: compass-users list 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Mon, 17 Jul 2000 20:09:32 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: [compass-users] Welcome to all!



Hello cavers!

A warm welcome to all of you! I am the maintainer of this
mailing list and I invite you to start up the discussions on
this forum and share your thoughts and experiences about
"Compass" with other cavers.

At the moment 12 people are subscribed to "compass-users" and
as far as I can see most of them are from the U.S., but also
from Austria, Germany, New Zealand and Sweden. I am sure this
is the beginning of a nice international caver's forum.

By the way, if you not already have done this, the Charta of
this group may be a good bed-time reading for some of you:

http://www.karst.net/Compass/charta.htm .

O.k., the first "real" posting to the list will follow soon...

Good caving!

Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users list 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Mon, 17 Jul 2000 22:04:16 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: [compass-users] CaveBase problem
X-Evolution: 00000004-0010



Hello cavers,

here is the first question on the "Compass" mailing list.

I have CaveBase 3.000203 (the recent release) and tried to
create a new cave database and exporting the data to the cave
viewer. Unfortunately the cave viewer gives an error message
"Viewer: Invalid floating point operation" if I enabled the
"Plot" setting in the "Complex Plotting" preferences dialog
and try to leave with the "show changes" button.

The cave database contains only one dataset for test
purposes:

Name  VP       Temp    Feucht   Datum
Value 9        9,8     79       19.06.1999
Type  String   Float   Float    Date

where VP ist the station name expressed as string. Here are also the survey
data:

Finsteres Loch
SURVEY NAME: 06.1.
SURVEY DATE: 7 10 1988  COMMENT:Kat.Nr. 7225/06
SURVEY TEAM:
Döbber, Schuster
DECLINATION:    0.00  FORMAT: DMMDLRUDLDAN  CORRECTIONS:  0.00 0.00 0.00
        FROM           TO   LENGTH  BEARING      INC     LEFT       UP     DOWN    RIGHT   FLAGS  COMMENTS
       0        1    27.49    57.00    -9.00    -9.90     4.59     4.92     9.84
       1        2    60.86   355.00     2.00     3.28     6.56     4.92    29.53
       2        3    38.71    60.00     4.00    22.97     6.56     6.56     6.56
       3        4    39.89    20.00    -1.00     3.28     9.84     8.20    19.69
       4        5    43.14    74.00    -1.00     7.55     5.91     4.27     0.98
       5        6    43.47    17.00    12.00     1.31     1.64     3.28     8.20
       6        7    25.85   347.00     6.00     0.00     1.97     1.64     3.94
       7        8    41.34    31.00    34.00     6.56     8.86     6.56     9.84
       8        9    59.88    40.00   -10.00    11.81    39.37     2.62     1.97
       9       10    28.54    56.00   -14.00     2.62     2.30     2.95     3.94
      10      11    35.66    60.00    -4.00     3.28    10.66     3.28    -9.90
      11      12    18.04    85.00   -15.00     0.00     4.27     0.92     8.20

I made a simple query to get the names of the stations with
temperatures greater than 5 deg.

The whole thing runs on a German Windows 95 version and the
Borland Database Engine is set to dbase as standard file
format and uses the comma as decimal separator and the dot as
thousand separator (the common notation in many European
countries). I think, this is the well-known comma vs. dot
problem that already caused some trouble in the past.

Another question is how to query fields of the "date" type.
CaveBase (or the BDE respectively) uses the regional settings
from the Windows Control Panel automatically and stores the
date in the dd.mm.yyyy format on my box. Which expression I
must enter to get all data that are measured at a certain
date? datum = 19.06.1999 and datum = 19991906 both don't
work. The latter is the internal format of most SQL
databases.

Thanks for any advice!

Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Christian Docksey 
Date: Mon, 17 Jul 2000 17:45:24 -0400
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Welcome to all!
X-Evolution: 00000006-0010



Hello

Well, I'm in Venezuela at the CEE which is the Simón Bolívar University
caving group. We are dedicated to vertical caving mainly and have the
highest technical level in the country in this aspect. I hope to share
experiences with you all in addition to the surveying aspect (ie:
compass).

I have not been able to download the latest version of compass (as
trialware). I have tried both USA and European sites and conection seems
fine but when I hit the save button, it just hangs there, as if no
comunication. I have ISDN at 256K, so speed is no problem. Anybody else
have a problem here like me??>
Many regards to you all....
Christian
Roger Schuster wrote:

> Hello cavers!
>
> A warm welcome to all of you! I am the maintainer of this mailing list
> and I
> invite you to start up the discussions on this forum and share your
> thoughts
> and experiences about "Compass" with other cavers.
>
> At the moment 12 people are subscribed to "compass-users" and as far
> as I
> can see most of them are from the U.S., but also from Austria,
> Germany, New
> Zealand and Sweden. I am sure this is the beginning of a nice
> international
> caver's forum.
>
> By the way, if you not already have done this, the Charta of this
> group may
> be a good bed-time reading for some of you:
> http://www.karst.net/Compass/charta.htm .
>
> O.k., the first "real" posting to the list will follow soon...
>
> Good caving!
>
> Roger
>
> --
> Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
>                 Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Mortimer 
Date: Mon, 17 Jul 2000 23:35:39 -0700
Subject: [compass-users] LRUDs
X-Evolution: 00000008-0010



Hi everyone,
    Here's a Compass question that might engender some general
discussion.  When I sketch, I am generally behind the people actually
surveying.  Because of this I want passage dimensions (LRUDs) based on
90 degrees relative to the shot from the "From Station."  This gives me
a better target as I approach the station.  Some (many?) prefer the
LRUDs to be relative to the upcoming shot.  Some will bisect the angle
between the two.
    Now Compass allows for marks to be plotted based on From or
From/To.  But as I look at the plot it seems like the "Mark From"
actually is relative to the upcoming ("To") station.  To be able to plot
LRUDs I have to use the Mark From/To then ignore half of the marks.  The
From/To option seems most adept at estimating bisected angles since
Compass doesn't offer it.  Perhaps some future edition might allow for
"Mark From," "Mark To," and "Mark Bisect" options?  Or to get way too
complicated perhaps each survey in the file needs to be marked as to the
option used underground since not everyone interprets these the same
ways and in a large project multiple interpretations might happen.
    Any thoughts?
    And Larry, I love using your program!
Roger Mortimer




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: "evan anderson" 
Date: Tue, 18 Jul 2000 07:07:24 GMT
Subject: Re: [compass-users] LRUDs
X-Evolution: 0000000a-0010



Hello Roger,
From/To option seems most adept at estimating bisected angles since
>Compass doesn't offer it.  Perhaps some future edition might allow for
>"Mark From," "Mark To," and "Mark Bisect" options?  Or to get way too
>complicated perhaps each survey in the file needs to be marked as to the
>option used underground since not everyone interprets these the same
>ways and in a large project multiple interpretations might happen.
The Compiler has the option of using the "To" or "From" station as a
saveable setting. But like you said, multiple interpretations occur.
I also think being able to have some type of setting in the Editor and not
the Compiler would fix the problem. Maybe an easy way to do this is by just
shifting the entries up or down one cell, since all data is entered on a
single line.
For now we just don't have the ability to render our larger project caves
perfectly in 3-D, but I think that what we do have is sweet enough.
Just think of how far Larry has taken this program, and where it will be
this time next year.
later
evan anderson




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Tue, 18 Jul 2000 11:50:21 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: [compass-users] Download problems
X-Evolution: 0000000c-0010



In regard to Christian's download problems: I get an occasional complaint
about downloading problems, but since I got the new web site, I have had
very few complaints. The fact that the problem occurs on both the COMPASS
site and Mirror site, makes me think the problem is probably somewhere
between Christian's computer and the web sites.
I have noticed that there are times of the day when general internet
traffic is so heavy that it takes forever to download files. This is
particularly true of transmissions between countries. When I first posted
COMPASS on the net, the files were on an ftp site in Brittain. I found
that the way overseas traffic patterns worked, the most reliable time to
access the files was at 4:00 AM local time.
The other possibility is that the problem is caused by something local to
Christian's computer. Perhaps he could try another computer connected to a
different ISP or network. If the problem went away, that would isolate the
problem to a particular computer, ISP or network.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Tue, 18 Jul 2000 20:01:50 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Welcome to all!
X-Evolution: 0000000e-0010



On Mon, 17 Jul 2000, Christian Docksey wrote:
Hello Christian,

> I have not been able to download the latest version of compass (as
> trialware). I have tried both USA and European sites and conection seems
> fine but when I hit the save button, it just hangs there, as if no
> comunication. I have ISDN at 256K, so speed is no problem. Anybody else
> have a problem here like me??>
I tested the European site with Netscape 4.7 (Linux) few minutes ago and
it worked well. Probably it will help if you use another browser? Or get the
files directly through FTP - if you need info about how to do this, let me
know.
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Wed, 19 Jul 2000 02:12:04 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] LRUDs
X-Evolution: 00000010-0010



In response to Roger Mortimer's question, I have added a feature to the
Viewer that marks the passage walls associated with the "TO" station. The
new version will get posted with the next release.
I don't know how many people are using the "bisected angle" method of
measuring LRUDs, but I'm not sure it is a good approach.
To review, with the bisected angle method, the surveyor takes the angle
between the last and next shot and splits it in half. He/she then measures
the LRUDs along that plane. This means that LRUDs for the last and next
shot are merged because they are measured at the exact same angle instead
of at right angles to each shot. The advantage of this is that the
polygons that describe are neatly connected together.
The big problem is that when the passage turns sharply the polygon narrows
as it goes into the corner. This occurs because of the way you have to
draw the lines when you connect the LRUDs from one station to the next. It
is like the way a hose kinks when you bend it too far. It is even worse if
you have two sharp turns in a row. Then the lines go from one narrowed
corner to another and the whole passage gets unrealistically narrow. The
only way around this problem would be to use some technique to round the
corners like "splines." COMPASS already does that, so bisecting the angle
does not improve the quality of the passage model.
The issues around passage wall modeling are complicated. The current
standards do not allow a survey program to accurately model a cave
passage. The most obvious example of this is the question: what do the
LRUDs mean on a vertical shot?
What COMPASS tries to do is come up with a reasonable compromise to give
more or less reasonable look passages, even though we all know they are
not exactly right.
I agree with Evan's suggestion of setting the LRUD mode in the Editor so
that each survey can have a different setting. It is on my list of things
to do and I will probably add the feature in the near future. However, it
is a more complicated feature to add because it means that I have to
modify the file format. That means that every program the works with the
COMPASS file must be modified to handle the new format. More than one days
work.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Wed, 19 Jul 2000 02:21:43 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] CaveBase problem
X-Evolution: 00000012-0010



Roger,
I was sure that your problem was another "decimal point" problem. But, I
tried everything I could to reproduce the problem and I could not. I set
the Regional Settings so the Decimal Point was a "comma" (,), and the
thousands separator was a "period" (.). I also set the date format to
match yours and I even set the units to meters. Inspite of all this, I
could not reproduce the error. When I query, the program nicely labels one
of the stations with a symbol.
I am currently running Win98 and slightly newer version of the database
engine. Beyond that, I can't think of a reason why you would be getting
this error and me not. Did the sample database I sent work? Maybe there
is a clue there.
On the subject of querying date fields, I have figured some of it out.
The date field in the Borland Database Engine is encoded as the number of
days since January 1, 00001. This means that the number 729924 matches
19.06.1999.
I have added an option to CaveBase that will do the translation from
normal dates to the encoded dates for you. I'm not entirely sure this is a
good idea, for the time being I will try it. I think that the date format
actually depends on the database engine that you are using. CaveBase can
connect through ODBC to an Access database and then the new date field
would not work. The change will get posted with the next release.
Decimal Point Discussion.
For those of you who are trying to follow this discussion, the United
States uses a "period" as a decimal point but some other countries such as
Germany use a "comma" as the decimal point. To accommodate these
differences, Windows allows you to configure the format for your own local
settings. As Roger knows, this has been the source of a lot of problems.
The programming lanugages I use automatically check the Windows settings
and make the appropriate adjustments. You would think that that would make
it easy, but it doesn't. If I let the programming language automatically
adjust to the local settings, cavers in Germany will write a survey file
with commas in it and a caver in the United States will be unable to view
the file. So I have chosen that COMPASS will use a period when it reads or
writes files. However, it still must be aware of the local settings when
it displays or edits data. Thus I have to be very careful to turn on and
off the local settings at the right time.
Roger will probably be amused to know that after I set all my settings to
the German standard, I forgot to set them back. I spent about an hour
tonight trying to figure out why Excel wouldn't let me enter the the
number 0.3048.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Wed, 19 Jul 2000 20:56:23 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] CaveBase problem
X-Evolution: 00000014-0010



On Wed, 19 Jul 2000, Larry Fish wrote:
Hello Larry,
thank you for your fast and friendly response.
> Did the sample database I sent work? Maybe there is a clue there.
The first and short test with your example data was positive so I am
wondering what's the problem with my own data! I'll do some more tests and
look what's wrong.
Btw: The BDE can read and write files in dbase format but which version of
dbase and which code page it uses?

> Roger will probably be amused to know that after I set all my settings to
> the German standard, I forgot to set them back. I spent about an hour
> tonight trying to figure out why Excel wouldn't let me enter the the
> number 0.3048.
Do you also have watched the interesting effect that if you hit "z" on the
keyboard you get a "y" on screen? :-)
Best regards
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Thu, 20 Jul 2000 02:23:27 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] CaveBase problemn
X-Evolution: 00000016-0010



Roger,
> Btw: The BDE can read and write files in dbase format but which version of
> dbase and which code page it uses?
There are some tools that come with the DBE that allow you to set various
parameter for the different database options. I haven't played with them
very much, but I think it controls things like how various data types are
interpreted. Also, Borland has a lot of information about their database
engine on their web site. They even have newer versions of the database
engine. The address is:
http://www.borland.com
Also, with the right configuration, you can connect the database engine to
just about any type of database. I have connected to MS Access databases
and even RBase databases. The trick is to use ODBC. I did it a couple
years ago as an experiement, so don't ask me how to do it.
Larry




To: compass-users list 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Sat, 22 Jul 2000 14:14:01 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: [compass-users] CaveBase
X-Evolution: 00000018-0010



Hello all,
I made some more experiments with the CaveBase and Borland Database Engine
and nothing worked!
I changed the country settings in the Control Panel to U.S. English, I
tested several code pages in the BDE, I downgraded to an older version of
the Cave Viewer, I updated the BDE first to 3.5 and later to 5.11 and
nothing helped me on with the problem.
I can enter data into the data base, query them and send it to the Cave
Viewer successfully but if I set the feature info to visible in the Complex
Plotting dialog the known error message "Invalid floating point operation"
occurres. This error appeares with any kind of data, not only with numbers
of type float!
Since those days as CaveBase was working I installed three new applications
on my PC which probably cause a conflict with Cave Base. The most suspicious
was Interbase SQL Server 5.1 and Interbase ODBC driver running in
the background so I uninstalled them. Result: Nothing! I can't get CaveBase
working.
While playing around with several software updates for BDE I experienced
that Cave Base will fail completely with BDE 3.5 and 5.11: "Exception
EDatabaseError in module CAVEBASE.EXE at 000A:11ED. An error occurred while
attempting to initialize the Borland Database Engine (error $2108)."
CaveBase will only start up with BDE 1.0 which is available from the Compass
Web site but I still can't pass the data to CaveViewer.
That's it!
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Sun, 23 Jul 2000 02:10:30 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] CaveBase
X-Evolution: 0000001a-0010



Roger,
> I changed the country settings in the Control Panel to U.S. English, I
> tested several code pages in the BDE, I downgraded to an older version of
> the Cave Viewer, I updated the BDE first to 3.5 and later to 5.11 and
> nothing helped me on with the problem.
This is very strange. Obviously, the old "decimal point" issue is not the
source of the problem.
> Since those days as CaveBase was working I installed three new applications
> on my PC which probably cause a conflict with Cave Base.
The fact that CaveBase worked in the past, but not now is interesting. It
indicates that something has changed on your system. Perhaps these other
programs are installing some component that doesn't get removed when you
uninstall them. This is a common occurance with some programs. For
example, let's say the BDE uses a common library called X.DLL. When
install your new program, it puts a newer version of X.DLL on your
computer. This new version is not compatable with the BDE. Even when you
uninstall your new program, X.DLL is not removed and replaced with the
earlier version, because WIndows determines that X.DLL is being used by
other programs.
I have a couple ideas for solving the problem. First, could you give me a
step-by-step description of exactly what you are doing to get the error?
It could be that I am leaving out a step that is crucial for recreating
the problem. That way, I can do precisely the same steps and try again to
duplicate the problem.
If that doesn't work, I will create a special version of the Viewer that
will have a memo box that will show exactly what data is being transmitted
by the database. That should tell us why you are getting the floating
point error.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Mon, 24 Jul 2000 20:51:14 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] CaveBase
X-Evolution: 0000001c-0010



On Sun, 23 Jul 2000, Larry Fish wrote:
Hello Larry, hello *.*,
> For example, let's say the BDE uses a common library called X.DLL. When
> install your new program, it puts a newer version of X.DLL on your
> computer. This new version is not compatable with the BDE. Even when you
> uninstall your new program, X.DLL is not removed and replaced with the
> earlier version, because WIndows determines that X.DLL is being used by
> other programs.
Can you use a debugging tool to trace the dll and function calls of Cave
Viewer, Cave Base and BDE? So we will know which shared components the
software uses.
> I have a couple ideas for solving the problem. First, could you give me a
> step-by-step description of exactly what you are doing to get the error?
O.k., here is the description:
1. Country Settings in Control Panel and win.ini: German, i.e. decimal comma
and thousands separator point.
2. BDE Configuration Utility: "Drivers" Tab Langdriver dBASE DEU cp850
                              "System" Tab the same as above
                              "Number" Tab the same as Windows country
                                       settings.
                               Database format dBASE
3. Starting Cave Viewer, loading arta.plt
4. Tools --> Database
5. Create New Database: Type dBase, table name arta, same directory as
arta.plt.
6. Fields: Station String, Temp Float, Humid Integer, Diskus Boolean, Lamp
String.
7. Query Temp > 16
8. In the third tab: Station Field --> Station, Number Field --> Temp
9. Do query --> result o.k.
10. As marked locations, feature name: Temp
11. Send to Viewer --> o.k.
12. In Viewer: Preferences | Set Complex | Color Surveys
13. Survey "Temp" (type "R") set to "Plot", set color blue, set symbol Bell.
Options: Color Survey, button "on".
14. Button "Close": Error "Invalid etc.". Cave Viewer shows infinite Windows
sand glass and must be closed.
15. The same with other numeric queries.
16. Numeric but "as line segments" --> does!
17. Field of type Boolean and "marked locations" --> does!
18: Field of type String: Sometimes yes, sometimes nothing happens.
The same result I got also with your example data.
I will send you the files I used in the description above.
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Mon, 24 Jul 2000 22:52:12 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] CaveBase
X-Evolution: 0000001e-0010



Roger,
I have found and fixed the bug!! (I think.) You will be amused. It had
nothing to do with the database engine and nothing to do with the regional
setting or the decimal points.
The problem occurred because you only had one hit from a query and were
plotting symbols of different sizes. Under these circumstances, COMPASS
has to calculate the largest and smallest values query. It uses this range
to scale the symbols. The problem occurred when you had only one value.
This meant that the highest and lowest value were the same. COMPASS
subtracts the two values and then divides. If the two values are the same,
the result is zero and then dividing by zero gives the error.
The funny thing is that the bug has existed for several years. Apparently,
nobody ever tried to plot different symbols sizes from a query that only
returned one value.
I have posted a new copy on the net. Check it out and see if it solves the
problem.
Thanks for your help and persistance! The real trick was using the exact
same data and the exact query that you used.
Larry




To: compass-users list 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Thu, 27 Jul 2000 20:20:33 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: [compass-users] new Compass files
X-Evolution: 00000020-0010



Hello all,
the new Compass files are now available on the European Compass Page, too!
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users list 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Fri, 28 Jul 2000 23:19:18 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: [compass-users] new interesting feature
X-Evolution: 00000022-0010



Hello there,
I came across a new interesting "feature" of the Compass Cave Base: If you
do a query with a field of type "date" you will see a red rectangle in the
upper right corner of Cave Viewer instead of a symbol near the station!
Larry, I send you the data I used and some (small) screen shots to explain
the settings and the result of my test. If one of the readers here is
interested, too, let me know and I put the example to the File Area of the
mailing list.
Btw: There is another problem. If you query a numeric field with a "less
than" operator the query finds also fields with no content. I thought first
that Cave Base gives fields with no content the value zero implicitly so I
made a second test. The query "less than  and not equal zero" gives
the same result and this is a little problem. I will only use fields which
are not left blank.
Good caving & nice week-end
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Sat, 29 Jul 2000 22:52:23 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] new interesting feature
X-Evolution: 00000024-0010



Roger,
> I came across a new interesting "feature" of the Compass Cave Base: If
> you do a query with a field of type "date" you will see a red rectangle
> in the upper right corner of Cave Viewer instead of a symbol near the
> station!
The red rectangle is actually a very very large symbol that the Viewer is
drawing on the screen. The problem comes from inconsistancies in the way
dates are handled in the database.
When the database sends data to the Viewer, it converts the data to a
string on numbers. I relied on the database engine to do that conversion.
It works correctly with everything except the date values. There it
converts them to a string of number like "7/19/1999". When the Viewer see
the date, it only reads the first value the "7", so the size of the
symbol grows to huge proportions. I solved the problem by changing the
code so it explicitly converts all values to numbers. I have posted the
new version on the net.
> Btw: There is another problem. If you query a numeric field with a "less
> than" operator the query finds also fields with no content. I thought
> first that Cave Base gives fields with no content the value zero
> implicitly so I made a second test. The query "less than  and not
> equal zero" gives the same result and this is a little problem. I will
> only use fields which are not left blank.
I talked to one of my database programmer friends and she says that this
is normal behavior for a database. The empty fields are treated as Nulls
and Nulls have a selectable value. She says that normallly you choose a
value that works for the kind of queries you are doing. I couldn't find a
way to set the default "Null" value for the BDE, but it is probably there
some where.
My friend said that you should query for the value you want and
specifically exclude nulls. It took me most of an afternoon to figure out
how to represent a null in a query. It turns out you do this with a set of
empty quotes. Either single ('') or double ("") will work. Here is a query
that works on your data:
(FEUCHT  < 78) AND (FEUCHT  <> '')
I also added a feature to CaveBase that enters a Null for you.
Larry




To: users group compass 
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Thu, 3 Aug 2000 23:14:54 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: [compass-users] Questions (fwd)
X-Evolution: 00000026-0010



Dear Compass Group,
I got this letter and I thought the question and my reply might be useful
to others. Also, other people who are working with DXF exports might have
some thoughts.
Larry
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
Mr fish,
I have been looking over the new version of COMPASS recently downloaded.
Pat Kambesis recently announced at the NSS Conv. she'd be giving out
portions of her Lech quads.   I am in the process of evaulating two
software illustrators in conjunction with COMPASS.  I have long been
interested in DXF increased capabilities.
With the new release of AUtoCAD 2000i I'm finding the DXF capabilities
don't allow me to bring in anything but the raw survey and stations (just
two layers).  I need more versistility.   Have you any recommendations at
this time.
Also, can I now dynamic rotate the wireframe?
thanks again,
Chris
Chris Andrews
427 South Loomis St. Suite B
Fort Collins, Colorado 80521
chrisandrews at juno.com
970-495-0534
LEARN RMR REP
LEARN CARTOGRAPHIC team




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Thu, 3 Aug 2000 23:18:51 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Questions (fwd)
X-Evolution: 00000028-0010



Chris,
DXF file conversion has been the bane of my existance. AutoCad keeps
changing their specifications and I keep having to rewrite my conversion
routines. The DXF file format worked pretty well from AutoCad version 3
through 12, but then AutoCad made a radical departure and changed
everything. Everybody complaigned, so in version 14 they went back a bit
toward the earlier versions.
The problem for me is that every time they do this, I have to get a copy
of the latest version of AutoCad and it is not cheap. Also, all the other
drawing programs interpret the DXF standard differently. Some only import
the early versions of DXF. Some only import the 2D model. Some don't
import certain layers. Some import everything into a single layer. It is a
mess.
> With the new release of AUtoCAD 2000i I'm finding the DXF capabilities
> don't allow me to bring in anything but the raw survey and stations (just
> two layers).  I need more versistility. Have you any recommendations at
> this time.
I currently have a copy of AutoCad 14. When I import the cave data into
it, it shows each survey on a separate layer, the station labels on a
separate layer, the passage walls on a separate layer, the legend and
north arrow on a separate layer. For Groaning Cave, there are about 200
layers.
What other things would you like to have in the DXF export?
Are you using the DXF exporter that is in the Windows Viewer? It sounds
like you might be using the old exporter that comes with the DOS version.
The DXF exporter was added to the Viewer in last few months. If you don't
have the latest version, you may not have the new exporter. The latest
version of COMPASS is always available on the internet. Incase you don't
have the address, it is at:
http://www.fountainware.com/compass
> Also, can I now dynamic rotate the wireframe?
Do you mean in COMPASS or Autocad? In AutoCad 14, you select "View|3D
Dynamic View" from the menu bar.
If you mean COMPASS, you should be able to get realtime pans, zooms and
rotation if the cave isn't too big and your computer is fast enough. Even
with large caves like Lechuguilla, I can get realtime refresh rates of 2
or 3 frames per second.
To get smooth animation, you have to set the Viewer properly. First run
the Viewer with the cave you want to view. Next select "Option|Hidden
Refresh Screen" from the Menu Bar. Also, select "Options|3D Compass" from
the menu bar. Finally, put the program in profile mode by hitting the
"Plan/Profile" button and then press the "Enter Box/Redraw" button.
You can now smoothly Pan, Zoom and Rotate by clicking on the appropriate
buttons. The "Multiplier Setting" box on the tool bar controls the amount
of movement each click accomplishes. Smaller steps make for smoother
motions. A multiplier 5 is a good choice.
If you want to smoothly rotate with the mouse, move the mouse cursor to
the "3D Compass", click the left mouse button and drag the "arms" to a new
position. The cave will track the 3D Compass position.
If you want to use the mouse to zoom or pan, push "Drag Mode" button on
the tool bar. You can now us the left mouse button to drag (pan) the cave
left, right, up or down. You can also use the middle mouse button to zoom
in and out and do "flythroughs."
I think I will post your letter on the COMPASS users group. Maybe some of
the other users will have some suggestions for you. If you would like to
subscribe to the users groups, there are instructions on the COMPASS web
page.
If you have any other questions, feel free to write.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Christian Docksey 
Date: Fri, 04 Aug 2000 14:51:04 -0400
Subject: [compass-users] Cave Graphics Extended
X-Evolution: 0000002a-0010



Hello Larry.
First let me show my appreciation at your efforts at solving queries and
problems quickly and thoroughly!
I managed to download the software finally. The problem was Gozilla
which didn't allow me to download any other way but through him, and it
was Gozilla that wouldn't work with this download. I uninstalled it and
all OK.
 I have yet to try out the methods you describe to have an interactive
mouse control. I hope it is what I imagine. I thought that maybe I could
take this "graphical"point a little further.
In todays world where graphics are so "taken for granted" there is the
need for 2 things.
1) To simplify the task of creating the artwork for a cave publication.
2) To be able to create a 3D model of the cave which can be used to
visualize the cave better and for analysis for future expeditions.
For creating the drawings (artwork) we use CorelDraw. This is to have
info in a vectorial format which allows for any required resolution.
Also, one has to keep in mind that there is the UIS standard to maintain
for symbols, etc. What would be useful (and please correct me if Compass
can do this already) is to be able to obtain an "extended profile view"
(Please excuse me if I don't use the exact term here but I don't know
it. In Venezuela we use the spanish terms and so I can only attempt to
explain it in English). This is NOT a projected view, but more like the
"stretched out" view of certain gallerys (which could be easily selected
in Compass ie: from stationX to stationY). In other words, the length of
the drawn galleries is equivalent to the fully walked or measured
distance (and not a component of the distance like Dist x cos(angle)). I
hope you follow what I mean. If not I'm willing to try again or send an
example.
The info needed from Compass would be the vector centre-line and also
the roof and floor outline (which we could add detail to on the
drawing). As to the format for these vectors, we go to the next point.
One of the most used and flexible formats around is Adobe Illustrator.
Nearly every software package used in graphics has an import and/or
export utility for Illustrator. With this info we could use CorelDraw,
Illustrator itself, and virtually any other package for 2D work (for
creating the artwork). Also 3D packages like 3DStudio Max, Maya,
lightwave all accept this vector format too!
Now, for 3d visualization, and considering that DXF is sometimes
problematic for you, wouldn't it be better to translate "Compass" info
to a stable, widely used 3d format. The .3ds format used by Kinetix
(part of Autodesk) for their Max 3d program is widely used for importing
3d data into 3d programs. Max is probably the widest used 3d program on
the market (not saying that it is the best) and one can still import the
same .3ds file today that was created 10 years ago when the software was
DOS based. An added benefit is that one can export to DXF. The reason
for all this is that if we could get this 3d info from Compass into a 3D
animation software, we could do wonders. First of all, the interactive
rotation,etc in a 3d program is superb. Then, we can create additional
detail as needed and then even add a camera which could fly through the
inside of the galleries! Not bad, Heh!  Also, pre-rendered animations
could be made and placed on a web site.
If your reply to this mail is "Shut up and keep quiet", then I don't
blame you. I'm only trying to get that stage further from having the
results as a bunch of numbers, to getting a good quality 2D drawing of
the cave. Getting the 3D info out to a 3D animation program would make
the topping on the cake. I think that Compass would definately be "the
Caving Software to have" for any serious cavers.
Forgive such a long and perhaps rediculous e-mail.
Regards...
Christian
Larry Fish wrote:
>
> Chris,
>
> DXF file conversion has been the bane of my existance. AutoCad keeps
> changing their specifications and I keep having to rewrite my
> conversion
> routines. The DXF file format worked pretty well from AutoCad version
> 3
> through 12, but then AutoCad made a radical departure and changed
> everything. Everybody complaigned, so in version 14 they went back a
> bit
> toward the earlier versions.
>
> The problem for me is that every time they do this, I have to get a
> copy
> of the latest version of AutoCad and it is not cheap. Also, all the
> other
> drawing programs interpret the DXF standard differently. Some only
> import
> the early versions of DXF. Some only import the 2D model. Some don't
> import certain layers. Some import everything into a single layer. It
> is a
> mess.
>
> > With the new release of AUtoCAD 2000i I'm finding the DXF
> capabilities
> > don't allow me to bring in anything but the raw survey and stations
> (just
> > two layers).  I need more versistility. Have you any recommendations
> at
> > this time.
>
> I currently have a copy of AutoCad 14. When I import the cave data
> into
> it, it shows each survey on a separate layer, the station labels on a
> separate layer, the passage walls on a separate layer, the legend and
> north arrow on a separate layer. For Groaning Cave, there are about
> 200
> layers.
>
> What other things would you like to have in the DXF export?
>
> Are you using the DXF exporter that is in the Windows Viewer? It
> sounds
> like you might be using the old exporter that comes with the DOS
> version.
> The DXF exporter was added to the Viewer in last few months. If you
> don't
> have the latest version, you may not have the new exporter. The latest
>
> version of COMPASS is always available on the internet. Incase you
> don't
> have the address, it is at:
>
> http://www.fountainware.com/compass
>
> > Also, can I now dynamic rotate the wireframe?
>
> Do you mean in COMPASS or Autocad? In AutoCad 14, you select "View|3D
> Dynamic View" from the menu bar.
>
> If you mean COMPASS, you should be able to get realtime pans, zooms
> and
> rotation if the cave isn't too big and your computer is fast enough.
> Even
> with large caves like Lechuguilla, I can get realtime refresh rates of
> 2
> or 3 frames per second.
>
> To get smooth animation, you have to set the Viewer properly. First
> run
> the Viewer with the cave you want to view. Next select "Option|Hidden
> Refresh Screen" from the Menu Bar. Also, select "Options|3D Compass"
> from
> the menu bar. Finally, put the program in profile mode by hitting the
> "Plan/Profile" button and then press the "Enter Box/Redraw" button.
>
> You can now smoothly Pan, Zoom and Rotate by clicking on the
> appropriate
> buttons. The "Multiplier Setting" box on the tool bar controls the
> amount
> of movement each click accomplishes. Smaller steps make for smoother
> motions. A multiplier 5 is a good choice.
>
> If you want to smoothly rotate with the mouse, move the mouse cursor
> to
> the "3D Compass", click the left mouse button and drag the "arms" to a
> new
> position. The cave will track the 3D Compass position.
>
> If you want to use the mouse to zoom or pan, push "Drag Mode" button
> on
> the tool bar. You can now us the left mouse button to drag (pan) the
> cave
> left, right, up or down. You can also use the middle mouse button to
> zoom
> in and out and do "flythroughs."
>
> I think I will post your letter on the COMPASS users group. Maybe some
> of
> the other users will have some suggestions for you. If you would like
> to
> subscribe to the users groups, there are instructions on the COMPASS
> web
> page.
>
> If you have any other questions, feel free to write.
>
> Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Sun, 6 Aug 2000 03:07:22 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Cave Graphics Extended
X-Evolution: 0000002c-0010



Christian,
Thanks for your letter.
> What would be useful (and please correct me if Compass can do this
> already) is to be able to obtain an "extended profile view" (Please
> excuse me if I don't use the exact term here but I don't know it. In
> Venezuela we use the spanish terms and so I can only attempt to explain
> it in English).
I think I understand what you are asking for and "extended profile" is a
good term for it. If I understand what you want, the "extended profile"
should take the cave passage and flattening it against a single vertical
plane. Normally, when you view a passage profile, the parts of the passage
that are coming toward you or going away from you are invisible. The
"extended profile" would have the effect of sort of "unwinding" these
passages so that all of the length would be visible.
I have toyed with implementing this feature for a couple of years.
Implementing the feature on a whole cave gets pretty complicated. As you
are "flattening" out the passages, the positions of all the stations move.
Since each station can be a "connecting point" for another branch of the
survey, I would have to keep track of the new position of each station.
This would require a complete recompile of the survey data every time you
wanted to change the viewing angle of the "extended profile." I could do
this, but, what I would really like to be able to do is manipulate these
"extended profiles" interactively and on-the-fly so you could get the
exact view you wanted. The bottom line is that I haven't figured out how
to do it so it "feels" right.
> One of the most used and flexible formats around is Adobe Illustrator.
I hadn't thought about Illustrator because nobody I know is using it. But
it is an interesting idea. I'm always afraid that a new file format will
just mean more work -- and of course, the risk that I will constantly be
trying to keep up with changes.
> Now, for 3d visualization, and considering that DXF is sometimes
> problematic for you, wouldn't it be better to translate "Compass" info
> to a stable, widely used 3d format.
This is an interesting idea. Have you played with CaveX yet? It will
export to "X" files, and I have seen converters on the web that will
convert "X" files to 3DS.
> If your reply to this mail is "Shut up and keep quiet", then I don't
> blame you.
No, no, no! I always appreciate new ideas and different perspectives.
Most of the best features of COMPASS have come from long discussions
with COMPASS users. So, keep making suggestions, I need them.
A proposito, he estado estudiando Espan~ol por un rato. Yo vivo in
el estado de Colorado y este estado fue un parte de Mejico en el
siglo XVII. Por eso, hay muchos lugares con nombres Espan~oles.
Tenemos dos canales de television en Espan~ol aqui. Me acuerdo que
hay una programma de Venezuela se llamada "Bien Venidos". Conoce
este programma?
Gracias
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Sun, 6 Aug 2000 17:08:34 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Cave Graphics Extended
X-Evolution: 0000002e-0010



On Sun, 6 Aug 2000, Larry Fish wrote:
Hello folks,
> Implementing the feature on a whole cave gets pretty complicated. As you
> are "flattening" out the passages, the positions of all the stations move.
> Since each station can be a "connecting point" for another branch of the
> survey, I would have to keep track of the new position of each station.
I think this is a real problem. Extended profiles are commonly used on the
small caves here in southern Germany where not much passages must be
"unfolded" and where extended profiles give less distorted impressions of
the cave than the usual perspectivic views. On large or complex caves it is
difficult to decide how the passages must become unfolded because the
surveys are inter-connected at many stations. Moving one station will damage
another survey.
Another point which must be kept in mind is in which direction the survey
must be flattended. Yesterday we surveyed a small pothole for example, where
the entrance pit intersects a small passage which extends to both
directions. For an extended profile one part of the cave must be flattened
to the left, the other part to the right. How should the computer decide
what to do?
I create such extended profiles manually. I make a copy of the original
survey data file and open it in the Cave Editor. Here I set the acimut of
all passages which should be flattened to the right to 0 degrees and that of
the passages to the left to 180 degrees. All the other shots I flagged with
the "exclude from plotting" option. If you view this in profile mode from 90
or 270 degrees this is exactly what you want: An extended profile.
I know two programs which already support e.p.. One is "Cave Render" in
which you must enter numeric values for each shot which describe how to
handle the data for extension. The other is a French product called
"Cybertopo" that has an automatic option for unfolding all surveys. I don't
know how good the results of this algorythm are.

> > One of the most used and flexible formats around is Adobe Illustrator.
Nearly as expensive as AutoCAD... :-) Why not Corel Draw which is widely
used and available for modest prices?
BTW: Have you tested the method that is described on
http://www.karst.net/Compass/hpgl.htm ? It works very good and even with old
versions of Corel Draw like 4.0 which is my favorite drawing tool.

> This is an interesting idea. Have you played with CaveX yet? It will
> export to "X" files, and I have seen converters on the web that will
> convert "X" files to 3DS.
Is there something that can convert *.x to VRML?

> > If your reply to this mail is "Shut up and keep quiet", then I don't
> > blame you.
As moderator of this list I welcome questions and suggestions like yours.

> Gracias
Freundliche Grüße
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Christian Docksey 
Date: Mon, 07 Aug 2000 13:25:58 -0400
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Cave Graphics Extended
X-Evolution: 00000030-0010



Hello Larry,
I'm grateful towards your receptiveness towards some of my comments.
I totally agree with you and with Roger, that trying to "extend" the
whole of a cave is an extremely complicated task and the computer
wouldn't know what to do sometimes. No, what I mean is for "Compass" to
ask for a station to station input (say station 1A to station 1S), which
would probably be the main passageway of the cave. The stations must be
joint by a single "route". All other galleries would be ignored. Then
Compass would work out the "flattened" route and display the results. It
would be like a separate et of data so as not to cause confusion with
the rest of the data. Internally, I imagine that maybe Compass would
create new stations (say x-1A to x-1S or whatever) but display them on
screen with the same labels but in another colour or whichever way you
deem more appropiate. Why only some galleries and not all? Well, because
I'm thinking of when its time for plotting, when really it is only some
portions of the cave that you tend to plot in "extended" mode (usually
the main passage from entrance to end). It IS possible to require
another "extended" gallery when plotting, but it is 99% sure that it
will be a separate drawing on the artwork. So there is no problem that
the second  be a separate set of data given by inputting the new station
to station info (say 3C to 3F).
I believe this "extended" method is really only valid for cave which are
generally horizontal in nature. This is because you are flattening the
compass readings but not the clinometer redings. A pothole, for example,
usually needs to be described by section views. And one should sketch as
many sections as needded for the shape of a cave  to be understood.
Now, Roger, your example of the pothole you visited is great, because
you could tell "Compass" that you want an extended set of data for your
intersected passage. You would enter the names of the stations of the
passage, and it would give you the set of data you require. Then you
would add the drawing of that "extended" passage to your artwork in
addition to the main views of the pothole and its sections.
When I suggested Adobe Illustrator, I meant it as the file format and
not as the software itself. I don't use Illustrator as a software
either. To me Corel is great too and its what I use for this type of
thing, but then you have hundreds of preferences from different users.
Corel Imports Illustrator files like a treat, just like nearly all 2D
and 3D software, and its because of the wide acceptance of this format
that I suggested it.
Thanks Roger for the link about the PLT method of transferring files. I
had not seen it. I will try it out. Maybe there's no need for any
vector file export after all, although I don't think this method will
work for importing into 3D software. I'll check it out though!
Many Thanks to all of you. I think it's great to have the chance to
discuss a topic at all with you.
By the way, Larry. Thats pretty good spanish you have! Yes, I've seen
the odd episode of "Bienvenidos". Its a "Joke telling" program with some
girls in bikinis forming part of the cast (The best part-Right?)
Cheers to all
Chris
Larry Fish wrote:
>
> Christian,
>
> Thanks for your letter.
>
> > What would be useful (and please correct me if Compass can do this
> > already) is to be able to obtain an "extended profile view" (Please
> > excuse me if I don't use the exact term here but I don't know it. In
>
> > Venezuela we use the spanish terms and so I can only attempt to
> explain
> > it in English).
>
> I think I understand what you are asking for and "extended profile" is
> a
> good term for it. If I understand what you want, the "extended
> profile"
> should take the cave passage and flattening it against a single
> vertical
> plane. Normally, when you view a passage profile, the parts of the
> passage
> that are coming toward you or going away from you are invisible. The
> "extended profile" would have the effect of sort of "unwinding" these
> passages so that all of the length would be visible.
>
> I have toyed with implementing this feature for a couple of years.
> Implementing the feature on a whole cave gets pretty complicated. As
> you
> are "flattening" out the passages, the positions of all the stations
> move.
> Since each station can be a "connecting point" for another branch of
> the
> survey, I would have to keep track of the new position of each
> station.
> This would require a complete recompile of the survey data every time
> you
> wanted to change the viewing angle of the "extended profile." I could
> do
> this, but, what I would really like to be able to do is manipulate
> these
> "extended profiles" interactively and on-the-fly so you could get the
> exact view you wanted. The bottom line is that I haven't figured out
> how
> to do it so it "feels" right.
>
> > One of the most used and flexible formats around is Adobe
> Illustrator.
>
> I hadn't thought about Illustrator because nobody I know is using it.
> But
> it is an interesting idea. I'm always afraid that a new file format
> will
> just mean more work -- and of course, the risk that I will constantly
> be
> trying to keep up with changes.
>
> > Now, for 3d visualization, and considering that DXF is sometimes
> > problematic for you, wouldn't it be better to translate "Compass"
> info
> > to a stable, widely used 3d format.
>
> This is an interesting idea. Have you played with CaveX yet? It will
> export to "X" files, and I have seen converters on the web that will
> convert "X" files to 3DS.
>
> > If your reply to this mail is "Shut up and keep quiet", then I don't
>
> > blame you.
>
> No, no, no! I always appreciate new ideas and different perspectives.
> Most of the best features of COMPASS have come from long discussions
> with COMPASS users. So, keep making suggestions, I need them.
>
> A proposito, he estado estudiando Espan~ol por un rato. Yo vivo in
> el estado de Colorado y este estado fue un parte de Mejico en el
> siglo XVII. Por eso, hay muchos lugares con nombres Espan~oles.
> Tenemos dos canales de television en Espan~ol aqui. Me acuerdo que
> hay una programma de Venezuela se llamada "Bien Venidos". Conoce
> este programma?
>
> Gracias
>
> Larry
> -----------------------------------------------------------------------
>
>




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: mr.doj at mailbox.swipnet.se
Date: Mon, 14 Aug 2000 13:59:50 -0000
Subject: [compass-users] Locking of mapping accuracy
X-Evolution: 00000032-0010



Hello!
Is there a way of locking survey stations when closing loops?
or
Is there some way to give surveys  less/more corrections when closing
loops ie by inserting UIS/BCRA survey accuracy?
 We would like to survey the main passage of a complex cave with a
higher grade and side passages with less timeconsuming surveying, but
not bend or alter the main passage when closing loops.
T Doj Sweden




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Tue, 15 Aug 2000 03:31:56 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Locking of mapping accuracy
X-Evolution: 00000034-0010



Hello,
Thanks for your question.
> Is there a way of locking survey stations when closing loops? or Is
> there some way to give surveys less/more corrections when closing
> loops ie by inserting UIS/BCRA survey accuracy?
You can exclude any shot from the closing process using the "Shot
Flags" in the Editor. However, you cannot set a variable level of
accuracy for different parts of the cave.
The processing of setting an accuracy for each shot is in a survey is
called "weighting." And, there is a very good reason why COMPASS does not
allow you to assign "weights." This is because COMPASS automatically
assigns "weights" to every shot in the cave based on the shot's length
and how well each loop closes.
The problem with allowing the user to assign weights, is that these
weights are only estimates. So even if you survey very very carefully,
you can still make mistakes that will destroy the accuracy of the survey.
Likewise, even a very sloppy survey can turn out to be accurate. What
COMPASS does is use the actual data to get a precise measurement of the
quality of each loop. Loops with large closure errors obviously cannot be
trusted and so they are given low weights. Likewise, loops with small
closure errors can be trusted and are given high weights. Thus COMPASS
creates a combination of weights that gives the best accuracy for all the
stations in the cave.
The actual process that COMPASS uses to analyze the quality of each loop
is a little more complicated. It begins by making a prediction about how
much error you would expect to find in a loop if all the errors were
small random errors. This is done by going through each shot in the loop
and seeing how each shot would effect the total error in the loop. This
gives an error predictions for the loop. Loops are then weighted based on
how well they match the prediction.
Assigning weights is a very important part of land surveying
and land surveyors have studied the problem for more than a century.
John Halleck has written extensively on the subject as it applies to
cave surveying. You might find his ideas interesting. His web page is
at:
http://www.cc.utah.edu/~nahaj/cave/survey/
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Devin Kouts 
Date: Tue, 15 Aug 2000 10:13:55 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Locking of mapping accuracy
X-Evolution: 00000036-0010



Larry,
I understand your explanation of how compass develops
weights for certain loops in the survey. I would like
to offer some pointers that might help "increase" the
weight given to a specific survey over another. Please
comment on my conjectures (they've not been tried in
the field, just thoughts I've discussed with other
cave surveyors).
In our friend's case he wants the main trunk survey to
bear a heavier weight than any potential loops created
by side passage surveys. In that instance I would
suppose a couple changes in one's survey technique
could be useful.
First, I would limit the length of individual shots
along the trunk passage to 20 feet or 7 meters maximum
(an arbitrary number, I'm working on the assumption
that shorter distances don't propogate as much error
in the azimuth / inclination as do longer distances).
Second, I would always record forward and backward
azimuth and inclination between every consecutive
station along the trunk passage survey.
Third, I would decrease the allowable error between
forward and backward azimuth / inclinations. E.g. the
folks I survey with will allow a maximum of two
degrees  difference between the foresight and the
corrected backsight azimuth and inclination. To
increase the accuracy (and the weight) of the trunk
survey I would decrease my allowable error to 1 degree
difference.
Fourth, I would avoid problematic shots, like
high-angle shots, in favor of multiple short,
low-angle, precise shots to cover the same distance.
Admittedly these techniques increase the level of
effort required to complete the survey but that's
simply the nature of information. If you desire
greater accuracy (i.e. weight) then you need to
increase the frequency and precision of the data you
collect (in this case survey data).
After the main trunk has been surveyed with these
increased standards of accuracy I presume the loops of
the main trunk (and they are a chain of consecutive
loops, foresight and backsight make a loop between
each station) will receive a greater weight from the
algorithm you described in Compass. Afterward,
surveying side passages with standard practices (i.e.
2 degree difference in fore/back sights and no
distance limits impossed on shot length) will create
relatively accurate survey but not to such a degree
that it's "weight" will degrade the accuracy of the
main trunk survey.
This approach should help our friend reach his goal of
increased deference to the main trunk survey over
errors introduced by lower quality side passage
surveys.
Comments?
Devin
--- Larry Fish  wrote:
>
>
> Hello,
>
> Thanks for your question.
>
> > Is there a way of locking survey stations when
> closing loops? or Is
> > there some way to give surveys less/more
> corrections when closing
> > loops ie by inserting UIS/BCRA survey accuracy?
>
> You can exclude any shot from the closing process
> using the "Shot
> Flags" in the Editor. However, you cannot set a
> variable level of
> accuracy for different parts of the cave.
>
> The processing of setting an accuracy for each shot
> is in a survey is
> called "weighting." And, there is a very good reason
> why COMPASS does not
> allow you to assign "weights." This is because
> COMPASS automatically
> assigns "weights" to every shot in the cave based on
> the shot's length
> and how well each loop closes.
>
> The problem with allowing the user to assign
> weights, is that these
> weights are only estimates. So even if you survey
> very very carefully,
> you can still make mistakes that will destroy the
> accuracy of the survey.
> Likewise, even a very sloppy survey can turn out to
> be accurate. What
> COMPASS does is use the actual data to get a precise
> measurement of the
> quality of each loop. Loops with large closure
> errors obviously cannot be
> trusted and so they are given low weights. Likewise,
> loops with small
> closure errors can be trusted and are given high
> weights. Thus COMPASS
> creates a combination of weights that gives the best
> accuracy for all the
> stations in the cave.
>
> The actual process that COMPASS uses to analyze the
> quality of each loop
> is a little more complicated. It begins by making a
> prediction about how
> much error you would expect to find in a loop if all
> the errors were
> small random errors. This is done by going through
> each shot in the loop
> and seeing how each shot would effect the total
> error in the loop. This
> gives an error predictions for the loop. Loops are
> then weighted based on
> how well they match the prediction.
>
> Assigning weights is a very important part of land
> surveying
> and land surveyors have studied the problem for more
> than a century.
> John Halleck has written extensively on the subject
> as it applies to
> cave surveying. You might find his ideas
> interesting. His web page is
> at:
>
> http://www.cc.utah.edu/~nahaj/cave/survey/
>
> Larry
>
>
=====
Devin S. Kouts
devinkouts at yahoo.com
http://sites.netscape.net/devinkouts/




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Tue, 15 Aug 2000 12:50:23 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Locking of mapping accuracy
X-Evolution: 00000038-0010



Devin,
Your ideas are great and should result in higher accuracy of surveys. A
couple of comments:
If you cannot get the fore and backsight compass to agree with only a
small error, it is probably due magnet anomolies in the cave. This is due
to the fact that the fore and back compass are taken in different
locations and the magnetic anomoly will be different at those locations.
See John Halleck article on this idea on his web page. There is a link to
his web page on the COMPASS web page.
If you are absolutely sure that your survey is 100% accurate, you can
exclude all the stations from closing. Carlsbad Cavern has a theodolite
survey down the backbone of the cave and they exclude all those shot from
closing. If you don't know for sure that the survey is 100% accurate, it
is probably better to let COMPASS do the weighting.
Larry




To: 
From: "Pel Torbjvrn Doj" 
Date: Thu, 17 Aug 2000 11:35:27 +0200
Subject: SV: [compass-users] Locking of mapping accuracy
X-Evolution: 0000003a-0010



Thank you for youranswers. I can see that compass is valuing
my mapping and thus actually making its own survey accuracy
grade. And as Larry sais, even if you aim to to a good
survey, the "grade 5" can under circumstanses be less
acuurate than intended, and compass gives me a percentage
failure of the loop.

The techniques of surveying accurate is a too large subject
to comment, but Devins commenta about compass backsights:

I presume the loops of the main trunk (and they are a chain
of consecutive loops, foresight and backsight make a loop
between each station) will receive a greater weight from the
algorithm you described in Compass.

     .......................

is interesting. This could be an answer to give the more
accurate surveyline (we will use backsights, as we do on the
surface survey) its credit. I hope compass works that way.

As for accuracy, we have around 1-2% on the larger loops
(300m+) except some unfortunate loops.

Torbjoern Doj




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Thu, 17 Aug 2000 05:11:27 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: SV: [compass-users] Locking of mapping accuracy
X-Evolution: 0000003c-0010



Torbjoern,
> ............I presume the loops of
> the main trunk (and they are a chain of consecutive
> loops, foresight and backsight make a loop between
> each station) will receive a greater weight from the
> algorithm you described in Compass.
Actually, no. COMPASS does not make loops out of the foresight/backsight
pair. The accuracy comes from the fact that you have checked the fore and
back measurement against each other. If you make sure that your fore and
back readings agree, then you automatically get higher accuracy.
However, the only way you can know in a cave survey whether a survey is
accurate is by having it in a loop. If the loop closes well, then the
combined errors of all the shots in the loop must be low and so the shots
in the loop should be weighted high. That is the only thing you can know
about the accuracy of shots in a cave.
Now if you have a special survey and check and double check it, then you
might be able to say that it is more accurate than the rest. If you are
really sure, you could then override COMPASS and flag all the shots not to
be closed. However, even under those circumstances, you could make a
mistake and your assumption be wrong.

> As for accuracy, we have around 1-2% on the larger loops (300m+) except
> some unfortunate loops.
The best measure of loop quality is the Standard Deviation measurement
that COMPASS gives. Percentage is based the loops length, but the Standard
Deviation takes into account all of the individual shots and how they
might contribute to the error.
Larry




To: 
From: "Pel Torbjvrn Doj" 
Date: Thu, 17 Aug 2000 17:20:20 +0200
Subject: SV: SV: [compass-users] Locking of mapping accuracy
X-Evolution: 0000003e-0010



>However, the only way you can know in a cave survey whether a survey is
>accurate is by having it in a loop. If the loop closes well, then the
>combined errors of all the shots in the loop must be low and so the shots
>in the loop should be weighted high. That is the only thing you can know
>about the accuracy of shots in a cave.
Well.So if we survey the mainpassage with precisioncompass and the side-loops with handheld, compass will correct the whole loop, giving all the individual shots a correction. If we have multiple loops covering the shots in the main passage repeadetly, compass will correct the shots in the main line several times?! And if I exclude the mainline, the loop wont close at all, since the loop also includes the mainline?
>Now if you have a special survey and check and double check it, then you
>might be able to say that it is more accurate than the rest. If you are
>really sure, you could then override COMPASS and flag all the shots not to
>be closed. However, even under those circumstances, you could make a
>mistake and your assumption be wrong.
A special survey could be the surface shots or if I can get the entrances fixed with a very high accuracy. It would be nice if the entrances does not move around when I close the loops.
>> As for accuracy, we have around 1-2% on the larger loops (300m+) except
>> some unfortunate loops.
>
>The best measure of loop quality is the Standard Deviation measurement
>that COMPASS gives. Percentage is based the loops length, but the Standard
>Deviation takes into account all of the individual shots and how they
>might contribute to the error.
OK thanks!!
Torbjoern




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Thu, 17 Aug 2000 11:47:04 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: SV: SV: [compass-users] Locking of mapping accuracy
X-Evolution: 00000040-0010



> Well.So if we survey the mainpassage with precision compass and the
> side-loops with handheld, compass will correct the whole loop, giving
> all the individual shots a correction.
Yes, but if the shots are part of a good loop, very little correction will
be done. Because, by definition, a good loop has a small amount of error.
Likewise, if it is part of a bad loop, a larger correction will be done.
For example, let's say you have a loop in which four shots are part of
precision survey and four shots are part of a non-precision survey. If
that loop closes badly, you cannot say whether the error was in the
precision survey or in the non-precision survey. In other words, using the
only emperical measure of the quality of the shots in the cave, you cannot
know which shots were bad, just that somewhere in the loop, there was one
or more problems.
Now you have to understand that closing loops with a survey program cannot
fix survey errors. All you can do is distrubute the error over several
shots so cosmetically, it distorts the map in a minimal way.
COMPASS does have tools which help to try to zero in on the individual
shot that has the error, but it can only narrow the search. You have to
look at your survey notes or recheck your measurements to be sure you have
found the source of the error.
> If we have multiple loops covering the shots in the main passage
> repeadetly, compass will correct the shots in the main line several
> times?!
No, COMPASS will only correct each shot one time. It begins by closing the
best loops first and then it locks all the shots in that loop so that it
cannot be adjusted again. This means that shots in the best quality loops
don't change much, while the shots in the worst loops do. This has the
effect of isolating the errors to a particular part of the cave, instead
of spreading them around like some survey programs do.
> And if I exclude the mainline, the loop wont close at all, since
> the loop also includes the mainline?
No, only the excluded shots won't be adjusted. Any adjustment will take
place on the un-excluded shots.

> A special survey could be the surface shots or if I can get the
> entrances fixed with a very high accuracy. It would be nice if the
> entrances does not move around when I close the loops.

The entrance and any fixed stations are never moved by the closure
process. All the other shots move around them. By the way, in the last
few weeks I fixed a small bug in this area. So if you don't have the
very latest version, you probably should get it.
Larry




To: compass-users list 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Sat, 19 Aug 2000 16:31:59 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: [compass-users] a CaveBase idea
X-Evolution: 00000042-0010



Hi all,
I am just back from a caving trip where we recorded some temperature and
climate data. I will enter them in Cave Base and this leads me to an idea
for a probably useful enhancement of Compass.
CaveBase can export numeric values to CaveViewer and the latter displays the
data as symbols of different size. I think it would be also interesting to
export the number itself, i.e. if you entered a temperature of 5.7 degrees
in CaveBase the number should appear in Cave Viewer near the corresponding
station.
Larry, what's your opinion?
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Sat, 19 Aug 2000 21:05:35 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] a CaveBase idea
X-Evolution: 00000044-0010



Roger,
> I think it would be also interesting to
> export the number itself, i.e. if you entered a temperature of 5.7 degrees
> in CaveBase the number should appear in Cave Viewer near the corresponding
> station.
> Larry, what's your opinion?
I liked the idea so much that I went ahead and implemented it. It is up on
the net. Download it and see what you think.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Sun, 20 Aug 2000 21:13:52 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] a CaveBase idea
X-Evolution: 00000046-0010



On Sat, 19 Aug 2000, Larry Fish wrote:
Hello again,

> I liked the idea so much that I went ahead and implemented it. It is up on
> the net. Download it and see what you think.
Guys, that's really hot stuff! :-)
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: "Thomas Oakes" 
Date: Thu, 24 Aug 2000 20:43:10 -0000
Subject: [compass-users] CaveX
X-Evolution: 00000048-0010



Hi Larry,
I am brand new to Compass and have been trying to run CaveX but I
keep getting an error message. I am running under win95 ver. 4.0 on a
266 MHz Pentium Pro. I installed DirectX 6.0, rebooted and then
installed CaveX. When I try to run CaveX I get the following series
of error messages:
Unknown error: $80040111
External exception C000001D
Could Not Initialize DirectX, Be Sure that DirectX is Installed
The CaveX window does open but when I click OK on the last error
message the application closes. Is this something you can help with?
Thanks,
Tom Oakes




To: compass-users list 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Mon, 28 Aug 2000 14:11:37 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: [compass-users] x files and MSIE
X-Evolution: 0000004a-0010



Hello Larry,
for a public demonstration of Compass next weekend I prepared my old
computer: fresh Windows 95 installation, DirectX 6.1 core, MSIE 5.0, current
Compass releases and anything goes well with one exception. I can't view the
x files (generated with CaveX) in Internet Explorer.
On my new machine the first time I accessed your live3d cave page MSIE asked
for downloading a specific ActiveX control and then it worked but on the old
computer nothing happened. ActiveX and scripting are enabled but the browser
doesn't download the 3d viewer.
Probably the problem is because my old video card doesn't have hardware 3d
acceleration. The DirectX diagnostics tools says that Direct3D runs only in
software mode. Your CaveX viewer on the other hand doesn't cause trouble.
Any hints or experiences?
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Mon, 28 Aug 2000 12:38:06 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] x files and MSIE
X-Evolution: 0000004c-0010



Roger,
I have a couple of thoughts on the subject. The fact that Internet
Explorer doesn't try to download the 3D viewer probably means that
Explorer thinks that it has already been loaded. My guess is that when you
installed Win95, it left the viewer half installed.
The 3D viewer is a Microsoft product that is not very well documented. I
discovered it by accident when I found that Explorer could display X
files. It took quite a bit of research before I was able to figure out
that the 3D viewing capabilities in Explorer came from an ActiveX
component called XWEB.OCX.
In the process of figuring out how XWEB.OCX worked, I had to install and
uninstall it several times. I did this by renaming the file. When I did
this, Windows decided that XWEB was gone and downloaded a new version when
I connected to my 3D Web Page.
The tricky part is that XWEB.OCX is difficult to find, even if it is on
your computer. This is because Windows doesn't want you messing with
installed components. This means the "Find Files and Folders" from the
Start Menu will not "see" XWEB.OCX. At least that is the case in Windows
98. Windows 95 may allow you to see the file. What I had to do to find it
was go to the DOS prompt and probe around in various hidden directories.
Currently on my machine, XWEB is in:
c:\windows\downloaded program files\xweb.ocx
I think what you need to do is find XWEB and delete or rename it. Then try
reconnecting to the web page. Hopefully, it will download and reinstall
the component.
The tricky part is going to be finding XWEB. I just tried one of the DOS
tools I have called "WHEREIS" and it could not find XWEB. Yet, when if I
go to the DOS prompt and look in the directory, it is there. If you have
trouble finding the file, you might try searching the registry for the
word XWEB. I find several entries for XWEB, and one of them gives me a
directory. In my case, the registry key is:
\HEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{970C7E08-05A7-11D0-89AA-00A0C9054129}\InprocServer32
This method of removing and reinstalling XWEB is probably not the correct
way to do it, but it does seem to work. I probably should look around on
the net and find the proper way.
I don't think the problem has to do with lack of graphics acceleration.
DirectX is supposed to work fine without it. It would just be slow.
I'll be interested to know how your demo goes.
Larry
> for a public demonstration of Compass next weekend I prepared my old
> computer: fresh Windows 95 installation, DirectX 6.1 core, MSIE 5.0, current
> Compass releases and anything goes well with one exception. I can't view the
> x files (generated with CaveX) in Internet Explorer.
>
> On my new machine the first time I accessed your live3d cave page MSIE asked
> for downloading a specific ActiveX control and then it worked but on the old
> computer nothing happened. ActiveX and scripting are enabled but the browser
> doesn't download the 3d viewer.
>
> Probably the problem is because my old video card doesn't have hardware 3d
> acceleration. The DirectX diagnostics tools says that Direct3D runs only in
> software mode. Your CaveX viewer on the other hand doesn't cause trouble.




To: compass-users list 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Wed, 6 Sep 2000 21:40:32 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: [compass-users] x to vrml converter
X-Evolution: 0000004e-0010



Hi all,
does anybody know if there is a converter available which can convert
Microsoft x files (which the CaveX Viewer produces as output) to vrml?
Happy caving
Roger
PS: A report about the public presentation of Compass last weekend will
follow soon.
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: "evan anderson" 
Date: Fri, 06 Oct 2000 04:52:18 GMT
Subject: [compass-users] Re: File date problems
X-Evolution: 00000054-0010



Roger wrote-
>Probably it *is* a problem with your control panel settings. My own
>experiences with COMPASS (on a box with the German edition of Win 95) >are
>that it uses the "short date" which stores only the last two digits of the
>year by default. This may in some circumstances end up with y2k >problems.
>Go to the control panel and select the regional settings and change the
>"short date" to something with a four digit year. There is a pull-down
> >menu with several choices, also some where the year has all four digits.
>After that you must reboot your PC and fix your cave data manually.
>Hopefully this error will never appear again.
I am running Windows 98 and the control panel displays the date as 2000...
not 00.  There is no option to change or manipulate what the year is other
than:
1. Toggle the years up or down one year at a time.
2. Highlight the year and re-write it.
3. Hit the OK, CANCEL, or APPLY buttons at the bottom.
The Editor does not change the saved 2000 year every time. Just randomly
every once in a while.
thanks for the Textpad.com thing. I'm going to try to learn Larry's XEDIT
program first.
later
evan




To: users group compass 
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Fri, 6 Oct 2000 15:21:55 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: [compass-users] Date Problem
X-Evolution: 00000056-0010



Evan,
I have found the problem! Roger was right, it has to do with the
Windows Regional settings and the way the editor handles the date. I
went through your step-by-step procedure and still could not
duplicate the problem. Finally, I went to the Control Panel and
changed the "Short Date Format" so that only two digits were
displayed for the year and the problem suddenly appeared.
For an immediate quick fix, carry out the following steps:
1. Goto "My Computer," then "Control Panel", finally select "Regional
Settings."
2. Select the "Date" tab and examine the "Short Date Style." The
"Style" string uses letters to specify the number of digits that will
appear in the date. The letter "m" is used to specify the month, "d"
is used to specify the day and "y" is used to specify the the year.
For example, if the style string were "mm/dd/yy" it would specify
that all dates are displayed with a two digit year.
3. Change the "Style" string so it has four "y"s in it. Press the
apply button. Besure to close any COMPASS programs and re-run them so
the new setting can take effect. You may need to reboot the computer
for the changes to take effect.
These instructions work for Win95 or Win98. Window 3.1 has something
similiar, but I don't have it available so I can't give you the
step-by-step procedure.
I have fixed COMPASS so it ignores the year part of the "Style" string.
I have posted the new version on the net, but it is not an official
release.
Check it out and see if it solves the problem for you.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Mon, 09 Oct 2000 09:22:04 +0200
Subject: [compass-users] [Fwd: Spud stuff: other survey software; and a few other bits.]
X-Evolution: 00000058-0010



Hi Compass Users,
this was posted on the Survex mailing list and I think it may be of some
interest to see what other survey software developers and users are
thinking.
Roger

Mark Shinwell wrote:
>
> Hi
>
> I have been browsing around various cave surveying web sites and collated
> some things which might be of use for Spud design.  This is the first
> installment of a summary of these things.
>
> Obviously some of these are specific features which do not have direct
> relevance on the fundamental architecture of Spud, but it is useful to
> have some inkling of what other developers are up to.
>
> Two prevelent features seem to be
>  (a) integrated editors for the data;
>  (b) 3D "tunnel" features for visualising passage shapes.
>
> 
> A page for those "fed up with Survex"...
>
> There are issues raised relating to:
>  (a) the lack of an editor tailored to entering svx files;
>  (b) no depth colouring or surface grids;
>  (c) no support for stereo visualisation;
>  (d) no 3D tunnel support;
>  (e) lack of features like the ones Chasm has for highlighting
>      bits of caves, etc.;
>  (f) lack of blunder detection;
>  (g) lack of print preview;
>  (h) difficulty in organising svx files.
>
> (c) is easy for us to do.  (b), (e) and (g) we certainly already have
> the technology to do and I believe (f) is covered to some extent.
>
> (h) is an awkward one -- how can one make it easy to do this?  Can we
> maybe produce a short document on it, using examples drawn from large
> datasets such as the CUCC Austria one?  (See later about "philosophy").
>
> (a) is in hand for Spud.
>
> (d) is more awkward.  Persuade Julian to port Tunnel to C++?  Dunno :)
>
> There is an interesting comment about a text editor "Aurora" which can
> select columns of text, not just normal blocks.  Might be worth
> considering... (then there are all the other questions to do with the
> editor which need sorting out -- eg are there two editors (plain text
> and a more sophisticated one)?).
>
> Compass  
> "...originally written in 1979 and ran on a PDP-10..."
>
> I suggest someone endowed with a machine running Windows has a look at
> this... here are a few notes on it anyway.
>
> The main thrust of the program is to allow easy input and easy
> visualisation.
>
> Some of the main features, condensed from
>   http://www.fountainware.com/compass/wdetails.htm:
>
> - Ghastly web site.
> - Project manager.  Survey files can participate in more than one
>   project (wow :)  Whether we need to have something like this I
>   don't know; the one thought that occurs to me which might be
>   relevant is that we need to figure out an interface to the revision
>   control system.
>   You can easily arrange and disorganise your survey data by dragging
>   and dropping.  There is a serious point here, related to the one
>   above, about the philosophy of the software.  With Survex at the
>   moment it's up to the user how to structure their dataset;
>   presumably we want to preserve this for Spud?  There are of course
>   the hierarchies of country/system etc. which Olly was proposing to
>   think about.
> - It has a built-in editor, which looks nasty and does things like
>   forcing a certain number of decimal places.  It has 12-character
>   station name restrictions.
> - Blunder detection is incorporated.
> - You can assemble 3D passage shapes as with Tunnel.  The whole
>   support for this looks quite sophisticated.
> - Eye-candy: fancy viewer with all the twiddles, export of
>   fly-through videos and some sort of way of exporting to the
>   Web (presumably VRML/Java).
> - Rose graphs and so on are all implemented.
> - Has integration with GIS stuff like ArcView, and can read standard
>   DEM (Digital Elevation Map) files for terrain data.  We ought to do
>   the latter (I will investigate).
> - Context-sensitive help.  We need to think about how we will provide
>   help.
> - It costs money.
>
> There is also some kind of interface to external database software to
> allow the recording of specific features within the cave.  I wonder if
> this could be used for CUCC's Austria dataset to record, for example,
> the position of cave entrances as marked via GPS.  Something like this
> could probably be very easily implemented as a plugin which acts as
> an arbiter between the rendering engine and an external database such
> as MySQL, for e
>
> Olly might want to look at
>   http://www.fountainware.com/compass/compart2.htm
> but I suspect he's already seen it :)
>
> It strikes me that Compass has featuritis, but I can't really make
> an informed decision not having tried it out.  Can anyone advise on the
> merits or otherwise of this software?  The thing is that it has
> hundreds of features in addition to the few I've noted above, and many
> of them would be easily implemented via our plugin architecture.
>
> Does anyone know much about the data model in Compass?
>
>  is a bad joke, but cites the
> main problem of Survex as being "poor qualities concerning the
> visualization of survey data".
>
>  "home of the best software
> for the study and mapping of caves".
>
> Looks pretty good.  One point I notice is that it can understand
> coordinate systems, GPS, etc. (e.g. it allows export of waypoint data
> for entrances).  This could be a really nice feature to have, but again,
> it doesn't really affect our underlying architecture (save for the fact
> that we need to make the editors understand commands, etc, implemented
> by the different plug-ins -- but when one considers that the data
> processing engine itself is just a plug-in, this becomes a non-issue).
>
> Has various fancy diagrams like 3D rose diagrams; see the web site.
>
> The tunnel features seem to be given much attention.  I seriously think
> we should make sure Spud can do something like this.
>
> It strikes me that WinKarst has the sort of overall features we might
> be aiming for and does seem to be targetting specific useful features
> rather than having lots of little twiddles.  Does anyone have any
> experience with it?
>
> The four major advantages which Spud will have over any of these other
> programs is that it will be multi-platform, free, open source and very
> easy to extend; from the look of it a Mac port will be plausible
> (assuming the GTK+ Mac port keeps going OK).
>
> How are we going to approach Spud design?  We need to think about overall
> architecture, data model etc.  Input from surveyors around the place would
> be very useful...  Then we can move onto the nitty gritty of specific
> features within each plugin (which can probably be designed fairly
> independently in some cases and then subjected to peer review).  What do
> people think?  Olly's mail has set the ball rolling and I'll reply to
> that as soon as I have time.
>
> To be honest I reckon it would be great to organise a meeting in person
> between people who have good ideas for the project, as then a lot more
> can get done at once...
>
> Anyway, that's all for now.
>
> Mark
>
> --
> Mark Shinwell -- President, Cambridge University Caving Club
> Queens' College, Cambridge, UK
> Mail: mrs30 at cam.ac.uk   Web: http://mrs30.quns.cam.ac.uk
>
> --
> Survex http://lists.survex.com/mailman/listinfo/survex
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Tue, 10 Oct 2000 03:18:30 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: [compass-users] Survex ideas.
X-Evolution: 0000005a-0010



The information from the Survex mailing was interesting and I wanted
to make a few comments. First, I have a great deal of respect for
Olly the author of Survex. I think that he has done a very nice job
with Survex. In fact, Survex appears to be the only cave survey
program that correctly implements the Least Squares technique for
loop closure. He has been very friendly and helpful. Olly, Wookey,
John Halleck and I have had extensive and very interesting
conversations about loop closures and blunders.
One of the big differences between Survex and COMPASS is the way data
is organized. This seems to be related to the Brittish cave surveying
style. I may not have this exactly right, but their survey stations
don't have unique names. For example, many surveys in the Survex data
I have seen have station names like "1, 2, 3, 4, etc." They organize
their data by sections and subsections, and these names are used to
distinguish the station names between surveys.
Survex has an elegant and sophisticated system for handling this.
COMPASS can do similiar things with its "Links," but it is not really
intended to do the kind of things that Survex needs to do. I don't
know if other parts of the world use the same surveying technique as
the Brittish, but so far, I haven't had any requests to improve the
linking features.
> - Ghastly web site.
Maybe a little chaotic. My frustration with most cave survey web sites
is that you cannot tell very much about the program. My goal has been
to put enough information on the web site so people could really tell
how the program works and what features it has.
> - It has a built-in editor, which looks nasty and does things like
>   forcing a certain number of decimal places.  It has 12-character
>   station name restrictions.
There are two philosophical approaches to cave survey editors. The first
is the "Free Form" editor.  With this type of editor, you just enter the
data pretty much any way you want, adding commands at the begining of the
text that define the where and how the data will appear. The best example
I have seen of this type of editor is the one in David MacKenzie's Walls
program.
The second type of editor is the "Spreadsheet" style editor. COMPASS uses
this type of editor. Although you can configure the editor to match the
measurement order and units used, you are forced to enter the information
in specific cells, in a specific way.
I chose the second type of editor because there is more opportunity
for error checking at the point that the data is entered. For
example, with Free Form editors, the data is only checked when the
data is compiled. This means that you can accidently do things like
enter letters in a numeric field, enter contradictory depth gauge
information, etc. With a Free Form editor, these types of errors will
not get caught until the data is compiled.
The 12-character limit can be increased at any point. It is a compromise.
The more characters you have in the station name, the more memory you use
and the slower the processing.
> - Eye-candy: fancy viewer with all the twiddles, export of
>   fly-through videos and some sort of way of exporting to the
>   Web (presumably VRML/Java).
> It strikes me that Compass has featuritis, but I can't really make
> an informed decision not having tried it out.
This is interesting because most of the features in COMPASS come from
the users. I have yet to hear someone say they want less features.
Usually, they want more and more.
> The four major advantages which Spud will have over any of these other
> programs is that it will be multi-platform, free, open source and very
> easy to extend.
The current version of COMPASS is written in Delphi a Boland product.
Borland is working on a version of Delphi for Linx called Kylix.
Supposedly, you can take a program written for Windows and convert it
directly to Linx. If there really is an interest from cavers for a Linx
version, it may be fairly easy to do.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Tue, 10 Oct 2000 20:27:32 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Survex ideas.
X-Evolution: 0000005c-0010



On Tue, 10 Oct 2000, Larry Fish wrote:
Hello folks,

> The current version of COMPASS is written in Delphi a Boland product.
> Borland is working on a version of Delphi for Linx called Kylix.
> Supposedly, you can take a program written for Windows and convert it
> directly to Linx. If there really is an interest from cavers for a Linx
> version, it may be fairly easy to do.
Kylix is a "rapid development IDE" for C++ and Delphi on Linux machines. I
don't know how difficult it is to port a Delphi application like Compass to
Linux but I think it is possible. Compass can be used on Linux today with the
help of some DOS and Windows emulators but these are somewhat slow and there
are several bugs. See http://www.karst.net/Compass/complin.htm for details.
Because of the problems with Compass in an emulated environment and the lack
of really good native cave surveying software for Linux I think we should
take it seriously into consideration to port Compass to Linux. I expect some
problems in those parts which make use of OLE and other Windows specific
technologies (e.g. the interface between Cave Base and Cave Viewer) but on
Linux there are good alternatives. AFAIK Kylix uses Qt as GUI toolkit which
means that Kylix applications will fit seamless into KDE and the latter
offers powerful methods for data transfer.
I don't know how much Kylix will cost and what's about the license stuff (Qt
is since version 2.2 under the GNU GPL but only for open source projects and
Compass isn't OSS) but in my opinion Compass for Linux is exactly that thing
which the (under)world is waiting for.
If the porting of Compass becomes reality I am strongly interested in
supporting this effort.
Best regards
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Tue, 10 Oct 2000 14:30:57 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Survex ideas.
X-Evolution: 0000005e-0010



According to the Delphi web page, applications developed with Delphi
version 5, will port directly to Kylix. COMPASS is now written in Delphi-1
and with portions like CaveX and the DEM Reader written in Delphi-3. The
first step would be to port everything to Delphi-5. This shouldn't be too
much of a problem, although I have written my own memory managers for the
Win3.1 environment and they would have be rewritten. Actually, I have been
planning to upgrade everything to Delphi-5 for a long time because it
would dramatically speed up some applications like the Viewer.
This disadvantange of porting everything to Delphi-5 is it would no longer
work with Win3.1. I don't know how many cavers are still using Win3.1, but
I know of one Colorado caver who is and I suspect there are others. (I
have also heard that people in Eastern European countries are currently
using older computer and old versions of the operating systems.) Still, I
think that most of the lagging cavers could be nudged into the
Win95/98/ME/2000 world.
After that, it would simply be a matter of doing whatever conversion are
necessary to make everything work with Kylix. Roger is correct that
programs like CaveBase would not work because it needs OLE, a Windows
specific feature, to work. Also, CaveX, which uses the Windows only
DirectX, would not work.
Beyond these issues, I have some practical questions. Currently, I barely
have time to keep up with the Windows version of COMPASS. I don't think I
would have time to deal with porting and maintaining a whole other
version. I might be able to do it if both version could be maintained from
the same source code, however, as Roger points out, at the very least,
certain modules would have to be different to deal with the Windows
specific features. In addition, to get maxium preformance, you always want
to take advantage of certain operating system specific features. I would
guess that before too long, the Kylix version would gradually evolve so
that it was very different from the Windows version. Finally, there are
all the bugs, configuration problems, and version specific issues that go
with a different operating system. For example, there are several
different flavors of Linux, each one created by different companies. I
suspect that each version would have its own issues and it would create a
lot of work for me.
Also, I have questions about the viability of Linux in this environment.
Inspite of the fact that Linux is becoming very popular, Windows machines
still dominate. I use Linux and Unix everyday and I'm not sure I see any
advantage that would compel the average computer user to switch. Most
people say that Linux is more stable than Windows, but that has not been
my experience. A number of my friends who are programmer types have loaded
Linux on there system, played with it for a while and then gone back to
Windows or DOS. I think that part of Linux's popularity is a result of
everyone hating Bill Gates and Microsoft and although it is fun to hate
Bill, most cavers are not involved in that fight. My guess is that a few
cavers who are programmers or tinkerers will be using Linux, but the vast
majority will be in the Windows environment.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: "rob harper" 
Date: Thu, 12 Oct 2000 23:54:12 GMT
Subject: [compass-users] general questions
X-Evolution: 00000060-0010



Just a couple of quick questions.
1. How do you fix the entrance stations so that more than one cave can be
entered on the same survey and, possibly more useful, their relationship to
each other can be assessed.
2. Regarding Larry's comment that there are still people using Win 3.1.
There are also some people still just using the DOS Version. This is mainly
because it requires much less sophisticated, and hence cheaper, hardware.
Following on from this - has anyone any experience of trying to run Compass
from one of the little palmtop computers?
Cheers,
Rob Harper





To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Thu, 12 Oct 2000 22:46:50 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] general questions
X-Evolution: 00000062-0010



Rob,
Thanks for the letter.
> 1. How do you fix the entrance stations so that more than one cave can
> be entered on the same survey and, possibly more useful, their
> relationship to each other can be assessed.
COMPASS works with both single data files and Projects. Fixed stations
have to entered as a part of a Project. If you are just working with
a small cave that you have in a single data file, you have to create a
project that goes with it. Once you have created the project, you can
enter one or more fixed stations. In the case of single caves, you would
probably be fixing the location of the entrance. In the case, multiple
caves or multiple entrances, you may be fixing many more stations.
Remember, survey files in COMPASS can be connected to more than one
Project. For example, in the Williams Canyon area of Colorado, there are
more than 30 caves. As a result, I have several different projects. Some
cover the whole canyon, others cover subsections of the canyon and others
show surface trails and terrain. Many of the caves participate in more
than one Project.
I have attached a complete description of setting up fixed stations at the
end of this letter.
Larry
==========================================================================
Linking Cave Surveys To Fixed Stations Or Real-World Coordinates.
It is sometimes useful to set one or more stations in a cave to a fixed
location. When you do this, all other stations in the cave are positioned
relative to the fixed stations. This is useful for tying together multiple
caves. For example, you can tie the entrances of several caves together
and create plot of the whole system.
It also allows you locate the position of rooms and passages on the
surface using a GPS receiver. Finally, it is useful for making the surveys
more accurate by tying them to benchmarks and precision (theodolite)
surface surveys.
Fixed stations can be applied to any station in the cave. Usually, they
are applied to entrances, but if have a "cave radio" coordinates or fixed
coordinates, you can apply them to station in the interior of the cave.
GEOGRAPHIC REFERENCE SYSTEMS
The fixed location can be based on a geographic reference system such as
UTM and longitude and latitude. COMPASS uses UTM as it standard geographic
measurement unit, but you can also enter locations in Longitude and
Latitude. You can get this information from maps, benchmarks and from GPS
receivers. Once you have connected a cave to a geographic reference point,
all stations and locations within the cave will be relative to this
location. For example, if you tie the entrance of a cave to its UTM
coordinates, location of all passages will be in UTM. This means that you
can find the elevation above sealevel for any passage in the cave. You can
also find location of passage on the surface, by comparing the coordinates
of the passage to the coordinates from a GPS receiver.
LOCAL REFERENCE SYSTEMS
You can also use other coordinate systems. If you are not using Longitude,
Latitude or UTM, the fixed location can be based on the relative distance
between fixed location on the earth and a point in the cave. This type of
fixed location can be anything like a telephone pole, fence post, building
corner, a land surveyors mark, a section corner, a bench mark etc.
FIXED STATIONS AS LOOPS
If you have a cave with more than one fixed location and you "Close" the
cave, the Loop Closer will treat the intermediate stations as a loop. This
means that the Loop Closer will look for errors between the two fixed
station and "adjust" intermediate station to reduce the effect of the
error. Fixed Stations themselves are never adjusted or moved by as the
cave data is processed.
FIXED STATIONS AND PROJECTS
In COMPASS, Fixed Stations can only be entered at the "Project" level. The
advantage of this is that since COMPASS can have more than one Project for
the same data, you can have more than one set of geographic reference
points for a particular cave. For example, you could have one Project
where the cave is tied to a local reference and another where it is tied
to UTM.
STEP-BY-STEP INSTRUCTIONS
1. PROJECT MANAGER. Since Fixed Stations are created at the project level,
you must go to the Project Manager to enter a Fixed Station.
2. CREATING A PROJECT. The Project Manager can work with either individual
".DAT" survey files or ".MAK" project files. Since the fixed stations are
entered at the project level, you must have a Project File before you can
enter a Fixed Station. If you don't have a Project File, go the "Project
Creation Wizard" on the "File" menu of the Project Manager. Just follow
the instructions. If you already have a Project, you can use it.
3. OPENING THE PROJECT. Once you have Project File, open it with the
Project Manager. Remember, this must be a file with the "MAK" extension
like LECH.MAK. You cannot use "DAT" file to create a link. Once you have
opened the Project File, click on the "Expand Tree" button on the tool bar
at the top of the screen. This will expand the "Survey Tree" to show all
the "Nodes."
4. SELECTING SURVEY FILE. You now need to select the survey file that has
the station or stations you want to use as a Fixed Station. Just click on
and highlight the survey file in the "Tree." Now click on the "Edit Node"
button at the top of the screen. This will display the Node Editing dialog
box. Select the "Links Tab" at the bottom of the page. This will take you
to the Links Editor.
5. ENTERING LINKS. The Links Editor displays a grid that allows you to
enter the station name and the North, East and Vertical coordinates of the
station. Enter the coordinates of the station in the cells to the right of
the station name. The units can be feet or meters as selected by the check
boxes below. As an example:
A1  10.1  20.2   30.3
This illustrates a fixed station. The station A1 is fixed to the location
10.1 east, 20.2 north and 30.3 vertical from the fixed reference point.
The East, North and Vertical coordinates can be in either feet or meters.
The coordinates can be relative a local coordinate system or a world-wide
geographic reference system. COMPASS uses UTM as its internal reference
system, however it can convert to and from longitude and latitude. To use
geographic referenced coordinates, enable the "Use UTM" checkbox. If you
are using UTM, be sure to set a "Zone" number. Only one zone is allowed
for each cave file, but you can have different files in different zones.
You can enter up to 99 Links for each survey file.
If you want to enter the data in Longitude and Latitude, first highlight
the row in the grid for the station you want to set. Then, click on the
"Georeference" button. The program will then display a dialog box that
will allow you to convert back and forth between Longitude and Latitude
and UTM. At the bottom of the box will be the UTM coordinates in meters.
(Note: UTM is always displayed in meters on maps.) If you press the "UTM
to Long/Lat" button, the UTM coordinates will be converted to longitude
and latitude. Like wise, if press the "Long/Lat to UTM" button, the
longitude/latitude values will be converted to UTM. This way, you can
enter longitude and latitude values. You can also use the dialog to verify
you UTM coordinates by converting them to longitude and latitude and then
checking the map.
6. OTHER USES FOR LINKS. Links can also be used to "link" together
different caves or different subsections of caves. You can create this
type of link by entering the station name without the coordinates. In this
situation, the links tell COMPASS which stations are the connecting
stations between survey files. COMPASS then discards all other stations
except the links.
This kind of link has two purposes. First, when you link together two
separate caves, it is possible to have duplicate station names. Since
COMPASS discards all station except links, duplicate stations do not
interfere with each other. Second, because the majority of stations are
discarded between files, this kind of link saves memory. This was
important in the DOS environment, where memory was limited. Under Windows,
memory is virtually unlimited, so there is little need to conserve memory.
7. VIEWING GEO-REFERENCED COORDINATES. Once you have created a project
with geo-referenced coordinates, all surveys station in the cave are
relative to the fixed stations. You can view these locations in the
Viewer. If press the "Label Elevations" button on the Viewer Tool Bar, the
elevation will be relative to fixed stations. If you have set the
elevation of the fixed stations to the altitude above sea level, all the
station elevations will be displayed as their elevation above sea level.
You can also find any East, North or Vertical coordinate in or around the
cave using the Measuring Tool. Just select "Tools|Measure
Distances/Angles" from the menu bar.




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Christian Docksey 
Date: Fri, 13 Oct 2000 11:29:17 -0400
Subject: Re: [compass-users] general questions
X-Evolution: 00000064-0010



Hello Larry,
First let me say that it is really nice to be able to read and write
with the programmer himself. To get answers, problems solved, doubts
explained, etc, is really fantastic.
For my few queries:
1) Your previous reply: "This means that you
can find the elevation above sealevel for any passage in the cave. You
can
also find location of passage on the surface, by comparing the
coordinates
of the passage to the coordinates from a GPS receiver."
Can you make compass give the UTM (and/or lat/long)coordinates of any
particular station in a cave once it has been linked to a geographical
reference system? If one could get this readout, the advantages are
enormous! We many times discover a cave, and want to see if it connects
to another cave nearby. Also, when a chimney is found in a cave, one
could look for a possible connection to the surface by looking on the
surface with GPS coordinates given by "Compass". Anyway, you can imagine
the benefits of this. If "Compass" can't now, would it be possible in
next version??
2)Since trying to keep "Compass" for windows compatible with DOS and 3.1
limits the power of compass in many ways (and its expansion), wouldn't
you consider separating the versions; just as you have a DOS version and
a windows version, you would have a DOS, a 3.1 and a 98/2000 version
which would permit all sorts of possibilities. As a note to this, would
you find it easier to use windows elements to simplify your work and
mantain a known interface. I mean it in the sense that you wouldn't have
to create buttons, menus, etc, because you would use those of windows. I
think this is what Winkarst has done.
3)I agree that the information section in the printout should be more
extensive. I know you want to make a nice feature of this. But maybe in
the meanwhile one could have the option of having, say, 6 to 8 cells in
which one could type in any info one wishes (as text). No interpretation
necessary by "Compass". Maybe this info could be put in at the printing
command stage. Anyway,to me, more important than this is to be able to
have a more sophisticated North arrow. Perhaps larger and not in its
current position, but more within the map drawn by compass. Ideally, it
could be positioned where one wanted by using a menu maybe. Same goes
with that extra info. Too complicated??
Also very necessary, is to have a scale bar outputted, whether printed
out or exported. I know you have the scale info (say 1:320) but to have
the scale bar (as in Winkarst) printed or exported allows one to scale
the whole map in another application until it fits the desired size. The
scale bar would change size along with the cave map, allowing a precise
scaling info to be always available. Please don't think I'm comparing
Compass to Winkarst. It's just that it does have some nice features too
(as many progs have) and why not take advantage of some of these ideas?
I have one or two other suggestions and ideas, but I think you may say,
maybe this is enough for one day!
Once again let me congratulate you for your work on this software and
let us hope that it becomes the undoubted software of choice for
everyone.
warm regards...
Christian
Larry Fish wrote:
>
> Rob,
>
> Thanks for the letter.
>
> > 1. How do you fix the entrance stations so that more than one cave
> can
> > be entered on the same survey and, possibly more useful, their
> > relationship to each other can be assessed.
>
> COMPASS works with both single data files and Projects. Fixed stations
>
> have to entered as a part of a Project. If you are just working with
> a small cave that you have in a single data file, you have to create a
>
> project that goes with it. Once you have created the project, you can
> enter one or more fixed stations. In the case of single caves, you
> would
> probably be fixing the location of the entrance. In the case, multiple
>
> caves or multiple entrances, you may be fixing many more stations.
>
> Remember, survey files in COMPASS can be connected to more than one
> Project. For example, in the Williams Canyon area of Colorado, there
> are
> more than 30 caves. As a result, I have several different projects.
> Some
> cover the whole canyon, others cover subsections of the canyon and
> others
> show surface trails and terrain. Many of the caves participate in more
>
> than one Project.
>
> I have attached a complete description of setting up fixed stations at
> the
> end of this letter.
>
> Larry
>
>
> =========================================================================
>
> Linking Cave Surveys To Fixed Stations Or Real-World Coordinates.
>
> It is sometimes useful to set one or more stations in a cave to a
> fixed
> location. When you do this, all other stations in the cave are
> positioned
> relative to the fixed stations. This is useful for tying together
> multiple
> caves. For example, you can tie the entrances of several caves
> together
> and create plot of the whole system.
>
> It also allows you locate the position of rooms and passages on the
> surface using a GPS receiver. Finally, it is useful for making the
> surveys
> more accurate by tying them to benchmarks and precision (theodolite)
> surface surveys.
>
> Fixed stations can be applied to any station in the cave. Usually,
> they
> are applied to entrances, but if have a "cave radio" coordinates or
> fixed
> coordinates, you can apply them to station in the interior of the
> cave.
>
> GEOGRAPHIC REFERENCE SYSTEMS
>
> The fixed location can be based on a geographic reference system such
> as
> UTM and longitude and latitude. COMPASS uses UTM as it standard
> geographic
> measurement unit, but you can also enter locations in Longitude and
> Latitude. You can get this information from maps, benchmarks and from
> GPS
> receivers. Once you have connected a cave to a geographic reference
> point,
> all stations and locations within the cave will be relative to this
> location. For example, if you tie the entrance of a cave to its UTM
> coordinates, location of all passages will be in UTM. This means that
> you
> can find the elevation above sealevel for any passage in the cave. You
> can
> also find location of passage on the surface, by comparing the
> coordinates
> of the passage to the coordinates from a GPS receiver.
>
> LOCAL REFERENCE SYSTEMS
>
> You can also use other coordinate systems. If you are not using
> Longitude,
> Latitude or UTM, the fixed location can be based on the relative
> distance
> between fixed location on the earth and a point in the cave. This type
> of
> fixed location can be anything like a telephone pole, fence post,
> building
> corner, a land surveyors mark, a section corner, a bench mark etc.
>
> FIXED STATIONS AS LOOPS
>
> If you have a cave with more than one fixed location and you "Close"
> the
> cave, the Loop Closer will treat the intermediate stations as a loop.
> This
> means that the Loop Closer will look for errors between the two fixed
> station and "adjust" intermediate station to reduce the effect of the
> error. Fixed Stations themselves are never adjusted or moved by as the
>
> cave data is processed.
>
> FIXED STATIONS AND PROJECTS
>
> In COMPASS, Fixed Stations can only be entered at the "Project" level.
> The
> advantage of this is that since COMPASS can have more than one Project
> for
> the same data, you can have more than one set of geographic reference
> points for a particular cave. For example, you could have one Project
> where the cave is tied to a local reference and another where it is
> tied
> to UTM.
>
> STEP-BY-STEP INSTRUCTIONS
>
> 1. PROJECT MANAGER. Since Fixed Stations are created at the project
> level,
> you must go to the Project Manager to enter a Fixed Station.
>
> 2. CREATING A PROJECT. The Project Manager can work with either
> individual
> ".DAT" survey files or ".MAK" project files. Since the fixed stations
> are
> entered at the project level, you must have a Project File before you
> can
> enter a Fixed Station. If you don't have a Project File, go the
> "Project
> Creation Wizard" on the "File" menu of the Project Manager. Just
> follow
> the instructions. If you already have a Project, you can use it.
>
> 3. OPENING THE PROJECT. Once you have Project File, open it with the
> Project Manager. Remember, this must be a file with the "MAK"
> extension
> like LECH.MAK. You cannot use "DAT" file to create a link. Once you
> have
> opened the Project File, click on the "Expand Tree" button on the tool
> bar
> at the top of the screen. This will expand the "Survey Tree" to show
> all
> the "Nodes."
>
> 4. SELECTING SURVEY FILE. You now need to select the survey file that
> has
> the station or stations you want to use as a Fixed Station. Just click
> on
> and highlight the survey file in the "Tree." Now click on the "Edit
> Node"
> button at the top of the screen. This will display the Node Editing
> dialog
> box. Select the "Links Tab" at the bottom of the page. This will take
> you
> to the Links Editor.
>
> 5. ENTERING LINKS. The Links Editor displays a grid that allows you to
>
> enter the station name and the North, East and Vertical coordinates of
> the
> station. Enter the coordinates of the station in the cells to the
> right of
> the station name. The units can be feet or meters as selected by the
> check
> boxes below. As an example:
>
> A1  10.1  20.2   30.3
>
> This illustrates a fixed station. The station A1 is fixed to the
> location
> 10.1 east, 20.2 north and 30.3 vertical from the fixed reference
> point.
>
> The East, North and Vertical coordinates can be in either feet or
> meters.
> The coordinates can be relative a local coordinate system or a
> world-wide
> geographic reference system. COMPASS uses UTM as its internal
> reference
> system, however it can convert to and from longitude and latitude. To
> use
> geographic referenced coordinates, enable the "Use UTM" checkbox. If
> you
> are using UTM, be sure to set a "Zone" number. Only one zone is
> allowed
> for each cave file, but you can have different files in different
> zones.
> You can enter up to 99 Links for each survey file.
>
> If you want to enter the data in Longitude and Latitude, first
> highlight
> the row in the grid for the station you want to set. Then, click on
> the
> "Georeference" button. The program will then display a dialog box that
>
> will allow you to convert back and forth between Longitude and
> Latitude
> and UTM. At the bottom of the box will be the UTM coordinates in
> meters.
> (Note: UTM is always displayed in meters on maps.) If you press the
> "UTM
> to Long/Lat" button, the UTM coordinates will be converted to
> longitude
> and latitude. Like wise, if press the "Long/Lat to UTM" button, the
> longitude/latitude values will be converted to UTM. This way, you can
> enter longitude and latitude values. You can also use the dialog to
> verify
> you UTM coordinates by converting them to longitude and latitude and
> then
> checking the map.
>
> 6. OTHER USES FOR LINKS. Links can also be used to "link" together
> different caves or different subsections of caves. You can create this
>
> type of link by entering the station name without the coordinates. In
> this
> situation, the links tell COMPASS which stations are the connecting
> stations between survey files. COMPASS then discards all other
> stations
> except the links.
>
> This kind of link has two purposes. First, when you link together two
> separate caves, it is possible to have duplicate station names. Since
> COMPASS discards all station except links, duplicate stations do not
> interfere with each other. Second, because the majority of stations
> are
> discarded between files, this kind of link saves memory. This was
> important in the DOS environment, where memory was limited. Under
> Windows,
> memory is virtually unlimited, so there is little need to conserve
> memory.
>
> 7. VIEWING GEO-REFERENCED COORDINATES. Once you have created a project
>
> with geo-referenced coordinates, all surveys station in the cave are
> relative to the fixed stations. You can view these locations in the
> Viewer. If press the "Label Elevations" button on the Viewer Tool Bar,
> the
> elevation will be relative to fixed stations. If you have set the
> elevation of the fixed stations to the altitude above sea level, all
> the
> station elevations will be displayed as their elevation above sea
> level.
> You can also find any East, North or Vertical coordinate in or around
> the
> cave using the Measuring Tool. Just select "Tools|Measure
> Distances/Angles" from the menu bar.
>
>
>




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Fri, 13 Oct 2000 20:32:26 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] general questions
X-Evolution: 00000066-0010



On Thu, 12 Oct 2000, rob harper wrote:
Hello Rob,
nice to meet you here!

> Following on from this - has anyone any experience of trying to run Compass
> from one of the little palmtop computers?
No, I don't have any experiences with palmtop computers but one suggestion I
can offer.
Microsoft made a special OS for palmtops, called "Windows CE". This product
was a desaster because it was too bulky and slow for little palmtop PCs and
only useful on machines with colour screens. Anyway, Compass will probably
run on Windows CE but I'm not sure about this because the hardware of
palmtops differs from that of common desktop machines.
Some weeks ago on our national caver convention one guy presented a
surveying software with the name "Auriga" which runs on a Palm Pilot and has
a connector kit to an electronic compass and clinometer. You can also enter
the data manually. Auriga can export its data in a Toporobot compatible
format which can be converted to Compass. Auriga also has a home page but I
don't have an URL at hand. The author of Auriga is Martin Melzer or Metzler
(or so) so you may find the web page with the help of a search engine.
Lucky caving!
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Sat, 14 Oct 2000 03:41:42 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] general questions
X-Evolution: 00000068-0010



Christian,
> First let me say that it is really nice to be able to read and write
> with the programmer himself. To get answers, problems solved, doubts
> explained, etc, is really fantastic.
Actually, it works out very nicely for me. I usually get several
COMPASS questions a week. Before the Mailing List, only me and the
questioner got to see the question and the answer. Now everybody gets
to see them and they are archived so people who come along later can
benifit from the information.
> Can you make compass give the UTM (and/or lat/long)coordinates of any
> particular station in a cave once it has been linked to a
> geographical reference system? If one could get this readout, the
> advantages are enormous!
Unless I don't understand your suggestion, you can already do this for
UTM. If you fix one or more stations to UTM or Long/Lat, the location
of each station in the cave is available in UTM.
The UTM information is available in two places. The first place is in
the Compiler. (From the Project Manager, you press the "Compile Only
(Blunder/Stats)" button.) The information is under the "View|Cave
Statistics" menu option in the Compiler. Here is a sample of the UTM
data for Fulford Cave:
Station COORDINATES:
Index Station   Parent           east         north   vertical
===============================================================
0          A1      Ent    359000.000m. 4372000.000m. 3048.000m.
1          A2       A1    359005.238m. 4372002.612m. 3044.888m.
2          A3       A2    359007.088m. 4372009.283m. 3042.771m.
The other place you can find UTM coordinates is in the Viewer. If you
have a Geo-referenced cave, the measurements in the "Tools|Measure
Distance/Angles" will be in UTM.
COMPASS uses UTM as the standard for geo-referenced coordinates. If
you enter coordinates in Lat/Long, they are converted to UTM. The
reason for this is that Lat/Long is a spherical coordinate system and
inorder to plot the cave, everything has to be in cartesian
coordinates. I suppose COMPASS could carry its measurements in
Long/Lat, but conversion between Long/Lat is very complicated and
slow. This is because the earth's surface is not a true sphere, but
more like a lumpy pear-shaped object. This means that it takes a
couple hundred lines of computer code to do the conversion. The
result is that the conversion is too slow to do on-the-fly while
plotting or doing anything that requires speed.
> 2) Since trying to keep "Compass" for windows compatible with DOS and
> 3.1 limits the power of compass in many ways (and its expansion),
> wouldn't you consider separating the versions; just as you have a DOS
> version and a windows version, you would have a DOS, a 3.1 and a
> 98/2000 version which would permit all sorts of possibilities.
The general plan is to eventually move everthing over to the 32 bit
environment without maintaining two versions. I might freeze the 16
bit version and leave it available for anyone who can't live without
Win3.1. The DEM Reader and CaveX are already 32 bit applications and
the other would be easy to do, mostly just a few keystrokes. However
there is really not that much advantage for most programs in 32 bit
environment. It wouldn't make much difference for the Project
Manager, Compiler, Loop Closer, and Editor. The Viewer is the only
program that would be enhanced using 32 bits. I figure that the
drawing speed could be 5 to 10 times faster.
> 3) I agree that the information section in the printout should be
> more extensive. I know you want to make a nice feature of this. But
> maybe in the meanwhile one could have the option of having, say, 6 to
> 8 cells in which one could type in any info one wishes (as text). No
> interpretation necessary by "Compass".
I wish there was a way to do this with "no interpretion necessary."
Things always sound simple when you describe a feature like
this, but in practice they get pretty complicated. First, nobody is
going to be satisfied without having at least a few options. For example,
everyone is going to want to be able to choose the fonts, colors and
sizes. If the text is going to go in a "cell," the cell will have to
be resizable and the text will have to be able wrap so it fills the
cell. The best way to do this is with the mouse like you can do in a
drawing program like Publisher. So the program would have to be able
to tell when you are clicking on a "cell" or when you are clicking on
the cave. In addition, the cell and text have to scale and display
properly both on the screen and on the printer. People are also going to
want the choice of having a border around the cell and will need to
select both the color and the thickness of the border. Finally, you
have to find a way to save the information so you don't have re-type
it everytime you want to print the map.
> Maybe this info could be put
> in at the printing command stage. Anyway,to me, more important than
> this is to be able to have a more sophisticated North arrow. Perhaps
> larger and not in its current position, but more within the map drawn
> by compass. Ideally, it could be positioned where one wanted by using
> a menu maybe. Same goes with that extra info. Too complicated??
Not too complicated, just a lot of work to really do it right. Again, I
have general plans to do something like this, but it will probably be a
while. Besides, most drawing programs already support most of these
features, alot of people are generating their finished maps by exporting
the plot to a drawing program.
> Also very necessary, is to have a scale bar outputted, whether
> printed out or exported. I know you have the scale info (say 1:320)
> but to have the scale bar (as in Winkarst) printed or exported allows
> one to scale the whole map in another application until it fits the
> desired size. The scale bar would change size along with the cave
> map, allowing a precise scaling info to be always available.
There is already a scale bar available as part of the legend. I think it
works exactly the way it should to provide a visual scale for the plot. I
should point out that Karst and COMPASS's scale bars work differently. The
Karst scale bar chooses a fixed number units to display and then the scale
bar gets longer and shorter depending on the scale.
The COMPASS scale bar, on the other hand, is a fixed length of one inch or
two centimeters depending on what units you are using. As the scale
changes, the length of the scale bar stays the same, but the units on the
bar change.
Since most people are thinking in terms of scaling ratios like
feet-per-inch, centimeters-per-meter, it makes the most sense to have the
scale bar match length match the scale we are using. This is also the
standard way that topo maps are done. For example, the 7.5 minute
quadrangles shows a "feet" scale bar with inch-long segments and
"kilometer" bar with two-centimeter segments.
Thanks for your thoughts and suggestions.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Christian Docksey 
Date: Sat, 14 Oct 2000 14:18:42 -0400
Subject: Re: [compass-users] general questions
X-Evolution: 0000006a-0010



Dear Roger,
I'm very interested in the "Auriga" porject, since my caving group is
working on something similar with respect to use of digital clino's,
compasses and altimeters. We intend to use them on fixed height "Sticks"
for surveying purposes to improve accuracy and the time taken to survey
a cave. I have searched by auriga, by his name and even by the "national
caver convention" but foind no link whatsoever. Is there any more info
you could give me as to locate the web page (or e-mail address).
Thanks a lot..
Christian
Roger Schuster wrote:
> On Thu, 12 Oct 2000, rob harper wrote:
>
> Hello Rob,
>
> nice to meet you here!
>
> > Following on from this - has anyone any experience of trying to run
> Compass
> > from one of the little palmtop computers?
>
> No, I don't have any experiences with palmtop computers but one
> suggestion I
> can offer.
>
> Microsoft made a special OS for palmtops, called "Windows CE". This
> product
> was a desaster because it was too bulky and slow for little palmtop
> PCs and
> only useful on machines with colour screens. Anyway, Compass will
> probably
> run on Windows CE but I'm not sure about this because the hardware of
> palmtops differs from that of common desktop machines.
>
> Some weeks ago on our national caver convention one guy presented a
> surveying software with the name "Auriga" which runs on a Palm Pilot
> and has
> a connector kit to an electronic compass and clinometer. You can also
> enter
> the data manually. Auriga can export its data in a Toporobot
> compatible
> format which can be converted to Compass. Auriga also has a home page
> but I
> don't have an URL at hand. The author of Auriga is Martin Melzer or
> Metzler
> (or so) so you may find the web page with the help of a search engine.
>
> Lucky caving!
>
> Roger
> --
> Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
>                 Cavepage http://www.karst.net
>
>
>




To: users group compass 
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Wed, 1 Nov 2000 22:25:30 -0700 (MST)
Subject: [compass-users] New COMPASS release
X-Evolution: 0000006c-0010



====================================================================
############# New COMPASS Cave Survey Software Release #############
====================================================================
I would like to annouce a new release of the cave survey software package
COMPASS. There have been more than 25 major improvements and bug fixes.
1. COMPASS USERS WEB PAGE. The COMPASS web page has a separate
section that has links to the web pages of COMPASS user who are
display cave related information.
2. COMPASS CD-ROM. The complete COMPASS software package and
accessories are now available on CD-ROM. It contains all software and
documentation plus other materials to large to post on the internet
or put on floppy disk. Currently, there are 45 programs and 300 files
totaling more than 60 megabytes of data. Even if all this information
were on the internet, it would require more than 3 hours to download
on a 56K modem. The COMPASS CD is ideal for cavers who are traveling
because CDs are more durable than floppy disks and less suseptable to
damage from magnetic fields, airport X-Ray machines etc.
3. Quad Map Settings. The Viewer now saves all the Quad Map settings
with the "Views" information. This means that you can set up any
number of quad map patterns and save them for later recall.
4. SEF Import and Export. In the past, you had to use a DOS program to
import or export COMPASS files. The Project Manager now supports
import and export to SEF file.
5. Accuracy. Several changes have been made to improve the accuracy
and resolution of all COMPASS programs. First, COMPASS now supports
24 geodetic formats for geographic coordinates like longitude,
latitude, and UTM. In addition, data is now stored with more digits
of accuracy, giving at least 1.5 mm or 0.06 inch resolution. Finally,
I have cleared up a descrepancy between the the "International Foot"
and the "US Survey Foot" which caused small errors with some UTM
measurements.
6. New Statistics. COMPASS now reports a variety of new statical
information about the cave. The Compiler now caculated the cave
volume based on passage diameter and shot length. It also calculates
thes Average Passage Diameter. This is a measure of the size of the
passage in the cave. Another statistic that is now available is
Average Inclination. This gives a general estimate of how vertical
the cave is. The final statistic in this group is Difficulty. It
combines the Average Passage Diameter and Inclination to give an
estimate of difficult it is to move through the cave.
In addition to this set of statistics, the Compiler now list the
overall average STD for all the loops in the cave. This gives you a
single number that rates the overall quality of all the loops in the
cave. Finally, the Compiler includes a set of Survey Specific
statistics. This includes a list of each survey in the cave along
with the length, number of shots and average shot length for each
survey. To facilitate working with larger systems, the Compiler now
allows you to search for any string in the Statistics and Blunder
Detection section. This makes it easier to find loops, stations,
shots, and surveys in the statistics.
7. CaveBase. The Viewer now supports displaying database values as
numerical values as well as varying symbol sizes. Numbers can be in
fixed or scientific notation format, with complete control over the
number of digits. CaveBase now has an option that allows you to
encode a date as a part of the query.
8. DXF Export. There are now DXF export features that allows more parts
of the drawing to be exported as separate layers. You can now
associate the Passage Wall modeling and the Station Labels with each
Survey layer. This enables you to isolate specific parts of the cave
for DXF export.
9. Spreadsheet Import and Export. The Editor now uses Tabs as the
delimiter when it Copys, Cuts, or Pastes to and from the Windows
Clipboard. This makes it more compatable with external Windows
programs like Excel.
10. Usability Features. The Editor allows you to search through a
survey file for the surveys where a specific station is found. You
can now double click on any of the surveys that are found and the
program will automatically highlight the specific survey. This makes
it easy to find and edit that survey. In addition, a new option has
been added that puts the highlight on the From Station whenever a new
shot is created. This makes it easy to override the Automatic Station
Sequencing feature and enter a different Station Name.
11. Miscellaneous. The Survey Name fields has been increased from 8 to 12
characters. The Viewer now allows you to mark the passage walls from
the orientation of the TO station.
=========================================================================
HOW TO GET COMPASS
COMPASS is a shareware product. You can try it out free. If you like it
and want to use it, you must register. If you don't like it, then don't
use it and pay nothing.
The registration cost is $25.00 for the DOS version and $25 for the
Windows version. Combined registration is $38. Registration for the data
base program is $15 for previously registered individual COMPASS users.
For new registrations the database program is $20 for private individuals.
For instituations, businesses, and government agencies, the database
registration is $50. Special group rates, and support programs are
available.
COMPASS is available free of charge for evaluation purposes. Copies are
available through the COMPASS World Wide Web page at:
     http://www.fountainware.com/compass
The Web Page also has full color screen images of some of the most
important features. It also has connections to other cave related WWW
pages including links to the USGS DEM files. The whole COMPASS package
has hundreds of features and a full discription of the software is beyond
the scope of this document. However, the COMPASS Web Page also has a
complete and detailed description of all the features and options.
You can also get an evaluation copy of the software directly from me for
$10.00 to cover materials and handling. If you are a registered user you
can get an updated version directly from me for only $5.00. My mailing
address is:
        Larry Fish
        123 E. Arkansas
        Denver CO 80210
Please specify DOS and/or Windows and disk size. If you like the
software, please register. You will receive notification of updates and
other special offers.

Thanks,
Larry Fish




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: "Stuart W. Marlatt" 
Date: Thu, 02 Nov 2000 17:28:17 -0000
Subject: [compass-users] Re: New COMPASS release
X-Evolution: 0000006e-0010



Hi Larry (et al)
  The new features sound good. The passage volume is a very nice
addition, for those of us who are doing winds modeling. It will
admittedly be a pretty coarse estimate, but should at least be in
the right range.
  One additional feature you might want to add sometime: my own cave
database program calculates the projected horizontal surface area
bounded by the cave planform (simply using min/max lateral extent and
assuming a rectangular area, unless I override for special cases).
Using the survey data and some perimeter tracing routine (limiting
interior angles, for instance), you could calculate the planform
area more accurately. The parameter I find most interesting is the
ratio of total length to planform area.
  Keep up the good work!
Stuart Marlatt
--- In compass-users at egroups.com, Larry Fish  wrote:
>
> ====================================================================
> ############# New COMPASS Cave Survey Software Release #############
> ====================================================================
>
> I would like to annouce a new release of the cave survey software
package
> COMPASS. There have been more than 25 major improvements and bug
fixes.
>
> 1. COMPASS USERS WEB PAGE. The COMPASS web page has a separate
> section that has links to the web pages of COMPASS user who are
> display cave related information.
>
> 2. COMPASS CD-ROM. The complete COMPASS software package and
> accessories are now available on CD-ROM. It contains all software
and
> documentation plus other materials to large to post on the internet
> or put on floppy disk. Currently, there are 45 programs and 300
files
> totaling more than 60 megabytes of data. Even if all this
information
> were on the internet, it would require more than 3 hours to download
> on a 56K modem. The COMPASS CD is ideal for cavers who are traveling
> because CDs are more durable than floppy disks and less suseptable
to
> damage from magnetic fields, airport X-Ray machines etc.
>
> 3. Quad Map Settings. The Viewer now saves all the Quad Map settings
> with the "Views" information. This means that you can set up any
> number of quad map patterns and save them for later recall.
>
> 4. SEF Import and Export. In the past, you had to use a DOS program
to
> import or export COMPASS files. The Project Manager now supports
> import and export to SEF file.
>
> 5. Accuracy. Several changes have been made to improve the accuracy
> and resolution of all COMPASS programs. First, COMPASS now supports
> 24 geodetic formats for geographic coordinates like longitude,
> latitude, and UTM. In addition, data is now stored with more digits
> of accuracy, giving at least 1.5 mm or 0.06 inch resolution.
Finally,
> I have cleared up a descrepancy between the the "International Foot"
> and the "US Survey Foot" which caused small errors with some UTM
> measurements.
>
> 6. New Statistics. COMPASS now reports a variety of new statical
> information about the cave. The Compiler now caculated the cave
> volume based on passage diameter and shot length. It also calculates
> thes Average Passage Diameter. This is a measure of the size of the
> passage in the cave. Another statistic that is now available is
> Average Inclination. This gives a general estimate of how vertical
> the cave is. The final statistic in this group is Difficulty. It
> combines the Average Passage Diameter and Inclination to give an
> estimate of difficult it is to move through the cave.
>
> In addition to this set of statistics, the Compiler now list the
> overall average STD for all the loops in the cave. This gives you a
> single number that rates the overall quality of all the loops in the
> cave. Finally, the Compiler includes a set of Survey Specific
> statistics. This includes a list of each survey in the cave along
> with the length, number of shots and average shot length for each
> survey. To facilitate working with larger systems, the Compiler now
> allows you to search for any string in the Statistics and Blunder
> Detection section. This makes it easier to find loops, stations,
> shots, and surveys in the statistics.
>
> 7. CaveBase. The Viewer now supports displaying database values as
> numerical values as well as varying symbol sizes. Numbers can be in
> fixed or scientific notation format, with complete control over the
> number of digits. CaveBase now has an option that allows you to
> encode a date as a part of the query.
>
> 8. DXF Export. There are now DXF export features that allows more
parts
> of the drawing to be exported as separate layers. You can now
> associate the Passage Wall modeling and the Station Labels with each
> Survey layer. This enables you to isolate specific parts of the cave
> for DXF export.
>
> 9. Spreadsheet Import and Export. The Editor now uses Tabs as the
> delimiter when it Copys, Cuts, or Pastes to and from the Windows
> Clipboard. This makes it more compatable with external Windows
> programs like Excel.
>
> 10. Usability Features. The Editor allows you to search through a
> survey file for the surveys where a specific station is found. You
> can now double click on any of the surveys that are found and the
> program will automatically highlight the specific survey. This makes
> it easy to find and edit that survey. In addition, a new option has
> been added that puts the highlight on the From Station whenever a
new
> shot is created. This makes it easy to override the Automatic
Station
> Sequencing feature and enter a different Station Name.
>
> 11. Miscellaneous. The Survey Name fields has been increased from 8
to 12
> characters. The Viewer now allows you to mark the passage walls from
> the orientation of the TO station.
>
>
>
==================================================
=======================
>
> HOW TO GET COMPASS
>
> COMPASS is a shareware product. You can try it out free. If you like
it
> and want to use it, you must register. If you don't like it, then
don't
> use it and pay nothing.
>
> The registration cost is $25.00 for the DOS version and $25 for the
> Windows version. Combined registration is $38. Registration for the
data
> base program is $15 for previously registered individual COMPASS
users.
> For new registrations the database program is $20 for private
individuals.
> For instituations, businesses, and government agencies, the database
> registration is $50. Special group rates, and support programs are
> available.
>
> COMPASS is available free of charge for evaluation purposes. Copies
are
> available through the COMPASS World Wide Web page at:
>
>      http://www.fountainware.com/compass
>
> The Web Page also has full color screen images of some of the most
> important features. It also has connections to other cave related
WWW
> pages including links to the USGS DEM files. The whole COMPASS
package
> has hundreds of features and a full discription of the software is
beyond
> the scope of this document. However, the COMPASS Web Page also has a
> complete and detailed description of all the features and options.
>
> You can also get an evaluation copy of the software directly from me
for
> $10.00 to cover materials and handling. If you are a registered user
you
> can get an updated version directly from me for only $5.00. My
mailing
> address is:
>
>         Larry Fish
>         123 E. Arkansas
>         Denver CO 80210
>
> Please specify DOS and/or Windows and disk size. If you like the
> software, please register. You will receive notification of updates
and
> other special offers.
>

>
> Thanks,
>
> Larry Fish




To: users group compass 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Fri, 3 Nov 2000 12:01:23 +0100 (CET)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] New COMPASS release
X-Evolution: 00000070-0010



Hello cavers,
the Compass mirror site in Europe, http://www.karst.net , is now also up to
date. Cavers on this side of the Atlantic ocean may download the new Compass
products from here.
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Tue, 7 Nov 2000 12:05:53 -0700 (MST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Re: New COMPASS release
X-Evolution: 00000072-0010



Stuart,
>   One additional feature you might want to add sometime: my own cave
> database program calculates the projected horizontal surface area
> bounded by the cave planform (simply using min/max lateral extent and
> assuming a rectangular area, unless I override for special cases).
I took your idea and have added a measurement of what you call the
Platform Area. I just used the rectangular area. I suppose to do it
right, I really should find the Convex Hull of the cave, but that seems
like quite a bit of work. Besides, I'm not sure how to calculate the area
of convex hull. (I assume that is probably some intergal that will do it,
but....)
I also have added a calculation of the rectangular volume of the rock
enclosing the cave. Finally, I show the passage density as a percentage of
the rock volume that is passage.
If you have any more ideas, let me know. It is always fun to add new
features.
Larry




To: "'compass-users at egroups.com'" 
From: "Ganter, John H" 
Date: Wed, 8 Nov 2000 14:00:10 -0700
Subject: [compass-users] A note on Carto for cave sketch morphing
X-Evolution: 00000074-0010



Carto is a program that "morphs" sketches to overlay a survey traverse. The
map-drawing part of Carto is not ready for serious use, but I have now done
a fairly complete test of Compass data reduction, Carto morphing, and
Freehand drawing.
The experiment / tutorial / tour is at
http://www.psc-cavers.org/carto/ganter/tutorial/default.htm
Note that the whole article contains about 800Kb of graphics. I know this
will be a long download for some, but it is hard to talk about Carto without
lots of graphics.
For more info on Carto, go to http://www.psc-cavers.org then choose Carto
from the list on the left
I first tried Carto out last summer on a 120mhz Pentium laptop with 32 megs
of RAM and Win95. It worked fine for a small test project.
Installing Carto is a little more involved then normal Windows programs.
Carto is a Java Application, not a Java Applet that runs inside a web
browser. So you first need to install the Java Runtime Environment (JRE),
which is fairly trivial. The good news is the JRE is fast and extremely
stable. I have had no GPFs, blue screens of death, DLL Hell, etc. problems.
Wish I could say the same for "pure" Windows programs. I'm thinking about
writing up an illustrated guide to installation; let me know if this would
be helpful.
Let me know if you have any comments or questions. I think Carto has a lot
of potential to help cave mappers, and I would like to assist others in
evaluating it for their own uses.
--John Ganter, ganter at etrademail.com




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Evaristo QUIROGA 
Date: Wed, 29 Nov 2000 19:21:13 +0100
Subject: [compass-users] Copy and Past problem
X-Evolution: 00000076-0010



Dear Compass-users,
I need import to Compass several Excell files with data  from the 80
and 90 Arañonera system  campaigns (a system with  35 Km of long and
1179 m of depth). This files have more to 8000 shots.
I have a problem with Copy and Paste through the Windows Clipboard. My
length data are in meters, and the Compass settings in meters too, but
when I Past the Rows the lengths are automatically converted in feets.
Best regards and thanks for your help.
Evaristo QUIROGA
ESPELEO CLUB DE GRÀCIA (Barcelona, Spain)




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Wed, 29 Nov 2000 14:42:11 -0700 (MST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Copy and Past problem
X-Evolution: 00000078-0010



Evaristo,
The Copy, Cut and Paste options in COMPASS are standardized around
feet and degree units. They have to be standardized, so that you can
copy between different copies of the Editor running at the same time.
If I made it so that you could copy and paste using different units,
there would be a high chance of corrupting the data.
There are two solutions to your problem. The first is to use the
"Repair Surveys" option. After you have copied the data into the
Editor, push the "Repair Survey" button or select "Block|Repair
Shots" from the menu bar. Next, select the "Linear" Page, and enable
the "Repair Tape" and "Repair UDRL" options. Finally, select the
"Entered Feet, Was Meters" option and click the "Okay" button. This
will convert all the measurements to meters.
If you have already copied some of the data, you can use this method to
fix it at anytime. This could save you some time.
The second method is to use the capabilities of your spreadsheet to
convert all the linear measurements to feet and then copy the
information to COMPASS. You can do this by dividing each linear
measurement by 0.3048. Once you do this, COMPASS will have the
correct information and can display it in meters, feet or any other
units.
I little background information would probably be useful here.
COMPASS stores all the information in the survey files in one set of
units. These units are feet and degrees. Each survey has a set
of flags that tells how the data was originally entered or how the
user wants it displayed and edited. This way, when you view the data or
edit the data, it is always in the units you prefer.
It might seem that it would be better to store all the data in the
original units. However, if you do that, there a much greater chance
of error and processing the data is much slower. For example, if you
enter the compass data in "Quads", (where W25W is the same as 335
degrees), the programs would have to test and convert the data on the
fly. This would slow down the processing and if an error is found
were in the Quads format, processing would have to stop. By storing
the data in a fixed format, the data is tested as it is entered and
you always know you are processing valid numbers.
I'm sorry that the conversion process is complicated. I deal with
converting cave data from one format to another all the time and there is
always some complication.
If you have any other questions or thoughts, feel free to write.
Larry
> I need import to Compass several Excell files with data  from the 80
> and 90 Arañonera system  campaigns (a system with  35 Km of long and
> 1179 m of depth). This files have more to 8000 shots.
>
> I have a problem with Copy and Paste through the Windows Clipboard. My
> length data are in meters, and the Compass settings in meters too, but
> when I Past the Rows the lengths are automatically converted in feets.




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Evaristo QUIROGA 
Date: Thu, 30 Nov 2000 11:24:45 +0100
Subject: [compass-users] Caves in UTM coordinates
X-Evolution: 0000007a-0010



Dear Larry,
Thanks for yours solutions to my Copy and Paste problem.
Now I have another questions.
Question 1:  I like to plot my cave in UTM. I know how to compensate the
declination in the survey Heading, and how to fix a Station with UTM
coordinates. But I dont know how to compensate the UTM convergence.
I look a reference to convergence in the Geographic Editor/Calculator,
but I think there is only to coordinates conversions.
Question 2: Is it possible to plot in the Viewer and/or print in paper
the cave with the UTM grid?
Best regards and thanks for your help.
Evaristo QUIROGA
ESPELEO CLUB DE GRÀCIA (Barcelona, Spain)




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Sat, 2 Dec 2000 12:49:15 -0700 (MST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Caves in UTM coordinates
X-Evolution: 0000007c-0010



Evaristo,
> Question 1:  I like to plot my cave in UTM. I know how to compensate the
> I look a reference to convergence in the Geographic Editor/Calculator,
> but I think there is only to coordinates conversions.
>
> declination in the survey Heading, and how to fix a Station with UTM
> coordinates. But I dont know how to compensate the UTM convergence.
At this point, the Geographic Editor displays the convergence angle, but
it is not used by COMPASS. You could subtract this value from the
Declination or the Compass Correction value to align the cave to the UTM
grid. I do have plans to add UTM convergence correction to COMPASS. I'm
hoping to do this in the next release, but it all depends on how much free
time I have.
> Question 2: Is it possible to plot in the Viewer and/or print in paper
> the cave with the UTM grid?
I'm not sure I completely understand your question. Do you want to draw
grid lines on the map? Or do you want to align the cave plot to the grid?
I can answer both questions. You can align the cave plot to the UTM grid
by taking the Convergence value from the Geographic calculator and use it
with Declination or Compass correction. At this point, you cannot draw
actual UTM grid lines on top of the cave plot. You could simulate them
using the Quad map option, by rotating quad grid to match the UTM grid. It
would not be the prettiest grid, because it is really designed for quad
maps and would have the quad grid coordinates on it.
If I were to add a feature that would add UTM grid lines, how should it
work? Should you have the control over the spacing of the lines? What
should the spacing be? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Evaristo QUIROGA 
Date: Mon, 04 Dec 2000 14:11:01 +0100
Subject: [compass-users] UTM convergence correction and grid suggestions
X-Evolution: 0000007e-0010



Dear Larry,
Yes, I can subtract the convergence correction value from Declination or
Compass Corrections. But this can produce  problems in the future.
For example: I have to import  data from the system with Lambert
convergence correction added  to the declination to a UTM georeferenced
project . For this reason now I have to subtract this convergence
correction from everyone survey.
I think is more efficient to fix the convergence correction at the
project level, like the geographic referencing. So the original survey
data are only corrected to the true north pole, and I can change the
projection without to modify  all the surveys.
In my question number 2, I want to draw grid lines on the map.
If you want to add  the UTM grid lines, these features should be in the
Options menu as  Show Grid, and Preference as  Set Grid. The
users should be the control over the spacing of the lines. The more
common spacing should be for international units users: 2 km, 1 km, 500
m, 100 m and 10 m; because it is the spacing in the topographic maps
(1:50000, 1:25000, 1:10000 and 1:5000). But I believe the users should
can enter this specific spacing. The UTM grid should have the option to
draw lines or only cross at lines intersections.
I wait you can add this new features in futures Compass releases.
Best regards and thanks for your help.
Evaristo QUIROGA
ESPELEO CLUB DE GRÀCIA (Barcelona, Spain)




To: 
From: "Fabio Kok Geribello" 
Date: Wed, 13 Dec 2000 14:36:50 -0200
Subject: [compass-users] Tape Correction Bug
X-Evolution: 00000080-0010



Hi People,
 I'm a survex user and I'm doing some tests over Compass.
My 1st impressions are very good but I'm having a little problem with the tape correction feature.
 I use the metric system and my survey tape has 30 cm less in the beginning of it. So, after I insert the 0,3 m of correction and save the file the correction goes back to zero. And it seems that the software is not using it in the calculations.
 I converted the measurements to decimal feet in the survey settings and it doesn't work ass well. 0,3 cm is about 0,98 foot. But if I insert 1 foot it works...
ling list compass-users at egroups.comTo: compass-users list 




From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Mon, 17 Jul 2000 20:09:32 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: [compass-users] Welcome to all!



Hello cavers!
A warm welcome to all of you! I am the maintainer of this mailing list and I
invite you to start up the discussions on this forum and share your thoughts
and experiences about "Compass" with other cavers.
At the moment 12 people are subscribed to "compass-users" and as far as I
can see most of them are from the U.S., but also from Austria, Germany, New
Zealand and Sweden. I am sure this is the beginning of a nice international
caver's forum.
By the way, if you not already have done this, the Charta of this group may
be a good bed-time reading for some of you:
http://www.karst.net/Compass/charta.htm .
O.k., the first "real" posting to the list will follow soon...
Good caving!
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users list 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Mon, 17 Jul 2000 22:04:16 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: [compass-users] CaveBase problem
X-Evolution: 00000004-0010



Hello cavers,
here is the first question on the "Compass" mailing list.
I have CaveBase 3.000203 (the recent release) and tried to create a new cave
database and exporting the data to the cave viewer. Unfortunately the cave
viewer gives an error message "Viewer: Invalid floating point operation" if
I enabled the "Plot" setting in the "Complex Plotting" preferences dialog
and try to leave with the "show changes" button.
The cave database contains only one dataset for test purposes:
Name  VP       Temp    Feucht   Datum
Value 9        9,8     79       19.06.1999
Type  String   Float   Float    Date
where VP ist the station name expressed as string. Here are also the survey
data:
Finsteres Loch
SURVEY NAME: 06.1.
SURVEY DATE: 7 10 1988  COMMENT:Kat.Nr. 7225/06
SURVEY TEAM:
Döbber, Schuster
DECLINATION:    0.00  FORMAT: DMMDLRUDLDAN  CORRECTIONS:  0.00 0.00 0.00
        FROM           TO   LENGTH  BEARING      INC     LEFT       UP     DOWN    RIGHT   FLAGS  COMMENTS
       0        1    27.49    57.00    -9.00    -9.90     4.59     4.92     9.84
       1        2    60.86   355.00     2.00     3.28     6.56     4.92    29.53
       2        3    38.71    60.00     4.00    22.97     6.56     6.56     6.56
       3        4    39.89    20.00    -1.00     3.28     9.84     8.20    19.69
       4        5    43.14    74.00    -1.00     7.55     5.91     4.27     0.98
       5        6    43.47    17.00    12.00     1.31     1.64     3.28     8.20
       6        7    25.85   347.00     6.00     0.00     1.97     1.64     3.94
       7        8    41.34    31.00    34.00     6.56     8.86     6.56     9.84
       8        9    59.88    40.00   -10.00    11.81    39.37     2.62     1.97
       9       10    28.54    56.00   -14.00     2.62     2.30     2.95     3.94
      10      11    35.66    60.00    -4.00     3.28    10.66     3.28    -9.90
      11      12    18.04    85.00   -15.00     0.00     4.27     0.92     8.20
I made a simple query to get the names of the stations with temperatures
greater than 5 deg.
The whole thing runs on a German Windows 95 version and the Borland Database
Engine is set to dbase as standard file format and uses the comma as decimal
separator and the dot as thousand separator (the common notation in many
European countries). I think, this is the well-known comma vs. dot problem
that already caused some trouble in the past.
Another question is how to query fields of the "date" type. CaveBase (or the
BDE respectively) uses the regional settings from the Windows Control Panel
automatically and stores the date in the dd.mm.yyyy format on my box. Which
expression I must enter to get all data that are measured at a certain date?
datum = 19.06.1999 and datum = 19991906 both don't work. The latter is the
internal format of most SQL databases.
Thanks for any advice!
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Christian Docksey 
Date: Mon, 17 Jul 2000 17:45:24 -0400
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Welcome to all!
X-Evolution: 00000006-0010



Hello
Well, I'm in Venezuela at the CEE which is the Simón Bolívar University
caving group. We are dedicated to vertical caving mainly and have the
highest technical level in the country in this aspect. I hope to share
experiences with you all in addition to the surveying aspect (ie:
compass).
I have not been able to download the latest version of compass (as
trialware). I have tried both USA and European sites and conection seems
fine but when I hit the save button, it just hangs there, as if no
comunication. I have ISDN at 256K, so speed is no problem. Anybody else
have a problem here like me??>
Many regards to you all....
Christian
Roger Schuster wrote:
> Hello cavers!
>
> A warm welcome to all of you! I am the maintainer of this mailing list
> and I
> invite you to start up the discussions on this forum and share your
> thoughts
> and experiences about "Compass" with other cavers.
>
> At the moment 12 people are subscribed to "compass-users" and as far
> as I
> can see most of them are from the U.S., but also from Austria,
> Germany, New
> Zealand and Sweden. I am sure this is the beginning of a nice
> international
> caver's forum.
>
> By the way, if you not already have done this, the Charta of this
> group may
> be a good bed-time reading for some of you:
> http://www.karst.net/Compass/charta.htm .
>
> O.k., the first "real" posting to the list will follow soon...
>
> Good caving!
>
> Roger
>
> --
> Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
>                 Cavepage http://www.karst.net
>
>
>




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Mortimer 
Date: Mon, 17 Jul 2000 23:35:39 -0700
Subject: [compass-users] LRUDs
X-Evolution: 00000008-0010



Hi everyone,
    Here's a Compass question that might engender some general
discussion.  When I sketch, I am generally behind the people actually
surveying.  Because of this I want passage dimensions (LRUDs) based on
90 degrees relative to the shot from the "From Station."  This gives me
a better target as I approach the station.  Some (many?) prefer the
LRUDs to be relative to the upcoming shot.  Some will bisect the angle
between the two.
    Now Compass allows for marks to be plotted based on From or
From/To.  But as I look at the plot it seems like the "Mark From"
actually is relative to the upcoming ("To") station.  To be able to plot
LRUDs I have to use the Mark From/To then ignore half of the marks.  The
From/To option seems most adept at estimating bisected angles since
Compass doesn't offer it.  Perhaps some future edition might allow for
"Mark From," "Mark To," and "Mark Bisect" options?  Or to get way too
complicated perhaps each survey in the file needs to be marked as to the
option used underground since not everyone interprets these the same
ways and in a large project multiple interpretations might happen.
    Any thoughts?
    And Larry, I love using your program!
Roger Mortimer




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: "evan anderson" 
Date: Tue, 18 Jul 2000 07:07:24 GMT
Subject: Re: [compass-users] LRUDs
X-Evolution: 0000000a-0010



Hello Roger,
From/To option seems most adept at estimating bisected angles since
>Compass doesn't offer it.  Perhaps some future edition might allow for
>"Mark From," "Mark To," and "Mark Bisect" options?  Or to get way too
>complicated perhaps each survey in the file needs to be marked as to the
>option used underground since not everyone interprets these the same
>ways and in a large project multiple interpretations might happen.
The Compiler has the option of using the "To" or "From" station as a
saveable setting. But like you said, multiple interpretations occur.
I also think being able to have some type of setting in the Editor and not
the Compiler would fix the problem. Maybe an easy way to do this is by just
shifting the entries up or down one cell, since all data is entered on a
single line.
For now we just don't have the ability to render our larger project caves
perfectly in 3-D, but I think that what we do have is sweet enough.
Just think of how far Larry has taken this program, and where it will be
this time next year.
later
evan anderson




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Tue, 18 Jul 2000 11:50:21 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: [compass-users] Download problems
X-Evolution: 0000000c-0010



In regard to Christian's download problems: I get an occasional complaint
about downloading problems, but since I got the new web site, I have had
very few complaints. The fact that the problem occurs on both the COMPASS
site and Mirror site, makes me think the problem is probably somewhere
between Christian's computer and the web sites.
I have noticed that there are times of the day when general internet
traffic is so heavy that it takes forever to download files. This is
particularly true of transmissions between countries. When I first posted
COMPASS on the net, the files were on an ftp site in Brittain. I found
that the way overseas traffic patterns worked, the most reliable time to
access the files was at 4:00 AM local time.
The other possibility is that the problem is caused by something local to
Christian's computer. Perhaps he could try another computer connected to a
different ISP or network. If the problem went away, that would isolate the
problem to a particular computer, ISP or network.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Tue, 18 Jul 2000 20:01:50 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Welcome to all!
X-Evolution: 0000000e-0010



On Mon, 17 Jul 2000, Christian Docksey wrote:
Hello Christian,

> I have not been able to download the latest version of compass (as
> trialware). I have tried both USA and European sites and conection seems
> fine but when I hit the save button, it just hangs there, as if no
> comunication. I have ISDN at 256K, so speed is no problem. Anybody else
> have a problem here like me??>
I tested the European site with Netscape 4.7 (Linux) few minutes ago and
it worked well. Probably it will help if you use another browser? Or get the
files directly through FTP - if you need info about how to do this, let me
know.
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Wed, 19 Jul 2000 02:12:04 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] LRUDs
X-Evolution: 00000010-0010



In response to Roger Mortimer's question, I have added a feature to the
Viewer that marks the passage walls associated with the "TO" station. The
new version will get posted with the next release.
I don't know how many people are using the "bisected angle" method of
measuring LRUDs, but I'm not sure it is a good approach.
To review, with the bisected angle method, the surveyor takes the angle
between the last and next shot and splits it in half. He/she then measures
the LRUDs along that plane. This means that LRUDs for the last and next
shot are merged because they are measured at the exact same angle instead
of at right angles to each shot. The advantage of this is that the
polygons that describe are neatly connected together.
The big problem is that when the passage turns sharply the polygon narrows
as it goes into the corner. This occurs because of the way you have to
draw the lines when you connect the LRUDs from one station to the next. It
is like the way a hose kinks when you bend it too far. It is even worse if
you have two sharp turns in a row. Then the lines go from one narrowed
corner to another and the whole passage gets unrealistically narrow. The
only way around this problem would be to use some technique to round the
corners like "splines." COMPASS already does that, so bisecting the angle
does not improve the quality of the passage model.
The issues around passage wall modeling are complicated. The current
standards do not allow a survey program to accurately model a cave
passage. The most obvious example of this is the question: what do the
LRUDs mean on a vertical shot?
What COMPASS tries to do is come up with a reasonable compromise to give
more or less reasonable look passages, even though we all know they are
not exactly right.
I agree with Evan's suggestion of setting the LRUD mode in the Editor so
that each survey can have a different setting. It is on my list of things
to do and I will probably add the feature in the near future. However, it
is a more complicated feature to add because it means that I have to
modify the file format. That means that every program the works with the
COMPASS file must be modified to handle the new format. More than one days
work.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Wed, 19 Jul 2000 02:21:43 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] CaveBase problem
X-Evolution: 00000012-0010



Roger,
I was sure that your problem was another "decimal point" problem. But, I
tried everything I could to reproduce the problem and I could not. I set
the Regional Settings so the Decimal Point was a "comma" (,), and the
thousands separator was a "period" (.). I also set the date format to
match yours and I even set the units to meters. Inspite of all this, I
could not reproduce the error. When I query, the program nicely labels one
of the stations with a symbol.
I am currently running Win98 and slightly newer version of the database
engine. Beyond that, I can't think of a reason why you would be getting
this error and me not. Did the sample database I sent work? Maybe there
is a clue there.
On the subject of querying date fields, I have figured some of it out.
The date field in the Borland Database Engine is encoded as the number of
days since January 1, 00001. This means that the number 729924 matches
19.06.1999.
I have added an option to CaveBase that will do the translation from
normal dates to the encoded dates for you. I'm not entirely sure this is a
good idea, for the time being I will try it. I think that the date format
actually depends on the database engine that you are using. CaveBase can
connect through ODBC to an Access database and then the new date field
would not work. The change will get posted with the next release.
Decimal Point Discussion.
For those of you who are trying to follow this discussion, the United
States uses a "period" as a decimal point but some other countries such as
Germany use a "comma" as the decimal point. To accommodate these
differences, Windows allows you to configure the format for your own local
settings. As Roger knows, this has been the source of a lot of problems.
The programming lanugages I use automatically check the Windows settings
and make the appropriate adjustments. You would think that that would make
it easy, but it doesn't. If I let the programming language automatically
adjust to the local settings, cavers in Germany will write a survey file
with commas in it and a caver in the United States will be unable to view
the file. So I have chosen that COMPASS will use a period when it reads or
writes files. However, it still must be aware of the local settings when
it displays or edits data. Thus I have to be very careful to turn on and
off the local settings at the right time.
Roger will probably be amused to know that after I set all my settings to
the German standard, I forgot to set them back. I spent about an hour
tonight trying to figure out why Excel wouldn't let me enter the the
number 0.3048.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Wed, 19 Jul 2000 20:56:23 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] CaveBase problem
X-Evolution: 00000014-0010



On Wed, 19 Jul 2000, Larry Fish wrote:
Hello Larry,
thank you for your fast and friendly response.
> Did the sample database I sent work? Maybe there is a clue there.
The first and short test with your example data was positive so I am
wondering what's the problem with my own data! I'll do some more tests and
look what's wrong.
Btw: The BDE can read and write files in dbase format but which version of
dbase and which code page it uses?

> Roger will probably be amused to know that after I set all my settings to
> the German standard, I forgot to set them back. I spent about an hour
> tonight trying to figure out why Excel wouldn't let me enter the the
> number 0.3048.
Do you also have watched the interesting effect that if you hit "z" on the
keyboard you get a "y" on screen? :-)
Best regards
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Thu, 20 Jul 2000 02:23:27 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] CaveBase problemn
X-Evolution: 00000016-0010



Roger,
> Btw: The BDE can read and write files in dbase format but which version of
> dbase and which code page it uses?
There are some tools that come with the DBE that allow you to set various
parameter for the different database options. I haven't played with them
very much, but I think it controls things like how various data types are
interpreted. Also, Borland has a lot of information about their database
engine on their web site. They even have newer versions of the database
engine. The address is:
http://www.borland.com
Also, with the right configuration, you can connect the database engine to
just about any type of database. I have connected to MS Access databases
and even RBase databases. The trick is to use ODBC. I did it a couple
years ago as an experiement, so don't ask me how to do it.
Larry




To: compass-users list 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Sat, 22 Jul 2000 14:14:01 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: [compass-users] CaveBase
X-Evolution: 00000018-0010



Hello all,
I made some more experiments with the CaveBase and Borland Database Engine
and nothing worked!
I changed the country settings in the Control Panel to U.S. English, I
tested several code pages in the BDE, I downgraded to an older version of
the Cave Viewer, I updated the BDE first to 3.5 and later to 5.11 and
nothing helped me on with the problem.
I can enter data into the data base, query them and send it to the Cave
Viewer successfully but if I set the feature info to visible in the Complex
Plotting dialog the known error message "Invalid floating point operation"
occurres. This error appeares with any kind of data, not only with numbers
of type float!
Since those days as CaveBase was working I installed three new applications
on my PC which probably cause a conflict with Cave Base. The most suspicious
was Interbase SQL Server 5.1 and Interbase ODBC driver running in
the background so I uninstalled them. Result: Nothing! I can't get CaveBase
working.
While playing around with several software updates for BDE I experienced
that Cave Base will fail completely with BDE 3.5 and 5.11: "Exception
EDatabaseError in module CAVEBASE.EXE at 000A:11ED. An error occurred while
attempting to initialize the Borland Database Engine (error $2108)."
CaveBase will only start up with BDE 1.0 which is available from the Compass
Web site but I still can't pass the data to CaveViewer.
That's it!
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Sun, 23 Jul 2000 02:10:30 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] CaveBase
X-Evolution: 0000001a-0010



Roger,
> I changed the country settings in the Control Panel to U.S. English, I
> tested several code pages in the BDE, I downgraded to an older version of
> the Cave Viewer, I updated the BDE first to 3.5 and later to 5.11 and
> nothing helped me on with the problem.
This is very strange. Obviously, the old "decimal point" issue is not the
source of the problem.
> Since those days as CaveBase was working I installed three new applications
> on my PC which probably cause a conflict with Cave Base.
The fact that CaveBase worked in the past, but not now is interesting. It
indicates that something has changed on your system. Perhaps these other
programs are installing some component that doesn't get removed when you
uninstall them. This is a common occurance with some programs. For
example, let's say the BDE uses a common library called X.DLL. When
install your new program, it puts a newer version of X.DLL on your
computer. This new version is not compatable with the BDE. Even when you
uninstall your new program, X.DLL is not removed and replaced with the
earlier version, because WIndows determines that X.DLL is being used by
other programs.
I have a couple ideas for solving the problem. First, could you give me a
step-by-step description of exactly what you are doing to get the error?
It could be that I am leaving out a step that is crucial for recreating
the problem. That way, I can do precisely the same steps and try again to
duplicate the problem.
If that doesn't work, I will create a special version of the Viewer that
will have a memo box that will show exactly what data is being transmitted
by the database. That should tell us why you are getting the floating
point error.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Mon, 24 Jul 2000 20:51:14 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] CaveBase
X-Evolution: 0000001c-0010



On Sun, 23 Jul 2000, Larry Fish wrote:
Hello Larry, hello *.*,
> For example, let's say the BDE uses a common library called X.DLL. When
> install your new program, it puts a newer version of X.DLL on your
> computer. This new version is not compatable with the BDE. Even when you
> uninstall your new program, X.DLL is not removed and replaced with the
> earlier version, because WIndows determines that X.DLL is being used by
> other programs.
Can you use a debugging tool to trace the dll and function calls of Cave
Viewer, Cave Base and BDE? So we will know which shared components the
software uses.
> I have a couple ideas for solving the problem. First, could you give me a
> step-by-step description of exactly what you are doing to get the error?
O.k., here is the description:
1. Country Settings in Control Panel and win.ini: German, i.e. decimal comma
and thousands separator point.
2. BDE Configuration Utility: "Drivers" Tab Langdriver dBASE DEU cp850
                              "System" Tab the same as above
                              "Number" Tab the same as Windows country
                                       settings.
                               Database format dBASE
3. Starting Cave Viewer, loading arta.plt
4. Tools --> Database
5. Create New Database: Type dBase, table name arta, same directory as
arta.plt.
6. Fields: Station String, Temp Float, Humid Integer, Diskus Boolean, Lamp
String.
7. Query Temp > 16
8. In the third tab: Station Field --> Station, Number Field --> Temp
9. Do query --> result o.k.
10. As marked locations, feature name: Temp
11. Send to Viewer --> o.k.
12. In Viewer: Preferences | Set Complex | Color Surveys
13. Survey "Temp" (type "R") set to "Plot", set color blue, set symbol Bell.
Options: Color Survey, button "on".
14. Button "Close": Error "Invalid etc.". Cave Viewer shows infinite Windows
sand glass and must be closed.
15. The same with other numeric queries.
16. Numeric but "as line segments" --> does!
17. Field of type Boolean and "marked locations" --> does!
18: Field of type String: Sometimes yes, sometimes nothing happens.
The same result I got also with your example data.
I will send you the files I used in the description above.
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Mon, 24 Jul 2000 22:52:12 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] CaveBase
X-Evolution: 0000001e-0010



Roger,
I have found and fixed the bug!! (I think.) You will be amused. It had
nothing to do with the database engine and nothing to do with the regional
setting or the decimal points.
The problem occurred because you only had one hit from a query and were
plotting symbols of different sizes. Under these circumstances, COMPASS
has to calculate the largest and smallest values query. It uses this range
to scale the symbols. The problem occurred when you had only one value.
This meant that the highest and lowest value were the same. COMPASS
subtracts the two values and then divides. If the two values are the same,
the result is zero and then dividing by zero gives the error.
The funny thing is that the bug has existed for several years. Apparently,
nobody ever tried to plot different symbols sizes from a query that only
returned one value.
I have posted a new copy on the net. Check it out and see if it solves the
problem.
Thanks for your help and persistance! The real trick was using the exact
same data and the exact query that you used.
Larry




To: compass-users list 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Thu, 27 Jul 2000 20:20:33 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: [compass-users] new Compass files
X-Evolution: 00000020-0010



Hello all,
the new Compass files are now available on the European Compass Page, too!
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users list 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Fri, 28 Jul 2000 23:19:18 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: [compass-users] new interesting feature
X-Evolution: 00000022-0010



Hello there,
I came across a new interesting "feature" of the Compass Cave Base: If you
do a query with a field of type "date" you will see a red rectangle in the
upper right corner of Cave Viewer instead of a symbol near the station!
Larry, I send you the data I used and some (small) screen shots to explain
the settings and the result of my test. If one of the readers here is
interested, too, let me know and I put the example to the File Area of the
mailing list.
Btw: There is another problem. If you query a numeric field with a "less
than" operator the query finds also fields with no content. I thought first
that Cave Base gives fields with no content the value zero implicitly so I
made a second test. The query "less than  and not equal zero" gives
the same result and this is a little problem. I will only use fields which
are not left blank.
Good caving & nice week-end
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Sat, 29 Jul 2000 22:52:23 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] new interesting feature
X-Evolution: 00000024-0010



Roger,
> I came across a new interesting "feature" of the Compass Cave Base: If
> you do a query with a field of type "date" you will see a red rectangle
> in the upper right corner of Cave Viewer instead of a symbol near the
> station!
The red rectangle is actually a very very large symbol that the Viewer is
drawing on the screen. The problem comes from inconsistancies in the way
dates are handled in the database.
When the database sends data to the Viewer, it converts the data to a
string on numbers. I relied on the database engine to do that conversion.
It works correctly with everything except the date values. There it
converts them to a string of number like "7/19/1999". When the Viewer see
the date, it only reads the first value the "7", so the size of the
symbol grows to huge proportions. I solved the problem by changing the
code so it explicitly converts all values to numbers. I have posted the
new version on the net.
> Btw: There is another problem. If you query a numeric field with a "less
> than" operator the query finds also fields with no content. I thought
> first that Cave Base gives fields with no content the value zero
> implicitly so I made a second test. The query "less than  and not
> equal zero" gives the same result and this is a little problem. I will
> only use fields which are not left blank.
I talked to one of my database programmer friends and she says that this
is normal behavior for a database. The empty fields are treated as Nulls
and Nulls have a selectable value. She says that normallly you choose a
value that works for the kind of queries you are doing. I couldn't find a
way to set the default "Null" value for the BDE, but it is probably there
some where.
My friend said that you should query for the value you want and
specifically exclude nulls. It took me most of an afternoon to figure out
how to represent a null in a query. It turns out you do this with a set of
empty quotes. Either single ('') or double ("") will work. Here is a query
that works on your data:
(FEUCHT  < 78) AND (FEUCHT  <> '')
I also added a feature to CaveBase that enters a Null for you.
Larry




To: users group compass 
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Thu, 3 Aug 2000 23:14:54 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: [compass-users] Questions (fwd)
X-Evolution: 00000026-0010



Dear Compass Group,
I got this letter and I thought the question and my reply might be useful
to others. Also, other people who are working with DXF exports might have
some thoughts.
Larry
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
Mr fish,
I have been looking over the new version of COMPASS recently downloaded.
Pat Kambesis recently announced at the NSS Conv. she'd be giving out
portions of her Lech quads.   I am in the process of evaulating two
software illustrators in conjunction with COMPASS.  I have long been
interested in DXF increased capabilities.
With the new release of AUtoCAD 2000i I'm finding the DXF capabilities
don't allow me to bring in anything but the raw survey and stations (just
two layers).  I need more versistility.   Have you any recommendations at
this time.
Also, can I now dynamic rotate the wireframe?
thanks again,
Chris
Chris Andrews
427 South Loomis St. Suite B
Fort Collins, Colorado 80521
chrisandrews at juno.com
970-495-0534
LEARN RMR REP
LEARN CARTOGRAPHIC team




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Thu, 3 Aug 2000 23:18:51 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Questions (fwd)
X-Evolution: 00000028-0010



Chris,
DXF file conversion has been the bane of my existance. AutoCad keeps
changing their specifications and I keep having to rewrite my conversion
routines. The DXF file format worked pretty well from AutoCad version 3
through 12, but then AutoCad made a radical departure and changed
everything. Everybody complaigned, so in version 14 they went back a bit
toward the earlier versions.
The problem for me is that every time they do this, I have to get a copy
of the latest version of AutoCad and it is not cheap. Also, all the other
drawing programs interpret the DXF standard differently. Some only import
the early versions of DXF. Some only import the 2D model. Some don't
import certain layers. Some import everything into a single layer. It is a
mess.
> With the new release of AUtoCAD 2000i I'm finding the DXF capabilities
> don't allow me to bring in anything but the raw survey and stations (just
> two layers).  I need more versistility. Have you any recommendations at
> this time.
I currently have a copy of AutoCad 14. When I import the cave data into
it, it shows each survey on a separate layer, the station labels on a
separate layer, the passage walls on a separate layer, the legend and
north arrow on a separate layer. For Groaning Cave, there are about 200
layers.
What other things would you like to have in the DXF export?
Are you using the DXF exporter that is in the Windows Viewer? It sounds
like you might be using the old exporter that comes with the DOS version.
The DXF exporter was added to the Viewer in last few months. If you don't
have the latest version, you may not have the new exporter. The latest
version of COMPASS is always available on the internet. Incase you don't
have the address, it is at:
http://www.fountainware.com/compass
> Also, can I now dynamic rotate the wireframe?
Do you mean in COMPASS or Autocad? In AutoCad 14, you select "View|3D
Dynamic View" from the menu bar.
If you mean COMPASS, you should be able to get realtime pans, zooms and
rotation if the cave isn't too big and your computer is fast enough. Even
with large caves like Lechuguilla, I can get realtime refresh rates of 2
or 3 frames per second.
To get smooth animation, you have to set the Viewer properly. First run
the Viewer with the cave you want to view. Next select "Option|Hidden
Refresh Screen" from the Menu Bar. Also, select "Options|3D Compass" from
the menu bar. Finally, put the program in profile mode by hitting the
"Plan/Profile" button and then press the "Enter Box/Redraw" button.
You can now smoothly Pan, Zoom and Rotate by clicking on the appropriate
buttons. The "Multiplier Setting" box on the tool bar controls the amount
of movement each click accomplishes. Smaller steps make for smoother
motions. A multiplier 5 is a good choice.
If you want to smoothly rotate with the mouse, move the mouse cursor to
the "3D Compass", click the left mouse button and drag the "arms" to a new
position. The cave will track the 3D Compass position.
If you want to use the mouse to zoom or pan, push "Drag Mode" button on
the tool bar. You can now us the left mouse button to drag (pan) the cave
left, right, up or down. You can also use the middle mouse button to zoom
in and out and do "flythroughs."
I think I will post your letter on the COMPASS users group. Maybe some of
the other users will have some suggestions for you. If you would like to
subscribe to the users groups, there are instructions on the COMPASS web
page.
If you have any other questions, feel free to write.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Christian Docksey 
Date: Fri, 04 Aug 2000 14:51:04 -0400
Subject: [compass-users] Cave Graphics Extended
X-Evolution: 0000002a-0010



Hello Larry.
First let me show my appreciation at your efforts at solving queries and
problems quickly and thoroughly!
I managed to download the software finally. The problem was Gozilla
which didn't allow me to download any other way but through him, and it
was Gozilla that wouldn't work with this download. I uninstalled it and
all OK.
 I have yet to try out the methods you describe to have an interactive
mouse control. I hope it is what I imagine. I thought that maybe I could
take this "graphical"point a little further.
In todays world where graphics are so "taken for granted" there is the
need for 2 things.
1) To simplify the task of creating the artwork for a cave publication.
2) To be able to create a 3D model of the cave which can be used to
visualize the cave better and for analysis for future expeditions.
For creating the drawings (artwork) we use CorelDraw. This is to have
info in a vectorial format which allows for any required resolution.
Also, one has to keep in mind that there is the UIS standard to maintain
for symbols, etc. What would be useful (and please correct me if Compass
can do this already) is to be able to obtain an "extended profile view"
(Please excuse me if I don't use the exact term here but I don't know
it. In Venezuela we use the spanish terms and so I can only attempt to
explain it in English). This is NOT a projected view, but more like the
"stretched out" view of certain gallerys (which could be easily selected
in Compass ie: from stationX to stationY). In other words, the length of
the drawn galleries is equivalent to the fully walked or measured
distance (and not a component of the distance like Dist x cos(angle)). I
hope you follow what I mean. If not I'm willing to try again or send an
example.
The info needed from Compass would be the vector centre-line and also
the roof and floor outline (which we could add detail to on the
drawing). As to the format for these vectors, we go to the next point.
One of the most used and flexible formats around is Adobe Illustrator.
Nearly every software package used in graphics has an import and/or
export utility for Illustrator. With this info we could use CorelDraw,
Illustrator itself, and virtually any other package for 2D work (for
creating the artwork). Also 3D packages like 3DStudio Max, Maya,
lightwave all accept this vector format too!
Now, for 3d visualization, and considering that DXF is sometimes
problematic for you, wouldn't it be better to translate "Compass" info
to a stable, widely used 3d format. The .3ds format used by Kinetix
(part of Autodesk) for their Max 3d program is widely used for importing
3d data into 3d programs. Max is probably the widest used 3d program on
the market (not saying that it is the best) and one can still import the
same .3ds file today that was created 10 years ago when the software was
DOS based. An added benefit is that one can export to DXF. The reason
for all this is that if we could get this 3d info from Compass into a 3D
animation software, we could do wonders. First of all, the interactive
rotation,etc in a 3d program is superb. Then, we can create additional
detail as needed and then even add a camera which could fly through the
inside of the galleries! Not bad, Heh!  Also, pre-rendered animations
could be made and placed on a web site.
If your reply to this mail is "Shut up and keep quiet", then I don't
blame you. I'm only trying to get that stage further from having the
results as a bunch of numbers, to getting a good quality 2D drawing of
the cave. Getting the 3D info out to a 3D animation program would make
the topping on the cake. I think that Compass would definately be "the
Caving Software to have" for any serious cavers.
Forgive such a long and perhaps rediculous e-mail.
Regards...
Christian
Larry Fish wrote:
>
> Chris,
>
> DXF file conversion has been the bane of my existance. AutoCad keeps
> changing their specifications and I keep having to rewrite my
> conversion
> routines. The DXF file format worked pretty well from AutoCad version
> 3
> through 12, but then AutoCad made a radical departure and changed
> everything. Everybody complaigned, so in version 14 they went back a
> bit
> toward the earlier versions.
>
> The problem for me is that every time they do this, I have to get a
> copy
> of the latest version of AutoCad and it is not cheap. Also, all the
> other
> drawing programs interpret the DXF standard differently. Some only
> import
> the early versions of DXF. Some only import the 2D model. Some don't
> import certain layers. Some import everything into a single layer. It
> is a
> mess.
>
> > With the new release of AUtoCAD 2000i I'm finding the DXF
> capabilities
> > don't allow me to bring in anything but the raw survey and stations
> (just
> > two layers).  I need more versistility. Have you any recommendations
> at
> > this time.
>
> I currently have a copy of AutoCad 14. When I import the cave data
> into
> it, it shows each survey on a separate layer, the station labels on a
> separate layer, the passage walls on a separate layer, the legend and
> north arrow on a separate layer. For Groaning Cave, there are about
> 200
> layers.
>
> What other things would you like to have in the DXF export?
>
> Are you using the DXF exporter that is in the Windows Viewer? It
> sounds
> like you might be using the old exporter that comes with the DOS
> version.
> The DXF exporter was added to the Viewer in last few months. If you
> don't
> have the latest version, you may not have the new exporter. The latest
>
> version of COMPASS is always available on the internet. Incase you
> don't
> have the address, it is at:
>
> http://www.fountainware.com/compass
>
> > Also, can I now dynamic rotate the wireframe?
>
> Do you mean in COMPASS or Autocad? In AutoCad 14, you select "View|3D
> Dynamic View" from the menu bar.
>
> If you mean COMPASS, you should be able to get realtime pans, zooms
> and
> rotation if the cave isn't too big and your computer is fast enough.
> Even
> with large caves like Lechuguilla, I can get realtime refresh rates of
> 2
> or 3 frames per second.
>
> To get smooth animation, you have to set the Viewer properly. First
> run
> the Viewer with the cave you want to view. Next select "Option|Hidden
> Refresh Screen" from the Menu Bar. Also, select "Options|3D Compass"
> from
> the menu bar. Finally, put the program in profile mode by hitting the
> "Plan/Profile" button and then press the "Enter Box/Redraw" button.
>
> You can now smoothly Pan, Zoom and Rotate by clicking on the
> appropriate
> buttons. The "Multiplier Setting" box on the tool bar controls the
> amount
> of movement each click accomplishes. Smaller steps make for smoother
> motions. A multiplier 5 is a good choice.
>
> If you want to smoothly rotate with the mouse, move the mouse cursor
> to
> the "3D Compass", click the left mouse button and drag the "arms" to a
> new
> position. The cave will track the 3D Compass position.
>
> If you want to use the mouse to zoom or pan, push "Drag Mode" button
> on
> the tool bar. You can now us the left mouse button to drag (pan) the
> cave
> left, right, up or down. You can also use the middle mouse button to
> zoom
> in and out and do "flythroughs."
>
> I think I will post your letter on the COMPASS users group. Maybe some
> of
> the other users will have some suggestions for you. If you would like
> to
> subscribe to the users groups, there are instructions on the COMPASS
> web
> page.
>
> If you have any other questions, feel free to write.
>
> Larry
>
>

>
>




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Sun, 6 Aug 2000 03:07:22 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Cave Graphics Extended
X-Evolution: 0000002c-0010



Christian,
Thanks for your letter.
> What would be useful (and please correct me if Compass can do this
> already) is to be able to obtain an "extended profile view" (Please
> excuse me if I don't use the exact term here but I don't know it. In
> Venezuela we use the spanish terms and so I can only attempt to explain
> it in English).
I think I understand what you are asking for and "extended profile" is a
good term for it. If I understand what you want, the "extended profile"
should take the cave passage and flattening it against a single vertical
plane. Normally, when you view a passage profile, the parts of the passage
that are coming toward you or going away from you are invisible. The
"extended profile" would have the effect of sort of "unwinding" these
passages so that all of the length would be visible.
I have toyed with implementing this feature for a couple of years.
Implementing the feature on a whole cave gets pretty complicated. As you
are "flattening" out the passages, the positions of all the stations move.
Since each station can be a "connecting point" for another branch of the
survey, I would have to keep track of the new position of each station.
This would require a complete recompile of the survey data every time you
wanted to change the viewing angle of the "extended profile." I could do
this, but, what I would really like to be able to do is manipulate these
"extended profiles" interactively and on-the-fly so you could get the
exact view you wanted. The bottom line is that I haven't figured out how
to do it so it "feels" right.
> One of the most used and flexible formats around is Adobe Illustrator.
I hadn't thought about Illustrator because nobody I know is using it. But
it is an interesting idea. I'm always afraid that a new file format will
just mean more work -- and of course, the risk that I will constantly be
trying to keep up with changes.
> Now, for 3d visualization, and considering that DXF is sometimes
> problematic for you, wouldn't it be better to translate "Compass" info
> to a stable, widely used 3d format.
This is an interesting idea. Have you played with CaveX yet? It will
export to "X" files, and I have seen converters on the web that will
convert "X" files to 3DS.
> If your reply to this mail is "Shut up and keep quiet", then I don't
> blame you.
No, no, no! I always appreciate new ideas and different perspectives.
Most of the best features of COMPASS have come from long discussions
with COMPASS users. So, keep making suggestions, I need them.
A proposito, he estado estudiando Espan~ol por un rato. Yo vivo in
el estado de Colorado y este estado fue un parte de Mejico en el
siglo XVII. Por eso, hay muchos lugares con nombres Espan~oles.
Tenemos dos canales de television en Espan~ol aqui. Me acuerdo que
hay una programma de Venezuela se llamada "Bien Venidos". Conoce
este programma?
Gracias
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Sun, 6 Aug 2000 17:08:34 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Cave Graphics Extended
X-Evolution: 0000002e-0010



On Sun, 6 Aug 2000, Larry Fish wrote:
Hello folks,
> Implementing the feature on a whole cave gets pretty complicated. As you
> are "flattening" out the passages, the positions of all the stations move.
> Since each station can be a "connecting point" for another branch of the
> survey, I would have to keep track of the new position of each station.
I think this is a real problem. Extended profiles are commonly used on the
small caves here in southern Germany where not much passages must be
"unfolded" and where extended profiles give less distorted impressions of
the cave than the usual perspectivic views. On large or complex caves it is
difficult to decide how the passages must become unfolded because the
surveys are inter-connected at many stations. Moving one station will damage
another survey.
Another point which must be kept in mind is in which direction the survey
must be flattended. Yesterday we surveyed a small pothole for example, where
the entrance pit intersects a small passage which extends to both
directions. For an extended profile one part of the cave must be flattened
to the left, the other part to the right. How should the computer decide
what to do?
I create such extended profiles manually. I make a copy of the original
survey data file and open it in the Cave Editor. Here I set the acimut of
all passages which should be flattened to the right to 0 degrees and that of
the passages to the left to 180 degrees. All the other shots I flagged with
the "exclude from plotting" option. If you view this in profile mode from 90
or 270 degrees this is exactly what you want: An extended profile.
I know two programs which already support e.p.. One is "Cave Render" in
which you must enter numeric values for each shot which describe how to
handle the data for extension. The other is a French product called
"Cybertopo" that has an automatic option for unfolding all surveys. I don't
know how good the results of this algorythm are.

> > One of the most used and flexible formats around is Adobe Illustrator.
Nearly as expensive as AutoCAD... :-) Why not Corel Draw which is widely
used and available for modest prices?
BTW: Have you tested the method that is described on
http://www.karst.net/Compass/hpgl.htm ? It works very good and even with old
versions of Corel Draw like 4.0 which is my favorite drawing tool.

> This is an interesting idea. Have you played with CaveX yet? It will
> export to "X" files, and I have seen converters on the web that will
> convert "X" files to 3DS.
Is there something that can convert *.x to VRML?

> > If your reply to this mail is "Shut up and keep quiet", then I don't
> > blame you.
As moderator of this list I welcome questions and suggestions like yours.

> Gracias
Freundliche Grüße
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Christian Docksey 
Date: Mon, 07 Aug 2000 13:25:58 -0400
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Cave Graphics Extended
X-Evolution: 00000030-0010



Hello Larry,
I'm grateful towards your receptiveness towards some of my comments.
I totally agree with you and with Roger, that trying to "extend" the
whole of a cave is an extremely complicated task and the computer
wouldn't know what to do sometimes. No, what I mean is for "Compass" to
ask for a station to station input (say station 1A to station 1S), which
would probably be the main passageway of the cave. The stations must be
joint by a single "route". All other galleries would be ignored. Then
Compass would work out the "flattened" route and display the results. It
would be like a separate et of data so as not to cause confusion with
the rest of the data. Internally, I imagine that maybe Compass would
create new stations (say x-1A to x-1S or whatever) but display them on
screen with the same labels but in another colour or whichever way you
deem more appropiate. Why only some galleries and not all? Well, because
I'm thinking of when its time for plotting, when really it is only some
portions of the cave that you tend to plot in "extended" mode (usually
the main passage from entrance to end). It IS possible to require
another "extended" gallery when plotting, but it is 99% sure that it
will be a separate drawing on the artwork. So there is no problem that
the second  be a separate set of data given by inputting the new station
to station info (say 3C to 3F).
I believe this "extended" method is really only valid for cave which are
generally horizontal in nature. This is because you are flattening the
compass readings but not the clinometer redings. A pothole, for example,
usually needs to be described by section views. And one should sketch as
many sections as needded for the shape of a cave  to be understood.
Now, Roger, your example of the pothole you visited is great, because
you could tell "Compass" that you want an extended set of data for your
intersected passage. You would enter the names of the stations of the
passage, and it would give you the set of data you require. Then you
would add the drawing of that "extended" passage to your artwork in
addition to the main views of the pothole and its sections.
When I suggested Adobe Illustrator, I meant it as the file format and
not as the software itself. I don't use Illustrator as a software
either. To me Corel is great too and its what I use for this type of
thing, but then you have hundreds of preferences from different users.
Corel Imports Illustrator files like a treat, just like nearly all 2D
and 3D software, and its because of the wide acceptance of this format
that I suggested it.
Thanks Roger for the link about the PLT method of transferring files. I
had not seen it. I will try it out. Maybe there's no need for any
vector file export after all, although I don't think this method will
work for importing into 3D software. I'll check it out though!
Many Thanks to all of you. I think it's great to have the chance to
discuss a topic at all with you.
By the way, Larry. Thats pretty good spanish you have! Yes, I've seen
the odd episode of "Bienvenidos". Its a "Joke telling" program with some
girls in bikinis forming part of the cast (The best part-Right?)
Cheers to all
Chris
Larry Fish wrote:
>
> Christian,
>
> Thanks for your letter.
>
> > What would be useful (and please correct me if Compass can do this
> > already) is to be able to obtain an "extended profile view" (Please
> > excuse me if I don't use the exact term here but I don't know it. In
>
> > Venezuela we use the spanish terms and so I can only attempt to
> explain
> > it in English).
>
> I think I understand what you are asking for and "extended profile" is
> a
> good term for it. If I understand what you want, the "extended
> profile"
> should take the cave passage and flattening it against a single
> vertical
> plane. Normally, when you view a passage profile, the parts of the
> passage
> that are coming toward you or going away from you are invisible. The
> "extended profile" would have the effect of sort of "unwinding" these
> passages so that all of the length would be visible.
>
> I have toyed with implementing this feature for a couple of years.
> Implementing the feature on a whole cave gets pretty complicated. As
> you
> are "flattening" out the passages, the positions of all the stations
> move.
> Since each station can be a "connecting point" for another branch of
> the
> survey, I would have to keep track of the new position of each
> station.
> This would require a complete recompile of the survey data every time
> you
> wanted to change the viewing angle of the "extended profile." I could
> do
> this, but, what I would really like to be able to do is manipulate
> these
> "extended profiles" interactively and on-the-fly so you could get the
> exact view you wanted. The bottom line is that I haven't figured out
> how
> to do it so it "feels" right.
>
> > One of the most used and flexible formats around is Adobe
> Illustrator.
>
> I hadn't thought about Illustrator because nobody I know is using it.
> But
> it is an interesting idea. I'm always afraid that a new file format
> will
> just mean more work -- and of course, the risk that I will constantly
> be
> trying to keep up with changes.
>
> > Now, for 3d visualization, and considering that DXF is sometimes
> > problematic for you, wouldn't it be better to translate "Compass"
> info
> > to a stable, widely used 3d format.
>
> This is an interesting idea. Have you played with CaveX yet? It will
> export to "X" files, and I have seen converters on the web that will
> convert "X" files to 3DS.
>
> > If your reply to this mail is "Shut up and keep quiet", then I don't
>
> > blame you.
>
> No, no, no! I always appreciate new ideas and different perspectives.
> Most of the best features of COMPASS have come from long discussions
> with COMPASS users. So, keep making suggestions, I need them.
>
> A proposito, he estado estudiando Espan~ol por un rato. Yo vivo in
> el estado de Colorado y este estado fue un parte de Mejico en el
> siglo XVII. Por eso, hay muchos lugares con nombres Espan~oles.
> Tenemos dos canales de television en Espan~ol aqui. Me acuerdo que
> hay una programma de Venezuela se llamada "Bien Venidos". Conoce
> este programma?
>
> Gracias
>
> Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: mr.doj at mailbox.swipnet.se
Date: Mon, 14 Aug 2000 13:59:50 -0000
Subject: [compass-users] Locking of mapping accuracy
X-Evolution: 00000032-0010



Hello!
Is there a way of locking survey stations when closing loops?
or
Is there some way to give surveys  less/more corrections when closing
loops ie by inserting UIS/BCRA survey accuracy?
 We would like to survey the main passage of a complex cave with a
higher grade and side passages with less timeconsuming surveying, but
not bend or alter the main passage when closing loops.
T Doj Sweden




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Tue, 15 Aug 2000 03:31:56 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Locking of mapping accuracy
X-Evolution: 00000034-0010



Hello,
Thanks for your question.
> Is there a way of locking survey stations when closing loops? or Is
> there some way to give surveys less/more corrections when closing
> loops ie by inserting UIS/BCRA survey accuracy?
You can exclude any shot from the closing process using the "Shot
Flags" in the Editor. However, you cannot set a variable level of
accuracy for different parts of the cave.
The processing of setting an accuracy for each shot is in a survey is
called "weighting." And, there is a very good reason why COMPASS does not
allow you to assign "weights." This is because COMPASS automatically
assigns "weights" to every shot in the cave based on the shot's length
and how well each loop closes.
The problem with allowing the user to assign weights, is that these
weights are only estimates. So even if you survey very very carefully,
you can still make mistakes that will destroy the accuracy of the survey.
Likewise, even a very sloppy survey can turn out to be accurate. What
COMPASS does is use the actual data to get a precise measurement of the
quality of each loop. Loops with large closure errors obviously cannot be
trusted and so they are given low weights. Likewise, loops with small
closure errors can be trusted and are given high weights. Thus COMPASS
creates a combination of weights that gives the best accuracy for all the
stations in the cave.
The actual process that COMPASS uses to analyze the quality of each loop
is a little more complicated. It begins by making a prediction about how
much error you would expect to find in a loop if all the errors were
small random errors. This is done by going through each shot in the loop
and seeing how each shot would effect the total error in the loop. This
gives an error predictions for the loop. Loops are then weighted based on
how well they match the prediction.
Assigning weights is a very important part of land surveying
and land surveyors have studied the problem for more than a century.
John Halleck has written extensively on the subject as it applies to
cave surveying. You might find his ideas interesting. His web page is
at:
http://www.cc.utah.edu/~nahaj/cave/survey/
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Devin Kouts 
Date: Tue, 15 Aug 2000 10:13:55 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Locking of mapping accuracy
X-Evolution: 00000036-0010



Larry,
I understand your explanation of how compass develops
weights for certain loops in the survey. I would like
to offer some pointers that might help "increase" the
weight given to a specific survey over another. Please
comment on my conjectures (they've not been tried in
the field, just thoughts I've discussed with other
cave surveyors).
In our friend's case he wants the main trunk survey to
bear a heavier weight than any potential loops created
by side passage surveys. In that instance I would
suppose a couple changes in one's survey technique
could be useful.
First, I would limit the length of individual shots
along the trunk passage to 20 feet or 7 meters maximum
(an arbitrary number, I'm working on the assumption
that shorter distances don't propogate as much error
in the azimuth / inclination as do longer distances).
Second, I would always record forward and backward
azimuth and inclination between every consecutive
station along the trunk passage survey.
Third, I would decrease the allowable error between
forward and backward azimuth / inclinations. E.g. the
folks I survey with will allow a maximum of two
degrees  difference between the foresight and the
corrected backsight azimuth and inclination. To
increase the accuracy (and the weight) of the trunk
survey I would decrease my allowable error to 1 degree
difference.
Fourth, I would avoid problematic shots, like
high-angle shots, in favor of multiple short,
low-angle, precise shots to cover the same distance.
Admittedly these techniques increase the level of
effort required to complete the survey but that's
simply the nature of information. If you desire
greater accuracy (i.e. weight) then you need to
increase the frequency and precision of the data you
collect (in this case survey data).
After the main trunk has been surveyed with these
increased standards of accuracy I presume the loops of
the main trunk (and they are a chain of consecutive
loops, foresight and backsight make a loop between
each station) will receive a greater weight from the
algorithm you described in Compass. Afterward,
surveying side passages with standard practices (i.e.
2 degree difference in fore/back sights and no
distance limits impossed on shot length) will create
relatively accurate survey but not to such a degree
that it's "weight" will degrade the accuracy of the
main trunk survey.
This approach should help our friend reach his goal of
increased deference to the main trunk survey over
errors introduced by lower quality side passage
surveys.
Comments?
Devin
--- Larry Fish  wrote:
>
>
> Hello,
>
> Thanks for your question.
>
> > Is there a way of locking survey stations when
> closing loops? or Is
> > there some way to give surveys less/more
> corrections when closing
> > loops ie by inserting UIS/BCRA survey accuracy?
>
> You can exclude any shot from the closing process
> using the "Shot
> Flags" in the Editor. However, you cannot set a
> variable level of
> accuracy for different parts of the cave.
>
> The processing of setting an accuracy for each shot
> is in a survey is
> called "weighting." And, there is a very good reason
> why COMPASS does not
> allow you to assign "weights." This is because
> COMPASS automatically
> assigns "weights" to every shot in the cave based on
> the shot's length
> and how well each loop closes.
>
> The problem with allowing the user to assign
> weights, is that these
> weights are only estimates. So even if you survey
> very very carefully,
> you can still make mistakes that will destroy the
> accuracy of the survey.
> Likewise, even a very sloppy survey can turn out to
> be accurate. What
> COMPASS does is use the actual data to get a precise
> measurement of the
> quality of each loop. Loops with large closure
> errors obviously cannot be
> trusted and so they are given low weights. Likewise,
> loops with small
> closure errors can be trusted and are given high
> weights. Thus COMPASS
> creates a combination of weights that gives the best
> accuracy for all the
> stations in the cave.
>
> The actual process that COMPASS uses to analyze the
> quality of each loop
> is a little more complicated. It begins by making a
> prediction about how
> much error you would expect to find in a loop if all
> the errors were
> small random errors. This is done by going through
> each shot in the loop
> and seeing how each shot would effect the total
> error in the loop. This
> gives an error predictions for the loop. Loops are
> then weighted based on
> how well they match the prediction.
>
> Assigning weights is a very important part of land
> surveying
> and land surveyors have studied the problem for more
> than a century.
> John Halleck has written extensively on the subject
> as it applies to
> cave surveying. You might find his ideas
> interesting. His web page is
> at:
>
> http://www.cc.utah.edu/~nahaj/cave/survey/
>
> Larry
>
>
=====
Devin S. Kouts
devinkouts at yahoo.com
http://sites.netscape.net/devinkouts/




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Tue, 15 Aug 2000 12:50:23 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Locking of mapping accuracy
X-Evolution: 00000038-0010



Devin,
Your ideas are great and should result in higher accuracy of surveys. A
couple of comments:
If you cannot get the fore and backsight compass to agree with only a
small error, it is probably due magnet anomolies in the cave. This is due
to the fact that the fore and back compass are taken in different
locations and the magnetic anomoly will be different at those locations.
See John Halleck article on this idea on his web page. There is a link to
his web page on the COMPASS web page.
If you are absolutely sure that your survey is 100% accurate, you can
exclude all the stations from closing. Carlsbad Cavern has a theodolite
survey down the backbone of the cave and they exclude all those shot from
closing. If you don't know for sure that the survey is 100% accurate, it
is probably better to let COMPASS do the weighting.
Larry




To: 
From: "Pel Torbjvrn Doj" 
Date: Thu, 17 Aug 2000 11:35:27 +0200
Subject: SV: [compass-users] Locking of mapping accuracy
X-Evolution: 0000003a-0010



Thank you for youranswers. I can see that compass is valuing my mapping and thus actually making its own survey accuracy grade. And as Larry sais, even if you aim to to a good survey, the "grade 5" can under circumstanses be less acuurate than intended, and compass gives me a percentage failure of the loop.
The techniques of surveying accurate is a too large subject to comment, but Devins commenta about compass backsights:
............I presume the loops of
the main trunk (and they are a chain of consecutive
loops, foresight and backsight make a loop between
each station) will receive a greater weight from the
algorithm you described in Compass.     .......................
is interesting. This could be an answer to give the more accurate surveyline (we will use backsights, as we do on the surface survey) its credit. I hope compass works that way.
As for accuracy, we have around 1-2% on the larger loops (300m+) except some unfortunate loops.
Torbjoern Doj




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Thu, 17 Aug 2000 05:11:27 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: SV: [compass-users] Locking of mapping accuracy
X-Evolution: 0000003c-0010



Torbjoern,
> ............I presume the loops of
> the main trunk (and they are a chain of consecutive
> loops, foresight and backsight make a loop between
> each station) will receive a greater weight from the
> algorithm you described in Compass.
Actually, no. COMPASS does not make loops out of the foresight/backsight
pair. The accuracy comes from the fact that you have checked the fore and
back measurement against each other. If you make sure that your fore and
back readings agree, then you automatically get higher accuracy.
However, the only way you can know in a cave survey whether a survey is
accurate is by having it in a loop. If the loop closes well, then the
combined errors of all the shots in the loop must be low and so the shots
in the loop should be weighted high. That is the only thing you can know
about the accuracy of shots in a cave.
Now if you have a special survey and check and double check it, then you
might be able to say that it is more accurate than the rest. If you are
really sure, you could then override COMPASS and flag all the shots not to
be closed. However, even under those circumstances, you could make a
mistake and your assumption be wrong.

> As for accuracy, we have around 1-2% on the larger loops (300m+) except
> some unfortunate loops.
The best measure of loop quality is the Standard Deviation measurement
that COMPASS gives. Percentage is based the loops length, but the Standard
Deviation takes into account all of the individual shots and how they
might contribute to the error.
Larry




To: 
From: "Pel Torbjvrn Doj" 
Date: Thu, 17 Aug 2000 17:20:20 +0200
Subject: SV: SV: [compass-users] Locking of mapping accuracy
X-Evolution: 0000003e-0010



>However, the only way you can know in a cave survey whether a survey is
>accurate is by having it in a loop. If the loop closes well, then the
>combined errors of all the shots in the loop must be low and so the shots
>in the loop should be weighted high. That is the only thing you can know
>about the accuracy of shots in a cave.
Well.So if we survey the mainpassage with precisioncompass and the side-loops with handheld, compass will correct the whole loop, giving all the individual shots a correction. If we have multiple loops covering the shots in the main passage repeadetly, compass will correct the shots in the main line several times?! And if I exclude the mainline, the loop wont close at all, since the loop also includes the mainline?
>Now if you have a special survey and check and double check it, then you
>might be able to say that it is more accurate than the rest. If you are
>really sure, you could then override COMPASS and flag all the shots not to
>be closed. However, even under those circumstances, you could make a
>mistake and your assumption be wrong.
A special survey could be the surface shots or if I can get the entrances fixed with a very high accuracy. It would be nice if the entrances does not move around when I close the loops.
>> As for accuracy, we have around 1-2% on the larger loops (300m+) except
>> some unfortunate loops.
>
>The best measure of loop quality is the Standard Deviation measurement
>that COMPASS gives. Percentage is based the loops length, but the Standard
>Deviation takes into account all of the individual shots and how they
>might contribute to the error.
OK thanks!!
Torbjoern




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Thu, 17 Aug 2000 11:47:04 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: SV: SV: [compass-users] Locking of mapping accuracy
X-Evolution: 00000040-0010



> Well.So if we survey the mainpassage with precision compass and the
> side-loops with handheld, compass will correct the whole loop, giving
> all the individual shots a correction.
Yes, but if the shots are part of a good loop, very little correction will
be done. Because, by definition, a good loop has a small amount of error.
Likewise, if it is part of a bad loop, a larger correction will be done.
For example, let's say you have a loop in which four shots are part of
precision survey and four shots are part of a non-precision survey. If
that loop closes badly, you cannot say whether the error was in the
precision survey or in the non-precision survey. In other words, using the
only emperical measure of the quality of the shots in the cave, you cannot
know which shots were bad, just that somewhere in the loop, there was one
or more problems.
Now you have to understand that closing loops with a survey program cannot
fix survey errors. All you can do is distrubute the error over several
shots so cosmetically, it distorts the map in a minimal way.
COMPASS does have tools which help to try to zero in on the individual
shot that has the error, but it can only narrow the search. You have to
look at your survey notes or recheck your measurements to be sure you have
found the source of the error.
> If we have multiple loops covering the shots in the main passage
> repeadetly, compass will correct the shots in the main line several
> times?!
No, COMPASS will only correct each shot one time. It begins by closing the
best loops first and then it locks all the shots in that loop so that it
cannot be adjusted again. This means that shots in the best quality loops
don't change much, while the shots in the worst loops do. This has the
effect of isolating the errors to a particular part of the cave, instead
of spreading them around like some survey programs do.
> And if I exclude the mainline, the loop wont close at all, since
> the loop also includes the mainline?
No, only the excluded shots won't be adjusted. Any adjustment will take
place on the un-excluded shots.

> A special survey could be the surface shots or if I can get the
> entrances fixed with a very high accuracy. It would be nice if the
> entrances does not move around when I close the loops.

The entrance and any fixed stations are never moved by the closure
process. All the other shots move around them. By the way, in the last
few weeks I fixed a small bug in this area. So if you don't have the
very latest version, you probably should get it.
Larry




To: compass-users list 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Sat, 19 Aug 2000 16:31:59 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: [compass-users] a CaveBase idea
X-Evolution: 00000042-0010



Hi all,
I am just back from a caving trip where we recorded some temperature and
climate data. I will enter them in Cave Base and this leads me to an idea
for a probably useful enhancement of Compass.
CaveBase can export numeric values to CaveViewer and the latter displays the
data as symbols of different size. I think it would be also interesting to
export the number itself, i.e. if you entered a temperature of 5.7 degrees
in CaveBase the number should appear in Cave Viewer near the corresponding
station.
Larry, what's your opinion?
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Sat, 19 Aug 2000 21:05:35 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] a CaveBase idea
X-Evolution: 00000044-0010



Roger,
> I think it would be also interesting to
> export the number itself, i.e. if you entered a temperature of 5.7 degrees
> in CaveBase the number should appear in Cave Viewer near the corresponding
> station.
> Larry, what's your opinion?
I liked the idea so much that I went ahead and implemented it. It is up on
the net. Download it and see what you think.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Sun, 20 Aug 2000 21:13:52 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] a CaveBase idea
X-Evolution: 00000046-0010



On Sat, 19 Aug 2000, Larry Fish wrote:
Hello again,

> I liked the idea so much that I went ahead and implemented it. It is up on
> the net. Download it and see what you think.
Guys, that's really hot stuff! :-)
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: "Thomas Oakes" 
Date: Thu, 24 Aug 2000 20:43:10 -0000
Subject: [compass-users] CaveX
X-Evolution: 00000048-0010



Hi Larry,
I am brand new to Compass and have been trying to run CaveX but I
keep getting an error message. I am running under win95 ver. 4.0 on a
266 MHz Pentium Pro. I installed DirectX 6.0, rebooted and then
installed CaveX. When I try to run CaveX I get the following series
of error messages:
Unknown error: $80040111
External exception C000001D
Could Not Initialize DirectX, Be Sure that DirectX is Installed
The CaveX window does open but when I click OK on the last error
message the application closes. Is this something you can help with?
Thanks,
Tom Oakes




To: compass-users list 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Mon, 28 Aug 2000 14:11:37 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: [compass-users] x files and MSIE
X-Evolution: 0000004a-0010



Hello Larry,
for a public demonstration of Compass next weekend I prepared my old
computer: fresh Windows 95 installation, DirectX 6.1 core, MSIE 5.0, current
Compass releases and anything goes well with one exception. I can't view the
x files (generated with CaveX) in Internet Explorer.
On my new machine the first time I accessed your live3d cave page MSIE asked
for downloading a specific ActiveX control and then it worked but on the old
computer nothing happened. ActiveX and scripting are enabled but the browser
doesn't download the 3d viewer.
Probably the problem is because my old video card doesn't have hardware 3d
acceleration. The DirectX diagnostics tools says that Direct3D runs only in
software mode. Your CaveX viewer on the other hand doesn't cause trouble.
Any hints or experiences?
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Mon, 28 Aug 2000 12:38:06 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] x files and MSIE
X-Evolution: 0000004c-0010



Roger,
I have a couple of thoughts on the subject. The fact that Internet
Explorer doesn't try to download the 3D viewer probably means that
Explorer thinks that it has already been loaded. My guess is that when you
installed Win95, it left the viewer half installed.
The 3D viewer is a Microsoft product that is not very well documented. I
discovered it by accident when I found that Explorer could display X
files. It took quite a bit of research before I was able to figure out
that the 3D viewing capabilities in Explorer came from an ActiveX
component called XWEB.OCX.
In the process of figuring out how XWEB.OCX worked, I had to install and
uninstall it several times. I did this by renaming the file. When I did
this, Windows decided that XWEB was gone and downloaded a new version when
I connected to my 3D Web Page.
The tricky part is that XWEB.OCX is difficult to find, even if it is on
your computer. This is because Windows doesn't want you messing with
installed components. This means the "Find Files and Folders" from the
Start Menu will not "see" XWEB.OCX. At least that is the case in Windows
98. Windows 95 may allow you to see the file. What I had to do to find it
was go to the DOS prompt and probe around in various hidden directories.
Currently on my machine, XWEB is in:
c:\windows\downloaded program files\xweb.ocx
I think what you need to do is find XWEB and delete or rename it. Then try
reconnecting to the web page. Hopefully, it will download and reinstall
the component.
The tricky part is going to be finding XWEB. I just tried one of the DOS
tools I have called "WHEREIS" and it could not find XWEB. Yet, when if I
go to the DOS prompt and look in the directory, it is there. If you have
trouble finding the file, you might try searching the registry for the
word XWEB. I find several entries for XWEB, and one of them gives me a
directory. In my case, the registry key is:
\HEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{970C7E08-05A7-11D0-89AA-00A0C9054129}\InprocServer32
This method of removing and reinstalling XWEB is probably not the correct
way to do it, but it does seem to work. I probably should look around on
the net and find the proper way.
I don't think the problem has to do with lack of graphics acceleration.
DirectX is supposed to work fine without it. It would just be slow.
I'll be interested to know how your demo goes.
Larry
> for a public demonstration of Compass next weekend I prepared my old
> computer: fresh Windows 95 installation, DirectX 6.1 core, MSIE 5.0, current
> Compass releases and anything goes well with one exception. I can't view the
> x files (generated with CaveX) in Internet Explorer.
>
> On my new machine the first time I accessed your live3d cave page MSIE asked
> for downloading a specific ActiveX control and then it worked but on the old
> computer nothing happened. ActiveX and scripting are enabled but the browser
> doesn't download the 3d viewer.
>
> Probably the problem is because my old video card doesn't have hardware 3d
> acceleration. The DirectX diagnostics tools says that Direct3D runs only in
> software mode. Your CaveX viewer on the other hand doesn't cause trouble.




To: compass-users list 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Wed, 6 Sep 2000 21:40:32 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: [compass-users] x to vrml converter
X-Evolution: 0000004e-0010



Hi all,
does anybody know if there is a converter available which can convert
Microsoft x files (which the CaveX Viewer produces as output) to vrml?
Happy caving
Roger
PS: A report about the public presentation of Compass last weekend will
follow soon.
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: users group compass 
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Thu, 5 Oct 2000 01:24:55 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: [compass-users] File problems
X-Evolution: 00000050-0010



I got this question from Evan Anderson and I thought it would be of
general interest:
=====================================================================
Evan,
> How's it going? Hopefully well. I wanted to send this to the Compass
> users group but don't have the address handy...
I will send it on to the COMPASS users group for you. The address is on
the web page.
> #1 Still having the same bug with the sort by Date function in the
> Project Manager. My surveys are entered with 2000 as the year, and
> the Editor will later re-arrange them to be at the start of the list
> (as in 1900). I will have to go back in and re-enter the year as 2000
> and so on. It works for a while then screws up. I have tried this on
> another computer too and the same thing happens. It's not anything to
> do with the computers control panel settings. See if you can make it
> happen with yours.
I tried to recreate the problem and I could not do it with the Fairy Cave
data I have. Also, I have not heard any other complaints about a problem
like this. I could try random things and see if I can find the problem,
but that would be hit and miss. I'm not sure what things you are doing
that preceed the dates getting changed. It would be very helpful to know
exactly what steps you are taking before the problem happens. Are you
perhaps running the DOS version on this data?  The DOS version is probably
not Y2K compatable.
> #2 Spanish data is corrupt somehow. I'm sending it zipped along with
> this message. When I Manipulate the data and try to save it tells me
> that "Surface" is not a valad integer. Don't know how to rectify
> this.
This data is a mess! There are two corrupt files in the survey. The
first one "SPNGLCH.DAT" appears to be a Word Perfect file. It is full
of control characters and text formating commands. This is very bad. You
should not edit COMPASS files with word processors. I know they look just
fine when you view them in the word processor, but it is very easy for
them to get corrupted when they are saved to disk.
The second file SPANISH.DAT has an extra blank line between each line
of data. I suspect that this data was transmitted over the internet.
This kind of corruption can occur because different operating systems
like Unix, Linx, Windows and DOS treat ends of lines differently.
I have cleaned up the data and attached it to this email.
> Also wondered what method you have for turning an emailed set
> of data into something readable by Compass.. for instance, Stevie
> sent me the newest data unzipped, it was listed out as text in the
> email.
My advice would be to avoid sending COMPASS files listed as text in
emails. Tell your friends to only send the data zipped. It is the
only way you be sure that data doesn't get corrupted. I don't
understand why people insist on send COMPASS files this way. If you
mailed a Word Perfect document, Excel spread sheet, a bitmap image or
virtually any other file over the internet this way, it would be
irretrievably corrupted.
The only way you can fix files that have been sent as text in email
is to use a sophisticated text editor. I have a shareware editor
called XEDIT that can be used to do this. It can be found at:
http://www.fountainware.com
You have to copy the text into the text editor and then edit-out any
anomolies. For example, you can have truncated lines, wrapped lines,
extra blank lines, formating characters at the end of lines, etc. The
problem is you have to understand the COMPASS file format and control
characters to reliably reformat the text. The file format is
described in detail in the DOS version of COMPASS in a file called
COMPASS.TXT.
Again, the simplest way to avoid file problems is to never use a word
processor and transmit your files zipped.
Larry




To: users group compass 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Thu, 5 Oct 2000 19:46:31 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] File problems
X-Evolution: 00000052-0010



Hello folks,

> > #1 Still having the same bug with the sort by Date function in the
> > Project Manager. My surveys are entered with 2000 as the year, and
> > the Editor will later re-arrange them to be at the start of the list
> > (as in 1900). I will have to go back in and re-enter the year as 2000
> > and so on. It works for a while then screws up. I have tried this on
> > another computer too and the same thing happens. It's not anything to
> > do with the computers control panel settings. See if you can make it
> > happen with yours.
Probably it *is* a problem with your control panel settings. My own
experiences with COMPASS (on a box with the German edition of Win 95) are
that it uses the "short date" which stores only the last two digits of the
year by default. This may in some circumstances end up with y2k problems.
Go to the control panel and select the regional settings and change the
"short date" to something with a four digit year. There is a pull-down menu
with several choices, also some where the year has all four digits.
After that you must reboot your PC and fix your cave data manually.
Hopefully this error will never appear again.

> The only way you can fix files that have been sent as text in email
> is to use a sophisticated text editor. I have a shareware editor
> called XEDIT that can be used to do this. It can be found at:
Another user friendly but powerful plain text editor: www.textpad.com
Lucky caving
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: "evan anderson" 
Date: Fri, 06 Oct 2000 04:52:18 GMT
Subject: [compass-users] Re: File date problems
X-Evolution: 00000054-0010



Roger wrote-
>Probably it *is* a problem with your control panel settings. My own
>experiences with COMPASS (on a box with the German edition of Win 95) >are
>that it uses the "short date" which stores only the last two digits of the
>year by default. This may in some circumstances end up with y2k >problems.
>Go to the control panel and select the regional settings and change the
>"short date" to something with a four digit year. There is a pull-down
> >menu with several choices, also some where the year has all four digits.
>After that you must reboot your PC and fix your cave data manually.
>Hopefully this error will never appear again.
I am running Windows 98 and the control panel displays the date as 2000...
not 00.  There is no option to change or manipulate what the year is other
than:
1. Toggle the years up or down one year at a time.
2. Highlight the year and re-write it.
3. Hit the OK, CANCEL, or APPLY buttons at the bottom.
The Editor does not change the saved 2000 year every time. Just randomly
every once in a while.
thanks for the Textpad.com thing. I'm going to try to learn Larry's XEDIT
program first.
later
evan




To: users group compass 
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Fri, 6 Oct 2000 15:21:55 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: [compass-users] Date Problem
X-Evolution: 00000056-0010



Evan,
I have found the problem! Roger was right, it has to do with the
Windows Regional settings and the way the editor handles the date. I
went through your step-by-step procedure and still could not
duplicate the problem. Finally, I went to the Control Panel and
changed the "Short Date Format" so that only two digits were
displayed for the year and the problem suddenly appeared.
For an immediate quick fix, carry out the following steps:
1. Goto "My Computer," then "Control Panel", finally select "Regional
Settings."
2. Select the "Date" tab and examine the "Short Date Style." The
"Style" string uses letters to specify the number of digits that will
appear in the date. The letter "m" is used to specify the month, "d"
is used to specify the day and "y" is used to specify the the year.
For example, if the style string were "mm/dd/yy" it would specify
that all dates are displayed with a two digit year.
3. Change the "Style" string so it has four "y"s in it. Press the
apply button. Besure to close any COMPASS programs and re-run them so
the new setting can take effect. You may need to reboot the computer
for the changes to take effect.
These instructions work for Win95 or Win98. Window 3.1 has something
similiar, but I don't have it available so I can't give you the
step-by-step procedure.
I have fixed COMPASS so it ignores the year part of the "Style" string.
I have posted the new version on the net, but it is not an official
release.
Check it out and see if it solves the problem for you.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Mon, 09 Oct 2000 09:22:04 +0200
Subject: [compass-users] [Fwd: Spud stuff: other survey software; and a few other bits.]
X-Evolution: 00000058-0010



Hi Compass Users,
this was posted on the Survex mailing list and I think it may be of some
interest to see what other survey software developers and users are
thinking.
Roger

Mark Shinwell wrote:
>
> Hi
>
> I have been browsing around various cave surveying web sites and collated
> some things which might be of use for Spud design.  This is the first
> installment of a summary of these things.
>
> Obviously some of these are specific features which do not have direct
> relevance on the fundamental architecture of Spud, but it is useful to
> have some inkling of what other developers are up to.
>
> Two prevelent features seem to be
>  (a) integrated editors for the data;
>  (b) 3D "tunnel" features for visualising passage shapes.
>
> 
> A page for those "fed up with Survex"...
>
> There are issues raised relating to:
>  (a) the lack of an editor tailored to entering svx files;
>  (b) no depth colouring or surface grids;
>  (c) no support for stereo visualisation;
>  (d) no 3D tunnel support;
>  (e) lack of features like the ones Chasm has for highlighting
>      bits of caves, etc.;
>  (f) lack of blunder detection;
>  (g) lack of print preview;
>  (h) difficulty in organising svx files.
>
> (c) is easy for us to do.  (b), (e) and (g) we certainly already have
> the technology to do and I believe (f) is covered to some extent.
>
> (h) is an awkward one -- how can one make it easy to do this?  Can we
> maybe produce a short document on it, using examples drawn from large
> datasets such as the CUCC Austria one?  (See later about "philosophy").
>
> (a) is in hand for Spud.
>
> (d) is more awkward.  Persuade Julian to port Tunnel to C++?  Dunno :)
>
> There is an interesting comment about a text editor "Aurora" which can
> select columns of text, not just normal blocks.  Might be worth
> considering... (then there are all the other questions to do with the
> editor which need sorting out -- eg are there two editors (plain text
> and a more sophisticated one)?).
>
> Compass  
> "...originally written in 1979 and ran on a PDP-10..."
>
> I suggest someone endowed with a machine running Windows has a look at
> this... here are a few notes on it anyway.
>
> The main thrust of the program is to allow easy input and easy
> visualisation.
>
> Some of the main features, condensed from
>   http://www.fountainware.com/compass/wdetails.htm:
>
> - Ghastly web site.
> - Project manager.  Survey files can participate in more than one
>   project (wow :)  Whether we need to have something like this I
>   don't know; the one thought that occurs to me which might be
>   relevant is that we need to figure out an interface to the revision
>   control system.
>   You can easily arrange and disorganise your survey data by dragging
>   and dropping.  There is a serious point here, related to the one
>   above, about the philosophy of the software.  With Survex at the
>   moment it's up to the user how to structure their dataset;
>   presumably we want to preserve this for Spud?  There are of course
>   the hierarchies of country/system etc. which Olly was proposing to
>   think about.
> - It has a built-in editor, which looks nasty and does things like
>   forcing a certain number of decimal places.  It has 12-character
>   station name restrictions.
> - Blunder detection is incorporated.
> - You can assemble 3D passage shapes as with Tunnel.  The whole
>   support for this looks quite sophisticated.
> - Eye-candy: fancy viewer with all the twiddles, export of
>   fly-through videos and some sort of way of exporting to the
>   Web (presumably VRML/Java).
> - Rose graphs and so on are all implemented.
> - Has integration with GIS stuff like ArcView, and can read standard
>   DEM (Digital Elevation Map) files for terrain data.  We ought to do
>   the latter (I will investigate).
> - Context-sensitive help.  We need to think about how we will provide
>   help.
> - It costs money.
>
> There is also some kind of interface to external database software to
> allow the recording of specific features within the cave.  I wonder if
> this could be used for CUCC's Austria dataset to record, for example,
> the position of cave entrances as marked via GPS.  Something like this
> could probably be very easily implemented as a plugin which acts as
> an arbiter between the rendering engine and an external database such
> as MySQL, for e
>
> Olly might want to look at
>   http://www.fountainware.com/compass/compart2.htm
> but I suspect he's already seen it :)
>
> It strikes me that Compass has featuritis, but I can't really make
> an informed decision not having tried it out.  Can anyone advise on the
> merits or otherwise of this software?  The thing is that it has
> hundreds of features in addition to the few I've noted above, and many
> of them would be easily implemented via our plugin architecture.
>
> Does anyone know much about the data model in Compass?
>
>  is a bad joke, but cites the
> main problem of Survex as being "poor qualities concerning the
> visualization of survey data".
>
>  "home of the best software
> for the study and mapping of caves".
>
> Looks pretty good.  One point I notice is that it can understand
> coordinate systems, GPS, etc. (e.g. it allows export of waypoint data
> for entrances).  This could be a really nice feature to have, but again,
> it doesn't really affect our underlying architecture (save for the fact
> that we need to make the editors understand commands, etc, implemented
> by the different plug-ins -- but when one considers that the data
> processing engine itself is just a plug-in, this becomes a non-issue).
>
> Has various fancy diagrams like 3D rose diagrams; see the web site.
>
> The tunnel features seem to be given much attention.  I seriously think
> we should make sure Spud can do something like this.
>
> It strikes me that WinKarst has the sort of overall features we might
> be aiming for and does seem to be targetting specific useful features
> rather than having lots of little twiddles.  Does anyone have any
> experience with it?
>
> The four major advantages which Spud will have over any of these other
> programs is that it will be multi-platform, free, open source and very
> easy to extend; from the look of it a Mac port will be plausible
> (assuming the GTK+ Mac port keeps going OK).
>
> How are we going to approach Spud design?  We need to think about overall
> architecture, data model etc.  Input from surveyors around the place would
> be very useful...  Then we can move onto the nitty gritty of specific
> features within each plugin (which can probably be designed fairly
> independently in some cases and then subjected to peer review).  What do
> people think?  Olly's mail has set the ball rolling and I'll reply to
> that as soon as I have time.
>
> To be honest I reckon it would be great to organise a meeting in person
> between people who have good ideas for the project, as then a lot more
> can get done at once...
>
> Anyway, that's all for now.
>
> Mark
>
> --
> Mark Shinwell -- President, Cambridge University Caving Club
> Queens' College, Cambridge, UK
> Mail: mrs30 at cam.ac.uk   Web: http://mrs30.quns.cam.ac.uk
>
> --
> Survex http://lists.survex.com/mailman/listinfo/survex
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Tue, 10 Oct 2000 03:18:30 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: [compass-users] Survex ideas.
X-Evolution: 0000005a-0010



The information from the Survex mailing was interesting and I wanted
to make a few comments. First, I have a great deal of respect for
Olly the author of Survex. I think that he has done a very nice job
with Survex. In fact, Survex appears to be the only cave survey
program that correctly implements the Least Squares technique for
loop closure. He has been very friendly and helpful. Olly, Wookey,
John Halleck and I have had extensive and very interesting
conversations about loop closures and blunders.
One of the big differences between Survex and COMPASS is the way data
is organized. This seems to be related to the Brittish cave surveying
style. I may not have this exactly right, but their survey stations
don't have unique names. For example, many surveys in the Survex data
I have seen have station names like "1, 2, 3, 4, etc." They organize
their data by sections and subsections, and these names are used to
distinguish the station names between surveys.
Survex has an elegant and sophisticated system for handling this.
COMPASS can do similiar things with its "Links," but it is not really
intended to do the kind of things that Survex needs to do. I don't
know if other parts of the world use the same surveying technique as
the Brittish, but so far, I haven't had any requests to improve the
linking features.
> - Ghastly web site.
Maybe a little chaotic. My frustration with most cave survey web sites
is that you cannot tell very much about the program. My goal has been
to put enough information on the web site so people could really tell
how the program works and what features it has.
> - It has a built-in editor, which looks nasty and does things like
>   forcing a certain number of decimal places.  It has 12-character
>   station name restrictions.
There are two philosophical approaches to cave survey editors. The first
is the "Free Form" editor.  With this type of editor, you just enter the
data pretty much any way you want, adding commands at the begining of the
text that define the where and how the data will appear. The best example
I have seen of this type of editor is the one in David MacKenzie's Walls
program.
The second type of editor is the "Spreadsheet" style editor. COMPASS uses
this type of editor. Although you can configure the editor to match the
measurement order and units used, you are forced to enter the information
in specific cells, in a specific way.
I chose the second type of editor because there is more opportunity
for error checking at the point that the data is entered. For
example, with Free Form editors, the data is only checked when the
data is compiled. This means that you can accidently do things like
enter letters in a numeric field, enter contradictory depth gauge
information, etc. With a Free Form editor, these types of errors will
not get caught until the data is compiled.
The 12-character limit can be increased at any point. It is a compromise.
The more characters you have in the station name, the more memory you use
and the slower the processing.
> - Eye-candy: fancy viewer with all the twiddles, export of
>   fly-through videos and some sort of way of exporting to the
>   Web (presumably VRML/Java).
> It strikes me that Compass has featuritis, but I can't really make
> an informed decision not having tried it out.
This is interesting because most of the features in COMPASS come from
the users. I have yet to hear someone say they want less features.
Usually, they want more and more.
> The four major advantages which Spud will have over any of these other
> programs is that it will be multi-platform, free, open source and very
> easy to extend.
The current version of COMPASS is written in Delphi a Boland product.
Borland is working on a version of Delphi for Linx called Kylix.
Supposedly, you can take a program written for Windows and convert it
directly to Linx. If there really is an interest from cavers for a Linx
version, it may be fairly easy to do.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Tue, 10 Oct 2000 20:27:32 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Survex ideas.
X-Evolution: 0000005c-0010



On Tue, 10 Oct 2000, Larry Fish wrote:
Hello folks,

> The current version of COMPASS is written in Delphi a Boland product.
> Borland is working on a version of Delphi for Linx called Kylix.
> Supposedly, you can take a program written for Windows and convert it
> directly to Linx. If there really is an interest from cavers for a Linx
> version, it may be fairly easy to do.
Kylix is a "rapid development IDE" for C++ and Delphi on Linux machines. I
don't know how difficult it is to port a Delphi application like Compass to
Linux but I think it is possible. Compass can be used on Linux today with the
help of some DOS and Windows emulators but these are somewhat slow and there
are several bugs. See http://www.karst.net/Compass/complin.htm for details.
Because of the problems with Compass in an emulated environment and the lack
of really good native cave surveying software for Linux I think we should
take it seriously into consideration to port Compass to Linux. I expect some
problems in those parts which make use of OLE and other Windows specific
technologies (e.g. the interface between Cave Base and Cave Viewer) but on
Linux there are good alternatives. AFAIK Kylix uses Qt as GUI toolkit which
means that Kylix applications will fit seamless into KDE and the latter
offers powerful methods for data transfer.
I don't know how much Kylix will cost and what's about the license stuff (Qt
is since version 2.2 under the GNU GPL but only for open source projects and
Compass isn't OSS) but in my opinion Compass for Linux is exactly that thing
which the (under)world is waiting for.
If the porting of Compass becomes reality I am strongly interested in
supporting this effort.
Best regards
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Tue, 10 Oct 2000 14:30:57 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Survex ideas.
X-Evolution: 0000005e-0010



According to the Delphi web page, applications developed with Delphi
version 5, will port directly to Kylix. COMPASS is now written in Delphi-1
and with portions like CaveX and the DEM Reader written in Delphi-3. The
first step would be to port everything to Delphi-5. This shouldn't be too
much of a problem, although I have written my own memory managers for the
Win3.1 environment and they would have be rewritten. Actually, I have been
planning to upgrade everything to Delphi-5 for a long time because it
would dramatically speed up some applications like the Viewer.
This disadvantange of porting everything to Delphi-5 is it would no longer
work with Win3.1. I don't know how many cavers are still using Win3.1, but
I know of one Colorado caver who is and I suspect there are others. (I
have also heard that people in Eastern European countries are currently
using older computer and old versions of the operating systems.) Still, I
think that most of the lagging cavers could be nudged into the
Win95/98/ME/2000 world.
After that, it would simply be a matter of doing whatever conversion are
necessary to make everything work with Kylix. Roger is correct that
programs like CaveBase would not work because it needs OLE, a Windows
specific feature, to work. Also, CaveX, which uses the Windows only
DirectX, would not work.
Beyond these issues, I have some practical questions. Currently, I barely
have time to keep up with the Windows version of COMPASS. I don't think I
would have time to deal with porting and maintaining a whole other
version. I might be able to do it if both version could be maintained from
the same source code, however, as Roger points out, at the very least,
certain modules would have to be different to deal with the Windows
specific features. In addition, to get maxium preformance, you always want
to take advantage of certain operating system specific features. I would
guess that before too long, the Kylix version would gradually evolve so
that it was very different from the Windows version. Finally, there are
all the bugs, configuration problems, and version specific issues that go
with a different operating system. For example, there are several
different flavors of Linux, each one created by different companies. I
suspect that each version would have its own issues and it would create a
lot of work for me.
Also, I have questions about the viability of Linux in this environment.
Inspite of the fact that Linux is becoming very popular, Windows machines
still dominate. I use Linux and Unix everyday and I'm not sure I see any
advantage that would compel the average computer user to switch. Most
people say that Linux is more stable than Windows, but that has not been
my experience. A number of my friends who are programmer types have loaded
Linux on there system, played with it for a while and then gone back to
Windows or DOS. I think that part of Linux's popularity is a result of
everyone hating Bill Gates and Microsoft and although it is fun to hate
Bill, most cavers are not involved in that fight. My guess is that a few
cavers who are programmers or tinkerers will be using Linux, but the vast
majority will be in the Windows environment.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: "rob harper" 
Date: Thu, 12 Oct 2000 23:54:12 GMT
Subject: [compass-users] general questions
X-Evolution: 00000060-0010



Just a couple of quick questions.
1. How do you fix the entrance stations so that more than one cave can be
entered on the same survey and, possibly more useful, their relationship to
each other can be assessed.
2. Regarding Larry's comment that there are still people using Win 3.1.
There are also some people still just using the DOS Version. This is mainly
because it requires much less sophisticated, and hence cheaper, hardware.
Following on from this - has anyone any experience of trying to run Compass
from one of the little palmtop computers?
Cheers,
Rob Harper





To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Thu, 12 Oct 2000 22:46:50 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] general questions
X-Evolution: 00000062-0010



Rob,
Thanks for the letter.
> 1. How do you fix the entrance stations so that more than one cave can
> be entered on the same survey and, possibly more useful, their
> relationship to each other can be assessed.
COMPASS works with both single data files and Projects. Fixed stations
have to entered as a part of a Project. If you are just working with
a small cave that you have in a single data file, you have to create a
project that goes with it. Once you have created the project, you can
enter one or more fixed stations. In the case of single caves, you would
probably be fixing the location of the entrance. In the case, multiple
caves or multiple entrances, you may be fixing many more stations.
Remember, survey files in COMPASS can be connected to more than one
Project. For example, in the Williams Canyon area of Colorado, there are
more than 30 caves. As a result, I have several different projects. Some
cover the whole canyon, others cover subsections of the canyon and others
show surface trails and terrain. Many of the caves participate in more
than one Project.
I have attached a complete description of setting up fixed stations at the
end of this letter.
Larry
==========================================================================
Linking Cave Surveys To Fixed Stations Or Real-World Coordinates.
It is sometimes useful to set one or more stations in a cave to a fixed
location. When you do this, all other stations in the cave are positioned
relative to the fixed stations. This is useful for tying together multiple
caves. For example, you can tie the entrances of several caves together
and create plot of the whole system.
It also allows you locate the position of rooms and passages on the
surface using a GPS receiver. Finally, it is useful for making the surveys
more accurate by tying them to benchmarks and precision (theodolite)
surface surveys.
Fixed stations can be applied to any station in the cave. Usually, they
are applied to entrances, but if have a "cave radio" coordinates or fixed
coordinates, you can apply them to station in the interior of the cave.
GEOGRAPHIC REFERENCE SYSTEMS
The fixed location can be based on a geographic reference system such as
UTM and longitude and latitude. COMPASS uses UTM as it standard geographic
measurement unit, but you can also enter locations in Longitude and
Latitude. You can get this information from maps, benchmarks and from GPS
receivers. Once you have connected a cave to a geographic reference point,
all stations and locations within the cave will be relative to this
location. For example, if you tie the entrance of a cave to its UTM
coordinates, location of all passages will be in UTM. This means that you
can find the elevation above sealevel for any passage in the cave. You can
also find location of passage on the surface, by comparing the coordinates
of the passage to the coordinates from a GPS receiver.
LOCAL REFERENCE SYSTEMS
You can also use other coordinate systems. If you are not using Longitude,
Latitude or UTM, the fixed location can be based on the relative distance
between fixed location on the earth and a point in the cave. This type of
fixed location can be anything like a telephone pole, fence post, building
corner, a land surveyors mark, a section corner, a bench mark etc.
FIXED STATIONS AS LOOPS
If you have a cave with more than one fixed location and you "Close" the
cave, the Loop Closer will treat the intermediate stations as a loop. This
means that the Loop Closer will look for errors between the two fixed
station and "adjust" intermediate station to reduce the effect of the
error. Fixed Stations themselves are never adjusted or moved by as the
cave data is processed.
FIXED STATIONS AND PROJECTS
In COMPASS, Fixed Stations can only be entered at the "Project" level. The
advantage of this is that since COMPASS can have more than one Project for
the same data, you can have more than one set of geographic reference
points for a particular cave. For example, you could have one Project
where the cave is tied to a local reference and another where it is tied
to UTM.
STEP-BY-STEP INSTRUCTIONS
1. PROJECT MANAGER. Since Fixed Stations are created at the project level,
you must go to the Project Manager to enter a Fixed Station.
2. CREATING A PROJECT. The Project Manager can work with either individual
".DAT" survey files or ".MAK" project files. Since the fixed stations are
entered at the project level, you must have a Project File before you can
enter a Fixed Station. If you don't have a Project File, go the "Project
Creation Wizard" on the "File" menu of the Project Manager. Just follow
the instructions. If you already have a Project, you can use it.
3. OPENING THE PROJECT. Once you have Project File, open it with the
Project Manager. Remember, this must be a file with the "MAK" extension
like LECH.MAK. You cannot use "DAT" file to create a link. Once you have
opened the Project File, click on the "Expand Tree" button on the tool bar
at the top of the screen. This will expand the "Survey Tree" to show all
the "Nodes."
4. SELECTING SURVEY FILE. You now need to select the survey file that has
the station or stations you want to use as a Fixed Station. Just click on
and highlight the survey file in the "Tree." Now click on the "Edit Node"
button at the top of the screen. This will display the Node Editing dialog
box. Select the "Links Tab" at the bottom of the page. This will take you
to the Links Editor.
5. ENTERING LINKS. The Links Editor displays a grid that allows you to
enter the station name and the North, East and Vertical coordinates of the
station. Enter the coordinates of the station in the cells to the right of
the station name. The units can be feet or meters as selected by the check
boxes below. As an example:
A1  10.1  20.2   30.3
This illustrates a fixed station. The station A1 is fixed to the location
10.1 east, 20.2 north and 30.3 vertical from the fixed reference point.
The East, North and Vertical coordinates can be in either feet or meters.
The coordinates can be relative a local coordinate system or a world-wide
geographic reference system. COMPASS uses UTM as its internal reference
system, however it can convert to and from longitude and latitude. To use
geographic referenced coordinates, enable the "Use UTM" checkbox. If you
are using UTM, be sure to set a "Zone" number. Only one zone is allowed
for each cave file, but you can have different files in different zones.
You can enter up to 99 Links for each survey file.
If you want to enter the data in Longitude and Latitude, first highlight
the row in the grid for the station you want to set. Then, click on the
"Georeference" button. The program will then display a dialog box that
will allow you to convert back and forth between Longitude and Latitude
and UTM. At the bottom of the box will be the UTM coordinates in meters.
(Note: UTM is always displayed in meters on maps.) If you press the "UTM
to Long/Lat" button, the UTM coordinates will be converted to longitude
and latitude. Like wise, if press the "Long/Lat to UTM" button, the
longitude/latitude values will be converted to UTM. This way, you can
enter longitude and latitude values. You can also use the dialog to verify
you UTM coordinates by converting them to longitude and latitude and then
checking the map.
6. OTHER USES FOR LINKS. Links can also be used to "link" together
different caves or different subsections of caves. You can create this
type of link by entering the station name without the coordinates. In this
situation, the links tell COMPASS which stations are the connecting
stations between survey files. COMPASS then discards all other stations
except the links.
This kind of link has two purposes. First, when you link together two
separate caves, it is possible to have duplicate station names. Since
COMPASS discards all station except links, duplicate stations do not
interfere with each other. Second, because the majority of stations are
discarded between files, this kind of link saves memory. This was
important in the DOS environment, where memory was limited. Under Windows,
memory is virtually unlimited, so there is little need to conserve memory.
7. VIEWING GEO-REFERENCED COORDINATES. Once you have created a project
with geo-referenced coordinates, all surveys station in the cave are
relative to the fixed stations. You can view these locations in the
Viewer. If press the "Label Elevations" button on the Viewer Tool Bar, the
elevation will be relative to fixed stations. If you have set the
elevation of the fixed stations to the altitude above sea level, all the
station elevations will be displayed as their elevation above sea level.
You can also find any East, North or Vertical coordinate in or around the
cave using the Measuring Tool. Just select "Tools|Measure
Distances/Angles" from the menu bar.




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Christian Docksey 
Date: Fri, 13 Oct 2000 11:29:17 -0400
Subject: Re: [compass-users] general questions
X-Evolution: 00000064-0010



Hello Larry,
First let me say that it is really nice to be able to read and write
with the programmer himself. To get answers, problems solved, doubts
explained, etc, is really fantastic.
For my few queries:
1) Your previous reply: "This means that you
can find the elevation above sealevel for any passage in the cave. You
can
also find location of passage on the surface, by comparing the
coordinates
of the passage to the coordinates from a GPS receiver."
Can you make compass give the UTM (and/or lat/long)coordinates of any
particular station in a cave once it has been linked to a geographical
reference system? If one could get this readout, the advantages are
enormous! We many times discover a cave, and want to see if it connects
to another cave nearby. Also, when a chimney is found in a cave, one
could look for a possible connection to the surface by looking on the
surface with GPS coordinates given by "Compass". Anyway, you can imagine
the benefits of this. If "Compass" can't now, would it be possible in
next version??
2)Since trying to keep "Compass" for windows compatible with DOS and 3.1
limits the power of compass in many ways (and its expansion), wouldn't
you consider separating the versions; just as you have a DOS version and
a windows version, you would have a DOS, a 3.1 and a 98/2000 version
which would permit all sorts of possibilities. As a note to this, would
you find it easier to use windows elements to simplify your work and
mantain a known interface. I mean it in the sense that you wouldn't have
to create buttons, menus, etc, because you would use those of windows. I
think this is what Winkarst has done.
3)I agree that the information section in the printout should be more
extensive. I know you want to make a nice feature of this. But maybe in
the meanwhile one could have the option of having, say, 6 to 8 cells in
which one could type in any info one wishes (as text). No interpretation
necessary by "Compass". Maybe this info could be put in at the printing
command stage. Anyway,to me, more important than this is to be able to
have a more sophisticated North arrow. Perhaps larger and not in its
current position, but more within the map drawn by compass. Ideally, it
could be positioned where one wanted by using a menu maybe. Same goes
with that extra info. Too complicated??
Also very necessary, is to have a scale bar outputted, whether printed
out or exported. I know you have the scale info (say 1:320) but to have
the scale bar (as in Winkarst) printed or exported allows one to scale
the whole map in another application until it fits the desired size. The
scale bar would change size along with the cave map, allowing a precise
scaling info to be always available. Please don't think I'm comparing
Compass to Winkarst. It's just that it does have some nice features too
(as many progs have) and why not take advantage of some of these ideas?
I have one or two other suggestions and ideas, but I think you may say,
maybe this is enough for one day!
Once again let me congratulate you for your work on this software and
let us hope that it becomes the undoubted software of choice for
everyone.
warm regards...
Christian
Larry Fish wrote:
>
> Rob,
>
> Thanks for the letter.
>
> > 1. How do you fix the entrance stations so that more than one cave
> can
> > be entered on the same survey and, possibly more useful, their
> > relationship to each other can be assessed.
>
> COMPASS works with both single data files and Projects. Fixed stations
>
> have to entered as a part of a Project. If you are just working with
> a small cave that you have in a single data file, you have to create a
>
> project that goes with it. Once you have created the project, you can
> enter one or more fixed stations. In the case of single caves, you
> would
> probably be fixing the location of the entrance. In the case, multiple
>
> caves or multiple entrances, you may be fixing many more stations.
>
> Remember, survey files in COMPASS can be connected to more than one
> Project. For example, in the Williams Canyon area of Colorado, there
> are
> more than 30 caves. As a result, I have several different projects.
> Some
> cover the whole canyon, others cover subsections of the canyon and
> others
> show surface trails and terrain. Many of the caves participate in more
>
> than one Project.
>
> I have attached a complete description of setting up fixed stations at
> the
> end of this letter.
>
> Larry
>
>
> =========================================================================
>
> Linking Cave Surveys To Fixed Stations Or Real-World Coordinates.
>
> It is sometimes useful to set one or more stations in a cave to a
> fixed
> location. When you do this, all other stations in the cave are
> positioned
> relative to the fixed stations. This is useful for tying together
> multiple
> caves. For example, you can tie the entrances of several caves
> together
> and create plot of the whole system.
>
> It also allows you locate the position of rooms and passages on the
> surface using a GPS receiver. Finally, it is useful for making the
> surveys
> more accurate by tying them to benchmarks and precision (theodolite)
> surface surveys.
>
> Fixed stations can be applied to any station in the cave. Usually,
> they
> are applied to entrances, but if have a "cave radio" coordinates or
> fixed
> coordinates, you can apply them to station in the interior of the
> cave.
>
> GEOGRAPHIC REFERENCE SYSTEMS
>
> The fixed location can be based on a geographic reference system such
> as
> UTM and longitude and latitude. COMPASS uses UTM as it standard
> geographic
> measurement unit, but you can also enter locations in Longitude and
> Latitude. You can get this information from maps, benchmarks and from
> GPS
> receivers. Once you have connected a cave to a geographic reference
> point,
> all stations and locations within the cave will be relative to this
> location. For example, if you tie the entrance of a cave to its UTM
> coordinates, location of all passages will be in UTM. This means that
> you
> can find the elevation above sealevel for any passage in the cave. You
> can
> also find location of passage on the surface, by comparing the
> coordinates
> of the passage to the coordinates from a GPS receiver.
>
> LOCAL REFERENCE SYSTEMS
>
> You can also use other coordinate systems. If you are not using
> Longitude,
> Latitude or UTM, the fixed location can be based on the relative
> distance
> between fixed location on the earth and a point in the cave. This type
> of
> fixed location can be anything like a telephone pole, fence post,
> building
> corner, a land surveyors mark, a section corner, a bench mark etc.
>
> FIXED STATIONS AS LOOPS
>
> If you have a cave with more than one fixed location and you "Close"
> the
> cave, the Loop Closer will treat the intermediate stations as a loop.
> This
> means that the Loop Closer will look for errors between the two fixed
> station and "adjust" intermediate station to reduce the effect of the
> error. Fixed Stations themselves are never adjusted or moved by as the
>
> cave data is processed.
>
> FIXED STATIONS AND PROJECTS
>
> In COMPASS, Fixed Stations can only be entered at the "Project" level.
> The
> advantage of this is that since COMPASS can have more than one Project
> for
> the same data, you can have more than one set of geographic reference
> points for a particular cave. For example, you could have one Project
> where the cave is tied to a local reference and another where it is
> tied
> to UTM.
>
> STEP-BY-STEP INSTRUCTIONS
>
> 1. PROJECT MANAGER. Since Fixed Stations are created at the project
> level,
> you must go to the Project Manager to enter a Fixed Station.
>
> 2. CREATING A PROJECT. The Project Manager can work with either
> individual
> ".DAT" survey files or ".MAK" project files. Since the fixed stations
> are
> entered at the project level, you must have a Project File before you
> can
> enter a Fixed Station. If you don't have a Project File, go the
> "Project
> Creation Wizard" on the "File" menu of the Project Manager. Just
> follow
> the instructions. If you already have a Project, you can use it.
>
> 3. OPENING THE PROJECT. Once you have Project File, open it with the
> Project Manager. Remember, this must be a file with the "MAK"
> extension
> like LECH.MAK. You cannot use "DAT" file to create a link. Once you
> have
> opened the Project File, click on the "Expand Tree" button on the tool
> bar
> at the top of the screen. This will expand the "Survey Tree" to show
> all
> the "Nodes."
>
> 4. SELECTING SURVEY FILE. You now need to select the survey file that
> has
> the station or stations you want to use as a Fixed Station. Just click
> on
> and highlight the survey file in the "Tree." Now click on the "Edit
> Node"
> button at the top of the screen. This will display the Node Editing
> dialog
> box. Select the "Links Tab" at the bottom of the page. This will take
> you
> to the Links Editor.
>
> 5. ENTERING LINKS. The Links Editor displays a grid that allows you to
>
> enter the station name and the North, East and Vertical coordinates of
> the
> station. Enter the coordinates of the station in the cells to the
> right of
> the station name. The units can be feet or meters as selected by the
> check
> boxes below. As an example:
>
> A1  10.1  20.2   30.3
>
> This illustrates a fixed station. The station A1 is fixed to the
> location
> 10.1 east, 20.2 north and 30.3 vertical from the fixed reference
> point.
>
> The East, North and Vertical coordinates can be in either feet or
> meters.
> The coordinates can be relative a local coordinate system or a
> world-wide
> geographic reference system. COMPASS uses UTM as its internal
> reference
> system, however it can convert to and from longitude and latitude. To
> use
> geographic referenced coordinates, enable the "Use UTM" checkbox. If
> you
> are using UTM, be sure to set a "Zone" number. Only one zone is
> allowed
> for each cave file, but you can have different files in different
> zones.
> You can enter up to 99 Links for each survey file.
>
> If you want to enter the data in Longitude and Latitude, first
> highlight
> the row in the grid for the station you want to set. Then, click on
> the
> "Georeference" button. The program will then display a dialog box that
>
> will allow you to convert back and forth between Longitude and
> Latitude
> and UTM. At the bottom of the box will be the UTM coordinates in
> meters.
> (Note: UTM is always displayed in meters on maps.) If you press the
> "UTM
> to Long/Lat" button, the UTM coordinates will be converted to
> longitude
> and latitude. Like wise, if press the "Long/Lat to UTM" button, the
> longitude/latitude values will be converted to UTM. This way, you can
> enter longitude and latitude values. You can also use the dialog to
> verify
> you UTM coordinates by converting them to longitude and latitude and
> then
> checking the map.
>
> 6. OTHER USES FOR LINKS. Links can also be used to "link" together
> different caves or different subsections of caves. You can create this
>
> type of link by entering the station name without the coordinates. In
> this
> situation, the links tell COMPASS which stations are the connecting
> stations between survey files. COMPASS then discards all other
> stations
> except the links.
>
> This kind of link has two purposes. First, when you link together two
> separate caves, it is possible to have duplicate station names. Since
> COMPASS discards all station except links, duplicate stations do not
> interfere with each other. Second, because the majority of stations
> are
> discarded between files, this kind of link saves memory. This was
> important in the DOS environment, where memory was limited. Under
> Windows,
> memory is virtually unlimited, so there is little need to conserve
> memory.
>
> 7. VIEWING GEO-REFERENCED COORDINATES. Once you have created a project
>
> with geo-referenced coordinates, all surveys station in the cave are
> relative to the fixed stations. You can view these locations in the
> Viewer. If press the "Label Elevations" button on the Viewer Tool Bar,
> the
> elevation will be relative to fixed stations. If you have set the
> elevation of the fixed stations to the altitude above sea level, all
> the
> station elevations will be displayed as their elevation above sea
> level.
> You can also find any East, North or Vertical coordinate in or around
> the
> cave using the Measuring Tool. Just select "Tools|Measure
> Distances/Angles" from the menu bar.
>

>
>




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Fri, 13 Oct 2000 20:32:26 +0200 (CEST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] general questions
X-Evolution: 00000066-0010



On Thu, 12 Oct 2000, rob harper wrote:
Hello Rob,
nice to meet you here!

> Following on from this - has anyone any experience of trying to run Compass
> from one of the little palmtop computers?
No, I don't have any experiences with palmtop computers but one suggestion I
can offer.
Microsoft made a special OS for palmtops, called "Windows CE". This product
was a desaster because it was too bulky and slow for little palmtop PCs and
only useful on machines with colour screens. Anyway, Compass will probably
run on Windows CE but I'm not sure about this because the hardware of
palmtops differs from that of common desktop machines.
Some weeks ago on our national caver convention one guy presented a
surveying software with the name "Auriga" which runs on a Palm Pilot and has
a connector kit to an electronic compass and clinometer. You can also enter
the data manually. Auriga can export its data in a Toporobot compatible
format which can be converted to Compass. Auriga also has a home page but I
don't have an URL at hand. The author of Auriga is Martin Melzer or Metzler
(or so) so you may find the web page with the help of a search engine.
Lucky caving!
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Sat, 14 Oct 2000 03:41:42 -0600 (MDT)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] general questions
X-Evolution: 00000068-0010



Christian,
> First let me say that it is really nice to be able to read and write
> with the programmer himself. To get answers, problems solved, doubts
> explained, etc, is really fantastic.
Actually, it works out very nicely for me. I usually get several
COMPASS questions a week. Before the Mailing List, only me and the
questioner got to see the question and the answer. Now everybody gets
to see them and they are archived so people who come along later can
benifit from the information.
> Can you make compass give the UTM (and/or lat/long)coordinates of any
> particular station in a cave once it has been linked to a
> geographical reference system? If one could get this readout, the
> advantages are enormous!
Unless I don't understand your suggestion, you can already do this for
UTM. If you fix one or more stations to UTM or Long/Lat, the location
of each station in the cave is available in UTM.
The UTM information is available in two places. The first place is in
the Compiler. (From the Project Manager, you press the "Compile Only
(Blunder/Stats)" button.) The information is under the "View|Cave
Statistics" menu option in the Compiler. Here is a sample of the UTM
data for Fulford Cave:
Station COORDINATES:
Index Station   Parent           east         north   vertical
===============================================================
0          A1      Ent    359000.000m. 4372000.000m. 3048.000m.
1          A2       A1    359005.238m. 4372002.612m. 3044.888m.
2          A3       A2    359007.088m. 4372009.283m. 3042.771m.
The other place you can find UTM coordinates is in the Viewer. If you
have a Geo-referenced cave, the measurements in the "Tools|Measure
Distance/Angles" will be in UTM.
COMPASS uses UTM as the standard for geo-referenced coordinates. If
you enter coordinates in Lat/Long, they are converted to UTM. The
reason for this is that Lat/Long is a spherical coordinate system and
inorder to plot the cave, everything has to be in cartesian
coordinates. I suppose COMPASS could carry its measurements in
Long/Lat, but conversion between Long/Lat is very complicated and
slow. This is because the earth's surface is not a true sphere, but
more like a lumpy pear-shaped object. This means that it takes a
couple hundred lines of computer code to do the conversion. The
result is that the conversion is too slow to do on-the-fly while
plotting or doing anything that requires speed.
> 2) Since trying to keep "Compass" for windows compatible with DOS and
> 3.1 limits the power of compass in many ways (and its expansion),
> wouldn't you consider separating the versions; just as you have a DOS
> version and a windows version, you would have a DOS, a 3.1 and a
> 98/2000 version which would permit all sorts of possibilities.
The general plan is to eventually move everthing over to the 32 bit
environment without maintaining two versions. I might freeze the 16
bit version and leave it available for anyone who can't live without
Win3.1. The DEM Reader and CaveX are already 32 bit applications and
the other would be easy to do, mostly just a few keystrokes. However
there is really not that much advantage for most programs in 32 bit
environment. It wouldn't make much difference for the Project
Manager, Compiler, Loop Closer, and Editor. The Viewer is the only
program that would be enhanced using 32 bits. I figure that the
drawing speed could be 5 to 10 times faster.
> 3) I agree that the information section in the printout should be
> more extensive. I know you want to make a nice feature of this. But
> maybe in the meanwhile one could have the option of having, say, 6 to
> 8 cells in which one could type in any info one wishes (as text). No
> interpretation necessary by "Compass".
I wish there was a way to do this with "no interpretion necessary."
Things always sound simple when you describe a feature like
this, but in practice they get pretty complicated. First, nobody is
going to be satisfied without having at least a few options. For example,
everyone is going to want to be able to choose the fonts, colors and
sizes. If the text is going to go in a "cell," the cell will have to
be resizable and the text will have to be able wrap so it fills the
cell. The best way to do this is with the mouse like you can do in a
drawing program like Publisher. So the program would have to be able
to tell when you are clicking on a "cell" or when you are clicking on
the cave. In addition, the cell and text have to scale and display
properly both on the screen and on the printer. People are also going to
want the choice of having a border around the cell and will need to
select both the color and the thickness of the border. Finally, you
have to find a way to save the information so you don't have re-type
it everytime you want to print the map.
> Maybe this info could be put
> in at the printing command stage. Anyway,to me, more important than
> this is to be able to have a more sophisticated North arrow. Perhaps
> larger and not in its current position, but more within the map drawn
> by compass. Ideally, it could be positioned where one wanted by using
> a menu maybe. Same goes with that extra info. Too complicated??
Not too complicated, just a lot of work to really do it right. Again, I
have general plans to do something like this, but it will probably be a
while. Besides, most drawing programs already support most of these
features, alot of people are generating their finished maps by exporting
the plot to a drawing program.
> Also very necessary, is to have a scale bar outputted, whether
> printed out or exported. I know you have the scale info (say 1:320)
> but to have the scale bar (as in Winkarst) printed or exported allows
> one to scale the whole map in another application until it fits the
> desired size. The scale bar would change size along with the cave
> map, allowing a precise scaling info to be always available.
There is already a scale bar available as part of the legend. I think it
works exactly the way it should to provide a visual scale for the plot. I
should point out that Karst and COMPASS's scale bars work differently. The
Karst scale bar chooses a fixed number units to display and then the scale
bar gets longer and shorter depending on the scale.
The COMPASS scale bar, on the other hand, is a fixed length of one inch or
two centimeters depending on what units you are using. As the scale
changes, the length of the scale bar stays the same, but the units on the
bar change.
Since most people are thinking in terms of scaling ratios like
feet-per-inch, centimeters-per-meter, it makes the most sense to have the
scale bar match length match the scale we are using. This is also the
standard way that topo maps are done. For example, the 7.5 minute
quadrangles shows a "feet" scale bar with inch-long segments and
"kilometer" bar with two-centimeter segments.
Thanks for your thoughts and suggestions.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Christian Docksey 
Date: Sat, 14 Oct 2000 14:18:42 -0400
Subject: Re: [compass-users] general questions
X-Evolution: 0000006a-0010



Dear Roger,
I'm very interested in the "Auriga" porject, since my caving group is
working on something similar with respect to use of digital clino's,
compasses and altimeters. We intend to use them on fixed height "Sticks"
for surveying purposes to improve accuracy and the time taken to survey
a cave. I have searched by auriga, by his name and even by the "national
caver convention" but foind no link whatsoever. Is there any more info
you could give me as to locate the web page (or e-mail address).
Thanks a lot..
Christian
Roger Schuster wrote:
> On Thu, 12 Oct 2000, rob harper wrote:
>
> Hello Rob,
>
> nice to meet you here!
>
> > Following on from this - has anyone any experience of trying to run
> Compass
> > from one of the little palmtop computers?
>
> No, I don't have any experiences with palmtop computers but one
> suggestion I
> can offer.
>
> Microsoft made a special OS for palmtops, called "Windows CE". This
> product
> was a desaster because it was too bulky and slow for little palmtop
> PCs and
> only useful on machines with colour screens. Anyway, Compass will
> probably
> run on Windows CE but I'm not sure about this because the hardware of
> palmtops differs from that of common desktop machines.
>
> Some weeks ago on our national caver convention one guy presented a
> surveying software with the name "Auriga" which runs on a Palm Pilot
> and has
> a connector kit to an electronic compass and clinometer. You can also
> enter
> the data manually. Auriga can export its data in a Toporobot
> compatible
> format which can be converted to Compass. Auriga also has a home page
> but I
> don't have an URL at hand. The author of Auriga is Martin Melzer or
> Metzler
> (or so) so you may find the web page with the help of a search engine.
>
> Lucky caving!
>
> Roger
> --
> Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
>                 Cavepage http://www.karst.net
>

>
>




To: users group compass 
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Wed, 1 Nov 2000 22:25:30 -0700 (MST)
Subject: [compass-users] New COMPASS release
X-Evolution: 0000006c-0010



====================================================================
############# New COMPASS Cave Survey Software Release #############
====================================================================
I would like to annouce a new release of the cave survey software package
COMPASS. There have been more than 25 major improvements and bug fixes.
1. COMPASS USERS WEB PAGE. The COMPASS web page has a separate
section that has links to the web pages of COMPASS user who are
display cave related information.
2. COMPASS CD-ROM. The complete COMPASS software package and
accessories are now available on CD-ROM. It contains all software and
documentation plus other materials to large to post on the internet
or put on floppy disk. Currently, there are 45 programs and 300 files
totaling more than 60 megabytes of data. Even if all this information
were on the internet, it would require more than 3 hours to download
on a 56K modem. The COMPASS CD is ideal for cavers who are traveling
because CDs are more durable than floppy disks and less suseptable to
damage from magnetic fields, airport X-Ray machines etc.
3. Quad Map Settings. The Viewer now saves all the Quad Map settings
with the "Views" information. This means that you can set up any
number of quad map patterns and save them for later recall.
4. SEF Import and Export. In the past, you had to use a DOS program to
import or export COMPASS files. The Project Manager now supports
import and export to SEF file.
5. Accuracy. Several changes have been made to improve the accuracy
and resolution of all COMPASS programs. First, COMPASS now supports
24 geodetic formats for geographic coordinates like longitude,
latitude, and UTM. In addition, data is now stored with more digits
of accuracy, giving at least 1.5 mm or 0.06 inch resolution. Finally,
I have cleared up a descrepancy between the the "International Foot"
and the "US Survey Foot" which caused small errors with some UTM
measurements.
6. New Statistics. COMPASS now reports a variety of new statical
information about the cave. The Compiler now caculated the cave
volume based on passage diameter and shot length. It also calculates
thes Average Passage Diameter. This is a measure of the size of the
passage in the cave. Another statistic that is now available is
Average Inclination. This gives a general estimate of how vertical
the cave is. The final statistic in this group is Difficulty. It
combines the Average Passage Diameter and Inclination to give an
estimate of difficult it is to move through the cave.
In addition to this set of statistics, the Compiler now list the
overall average STD for all the loops in the cave. This gives you a
single number that rates the overall quality of all the loops in the
cave. Finally, the Compiler includes a set of Survey Specific
statistics. This includes a list of each survey in the cave along
with the length, number of shots and average shot length for each
survey. To facilitate working with larger systems, the Compiler now
allows you to search for any string in the Statistics and Blunder
Detection section. This makes it easier to find loops, stations,
shots, and surveys in the statistics.
7. CaveBase. The Viewer now supports displaying database values as
numerical values as well as varying symbol sizes. Numbers can be in
fixed or scientific notation format, with complete control over the
number of digits. CaveBase now has an option that allows you to
encode a date as a part of the query.
8. DXF Export. There are now DXF export features that allows more parts
of the drawing to be exported as separate layers. You can now
associate the Passage Wall modeling and the Station Labels with each
Survey layer. This enables you to isolate specific parts of the cave
for DXF export.
9. Spreadsheet Import and Export. The Editor now uses Tabs as the
delimiter when it Copys, Cuts, or Pastes to and from the Windows
Clipboard. This makes it more compatable with external Windows
programs like Excel.
10. Usability Features. The Editor allows you to search through a
survey file for the surveys where a specific station is found. You
can now double click on any of the surveys that are found and the
program will automatically highlight the specific survey. This makes
it easy to find and edit that survey. In addition, a new option has
been added that puts the highlight on the From Station whenever a new
shot is created. This makes it easy to override the Automatic Station
Sequencing feature and enter a different Station Name.
11. Miscellaneous. The Survey Name fields has been increased from 8 to 12
characters. The Viewer now allows you to mark the passage walls from
the orientation of the TO station.
=========================================================================
HOW TO GET COMPASS
COMPASS is a shareware product. You can try it out free. If you like it
and want to use it, you must register. If you don't like it, then don't
use it and pay nothing.
The registration cost is $25.00 for the DOS version and $25 for the
Windows version. Combined registration is $38. Registration for the data
base program is $15 for previously registered individual COMPASS users.
For new registrations the database program is $20 for private individuals.
For instituations, businesses, and government agencies, the database
registration is $50. Special group rates, and support programs are
available.
COMPASS is available free of charge for evaluation purposes. Copies are
available through the COMPASS World Wide Web page at:
     http://www.fountainware.com/compass
The Web Page also has full color screen images of some of the most
important features. It also has connections to other cave related WWW
pages including links to the USGS DEM files. The whole COMPASS package
has hundreds of features and a full discription of the software is beyond
the scope of this document. However, the COMPASS Web Page also has a
complete and detailed description of all the features and options.
You can also get an evaluation copy of the software directly from me for
$10.00 to cover materials and handling. If you are a registered user you
can get an updated version directly from me for only $5.00. My mailing
address is:
        Larry Fish
        123 E. Arkansas
        Denver CO 80210
Please specify DOS and/or Windows and disk size. If you like the
software, please register. You will receive notification of updates and
other special offers.

Larry Fish




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: "Stuart W. Marlatt" 
Date: Thu, 02 Nov 2000 17:28:17 -0000
Subject: [compass-users] Re: New COMPASS release
X-Evolution: 0000006e-0010



Hi Larry (et al)
  The new features sound good. The passage volume is a very nice
addition, for those of us who are doing winds modeling. It will
admittedly be a pretty coarse estimate, but should at least be in
the right range.
  One additional feature you might want to add sometime: my own cave
database program calculates the projected horizontal surface area
bounded by the cave planform (simply using min/max lateral extent and
assuming a rectangular area, unless I override for special cases).
Using the survey data and some perimeter tracing routine (limiting
interior angles, for instance), you could calculate the planform
area more accurately. The parameter I find most interesting is the
ratio of total length to planform area.
  Keep up the good work!
Stuart Marlatt
--- In compass-users at egroups.com, Larry Fish  wrote:
>
> ====================================================================
> ############# New COMPASS Cave Survey Software Release #############
> ====================================================================
>
> I would like to annouce a new release of the cave survey software
package
> COMPASS. There have been more than 25 major improvements and bug
fixes.
>
> 1. COMPASS USERS WEB PAGE. The COMPASS web page has a separate
> section that has links to the web pages of COMPASS user who are
> display cave related information.
>
> 2. COMPASS CD-ROM. The complete COMPASS software package and
> accessories are now available on CD-ROM. It contains all software
and
> documentation plus other materials to large to post on the internet
> or put on floppy disk. Currently, there are 45 programs and 300
files
> totaling more than 60 megabytes of data. Even if all this
information
> were on the internet, it would require more than 3 hours to download
> on a 56K modem. The COMPASS CD is ideal for cavers who are traveling
> because CDs are more durable than floppy disks and less suseptable
to
> damage from magnetic fields, airport X-Ray machines etc.
>
> 3. Quad Map Settings. The Viewer now saves all the Quad Map settings
> with the "Views" information. This means that you can set up any
> number of quad map patterns and save them for later recall.
>
> 4. SEF Import and Export. In the past, you had to use a DOS program
to
> import or export COMPASS files. The Project Manager now supports
> import and export to SEF file.
>
> 5. Accuracy. Several changes have been made to improve the accuracy
> and resolution of all COMPASS programs. First, COMPASS now supports
> 24 geodetic formats for geographic coordinates like longitude,
> latitude, and UTM. In addition, data is now stored with more digits
> of accuracy, giving at least 1.5 mm or 0.06 inch resolution.
Finally,
> I have cleared up a descrepancy between the the "International Foot"
> and the "US Survey Foot" which caused small errors with some UTM
> measurements.
>
> 6. New Statistics. COMPASS now reports a variety of new statical
> information about the cave. The Compiler now caculated the cave
> volume based on passage diameter and shot length. It also calculates
> thes Average Passage Diameter. This is a measure of the size of the
> passage in the cave. Another statistic that is now available is
> Average Inclination. This gives a general estimate of how vertical
> the cave is. The final statistic in this group is Difficulty. It
> combines the Average Passage Diameter and Inclination to give an
> estimate of difficult it is to move through the cave.
>
> In addition to this set of statistics, the Compiler now list the
> overall average STD for all the loops in the cave. This gives you a
> single number that rates the overall quality of all the loops in the
> cave. Finally, the Compiler includes a set of Survey Specific
> statistics. This includes a list of each survey in the cave along
> with the length, number of shots and average shot length for each
> survey. To facilitate working with larger systems, the Compiler now
> allows you to search for any string in the Statistics and Blunder
> Detection section. This makes it easier to find loops, stations,
> shots, and surveys in the statistics.
>
> 7. CaveBase. The Viewer now supports displaying database values as
> numerical values as well as varying symbol sizes. Numbers can be in
> fixed or scientific notation format, with complete control over the
> number of digits. CaveBase now has an option that allows you to
> encode a date as a part of the query.
>
> 8. DXF Export. There are now DXF export features that allows more
parts
> of the drawing to be exported as separate layers. You can now
> associate the Passage Wall modeling and the Station Labels with each
> Survey layer. This enables you to isolate specific parts of the cave
> for DXF export.
>
> 9. Spreadsheet Import and Export. The Editor now uses Tabs as the
> delimiter when it Copys, Cuts, or Pastes to and from the Windows
> Clipboard. This makes it more compatable with external Windows
> programs like Excel.
>
> 10. Usability Features. The Editor allows you to search through a
> survey file for the surveys where a specific station is found. You
> can now double click on any of the surveys that are found and the
> program will automatically highlight the specific survey. This makes
> it easy to find and edit that survey. In addition, a new option has
> been added that puts the highlight on the From Station whenever a
new
> shot is created. This makes it easy to override the Automatic
Station
> Sequencing feature and enter a different Station Name.
>
> 11. Miscellaneous. The Survey Name fields has been increased from 8
to 12
> characters. The Viewer now allows you to mark the passage walls from
> the orientation of the TO station.
>
>
>
==================================================
=======================
>
> HOW TO GET COMPASS
>
> COMPASS is a shareware product. You can try it out free. If you like
it
> and want to use it, you must register. If you don't like it, then
don't
> use it and pay nothing.
>
> The registration cost is $25.00 for the DOS version and $25 for the
> Windows version. Combined registration is $38. Registration for the
data
> base program is $15 for previously registered individual COMPASS
users.
> For new registrations the database program is $20 for private
individuals.
> For instituations, businesses, and government agencies, the database
> registration is $50. Special group rates, and support programs are
> available.
>
> COMPASS is available free of charge for evaluation purposes. Copies
are
> available through the COMPASS World Wide Web page at:
>
>      http://www.fountainware.com/compass
>
> The Web Page also has full color screen images of some of the most
> important features. It also has connections to other cave related
WWW
> pages including links to the USGS DEM files. The whole COMPASS
package
> has hundreds of features and a full discription of the software is
beyond
> the scope of this document. However, the COMPASS Web Page also has a
> complete and detailed description of all the features and options.
>
> You can also get an evaluation copy of the software directly from me
for
> $10.00 to cover materials and handling. If you are a registered user
you
> can get an updated version directly from me for only $5.00. My
mailing
> address is:
>
>         Larry Fish
>         123 E. Arkansas
>         Denver CO 80210
>
> Please specify DOS and/or Windows and disk size. If you like the
> software, please register. You will receive notification of updates
and
> other special offers.
>
> Thanks,
>
> Larry Fish




To: users group compass 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Fri, 3 Nov 2000 12:01:23 +0100 (CET)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] New COMPASS release
X-Evolution: 00000070-0010



Hello cavers,
the Compass mirror site in Europe, http://www.karst.net , is now also up to
date. Cavers on this side of the Atlantic ocean may download the new Compass
products from here.
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Tue, 7 Nov 2000 12:05:53 -0700 (MST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Re: New COMPASS release
X-Evolution: 00000072-0010



Stuart,
>   One additional feature you might want to add sometime: my own cave
> database program calculates the projected horizontal surface area
> bounded by the cave planform (simply using min/max lateral extent and
> assuming a rectangular area, unless I override for special cases).
I took your idea and have added a measurement of what you call the
Platform Area. I just used the rectangular area. I suppose to do it
right, I really should find the Convex Hull of the cave, but that seems
like quite a bit of work. Besides, I'm not sure how to calculate the area
of convex hull. (I assume that is probably some intergal that will do it,
but....)
I also have added a calculation of the rectangular volume of the rock
enclosing the cave. Finally, I show the passage density as a percentage of
the rock volume that is passage.
If you have any more ideas, let me know. It is always fun to add new
features.
Larry




To: "'compass-users at egroups.com'" 
From: "Ganter, John H" 
Date: Wed, 8 Nov 2000 14:00:10 -0700
Subject: [compass-users] A note on Carto for cave sketch morphing
X-Evolution: 00000074-0010



Carto is a program that "morphs" sketches to overlay a survey traverse. The
map-drawing part of Carto is not ready for serious use, but I have now done
a fairly complete test of Compass data reduction, Carto morphing, and
Freehand drawing.
The experiment / tutorial / tour is at
http://www.psc-cavers.org/carto/ganter/tutorial/default.htm
Note that the whole article contains about 800Kb of graphics. I know this
will be a long download for some, but it is hard to talk about Carto without
lots of graphics.
For more info on Carto, go to http://www.psc-cavers.org then choose Carto
from the list on the left
I first tried Carto out last summer on a 120mhz Pentium laptop with 32 megs
of RAM and Win95. It worked fine for a small test project.
Installing Carto is a little more involved then normal Windows programs.
Carto is a Java Application, not a Java Applet that runs inside a web
browser. So you first need to install the Java Runtime Environment (JRE),
which is fairly trivial. The good news is the JRE is fast and extremely
stable. I have had no GPFs, blue screens of death, DLL Hell, etc. problems.
Wish I could say the same for "pure" Windows programs. I'm thinking about
writing up an illustrated guide to installation; let me know if this would
be helpful.
Let me know if you have any comments or questions. I think Carto has a lot
of potential to help cave mappers, and I would like to assist others in
evaluating it for their own uses.
--John Ganter, ganter at etrademail.com




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Evaristo QUIROGA 
Date: Wed, 29 Nov 2000 19:21:13 +0100
Subject: [compass-users] Copy and Past problem
X-Evolution: 00000076-0010



Dear Compass-users,
I need import to Compass several Excell files with data  from the 80
and 90 Arañonera system  campaigns (a system with  35 Km of long and
1179 m of depth). This files have more to 8000 shots.
I have a problem with Copy and Paste through the Windows Clipboard. My
length data are in meters, and the Compass settings in meters too, but
when I Past the Rows the lengths are automatically converted in feets.
Best regards and thanks for your help.
Evaristo QUIROGA
ESPELEO CLUB DE GRÀCIA (Barcelona, Spain)




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Wed, 29 Nov 2000 14:42:11 -0700 (MST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Copy and Past problem
X-Evolution: 00000078-0010



Evaristo,
The Copy, Cut and Paste options in COMPASS are standardized around
feet and degree units. They have to be standardized, so that you can
copy between different copies of the Editor running at the same time.
If I made it so that you could copy and paste using different units,
there would be a high chance of corrupting the data.
There are two solutions to your problem. The first is to use the
"Repair Surveys" option. After you have copied the data into the
Editor, push the "Repair Survey" button or select "Block|Repair
Shots" from the menu bar. Next, select the "Linear" Page, and enable
the "Repair Tape" and "Repair UDRL" options. Finally, select the
"Entered Feet, Was Meters" option and click the "Okay" button. This
will convert all the measurements to meters.
If you have already copied some of the data, you can use this method to
fix it at anytime. This could save you some time.
The second method is to use the capabilities of your spreadsheet to
convert all the linear measurements to feet and then copy the
information to COMPASS. You can do this by dividing each linear
measurement by 0.3048. Once you do this, COMPASS will have the
correct information and can display it in meters, feet or any other
units.
I little background information would probably be useful here.
COMPASS stores all the information in the survey files in one set of
units. These units are feet and degrees. Each survey has a set
of flags that tells how the data was originally entered or how the
user wants it displayed and edited. This way, when you view the data or
edit the data, it is always in the units you prefer.
It might seem that it would be better to store all the data in the
original units. However, if you do that, there a much greater chance
of error and processing the data is much slower. For example, if you
enter the compass data in "Quads", (where W25W is the same as 335
degrees), the programs would have to test and convert the data on the
fly. This would slow down the processing and if an error is found
were in the Quads format, processing would have to stop. By storing
the data in a fixed format, the data is tested as it is entered and
you always know you are processing valid numbers.
I'm sorry that the conversion process is complicated. I deal with
converting cave data from one format to another all the time and there is
always some complication.
If you have any other questions or thoughts, feel free to write.
Larry
> I need import to Compass several Excell files with data  from the 80
> and 90 Arañonera system  campaigns (a system with  35 Km of long and
> 1179 m of depth). This files have more to 8000 shots.
>
> I have a problem with Copy and Paste through the Windows Clipboard. My
> length data are in meters, and the Compass settings in meters too, but
> when I Past the Rows the lengths are automatically converted in feets.




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Evaristo QUIROGA 
Date: Thu, 30 Nov 2000 11:24:45 +0100
Subject: [compass-users] Caves in UTM coordinates
X-Evolution: 0000007a-0010



Dear Larry,
Thanks for yours solutions to my Copy and Paste problem.
Now I have another questions.
Question 1:  I like to plot my cave in UTM. I know how to compensate the
declination in the survey Heading, and how to fix a Station with UTM
coordinates. But I dont know how to compensate the UTM convergence.
I look a reference to convergence in the Geographic Editor/Calculator,
but I think there is only to coordinates conversions.
Question 2: Is it possible to plot in the Viewer and/or print in paper
the cave with the UTM grid?
Best regards and thanks for your help.
Evaristo QUIROGA
ESPELEO CLUB DE GRÀCIA (Barcelona, Spain)




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Sat, 2 Dec 2000 12:49:15 -0700 (MST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Caves in UTM coordinates
X-Evolution: 0000007c-0010



Evaristo,
> Question 1:  I like to plot my cave in UTM. I know how to compensate the
> I look a reference to convergence in the Geographic Editor/Calculator,
> but I think there is only to coordinates conversions.
>
> declination in the survey Heading, and how to fix a Station with UTM
> coordinates. But I dont know how to compensate the UTM convergence.
At this point, the Geographic Editor displays the convergence angle, but
it is not used by COMPASS. You could subtract this value from the
Declination or the Compass Correction value to align the cave to the UTM
grid. I do have plans to add UTM convergence correction to COMPASS. I'm
hoping to do this in the next release, but it all depends on how much free
time I have.
> Question 2: Is it possible to plot in the Viewer and/or print in paper
> the cave with the UTM grid?
I'm not sure I completely understand your question. Do you want to draw
grid lines on the map? Or do you want to align the cave plot to the grid?
I can answer both questions. You can align the cave plot to the UTM grid
by taking the Convergence value from the Geographic calculator and use it
with Declination or Compass correction. At this point, you cannot draw
actual UTM grid lines on top of the cave plot. You could simulate them
using the Quad map option, by rotating quad grid to match the UTM grid. It
would not be the prettiest grid, because it is really designed for quad
maps and would have the quad grid coordinates on it.
If I were to add a feature that would add UTM grid lines, how should it
work? Should you have the control over the spacing of the lines? What
should the spacing be? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Evaristo QUIROGA 
Date: Mon, 04 Dec 2000 14:11:01 +0100
Subject: [compass-users] UTM convergence correction and grid suggestions
X-Evolution: 0000007e-0010



Dear Larry,
Yes, I can subtract the convergence correction value from Declination or
Compass Corrections. But this can produce  problems in the future.
For example: I have to import  data from the system with Lambert
convergence correction added  to the declination to a UTM georeferenced
project . For this reason now I have to subtract this convergence
correction from everyone survey.
I think is more efficient to fix the convergence correction at the
project level, like the geographic referencing. So the original survey
data are only corrected to the true north pole, and I can change the
projection without to modify  all the surveys.
In my question number 2, I want to draw grid lines on the map.
If you want to add  the UTM grid lines, these features should be in the
Options menu as  Show Grid, and Preference as  Set Grid. The
users should be the control over the spacing of the lines. The more
common spacing should be for international units users: 2 km, 1 km, 500
m, 100 m and 10 m; because it is the spacing in the topographic maps
(1:50000, 1:25000, 1:10000 and 1:5000). But I believe the users should
can enter this specific spacing. The UTM grid should have the option to
draw lines or only cross at lines intersections.
I wait you can add this new features in futures Compass releases.
Best regards and thanks for your help.
Evaristo QUIROGA
ESPELEO CLUB DE GRÀCIA (Barcelona, Spain)




To: 
From: "Fabio Kok Geribello" 
Date: Wed, 13 Dec 2000 14:36:50 -0200
Subject: [compass-users] Tape Correction Bug
X-Evolution: 00000080-0010



Hi People,
 I'm a survex user and I'm doing some tests over Compass.
My 1st impressions are very good but I'm having a little problem with the tape correction feature.
 I use the metric system and my survey tape has 30 cm less in the beginning of it. So, after I insert the 0,3 m of correction and save the file the correction goes back to zero. And it seems that the software is not using it in the calculations.
 I converted the measurements to decimal feet in the survey settings and it doesn't work ass well. 0,3 cm is about 0,98 foot. But if I insert 1 foot it works...
 I'm with the 3.00.09.16 version of COMPASS and wish to know if this bug have been reported yet.
 Thank you for your attention,
 Fabio KG




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Wed, 13 Dec 2000 15:02:10 -0700 (MST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Tape Correction Bug
X-Evolution: 00000082-0010



Fabio,
Thanks for your letter.
I think I know what the problem is. I notice that you are using a
"comma" as the decimal separator in your numbers (0,3). I assume that
this is the standard in your country. In other parts of the world
like the United States, a "dot" or "period" is used (0.3). Windows
allows you to set which character is used as the decimal separator.
My guess is that your computer is set to so that "period" is your
decimal separator. If that is the case, COMPASS will ignore any
digits past the "comma".
Here is how you set it. Go to "My Computer" and select the "Control
Panel." Next, select the "Regional Settings" options and then go to
the "Number" tab. Look at the "Decimal symbol" option. If I am right,
there should be a "period" or "dot" in the box. Just change the
character to "comma" and press the "Apply" button. Restart COMPASS
and this should fix your problem.
Larry
> I use the metric system and my survey tape has 30 cm less in the
> beginning of it. So, after I insert the 0,3 m of correction and save
> the file the correction goes back to zero. And it seems that the
> software is not using it in the calculations.




To: 
From: "Fabio Geribello" 
Date: Wed, 13 Dec 2000 21:24:27 -0200
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Tape Correction Bug
X-Evolution: 00000084-0010



 Hi Larry,
 1st of all thank you for your fast answer.
 As you assumed, in my country (Brazil) we really use "comma" as decimal separator. But my system was configured right. So I changed it back to the "dot". And then COMPASS worked properly.
 I think COMPASS is ignoring the "comma" even if the system is set correctly. Is it possible??
 Any way is no problem for me using the "dot" character.
 I'll continue with my tests and hope that soon I can give you my full impressions and results.
 Thank you once again,
 Fabio KG




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Thu, 14 Dec 2000 13:30:29 -0700 (MST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Tape Correction Bug
X-Evolution: 00000086-0010



Fabio,
You were right, I just found the bug! I will try to fix it in the next
release. Thanks for your feedback, it is really useful.
Larry
> I think COMPASS is ignoring the "comma" even if the system is set
> correctly. Is it possible??




To: compass-users list 
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Sun, 17 Dec 2000 13:21:31 +0100 (CET)
Subject: [compass-users] European Compass site down
X-Evolution: 00000088-0010



Hello cavers,
because of software updates the European mirror site of "Compass" at
http://www.karst.net is down. I don't know how long it would last but I hope
that everything will work correctly in a few days.
Lucky caving
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Sun, 17 Dec 2000 23:03:36 -0700 (MST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Tape Correction Bug
X-Evolution: 0000008a-0010



Fabio,
> I think COMPASS is ignoring the "comma" even if the system is set
> correctly. Is it possible??
I have found and corrected the problem. I put a new copy of COMPASS on
the internet that corrects the problem. Please test it and see if it
solves the problem for you. There are also some other interesting new
features. See the WINWHATS.NEW for information on all the changes.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Mon, 18 Dec 2000 00:32:50 -0700 (MST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] UTM convergence correction and grid suggestions
X-Evolution: 0000008c-0010



Evaristo,
Sorry it has taken a while to get back to you, but I have been working
your suggestions.
> I think is more efficient to fix the convergence correction at the
> project level, like the geographic referencing. So the original survey
> data are only corrected to the true north pole, and I can change the
> projection without to modify  all the surveys.
This is exactly what I have done. You can now set or calculate the UTM
Convergence angle at the Project level and apply it to part or all of the
project.

> In my question number 2, I want to draw grid lines on the map.
I have now added a feature that allows you to put grid lines on the Shadow
Box feature. You can turn off all the Shadow Box options leaving only the
grid lines on the map. The grid lines can be solid, dotted or dashed and
you can control the spacing and the units. It not quite everything you
wanted but most of it is there. There is a new verion of COMPASS on the
net with the changes. Check it out and let me know what you think.
By the way, I just finished reading a story in Spanish by Horacio Quiroga
called "The Roof" (El Techo). I wondered if you might be related to him.
Thanks again for the feedback, it was very useful.
Larry




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Evaristo QUIROGA 
Date: Tue, 19 Dec 2000 12:31:19 +0100
Subject: [compass-users] Grid lines and UTM convergence
X-Evolution: 0000008e-0010



Larry,
It has been worth while to wait your answer; you have done a very good
job with my little suggestions. I am enjoyed with the results of the
news features. My firsts checks to the UTM convergence and Grid features
are more positive.
I have a new suggestion: Do you can modify the DXF export filter to
export the grid lines created in the Compass Viewer in a separate layer?
I am sorry, but I am not directly related to Horacio Quiroga. But the
name QUIROGA are from a little village of the Galicia (a Celtic Spanish
region), and it can to be a very distant relative.
Evaristo.
ESPELEO CLUB DE GRÀCIA (Barcelona, Spain).




To: compass-users at egroups.com
From: Evaristo QUIROGA 
Date: Mon, 08 Jan 2001 19:36:07 +0100
Subject: [compass-users] UTM convergence correction bug.
X-Evolution: 00000090-0010



Larry,
I have detected a bug in the new UTM convergence correction module. The
convergence is well calculate with the geo-calculator, but the
correction results are worst.
All  my caves system are rotated +4 degrees, when the convergence angle
are +2 degrees.  I think the module add the convergence angle to the
compass angle (corrected to declination),  when it should subtract this
convergence angle.
Actually, to avoid this bug, I change manually the convergence angle
sign, for the compiler compute correctly the station UTM coordinates.
It token a long time to detect the bug, because I would believe that I
have made a error  in the two projection changes (Lambert to UTM, with
differents ellipsoids) of my surface survey. But after to recompute  all
the projection changes many times, I have deduced that the problem was
from Compass compilation.
Best regards.
Evaristo.
ESPELEO CLUB DE GRÀCIA (Barcelona, Spain).




To: compass-users at egroups.com
Cc: equiroga at readysoft.es
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Thu, 11 Jan 2001 03:54:53 -0700 (MST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] UTM convergence correction bug.
X-Evolution: 00000092-0010



Evaristo,
Sorry it has taken so much time to get back to you, but I have been busy.
I think I have fixed the problem of the UTM convergence not working
correctly. I have changed it so the angle is subtracted from the shot
azimuth. This should fix the problem. There is a new copy on the net.
Check it out and see if it works correctly.
Larry
On Mon, 8 Jan 2001, Evaristo QUIROGA wrote:
> Larry,
>
> I have detected a bug in the new UTM convergence correction module. The
> convergence is well calculate with the geo-calculator, but the
> correction results are worst.
>
> All  my caves system are rotated +4 degrees, when the convergence angle
> are +2 degrees.  I think the module add the convergence angle to the
> compass angle (corrected to declination),  when it should subtract this
> convergence angle.
>
> Actually, to avoid this bug, I change manually the convergence angle
> sign, for the compiler compute correctly the station UTM coordinates.
>
> It token a long time to detect the bug, because I would believe that I
> have made a error  in the two projection changes (Lambert to UTM, with
> differents ellipsoids) of my surface survey. But after to recompute  all
> the projection changes many times, I have deduced that the problem was
> from Compass compilation.
>
> Best regards.
>
> Evaristo.
> ESPELEO CLUB DE GR=C0CIA (Barcelona, Spain).
>




To: users group compass 
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Sat, 27 Jan 2001 12:42:56 -0700 (MST)
Reply-To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
Subject: [compass-users] Project problems
X-Evolution: 00000094-0010



I'm not sure that this response got out, because I didn't see it get
echoed back. So, here it is again. Also, I added a few more ideas.
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Without knowing exactly what you are doing, I can't be sure, but it
sounds like the DAT files are not getting saved to the floppy disk
along with project file. In COMPASS, a Project File or ".MAK" File is
just a list of data files that make up your project. It doesn't
contain the actual survey data. The survey data is in one or more
survey files or ".DAT" files.
COMPASS expects to find the survey "DAT" files in same directory or
folder as the project "MAK" file. If they aren't in the same
directory (folder), the Project Manager will show the list of the
surveys, but it will not be able to open the individual surveys file,
display any information about the content or edit the data.
Just saving the project to a floppy will not necessarily save all the
DAT files to that floppy. When you copy the MAK file to a floppy
disk, you have to copy all the "DAT" files that go with it.
To make that process easier, the Project Manager has an option to
copy a Project to another directory, folder or disk. Choose the
"File|Copy Project" option from the menu bar. Then select the
destination directory (folder) for the files. The Project Manager
will then copy all the files including the MAK file and the all the
DAT files. Remember, after the files have been copied, the Project
Manager will still be working with the original project. So, if you
want to work with the new copy, be sure to specifically open that
project.
The same issues occur when you are trying to create a new project. If
you are using the Project Creation Wizard, you have a choice of
selecting preexisting survey files or creating new survey files.
Generally, all these files must end up in the same directory or
folder. If they don't the Project Manager will not be able to find
them and manipulate them. As a result, you may have to use Windows
tools like Explorer or File Manager, to put copies of all the files
in the same directory.
Finally, you can create projects where the survey files are different
directories. For example, if you wanted to link two different caves
that are kept in different directories. You can with the "Use Full Path"
option that appears in the "Node Editor". When you do this, COMPASS
remembers which directory the files is in. That way, you can have your
DAT files in different directories. The disadvantage of doing this is
that if you move any of these files to a different directory (folder),
COMPASS will no longer be able to find them and you will have to fix the
MAK file.
One thing you have to be aware of is where you are putting your
COMPASS files. When you go to save a file, COMPASS always starts with
the default directory and the default directory depends on what
programs you are running. For example if you have been running
Microsoft Word, the default directory may be the Word Directory. If
you are not careful, some of your cave files will end up there. I
occasionally get phone call from people whose cave files have
mysteriously disappeared. Later on they find them on a different hard
driver, folder or even somewhere accross their network. One way to
sort out a problem like this is to use Windows Explorer to locate all
your cave files. The best policy is to organize your cave files in
put them in specific directories. For example, I have so many cave
files that I have mine organized by region of the country and state.
One more thought here. There was a bug that I found about year ago that
caused a problem with files on a floppy disk or in the root directory of
a hard drive. If you have an old version of COMPASS you might want to
down load the latest version.
Let me know if this helps you solve the problem. Feel free to write if
you have more questions.
Larry
> What is going on? I have started a new project and everything went
> fine until I went to save the .mak file to floppy. When I attempt to
> reopen the .mak file I still have all my .dat files but I have lost all
> my individual survey files. Then I tried to do it again using the
> fulford.mak file. It will not save the individual surveys for this file
> either. I have never had this problem before. What the heck?




To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Mon, 29 Jan 2001 16:08:33 +0100
Reply-To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
Subject: [compass-users] KarstNet down
X-Evolution: 00000096-0010



Hello cavers,
the European mirror of "Compass" on www.karst.net is down again. We
will move to another web hosting service but this may take a time.
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: users group compass 
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Sat, 17 Mar 2001 12:34:13 -0700 (MST)
Reply-To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
Subject: [compass-users] New release
X-Evolution: 00000098-0010



====================================================================
############# New COMPASS Cave Survey Software Release #############
====================================================================
I would like to annouce a new release of the cave survey software
package COMPASS. There have been more than 38 major improvements and
bug fixes.
1. CaveX is vastly improved. It will now how handle caves of
unlimited length. It takes better advantage of accelerated video
cards so it can animate caves as much 10 times faster. It is more
tolerant of different video cards and system configurations. Current
performance is such that on a 450MHz Pentium III, it can do a fully
realistic, animated, 3D passage models of all 106 miles of
Lechuguilla Cave at 20 frames per second. Even with Gourad shading,
perspective transform, hidden line/face removal, texturing, multiple
light sources, specular highlighting and various other special
effects, the program achieves speeds of over 2 million polygons per
second.
CaveX has several new features that help orient the cave. It will now
display a "bounding box" that makes it easy to see the orientation of
the passages. It also now supports the same color-by-depth options as
the regular Viewer including individually colorable bands,
individually adjustable band thickness and gradient colors. All
images can be copied to the Windows clipboard for display in other
programs.
To help you control your joystick fly-throughs, CaveX has a new "Look
At" button that causes the viewer to smoothly pan and rotate until it
is looking directly at the center of the cave. It also rotates the
image so the top of the cave is aligned with the top of the screen.
This is useful when you have panned, zoomed or flown to a position
where you can't find the cave. Since it does not change the scaling
or move the camera closer to the cave, other scaling information is
not lost. Also, there is a button on the Joystick which does the same
thing.
2. Viewer. There is a new 32 bit version of the Viewer that is now
available for beta test. It is 10 times faster than the regular 16 bit
version. This gives it enough speed to fully animate even the largest
cave. On my 450 MHz Pentium III, I'm getting drawing rates of 15 frames
per second for large caves like Lechuguilla.
3. Viewer. The Viewer now has several new Shadow Box features. Grids
can be added to the walls of the shadow boxes. You have complete
control over which walls are gridded, the color and style of lines,
and the spacing or count of the grid lines. The walls can be filled with
color for better visual contrast. Finally, you can remove the Shadow Box
walls and just display the grid. This is very useful for things like
putting UTM grid lines on the map.
4. Editor. The Editor now has the option of setting flags for
multiple blocks of surveys simultaneously. You have the option of
Inserting, Replacing or Removing specific survey flags. The Repair
option now allows you to work with fore and backsight values
separately. This makes it possible to repair large blocks of data
where only the foresight or the backsight is bad.
5. All Programs. COMPASS now gives you the choice of using the
International Foot or the US Survey Foot when displaying or
converting data. While the International Foot is used for most
measurements, the US Survey Foot is widely used for maps, surveys and
benchmarks. Using the incorrect units can make as a 35 feet in difference
when converting UTM coordinates.
6. General Improvements. There are five new statistical measuresments
including, Surface Length, Surface Width, Surface Area, Enclosed
Volume, and Volume Density. The Viewer has a simplier, more user-
friendly method of setting all the different color and font options.
The DXF export option now allows you to pre-scale the exported image
for those drawing programs that have limited scaling capabilites. The
Geographic Calculator is easier to use and COMPASS now supports using
the UTM "Convergence" angle for rotating the cave to match the UTM
grid. In addition to scale, vertical magnification, you can now set
exact values for pitch and yawl rotations. The survey header comments
had been increased to 80 characters. The functions of the project
manager has been improved. The Passage Model Dialog now has a "View"
button that allows you to see any changes before exiting.
7. Digital Survey Map Tutorial. I have posted a tutorial by Paul
Burger on generating salon quality survey maps using a drawing
program. See the current issue of Compass and Tape (#48) for some
examples of Paul's maps.
8. The COMPASS CD. The CD now has many more items including more DEMs
and the Microsoft DirectX-7 installation package. The CD now contains
376 files and 52 folders for a total of more than 170 megabytes  of
programs, files and data.
9. Web Page. There are new links to DEM files, with more complete coverage
of the United States. Most of the United States is covered by free DEMs,
the remainder only costs $5.00 for downloading a 7.5 degree DEM. The web
page has also been reorganized with dozens of new images from COMPASS
programs.
10. There are dozens of other new features, bug fixes, and minor
improvements.
=========================================================================
HOW TO GET COMPASS
COMPASS is a shareware product. You can try it out free. If you like it
and want to use it, you must register. If you don't like it, then don't
use it and pay nothing.
The individaul registration cost for the WIndows version is only
$25.00. Registration for the Inventory and Feature Database Program
is $15 for previously registered individual, $20 for new individual
registrations and $50 for instituations, businesses, and government
agencies. The COMPASS package includes special tools for generating
surface terrain model manually or from USGS DEM files. There is also
a DOS version and special group rates, and support programs are
available.
COMPASS CD-ROM PACKAGE. The most enconomical option is the COMPASS
CD-ROM package. It offers registration for all COMPASS programs,
copies of all COMPASS programs and more than 160 megabyte of
additional data, tools and programs. The cost is $50 for new
registrations, $80 for instituations, businesses, and government
agencies, and $28 for previously registered users.
Fully functional, complete versions of all the latest COMPASS
software is available free of charge for evaluation purposes on the
internet. Copies are available through the COMPASS World Wide Web
page at:
     http://www.fountainware.com/compass
The Web Page also has full color screen images of some of the most
important features. It also has connections to other cave related WWW
pages including links to the USGS DEM files. The whole COMPASS package
has hundreds of features and a full discription of the software is beyond
the scope of this document. However, the COMPASS Web Page also has a
complete and detailed description of all the features and options.
You can also get an evaluation copy of the software directly from me for
$10.00 to cover materials and handling. If you are a registered user you
can get an updated version directly from me for only $5.00. My mailing
address is:
        Larry Fish
        123 E. Arkansas
        Denver CO 80210
Please specify DOS and/or Windows and disk size. If you like the
software, please register. You will receive notification of updates and
other special offers.

Larry Fish




To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
X-Sender: 520037903410-0001 at t-dialin.net
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Wed, 21 Mar 2001 14:04:27 +0100
Reply-To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
Subject: [compass-users] Bug reports needed
X-Evolution: 0000009a-0010



Hello cavers,
as Larry mentioned in his latest posting to this list, there is a new
32 Bit version of the Compass Cave Viewer (file name: BETA.EXE). We
need some response from other users / beta testers, especially from
people using European Windows releases.
On my own box, running a German edition of Windows 98 SE, an error
message "invalid floating point operation" appears immediately after
double- clicking the program icon. If I click on "OK" the message
disappears and the Cave Viewer starts and runs correctly.
Changing the regional settings of Windows doesn't make the error going
away. Larry tested it on his machine but he can't reproduce the error.
This means we need your input! Please give the new 32 Bit Cave Viewer a
try (it's much faster than the old 16 Bit version) and report any
problems you come across. Please tell us also which version of Windows
you use.
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Web      http://www.r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net




To: "'compass-users Moderator'" 
Subject: RE: Welcome to compass-users
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 2001 17:07:56 +1000
X-Evolution: 0000009c-0010



l would actually like some information on the Compass group. I would like to
know if l can get a list of people in the group - companies would be fine,
also how often is the list updated? Is it monthly, quarterly, yearly etc....
Thanks
Bridget Cant
Terrain Capital Ltd
Tel   + 61 3 9620 7555
Fax  + 61 3 9620 7566
mob  0410 434 889
-----Original Message-----
From: compass-users Moderator
[mailto:compass-users-owner at yahoogroups.com]
Sent: Wednesday, 29 August 2001 16:59
To: bcant at terraincapital.com
Subject: Welcome to compass-users
Welcome to the compass-users group at eGroups, a
free, easy-to-use email group service.  Please
take a moment to review this message.
To start sending messages to members of this group,
simply send email to
compass-users at egroups.com
If you do not wish to belong to compass-users, you may
unsubscribe by sending an email to
compass-users-unsubscribe at egroups.com
You may also visit the eGroups web site to modify your
subscriptions:
http://www.egroups.com/mygroups
Regards,
Roger Schuster, Moderator of compass-users

Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/

If any information, recommendation or advice is supplied with this e-mail,
Terrain Capital Limited and its employees and associates to the full extent
permitted by law, disclaim any liability for that information,
recommendation or advice and to the extent liability is imposed by law and
is not avoided by the disclaimer, the liability of Terrain Capital Limited
and all its employees and associates does not extend to any consequential or
economic loss.




To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
From: richwrig at tig.com.au
Date: Sat, 08 Sep 2001 01:30:07 -0000
Reply-To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
Subject: [compass-users] ROTATE files to COMPASS files
X-Evolution: 0000009e-0010



I have dozens of ASCII files in ROTATE format (ROTATE is by Marijka
van Gans and is for the 3D rotation of images).
Does anybody know of a translator for ROTATE files to COMPASS files?




To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Sat, 8 Sep 2001 04:04:07 -0600 (MDT)
Reply-To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [compass-users] ROTATE files to COMPASS files
X-Evolution: 000000a0-0010



> I have dozens of ASCII files in ROTATE format (ROTATE is by Marijka
> van Gans and is for the 3D rotation of images).
>
> Does anybody know of a translator for ROTATE files to COMPASS files?
At this point there is no converter that I know of that will convert
Rotate files to COMPASS files. I don't know what the file format for
Rotate files look like, but there may be a way to convert the data.
First, COMPASS will import data from an Excel spreadsheet, so one way
to do this would be to figure out a way to get the Rotate data into
Excel. I also suspect that the Rotate files are going to be in
cartesian coordinates where as cave survey data is generally in polar
coordinates. If this is true, you would have to convert them back to
polar, which you could do with some formulas in the spreadsheet.
Another option would be to look for another cave survey program that is
more tied to Rotate. COMPASS can rotate caves just as fast as Rotate can,
so there was never any reason to tie the two programs together. However,
there are some other program like CavePlot that are tied to Rotate.
(http://members.aol.com/caverdave/CPHome.html) Perhaps CavePlot could read
your Rotate files. If it could, it could then you may be able to export
the data as SEF which COMPASS can read.
Sorry I can't be more helpful. There are so many file formats out there
and it is hard to write conversion software for every one of them.
Larry




To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Sat, 8 Sep 2001 17:46:54 +0200
Reply-To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [compass-users] ROTATE files to COMPASS files
X-Evolution: 000000a2-0010



Am Sat, 08 Sep 2001 01:30:07 -0000 schrieb richwrig at tig.com.au:
Hello guys 'n gals,
> I have dozens of ASCII files in ROTATE format (ROTATE is by Marijka
> van Gans and is for the 3D rotation of images).
>
> Does anybody know of a translator for ROTATE files to COMPASS files?
I know rotate. It is a nice little 3D animation software for DOS and MacOS
and it is not cave specific. You can display and rotate nearly any kind of
3D object: Cave surveys, DNA molecules of HIV viruses or gravitation waves
of black holes. O.k., caves are a more every day kind of business! :-)
Rotate data files are plain ASCII with Cartesian coordinates of objects in
your 3D image and a certain number for each object which describes the
color and the type of object (point or line). The syntax is very simple.
Converting Compass plot files (the ones Cave Viewer uses) into rotate is
easy because of the similar syntax. If the caves are small the conversion
can be done with a plain text editor.
Converting rotate to Compass plot files is a little bit more difficult
because rotate does not store any information about the scale of the
objects. You must convert the coordinates into decimal feet (right?) and
add the necessary headers to the file and the surveys. The format of any
Compass files is specified in the "compass.txt" which comes with Compass
for DOS - read it for details. As Larry suggested a spreadsheet software
like Excel maybe a good help for doing the conversion. The most difficult
task is to find out the original units of the data in the rotate file and
the scale of the cave.
If you would really work with the data (adding new surveys and so on) and
not only displaying the cave on
screen you need to convert the Cartesian coordinates of the rotate file
back to polar coordinates and create a Compass raw data file (*.dat). You
also need to find out the original data units to get a cave map scaled in
the right way. This is the hardest job.
My two Cents
Roger
--
Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de
                Web      http://www.r-schuster.de
                Cavepage http://www.karst.net
Linux, Windows, SAP R/3: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly!




To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
From: Richard Wright 
Date: Sun, 09 Sep 2001 06:25:33 +1000
Reply-To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [compass-users] ROTATE files to COMPASS files
X-Evolution: 000000a4-0010



Thanks Larry and Roger. You have nicely clarified the issues for me.
My surveys come from archaeological sites, not caves. They are in the form of
metric Cartesian coordinates, which are fine for ROTATE. All we need to draw
are lines and points, coloured differently according to type of object and
feature. I thought that the ingenious software written by cavers might be a
step up from ROTATE. My main problem is not with ROTATE's onscreen rotation,
which nicely allows us to discover and display the stratigraphic structures
latent in 3D space. The problem is with the quality of hardcopy derived from
ROTATE - the image is on only part of the screen, and a VGA screen at that.
Probably the best way to go is to translate ROT files to DXF files. Then I
have several cheap and expensive software solutions available for getting
hardcopy.
Thanks again. Happy caving.
Richard




To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
From: "Roger Johansson" 
Date: Thu, 04 Oct 2001 10:51:14 -0000
Reply-To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
Subject: [compass-users] Exporting dxf - scaling problem
X-Evolution: 000000a6-0010



Hello!
When I try to export a dxf to import in Macromedia Freehand, the=20
scaling option  doesn't work properly for me. The map I'm drawing=20
will have the scale 1:200 so I chose the value 0,5% as at scaling=20
factor. This will produce an extremly small picture of the cave when=20
I import it to Freehand.=20
By trial I found out that a scaling factor of 6% will produce a dxf=20
that seems to have the rigth dimensions.=20
Does anyone have any sugestions about this?=20
Roger Johansson
=D6stersund, Sweden




To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Thu, 4 Oct 2001 16:00:09 -0600 (MDT)
Reply-To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Exporting dxf - scaling problem
X-Evolution: 000000a8-0010



Roger,
I don't know about the specifics of Freehand, but I suspect that the
problem you are seeing is due to the fact that the current version of
the Viewer exports the information in feet rather than meters. If
that is what is causing the problem, you should be able to deal with
it by adjusting the scaling factor appropriately.
I am working on a big new release of COMPASS and the new version
gives the option of exporting in either feet or meters. I am hoping
to have the new version ready in the next month.
There may be other things that are effecting the scaling of your
data. Here are some thoughts:
DXF files were designed for AutoCAD which is a drafting program.
Because AutoCAD is so popular, many other drawing programs have
addopted the DXF format as one of the file formats they can read. However,
some drawing programs don't work the same way as AutoCad and this can lead
to problems.
Cave survey data often deals with very large numbers. For example, a
cave can be thousands of meters or feet in length and with UTM
coordinates, the numbers can be even larger. Programs like AutoCad
have the capability of dealing with a wide range of numbers. For
example, AutoCad can be used to design skyscrapers as well as tiny
machine parts. As a result, AutoCad will actually do all its work in
the original units. This means that if AutoCad is working with tiny
machine parts, the coordinates can be in milimeters and if it is
working with skyscrapers, the coordinates can be in thousands of
meters. For this reason, programs like AutoCad have no problem
dealing with cave data.
Some drawing programs work differently from AutoCad in that they are
specifically designed to draw small objects and they are tied to paper
coordinates. As a result, the size of the object they expect is no
more than a few centimeters, the size of a normal sheet of paper. If
you try to export a cave which has coordinate of the thousands of
meters, the program will have problems. As a result, the Viewer gives
you the option of scaling the outgoing DXF file.
Most drawing programs will handle the full range of values found in a
cave file. As a result, you would only use the scaling option for
those program that do not. If you do use the scaling option, you
need to reduce the size of the cave coordinates from hundreds or
thousands of meters down to a few centimeters. How much scaling you
need to do will depend on the initial size of the cave. In other
words, this will vary from cave to cave, depending on the size.
In your situation, you need to be sure you understand how Freehand
works. If it will handle "full-sized" coordinates, then you probably
would be better off doing your scaling in Freehand. If Freehand
requires that the coordinate be scaled, you need to understand
exactly how it scales or displays its coordinates. For example, is
Freehand displaying in meters, centimeters, inches, feet, etc.? All
these conversions will effect the displays.
If you have any other questions, feel free to write.
Larry
> When I try to export a dxf to import in Macromedia Freehand, the
> scaling option  doesn't work properly for me. The map I'm drawing
> will have the scale 1:200 so I chose the value 0,5% as at scaling
> factor. This will produce an extremly small picture of the cave when
> I import it to Freehand.
The percent scaling doesn't have anything to do with the 1:200 scaling you
want to produce
> By trial I found out that a scaling factor of 6% will produce a dxf
> that seems to have the rigth dimensions.
>
> Does anyone have any sugestions about this?




To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
From: michel.pauwels at advalvas.be
Date: Mon, 03 Dec 2001 12:41:35 -0000
Reply-To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
Subject: [compass-users] Re: Bug reports needed
X-Evolution: 000000aa-0010



Hello,
I'm a belgian caver using Compass since a few years (by the way, I
would like to register via credit card and it doesn't seem to work,
but this is another bug report).
I just installed the latest release of Compass on my computer running
Windows ME and I've got precisely the same bug.  Apart of the message
about a floating point error, everything seems to work well
nevertheless.  The settings on my computer are French (Belgium) with
belgian french keyboard, and of course european times, dates, and so
on.
If I remember well, I already tried the new beta release of the
viewer with my old release of Compass on the same computer without
getting any trouble.  Fancy, isn't it ?
--- In compass-users at y..., Roger Schuster  wrote:
> Hello cavers,
>
> as Larry mentioned in his latest posting to this list, there is a
new
> 32 Bit version of the Compass Cave Viewer (file name: BETA.EXE). We
> need some response from other users / beta testers, especially from
> people using European Windows releases.
>
> On my own box, running a German edition of Windows 98 SE, an error
> message "invalid floating point operation" appears immediately
after
> double- clicking the program icon. If I click on "OK" the message
> disappears and the Cave Viewer starts and runs correctly.
>
> Changing the regional settings of Windows doesn't make the error
going
> away. Larry tested it on his machine but he can't reproduce the
error.
> This means we need your input! Please give the new 32 Bit Cave
Viewer a
> try (it's much faster than the old 16 Bit version) and report any
> problems you come across. Please tell us also which version of
Windows
> you use.
>
> Roger
> --
> Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r...
>                 Web      http://www.r-schuster.de
>                 Cavepage http://www.karst.net
> Linux a day keeps Apple away!




To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Mon, 3 Dec 2001 14:00:52 -0700 (MST)
Reply-To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Re: Bug reports needed
X-Evolution: 000000ac-0010



Michel,
Thanks for the letter.
> I'm a belgian caver using Compass since a few years (by the way, I
> would like to register via credit card and it doesn't seem to work,
> but this is another bug report).
I don't know if this is what you are referring to, but the COMPASS web
page now has the ability to accept credit card registrations. I just got
it running at the end of last week and there has already been one
registion through credit card. The program works through PayPals.
Each COMPASS registration option and CD order option has an icon next to
it. You just click the appropriate icon and you will be led through the
purchasing process.
They will accept Visa or Master Card.  If you are not already a member of
PayPals, you have to register with them. The process is simple. In fact,
it is no different from a normal credit card purchase; you just register
your credit card and choose a password.
After you have registered, you can buy from other PayPals sites by just
entering your password. You do have to have graphics enabled in your
browser or you will not be able to pass one of the security measures that
PayPals uses. If you are having problems, let me know and I'll see what I
can do to solve them.
> I just installed the latest release of Compass on my computer running
> Windows ME and I've got precisely the same bug.  Apart of the message
> about a floating point error, everything seems to work well
> nevertheless.  The settings on my computer are French (Belgium) with
> belgian french keyboard, and of course european times, dates, and so
> on.
I still have not been able to duplicate this problem. My plan is to get a
copy of Windows 98SE or ME and load it on a spare computer to see if I can
reproduce the problem. So far, there have been two reports of this problem
and both from Europe. One was on 98SE and yours which is on ME. I am
currently running Win98 first edition. If you notice any clues that might
help me pinpoint the problem, let me know.
Thanks,
Larry




To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
From: Roger Schuster 
Date: Fri, 7 Dec 2001 18:25:39 +0100
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Re: Bug reports needed
Reply-To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
X-Evolution: 000000ae-0010



Am Mon, 3 Dec 2001 14:00:52 -0700 (MST) schrieb Larry Fish:
Hello cavers,
> So far, there have been two reports of this
> problem
> and both from Europe. One was on 98SE and yours which is on ME.
I am the guy with the "floating point error" on Windows 98 SE. Today I
tested the latest COMPASS release on several flavors of Windows to
reproduce the bug. Here are the results:
Windows 95, 4.00.950 B: no problem
Windows 98 SE, 4.10.2222 A: no problem
Windows NT 4.0 SP 6, 4.00.1381: no error message but Cave Viewer needs up
to 30 seconds to start. The behavior of the other COMPASS programs are not
unusual. After the slow start Cave Viewer seems to work correct.
Windows 2000 SP 2: exactly the same as with Windows NT.
I made all tests with German versions of Windows on computers with the
same hardware components and new installed OS without additional software.
I am surprised because on the test machine with Windows 98 anything
behaves well but on my own computer with Win 98 SE the floating point
error occurs.
Roger -- Roger Schuster  eMail    roger at r-schuster.de                Web
   http://www.r-schuster.de                Cavepage http://www.karst.net
rm -rf /bin/laden




To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Fri, 7 Dec 2001 13:09:08 -0700 (MST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Re: Bug reports needed
Reply-To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
X-Evolution: 000000b0-0010



Roger,
Thanks for spending so much time analyzing this problem. It really helps.
> I am surprised because on the test machine with Windows 98 anything
> behaves well but on my own computer with Win 98 SE the floating point
> error occurs.
It appears from your tests that the operating system version is not the
problem. Since you have one version of Win 98 SE that succeeds and another
that fails, you might be able to find a difference between the two
computers. My guess is that one of the DLLs that is a part of the Windows
98 base installation has been changed on the system that fails. The system
DLLs are in the directory /windows/system. You might want to compare DLLs
on the two systems and look for differences. Actually the easiest way to
do this would be to use the System Information tool. You will find it in
the Program menu at Start->Programs->Accessories->System Tools->. Check
the "System File Checker" and the "Version Conflict Manager" under the
tools menu. These tools will list DLLs and other system files that have
changed or have conflicts. If you do find a difference, then I could try
one of the DLLs on my machine to see if it causes the problem.
The other clue is the fact that there is another person who has the
problem under Windows ME. Maybe your computer and his have something in
common. For example, you might have the same program or programs installed
on your computer. It is also interesting that the only reports that I have
had of this problem have come from Europe. Perhaps there is program that
european users are more likely to have installed that is causing the
problem.
I supposed it could also be a hardware problem. For example, it could be
that there is some subtle difference between the way Pentium and Athalon
works. If worse comes to worst, I can write a special test version of the
Viewer that keeps track of what it is doing as it starts up. That way it
could help zero in on where the problem is.
> Windows NT 4.0 SP 6, 4.00.1381: no error message but Cave Viewer needs up
> to 30 seconds to start. The behavior of the other COMPASS programs are not
> unusual. After the slow start Cave Viewer seems to work correct.
By the way, I know how to improve the start-up speed of the Viewer. It
is a fairly easy task, although very time consuming. When I have a bit of
spare time, I will give it shot.
Larry




To: "[Compass Users] (Posta elettronica)" 
From: Amedeo Gambini 
Date: Sat, 12 Jan 2002 18:13:25 +0100
Subject: [compass-users] Surface modeling
Reply-To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
X-Evolution: 000000b2-0010



Some years ago I used for a while Compass (dos version). Now I started
using Wincompass and I was surprised by the 3D modeling capabilities using
Wincompass and CaveX. I have some questions:
is it possible to model surface external to the cave (starting fron a mesh
of X, Y, Z) and view it joined to the Cavex representation of the cave?
I used CaveX in Window NT environment and I was able to see *.X files
generated by CaveX through Explorer but I wasn't able to do the same in
Windows 98 environment; there is some specific reason or I did some
mistakes?
Many thanks
Amedeo Gambini
Italy




To: "[Compass Users] (Posta elettronica)" 
From: Larry Fish 
Date: Sat, 12 Jan 2002 13:11:19 -0700 (MST)
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Surface modeling
Reply-To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
X-Evolution: 000000b4-0010



Amedeo,
Thanks for your questions.
> is it possible to model surface external to the cave (starting fron a mesh
> of X, Y, Z) and view it joined to the Cavex representation of the cave?
It is possible to model surface terrain over with a mesh or topographic
lines over the cave. However, it will not work in CaveX, only in the
standard COMPASS Viewer. I am planning to add the capability to CaveX in
the near future, I just need to get the time to do it.
To generate terrain model for the regular Viewer, you need the DEM Reader,
which is available for download from the COMPASS web page. The DEM Reader
will read standard United States Geological Survey Digital Elevation Model
files (DEM). I would guess that this will not help you very much because
your caves are probably not in the United States. However, the DEM Reader
also allows you to enter X,Y,Z surface terrain data manually by entering
it into an editor.

> I used CaveX in Window NT environment and I was able to see *.X files
> generated by CaveX through Explorer but I wasn't able to do the same in
> Windows 98 environment; there is some specific reason or I did some
> mistakes?
Explorer has to have a "plug-in" called XWeb before it will display *.X
files. I would guess that your NT system has the "plug-in" and your Win98
system does not. The "plug-in" will install automatically if you go to the
COMPASS web page and go to the section that shows the "live 3D cave
models." You can use this link to go directly to the page:
http://www.fountainware.com/cavex
Go to the section that displays the cave on your Win98 system and Explorer
should automatically ask to download the plug-in. From that point on,
Explorer will be able to display *.X files.
Larry




To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
From: "cavedoc2001" 
Date: Tue, 19 Feb 2002 07:23:08 -0000
Subject: [compass-users] loop error and survey grades
Reply-To: compass-users at yahoogroups.com
X-Evolution: 000000b6-0010



Hello,
     I was looking at some new data that I entered and was happy to
see that the loops closed at the "good" level.  I am wondering what
type of correlation there might be between this and the survey grades
defined by BCRA.  If I wanted to calculate percent error per BCRA
would I just use linear error divided by loop length?  And then do
some sort of weighted average based on loop lengths?  Perhaps the
Brits might chime in on this?
Roger Mortimer




From: "Victor Komarov" 
To: 
Subject: [compass-users] Trouble with Cyrillic characters
Date: Saturday, June 25, 2005 9:33 PM



Good day.

Sent: Sunday, June 26, 2005 1:38 AM
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Search again

> It is also possible that the problem is caused by special
> characters in the filename. For example, Compass might be
> having trouble with Cyrillic characters or other non-English
> characters.

I meet problems to enter date in Compass with Cyrillic characters.
It is difficult to edit names, description.
There is problem to enter the letter in it correct place in the word.

Is Unicode support  in Compass?

If no, maybe adding Unicode support to Compass will fixed
this and some others problems with non-English characters?

Best of all.

--
Victor Komarov < v_komarov@bk.ru >




From: "kershawrg" 
To: 
Subject: [compass-users] Re: geographic location problems
Date: Tuesday, June 28, 2005 5:29 PM



hello Larry and others
I have just had a few of teh same problems and will try the new version
of compass that is posted.
but could you just simply have a menu "geo reference features"
and then simply refernce a cave entrance or station for example, to a
GPS reference.

thanks again for your time
Bob Kershaw




From: "Larry Fish" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Trouble with Cyrillic characters
Date: Sunday, June 26, 2005 8:45 PM



Victor,

Thank you for your letter. It would not be too hard for me to
convert the Compass programs to use Unicode characters.
However, the biggest problem would the current Compass file
format.

Currently, the Compass file format only allows 8-bit ASCII
characters. If I were to switch to Unicode for the files, all
the existing Compass data would immediately become obsolete
and thousands of cave survey files would become useless.

I am planning on creating a new Compass file format in near
future. The new format will probably be based on XML and
would include file-converters that would convert between the
old and new format. When I implement the new format, I will
give serious consideration to supporting Unicode characters
for various elements in the survey data.

Larry Fish

----- Original Message -----
From: "Victor Komarov" 
To: 
Sent: Saturday, June 25, 2005 10:30 PM
Subject: [compass-users] Trouble with Cyrillic characters

> Good day.
>
> Sent: Sunday, June 26, 2005 1:38 AM
> Subject: Re: [compass-users] Search again
>
>
>> It is also possible that the problem is caused by special
>> characters in the filename. For example, Compass might be
>> having trouble with Cyrillic characters or other non-English
>> characters.
>
> I meet problems to enter date in Compass with Cyrillic characters.
> It is difficult to edit names, description.
> There is problem to enter the letter in it correct place in the word.
>
> Is Unicode support  in Compass?
> If no, maybe adding Unicode support to Compass will fixed this and some
> others problems with non-English characters?
>
> Best of all.
>
> --
> Victor Komarov < v_komarov@bk.ru >




From: "bagu1uk" 
To: 
Subject: [compass-users] Re: Search again
Date: Sunday, June 26, 2005 5:44 AM



Hi Larry,
thanks for your reply ..

> Thank you for your letter. I was able to fix two of the
> problems. Here is what I found:
> Anyway, the problem is fixed and there is a new version on the
> net.

... sorry, it might be the heat outside ;-)) , but nothing changed...

at least for point 1: still floating point error ( was not there in
the last year)
and 2: Still saying, that there is no Geo-Loc. set in the manager.
and 3: Well, it is confusing (I understand what you are doing, will
check it further), will check it again, but, even with fulfords.dat
(deleting the declination '0') and trying to save ends up with
floating point error. Ok, I can life with that.

5... and maybe there is a misunderstanding in the whole declination
processing (on my side).
5a. Setting the geographic location in the Project Manager AND having
"Calculate Declination" set in the general options ... -> processes
the declination for each survey during compiling, if the .MAK is
highlighted during processing.
5b. Setting it manually in a survey overrides(?) the project manager
setting or, run stand-alone without a .mak, processes with the manual
entry?

In the HELP:
"Location Not Set. If the cave location has not been set in the
Project Manager, the Editor will warn you to set the location manually
while your calculating the declination. This usually occurs if you did
not run the Editor from the Project Manager or you are not working
with a Project File. (See the Project Manager help for details on how
to create a project file or to set the Base Location for a survey
project.)"

I do get the warning all the time. I have the Geo. Loc. set in the
project manager and and and ....

Survey Editor is: 5.05.5.26.37

> I could not duplicate this problem and the symptoms that you
> describe are confusing:
>
> 1. The "Cannot Rename File" error is usually caused because
> It is also possible that the problem is caused by special
> characters in the filename. For example, Compass might be
> having trouble with Cyrillic characters or other non-English
> characters.

> 1. What country do you live in? It would be useful to know so I
> could test using exactly the same settings as you.

Germany

> 2. If you can reliably duplicate the problem, tell me exactly
> what steps I need to take to make it happen. The more detail
> the better.

still trying...

>
> 3. Send me a copy of the file you are working on. It might have
> something to do with that specific file.

seems not to be file depending... but also checking.

>
> Thanks for feedback. It is always useful to help me find problems
> in Compass.

Thanks for your help.
Bagu

>
> Larry Fish




From: "bagu1uk" 
To: 
Subject: [compass-users] Search again
Date: Friday, June 24, 2005 2:09 PM



Hi,
since my last try last year I started again with compass. But now, no
more search possible:
1. 'Advanced search' in Survey section gives always an error: "155.18
is not a valid floating point value"?? Whatever I am searching.

and 2. :
Trying to set the declination in the survey section by the "Calculate
Survy" button ALWAYS ends up in: "Warning Geogr. Locator has not been
set...." But it is set in the project. So it should take the value,
but does not.

and 3., a killing feature:
Beeing in the "Edit Survey", there is a lot of trouble with the saving:
Sometimes "Cannot rename file" if I say YES for saving. Who wants to
rename?
Sometimes ' "is not a valid floating point value' ... and nobody knows
what or where. Sometimes it happens, if I delete the survey
declination and forget to insert a "0", entering the "0" ends up with
"Cannot rename file"-error. ??

All in the latest version 5.05.5.26.37

bagu




From: "Larry Fish" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Re: Search again
Date: Sunday, June 26, 2005 3:34 PM



Bagu,

> Survey Editor is: 5.05.5.26.37

The Survey Editor's Version number indicates that you don't
have the most recent version. The version number you just
sent indicates that it was produced on May 26th, 2005. This
is a month old. The current version has a version number of:

5.05.6.25.37

The first number is the version number. The second number is
the year. The third number is the month and the fourth number
is the day. Thus the current version was created on June
25th, 2005.

To make sure that I uploaded the right version, I just
download the version that is on the internet and installed it
on my computer. It has the correct version of 5.05.6.25.37.
Some how, the newest version is not running on your computer.

I retested this version with my computer's "Regional
Settings" configured for "Germany(Germany)" and there was no
error with Geographic Settings or the Advanced Search
features. Before I made the changes yesterday, I would get
the same error you had.

I am not sure why you don't seem to have the newest version.
Or, perhaps you have more than one copy of Compass on your computer.
Perhaps you installed the new version of Compass to a different
folder.

Larry




From: "Larry Fish" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Search again
Date: Saturday, June 25, 2005 2:38 PM



Bagu,

Thank you for your letter. I was able to fix two of the
problems. Here is what I found:

> 1. 'Advanced search' in Survey section gives always an error:
> "155.18 is not a valid floating point value"?? Whatever I am
> searching.

This problem is fixed. It was caused by the fact that the
United States and other countries have different standards
for numbers. In the United States, the decimal point is a
period (.). In many European countries, the decimal point is
a comma (,).

It is very important that Compass only use one standard in
its files. If Compass were to allow different standards for
different countries, then Survey Data generated in England
would not be readable by someone in Germany. For this reason,
Compass has adopted the US standard of using periods as the
decimal point.

This issue only applies to the content of files.
Every where else, Compass must be able accept numbers in
the proper format for the country where the computer lives.
As a result, it is a bit tricky keeping track of where numbers
need to use the US standard and where they use the international
standard.

Sometimes, I forget about this issue and forget to tell the
programming language to turn off International Number support
in the right places. That is what has happened here.

Anyway, the problem is fixed and there is a new version on the
net.

> 2. Trying to set the declination in the survey section by the
> "Calculate Survy" button ALWAYS ends up in: "Warning Geogr.
> Locator has not been set...." But it is set in the project.
> So it should take the value, but does not.

This problem was caused by the same issues I described above.
It has also been fixed.

> 3. a killing feature: Beeing in the "Edit Survey", there is a
> lot of trouble with the saving: Sometimes "Cannot rename
> file" if I say YES for saving. Who wants to rename?
>
> Sometimes ' "is not a valid floating point value' ... and
> nobody knows what or where. Sometimes it happens, if I delete
> the survey declination and forget to insert a "0", entering
> the "0" ends up with "Cannot rename file"-error. ??

I could not duplicate this problem and the symptoms that you
describe are confusing:

1. The "Cannot Rename File" error is usually caused because
Compass has to Rename files in the process of backing up the
current survey. For example, if you are saving a file called
"Cave.dat", Compass first has to delete "Cave.bak". Then it has
to rename "Cave.dat" to "Cave.bak". Finally, it has to save the
newly modified "Cave.dat."

If, for some reason, Windows cannot rename "Cave.dat" to
"Cave.bak" then you will get this error. This is usually
caused by one of the files or the disk drive being "Write
Protected" or set to being "Read Only". It can also occur
if the file is open by another program.

It is also possible that the problem is caused by special
characters in the filename. For example, Compass might be
having trouble with Cyrillic characters or other non-English
characters.

2. The "is not a valid floating point value" error is probably
caused the "decimal point" problem I described earlier. However,
I have been running my computer with the "German" standard and
have not been able to duplicate the problem.

It is possible the problem has been fixed with the changes I just
made. Test the new version and see if it fixed this problem. If
not, here are some things that would be useful for me to know:

1. What country do you live in? It would be useful to know so I
could test using exactly the same settings as you.

2. If you can reliably duplicate the problem, tell me exactly
what steps I need to take to make it happen. The more detail
the better.

3. Send me a copy of the file you are working on. It might have
something to do with that specific file.

Thanks for feedback. It is always useful to help me find problems
in Compass.

Larry Fish




From: "bagu1uk" 
To: 
Subject: [compass-users] Re: Search again
Date: Monday, June 27, 2005 1:45 AM



>
> The Survey Editor's Version number indicates that you don't
> have the most recent version. The version number you just
> sent indicates that it was produced on May 26th, 2005. This
> is a month old. The current version has a version number of:
>
> 5.05.6.25.37

Sorry Larry,
YES, it was the heat :-(
Ok, it seems to be the time to register...
Thanks a lot
Bagu




From: "Tom Lounsbury" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Digest Number 111
Date: Tuesday, June 28, 2005 4:22 AM



I would also like data generated such as total man hours,
surveyor list, and what surveyor/s did what. Also I would
like to be able to store photo's and other pertinent info
within compass. I had some other need but can't seem to think
of it right now its awfully early.

Tom Lounsbury




From: "Larry Fish" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Digest Number 111
Date: Tuesday, June 28, 2005 1:58 PM



Tom,

> I would also like data generated such as total man hours,
> surveyor list, and what surveyor/s did what. Also I would
>  like to be able to store photo's and other pertinent info within
> compass.

For things like photographs, I suggest that you look at
CaveBase. It was designed to hold all kinds of auxillary
data. It already handles photographs and you can create
databases of almost any imaginable structure. Putting
auxillary data in a database also has the advantage of
keeping your survey files relatively small and easy to
handle. (A file full of pictures could be hundreds of
megabytes in size; possibly too large even for a CD-Rom.)

I am currently working on a new file format for Compass and
some of the items you mentioned may get added as normal data
items.

Larry




From: "Christian Chenier" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Digest Number 111
Date: Tuesday, June 28, 2005 5:55 PM



At 16:56 2005/06/28, Larry Fish wrote:

>I am currently working on a new file format for Compass and
>some of the items you mentioned may get added as normal data
>items.

Some more ideas you should consider including in your new file format:

1) Support for projected cross-sections. 99% of this
functionality is in the code, but you would need to identify
"flip" points (points at witch we start going right-to-left
instead of left-to-right). The method of doing this which
requires less work would involve simply identifying each
survey as either "left to right" or "right to left". A more
advanced system might also allow you to flip individual
shots. Projected cross-sections is probably the single most
important feature currently lacking in Compass.

2) Support for Topofil measuring devices. This would require
a calibration (a single floating point number per survey), as
well as two number for the length: the start counter and end
counter (a total of two integers per shot). Of course you
also require some sort of flag to identify the survey as a
Topofil survey. Once you have these data, you'll be able to
write code to do anything one may want with a Topofil.
Theoritically one could also use the Topofil to measure LRUD,
but I have never heard of anyone doing so.

3) You should definitely try to keep an "open-ended" file
format to support future enhancements. This can be achieved,
for example, with a tag-driven data structure (such as XML).

Don't hesitate to contact me if you have questions about the above.

Will you be attending the NSS Convention next week?  If so we could chat
about this then if you wish.

Chris

---------------------------
Christian Chénier
Cantley (Québec), Canada
(819) 827-5201




From: "Larry Fish" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Digest Number 111
Date: Wednesday, June 29, 2005 2:01 AM



Christian,

Thank you for your letter.

> 1) Support for projected cross-sections.

I assume you are talking about flattening out the cross
sections so they appear as though they all have the same
azimuth? I spent some time working on this idea a few years
ago. As you point out, one issue is specifying where to
flip the direction. I thought maybe you could specify a base
azimuth and then flip any shot that was greater than 90
degrees away. I also had the idea of allow the user to
draw a line in plan view that indicate how to flatten the
passage. In addition, you might want to do it dynamically,
as the viewing angle changes.

In the processing of working on the problem, I realized that
flattening one shot, changes the position of all subsequent
stations and shots, so, in effect, you have to recompile the
cave. For example, if your base azimuth were 90 degrees, all
the shots have to be converted to either 90 or 180 and then
the cave would be recompiled.

At this point in Compass, the Compiler and Viewer are
separate programs, so flipping back and forth between Polar
Space and Cartesian Space would be tricky. Maybe there is a
way to use "Turtle Graphic" or something similar to get
around the problem. At any rate, that is as far as I got.

> 2) Support for Topofil measuring devices.

I have looked at this option before and it will have to wait
until there is a new file format for Compass.

> 3) You should definitely try to keep an "open-ended" file
> format to support future enhancements. This can be achieved,
> for example, with a tag-driven data structure (such as XML).

Yes, that is reason I am looking at XML. The current Compass
format is showing its age and it is pretty hard to add new
features.

Devin Kouts spent quite a bit of time working on an XML
standard for cave surveys. He had input from lots of people
including most of the cave survey software writers. I have
already written code that will convert Compass data to
something pretty similar to Devin's format. You can see his
work here:

http://www.psc-cavers.org/xml/#designRequirements

In my experiments with this XML format, I found that the
files ended up eight times larger than the original Compass
files. Loading one of the Lechuguilla files went from 0.5
seconds to 5 seconds, a 10-times increase.

I think the majority of increased sized comes from having a
separate XML tag for every item in the a shot. I think I can
reduce the size a lot by putting more of the shot data inside a
single tags.

If you want to see what I currently have, you can download a
copy of Fulford converted to XML at:

http://www.fountainware.com/download/fulford.zip

> Will you be attending the NSS Convention next week? If so
> we could chat about this then if you wish.

Unfortunately, I won't be able to make it to Convention this
year.

Larry




From: "Evaristo QUIROGA" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Digest Number 111 - Developed cross section
Date: Tuesday, August 23, 2005 2:30 AM



Larry Fish escribió:

>Christian,
>
>Thank you for your letter.
>
>
>
>>1) Support for projected cross-sections.
>>
>>
>
>I assume you are talking about flattening out the cross
>sections so they appear as though they all have the same
>azimuth? I spent some time working on this idea a few years
>ago. As you point out, one issue is specifying where to
>flip the direction. I thought maybe you could specify a base
>azimuth and then flip any shot that was greater than 90
>degrees away. I also had the idea of allow the user to
>draw a line in plan view that indicate how to flatten the
>passage. In addition, you might want to do it dynamically,
>as the viewing angle changes.
>
>In the processing of working on the problem, I realized that
>flattening one shot, changes the position of all subsequent
>stations and shots, so, in effect, you have to recompile the
>cave. For example, if your base azimuth were 90 degrees, all
>the shots have to be converted to either 90 or 180 and then
>the cave would be recompiled.
>
>At this point in Compass, the Compiler and Viewer are
>separate programs, so flipping back and forth between Polar
>Space and Cartesian Space would be tricky. Maybe there is a
>way to use "Turtle Graphic" or something similar to get
>around the problem. At any rate, that is as far as I got.
>
>

I think like Cristian, DEVELOPED cross section is the most
important feature lacking in Compass. I use Compass for the
80% process of my survey data. For the 20% remaining I have
to import the "plt" file to Visualtopo to generate the
developed cross section ant export it to "dxf" format.

In Europe we are used to represent the caves with: plant,
sections and developed cross section. When we survey we drawn
in the book directely the plant, section and developed cross
section. Developed cross section is very useful to represente
the alpine vertical cave morfology. In this, not projected,
cross section it is very easy to look the verticals obstacles
and the need of exploration gear (ropes, etc).

I think than the implementation of developed cross section in
Compass was very easy. You have to add a new field to the
heading survey and a new flag to the shot (ex: "I", inverse).
With this parameters you control the direction to plot the
survey and the shot to a new direction change: "left to
right" or "right to left".

The data compilation is very easy, you have to compute a new
variable for every station (moreover X, Y and Z): DR,
developed radius. DR is the sum of the projected lenght of
all the shots from the origen station (normaly the entrance,
with DR=0, we don't need UTM or other coordinates system) to
station computed. The software sum the projected lenght until
it read a inversion parameter, then it rest the next shots
until a new inversion parameter.

After in the Compass Viewer, the plot of the developed cross
section (or developed profile) is very easy, you have to plot
a 2D graf: DR-Z.

In a developed cross section loops closure is not important,
it's more important the visualization of the caver vertical
path and the vertical morfology. You have to break the loops,
the user manualy inverse the cross section to simulate the
principal turns.

You can look explainations and use of the developed cross
section in software like AURIGA and VISUALTOPO. If we need
more information I send you.

Evaristo Quiroga
Espeleo Club de Gràcia
Barcelona - Spain

P.S: My english is very poor, if you understand spanish I can
explain more better the developed cross section concept and
the way to implent it in Compass.




From: "Larry Fish" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Digest Number 111 - Developed cross section
Date: Friday, August 26, 2005 2:03 AM



Evaristo,

Thank you for your letter. Sorry it has taken a few days to
respond - I have been very busy.

> P.S: My english is very poor, if you understand spanish I can
> explain more better the developed cross section concept and
> the way to implent it in Compass.

Tu Inglés es muy bien e entiendo perfectamente todas las
ideas que estas diciendo. Creo que te hables Inglés mucho
mejor que yo puedo hablar en el Español. Sin enbargo, si
quieres, por favor, escribes en Español. Puedo entender
Español escrito bastante bien aunque hay muchas palabras en el
campo de agrimensura y informatica que no sepa. Pero tengo
tres dictionarios y, ademas, tengo una vecina en el otro lado
de mi callejuela que es de Venezuela. Ella pueda ayudarme con
cualquier cosa dificil. Tambien, me gustaria platicar acerca
de este tema en Español por que pudiera aprender nuevas
palabra acerca del campo de agrimensura.

Pero, primero, antes de aprendiendo las nuevas palabras,
debo contestar sus preguntas en Inglés:

I have given a lot of thought to the Projected Profile issue.
I have even downloaded VisualTopo to see how they do it.
The problem is not with the Projected Profile itself, which
is fairly easy to do. The problem is integrating it with the
other aspects of Compass.

I have done several experiments that create Projected
Profiles and there have certain problems. There two basic
ways of creating the Projected Profile in Compass One is to let the
Viewer do all the work and the other is to let the Compiler
do all the work.

If send the "Developed Radius" to Viewer in the plot file
(plt) then the Viewer can do all the work. However, this
would mean changing the Plot File format. It would also be a
lot of work for me to integrate the the Developed Profile
into all the other features of Compass. For example, I would
have to write special "Developed Profile" routines for
Station Labels, Elevation Marking, Passage Wall Modeling,
etc.

Another strategy would be to have the Compiler generate a
special plot file that only contains Developed Profile
information. I have experimented with idea a lot and it
requires some fairly big changes to the Compiler. This would
allow the Developed Profile to work with all the features of
the Viewer including color-by-depth, passage modeling etc.
One problem is that you have to recompile the cave every time
you want to make a change. You also can't quickly switch
between the Projected Profiles and non-Projected Profile. It
also require lots of small changes to the Compiler. For
example, the Compiler puts the size of each survey in the
Plot File. This allows the Viewer the test each survey to see
if it is on the screen and skip any survey that is out of
sight, which greatly speeds up drawing. However, with the
Projected Profile, the size of each survey changes and so
I would have make lots of changes before it would work.
The changes are terribly hard, but I think I have a better
way to do it:

I am in the process of making major changes to the way
Compass works and the structure of the data. I think that
this problem will be much easier to solve after those changes
are made. It is going to take several months to complete all
the changes, so I am afraid that the Projected Profile will
have to wait a few months.

Now I have a couple of questions for you and anyone else
in the group. I notice in Visual Topo that in this mode the
passages are pretty clutted and since they are distorted from
the normal positions and shape, it is hard to identify which
survey you are looking at. I'm wonder if the Extended Profile
would be more useful if you only looked at one survey at a time.
That would be somewhat easier to do and would allow me to
do it all in the Viewer. What do you think?

Gracias para sus ideas.

Larry




From: "Evaristo QUIROGA" 
To: ; 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Digest Number 111 - Developed cross section
Date: Friday, August 26, 2005 7:41 AM



Hola Larry

Larry Fish escribió:

>Tu Inglés es muy bien e entiendo perfectamente todas las
>ideas que estas diciendo. Creo que te hables Inglés mucho
>mejor que yo puedo hablar en el Español. Sin enbargo, si
>quieres, por favor, escribes en Español.
>
Espero que podamos entendernos perfectamete al poder cada uno expresarse
en su lengua natal. Cada uno puede usar su lengua para expresarse mejor,
ya que los dos entendemos satisfactoriamente la lengua escrita del otro
y sera mas enriquecedor, para lo poco que no entendamos ya estan los
diccionarios. Gracias.

Por otro lado, estoy encantado de volver a colaborar contigo en mejorar
las prestaciones de un programa tan bueno como COMPASS. Ya estuvimos en
contacto hace unos años a la hora de implementar la visualización de las
coordenadas UTM en el VIEWER.

Desde entonces tenia pendiente hacerte la petición de que añadieras el
"alzado desarrollado" (Developed or Extended Profile) a COMPASS, pero no
encontrada el tiempo y la ocasión para hacerlo. Por ello he aprovechado
el comentario de Christian sobre el tema.

Por ultimo, recalcar que el tema que nos ocupa es el alzado desarrollado
, ya que COMPASS ya gestiona eficientemente los "alzados proyectados"
(Projected Profile or Projected cross section).

>I have given a lot of thought to the Projected Profile issue.
>I have even downloaded VisualTopo to see how they do it.
>The problem is not with the Projected Profile itself, which
>is fairly easy to do. The problem is integrating it with the
>other aspects of Compass.
>
>I have done several experiments that create Projected
>Profiles and there have certain problems. There two basic
>ways of creating the Projected Profile in Compass One is to let the
>Viewer do all the work and the other is to let the Compiler
>do all the work.
>
>If send the "Developed Radius" to Viewer in the plot file
>(plt) then the Viewer can do all the work. However, this
>would mean changing the Plot File format. It would also be a
>lot of work for me to integrate the the Developed Profile
>into all the other features of Compass. For example, I would
>have to write special "Developed Profile" routines for
>Station Labels, Elevation Marking, Passage Wall Modeling,
>etc.
>
>Another strategy would be to have the Compiler generate a
>special plot file that only contains Developed Profile
>information. I have experimented with idea a lot and it
>requires some fairly big changes to the Compiler. This would
>allow the Developed Profile to work with all the features of
>the Viewer including color-by-depth, passage modeling etc.
>One problem is that you have to recompile the cave every time
>you want to make a change. You also can't quickly switch
>between the Projected Profiles and non-Projected Profile. It
>also require lots of small changes to the Compiler. For
>example, the Compiler puts the size of each survey in the
>Plot File. This allows the Viewer the test each survey to see
>if it is on the screen and skip any survey that is out of
>sight, which greatly speeds up drawing. However, with the
>Projected Profile, the size of each survey changes and so
>I would have make lots of changes before it would work.
>The changes are terribly hard, but I think I have a better
>way to do it:
>
>I am in the process of making major changes to the way
>Compass works and the structure of the data. I think that
>this problem will be much easier to solve after those changes
>are made. It is going to take several months to complete all
>the changes, so I am afraid that the Projected Profile will
>have to wait a few months.
>
>
Tambien opino que es el momento de implementar el alzado desarrollado,
aprovechando que estas cambiando la estructura y flujo de trabajo de
COMPASS.
Tomate el tiempo que consideres necesario, llevo años utilizando COMPASS
sin poder ver alzados desarrollados, por lo tanto podre esperar con la
promesa que en un futuro proximo podre utilizar esta función en COMPASS.
Mientras seguiré utilizando VISUALTOPO para esta tarea.

Como ya comentaba en mi email anterior soy de la opinión que la
visualización del alzado desarrollado deberia estar integrado en el
VIEWER, añadido a las opciones de visualización de planta (Plant) y
alzado proyectado (Projected Profile, the normal Compass Profile). El
compilador solo deberia añadir el Radio Desarrollado (Developed Radius)
y la información para calcular y dibujar las alturas (techo/UP y
suelo/Down). Esta información de las alturas puede ser la Z en valor
absoluto calculada para techo y suelo para cada estación, o  solo los
valores relativos de "z" respecto a la Z de la estación (ej: +3.20m
para el techo y -1.70m para el suelo). Con esta información el VIEWER
deberia ser capaz de generar un vista en alzado desarollado, con la
posibilidad de ver las alturas  (elevation marking) y los contornos
(Passage wall modeling).  En este tipo de visualizacion (alzado
desarrollado) pierden sentido las visualizaciones de contornos 3D  (3D
polygons y Shaded cylinders).

Creo que aprovechando tus cambios proyectados es el momento para que
modifiques el formato del fichero "plt" para incorporar esta información.

Si la integración el VIEWER es muy problematica, puedes plantear una
función del VIEWER que cree una nueva ventana de visualización  para el
alzado desarrollado, que tenga asociada los botones para las pocas
funciones que son necesarias para visualizar este tipo de vista.

Resumiendo las funciones estrictamente necearias son:
- Poder modificar el sentido de visualización mediante un parametro en
el camp "flags" de las visuales (shots) y las cabeceras de las sessiones
(survey heading)  en el editor.
- Que el compilador calcule los Radios Desarollados y las alturas en
valores relativos de "z". Los Radios Desarrollados estan referidos a un
origen 0 (normalemente la entrada de la cavidad/cave), no utilizando los
sistemas de referencia absoluto tipo UTM u otros.
- El VIEWER debe poder generar una visualización del alzado
desarrollado, con la opción ver las alturas y los contornos. - Por
último esta visualización debe poder exportarse en formato DXF, y otros
si necesario, a un  programa de CAD o de dibujo, para poder vestir la
poligonal con el dibujo de la galeria  y su simbologia asociada.

>Now I have a couple of questions for you and anyone else
>in the group. I notice in Visual Topo that in this mode the
>passages are pretty clutted and since they are distorted from
>the normal positions and shape, it is hard to identify which
>survey you are looking at. I'm wonder if the Extended Profile
>would be more useful if you only looked at one survey at a time.
>That would be somewhat easier to do and would allow me to
>do it all in the Viewer. What do you think?
>
>
Como comentaba en mi anterior email el alzado desarrollado es una
visualización muy importante para  representar  la morfologia de las
cavidades alpinas con gran predominio vertical, con abundanes pozo
(pits) u otros obstaculos verticales; facilitando al lector de la
topografia (survey) hacerse una idea del camino mas optimo y el material
neceario para recorrer las galerias.

Normalmente dichas cavidades alpinas de predominio vertical son mucho
mas sencillas que las cavidades laberinticas tipo Lechuguilla.

En cavidades de estructura sencilla es muy facil hacer una
representación del alzado desarrollado de toda la cavidad, eligiendo
unos cuantos giros estrategicos para facilitar la visualización. Si
quieres puedo enviarte esquemas y dibujos que reflejen las distintas
visualizaciones de una cavidad, para que puedas hacerte una mejor idea
de que se busca con esta visualización.

En cavidades complejas normalmente no se visualiza un alzado
desarrollado de toda la cavidad a la vez, sino que se dibujan en alzado
desarrollado partes de la cavidad. Normalmente se dibuja una alzado
desarrollado de la arterias principales de la cavidad, haciendo los
giros mas adecuados, y  el resto de galerias se  agrupan y relacionan
entre si mediante desplazamientos y flechas, u otra simbologia, que las
relacionen en el  dibujo final en CAD
Por lo tanto como comentas no es necesario en los grandes sistemas
visualizar a la vez toda la cavidad en alzado desarrollado, sino partes
de ellas. Sin embargo creo que la visualización debe permitir ver mas de
una sesión (survey) a la vez, ya que normalment una sesión de topografia
puede comprender solo parte de una galeria que se quiere visualizar entera.

Como ya te comente hace años en mi club estamos trabajando en un macizo
donde hemos topografiado un  sistema (network) principal, el Sistema
Arañonera, de más de 42 kilometros de galerias con varias vias que
superan los -1000 metros de profundidad; el sistema principal tiene
actualmente 9 bocas y un desnivel entre la mas alta y las más baja de
1.349m.

Puedes ver un alzado proyectado (W-E) realizado con COMPASS de este
sistema en la pagina siguiente:

http://www.telefonica.net/web2/espeleoclubgracia/SistemaAranyonera2.htm

De este sistema no intento ver una alzado desarrollado de todas las
galerias a la vez. Exporto a VISUALTOPO las galerias, topografiadas en
varias sesiones (surveys), que quiero visualizar en alzado desarrollado.
Las visualizos con las alturas y contornos, y hago los giros oportunos
para mejorar la  visualización. Entonces los exporto a AUTOCAD, donde
agrego el dibujo de la galeria y la simbologia, y posiciono este tramo
del sistema en la posición adecuada dentro del espacio modelo,
relacionandolo con simbologia con el resto de galerias del sistema.
Tenemos así un fichero en AUTOCAD para el alzado desarrollado de todo el
sistema y otro fichero con la planta y las secciones (sections). Dentro
de unos años con todo este trabajo generaremos un mosaico de la
topografia de todo el sistema, la planta y el alzado por separado, a
escala 1:1000 o 1:1500 con los cuales confeccionaremos un libro tipo
atlas. Si quieres puedo enviarte dibujos y ficheros de algunas galerias
del sistema para que te hagas una idea.

>Gracias para sus ideas.
>
>

De nada. Estoy encantado de poder ayudar a mejorar un programa tan
magnifico como COMPASS.

Por ultimo comentarte que soy miembro de la Escuela Catalana de
Espeleologia de la Federación Catalana de Espeleologia, que es la
federación de una de las 17 autonomias (like states in USA) de España.
En ella ejerzo, en mi tiempo libre y sin remuneración, de profesor de
topografia subterránea (cave survey), dando cursos tanto de iniciación
como de perfeccionamiento. En los curso de iniciación suelo enseñar a
utilizar el programa de topografia VISUALTOPO, ya que es más sencillo y
cubre perfectamente las pocas necesidades de los alumnos. En cambio en
los cursos de perfeccionamiento ya introduzco los alumnos en los
secretos de la utilización de COMPASS y su gran potencial para el
tratamiento de los datos topograficos. Y aqui viene la conclusión de
esta introducción: la mayoria de mis alumnos tienen como principal
barrera, para usar COMPASS en sus trabajos de topografia subterránea, el
idioma: COMPASS solo tiene una versión en inglés.
Aprovechando que estás reformando todo el programa y su estrutura, seria
interesante en que pensases en una organización de los menus y mensajes
del programa, que facilitara su posible traducción a otros idiomas:
español, frances, etc. Creo que disponer de versiones en otros idiomas
contribuiria mucho en  una mayor divulgación y utilización de COMPASS
fuera del mundo anglosajon. Se perfectamente que la traducción de un
programa como COMPASS, o sobretodo de su ayuda (help), puede ser una
tarea monstruosa, pero también se que habria mucha gente dispuesta a
ayudar a llevarla a cabo. De hecho yo mismo y otros compañeros hemos
colaborado, o seguimos colaborando, en traducir otros programas
(VISUALTOPO, AURIGA, etc) u otros documentos de tematica espeleologica.

Hasta pronto, y gracias por permitir la existencia que un programa como
COMPASS.

Saludos.

Evaristo Quiroga
Espeleo Club de Gràcia
Barcelona - Spain




From: "Larry Fish" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Digest Number 113
Date: Wednesday, June 29, 2005 7:07 PM



Tom,

> I have diddled with Cave-base and like it very much if it
> were not so french. He did a decent job at some of the
> English translations but many aspects of it are pure European
> and not easy to decipher on this end. I would be a devout
> user as well as many of my friends had it a more Compass type
> format.

I suspect that you have CaveBase mixed up with a different
program. The "CaveBase" I am referring to is an auxiliary
Compass program that allows Compass to access standard
databases. There are no English translations in CaveBase nor
was any of it originally written in French. Although I am
reasonably fluent in Spanish, I don't speak French and so I
don't see how I could put any French or even European
influence in the program.

CaveBase allows Compass users to associate all kinds of
auxiliary data with cave survey information. Generally
speaking, the database data is associated with specific
stations in the cave.

For example, the National Park has generated a database of
all minerals found in Lechuguilla Cave. With this database
and CaveBase you can display all the stations in the cave
that have minerals like Sulfur or Gypsum nearby. By viewing
this data in the Compass Viewer you see all the places where
the various minerals exists and infer things about the
speleogenesis of the cave.

You can also use CaveBase to associate photographs with
particular parts of the cave. CaveBase allows you to import
and save any bitmap image into a database.

Here is a link to CaveBase information:

http://www.fountainware.com/compass/database.htm

You can download a copy of CaveBase here:

http://www.fountainware.com/compass/download.htm

Larry




From: "Tom Lounsbury" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Digest Number 113
Date: Wednesday, June 29, 2005 4:29 PM



Larry,

I have diddled with Cave-base and like it very much if it
were not so french. He did a decent job at some of the
English translations but many aspects of it are pure European
and not easy to decipher on this end. I would be a devout
user as well as many of my friends had it a more Compass type
format.

Tom Lounsbury




From: "Larry Fish" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Unique Station Identifiers
Date: Saturday, August 20, 2005 9:05 PM



Devon,

Thanks for your letter. I think I can help.

> Compass does not appear to have a means of distinguishing
> between two different stations that have the same name. Thus
> I am forced to manually edit dozens of survey files,
> containing thousands of redundantly named survey stations,
> and by-hand rename each of those survey stations (which
> coincidentally means they no longer match the hard copy
> survey notes stored in our club's archives).

Actually, Compass can deal with duplicate station names and
you should not have to edit the individual stations to deal
with the problem. The only requirement is that you cannot
have duplicate stations in the same file.

In Williams Canyon we have about 30 different caves and
nearly everyone of them has an "A" survey and so there are
lots of duplicates like "A1, A2, A3, etc."

Compass uses a "linking" system to isolate one file from
another. With the linking system, the Compiler "forgets" all
the stations in a cave after it processes each file. The only
stations it remembers are the "Links" between caves.
Typically, these are entrance stations of the caves. If you
have duplicate entrance station names, you might have to
rename them, but that is all the editing you would have to
do. For example, we had a lot entrance stations that were
name A1, so we had to rename them.

The linking system is a little tricky if you don't understand
what the Compiler is doing. Basically, with each file, you
have to tell the Compiler which stations it should remember
from the previous file(s). The part that confuses people is
that you have to attach the link stations from previous files
to the current file. You also may have to carry links across
several files to the file where it is needed.

If you have stations fixed to GPS coordinates, they should be
attached to the first file. They also may need to be carried forward
to other files using the links.

I have attached some pages from the Compass help files that
describe how the linking is done. Let me know if you need any
help with the process.

> It seems to me that Compass could easily keep track of
> individual stations in memory if it gave each station in a
> data file a unique identifier. It could even be a two part
> identifier. The first part would id the cave that the survey
> is a part of, and the second part would id the unique
> station.

I am planning on adding a "prefixing" system similar to your
suggestion. I am not sure that it will use the filename as
the prefix, since filenames can be 256 characters and that
would consume a lot of memory and probably slow processing.

Larry
===========================================================

What Are Links?

Linking is an optional feature that allows you to combine
survey files that have duplicate station names. With linking,
you tell the compiler which stations are to be used to
connect two cave files together. Linking tells the compiler
to remember only the linking stations and forget all other
stations between files. This way, duplicate station names do
not interfere with each other.

Linking is only required when you have duplicate station
names. However, there are some other circumstances where
linking can be useful. For one thing, linked files compile
slightly faster because the compiler doesn't have to remember
so many stations at one time. For another, the DOS version of
COMPASS requires linking on large files because of the memory
limitations of DOS. Windows does not have memory limitations,
but if you plan to use your files with COMPASS for DOS, you
may want to use links.

Links specify the station or stations in an old file that
makes the connection to the new file. You can have up to 500
links between files. The value of linking is that after the
compiler has been given all the linking stations, it can
forget all other stations in the old file. This also frees up
a large block of memory.

As an example, here are two very simple survey files, with
the shots shown afterward:

 COW.DAT -     A1->A2      A2->A3      A3->A4
 TREE.DAT -    A3->B1      B1->B2      B2->B3

You will notice that the station A3 is first defined in
COW.DAT. It appears again in TREE.DAT where it defines the
connection between COW.DAT and TREE.DAT. That means that to
process TREE.DAT, the only thing the program needs to know
about is A3. It can forget about everything else in COW.DAT
but A3. For this reason, we need tell the program that A3 is
the connection. As a result, the linking information for the
two files would be:

  COW.DAT  --  No Links
  TREE.DAT --  A3

You will notice that the link A3 is specified for TREE.DAT,
not COW.DAT. This is because the program does not need any
links to process COW.DAT because it is the first file to be
processed. Since the program only needs to know that A3 is
the link when it begins processing TREE.DAT, you must put the
linking station with TREE.DAT.

Carrying Links Across Files.

If you have more than two files, some links may need to be
carried across files. Here is a set of files showing the
survey shots:

COW.DAT      A1->A2    A2->A3    A3->A4    A4->A5
TREE.DAT     A3->B1    B1->B2    B2->B3    B3->B4
DOG.DAT      A4->C1    C1->C2    C2->C3    C3->C4

In this situation, there is a connection between the first
file and the two remaining files. The important thing to note
is that one station has to be "carried" from the first file
to the third. This is because the Compiler "forgets" stations
between files. In the example above, station A4 in the first
file, is the link to the third file. Since the compiler
forgets all stations after processing COW.DAT and TREE.DAT,
you must to tell the compiler not to forget A4 after
processing both COW.DAT and TREE.DAT. In other words, we need
to "carry" A4 from COW.DAT, through TREE.DAT to DOG.DAT. Here
are the links for these files:

  COW.DAT -- No Links

  TREE.DAT -- A3, A4
  DOG.DAT -- A4

As you can see, A4 is linked into TREE.DAT, but it is not
used by TREE.DAT. It is simply carried forward so it can be
used in DOG.DAT.

Mixed Linked And Unlinked Files.

You can combine linked and unlinked surveys in the same
project. For example:

DOGCAVE.DAT -- No Links

CATCAVE.DAT  -- No Links
PIGCAVE.DAT  -- EF23
COWCAVE.DAT -- No links

Here, there are no links between DOGCAVE and CATCAVE, so the
compiler remembers all the stations in DOGCAVE while it
processes CATCAVE. However, when PIGCAVE is processed, there
is one link, EF23. As a result, the compiler "forgets" all
the stations in DOGCAVE and CATCAVE except EF23. Finally,
there are links from PIGCAVE to COWCAVE, so the compiler
remembers all the stations in PIGCAVE when it processes
COWCAVE.

Entering Links Into The Grid

To create links, just type the connecting station name into
the grid at the bottom of the Node Editor. Linking station
names go in the left most cells of the grid. The three right
cells are used to create fixed stations. Here is an example
of linking two files:

OLDCAVE.DAT -- No Links
NEWCAVE.DAT -- B22,  C17

In this example, B22 and C17 are linking stations between
OLDCAVE and NEWCAVE. You will notice that OLDCAVE has no
links. This is because it is the first file to be processed,
and it does not need to be connected to a previous file. If
you are working with three or more files, you may have to
carry links between files.




From: "devinkouts" 
To: 
Subject: [compass-users] Unique Station Identifiers
Date: Saturday, August 20, 2005 2:25 PM



Larry,

I'm running into an old bugaboo that I recall writing you about
sometime back in the late 1990s. Specifically the issue of unique
survey station identifiers. Here's the problem. I'm involved in a
large scale project that has begun tieing together several large cave
systems scattered within a given region. As the exploration proceeds
in these caves we have recorded literally hundreds (if not yet a full
1000) individual surveys. Now we are facing the likelhood that several
of the larger caves will be tied together into one massive system
(potential for 40 miles or better!). We've already begun tieing the
caves together with overland surface survey. And there's the kicker.

All too often cavers use the same survey designators in multiple
caves. I'll bet the first survey leg in the majority of most cave
surveys in America is the "A" survey. And now it's becoming a data
management nightmare.

Compass does not appear to have a means of distinguishing between two
different stations that have the same name. Thus I am forced to
manually edit dozens of survey files, containing thousands of
redundantly named survey stations, and by-hand rename each of those
survey stations (which coincidentally means they no longer match the
hard copy survey notes stored in our club's archives).

It seems to me that Compass could easily keep track of individual
stations in memory if it gave each station in a data file a unique
identifier. It could even be a two part identifier. The first part
would id the cave that the survey is a part of, and the second part
would id the unique station. Then redundantly named survey stations
would no longer confuse Compass, and users wouldn't have to spend
hours fixing data that was entered years earlier.

DSK




From: "Devin Kouts" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Unique Station Identifiers
Date: Sunday, August 21, 2005 8:16 AM



Larry,

Thanks. I hadn't thought to investigate the use of links to solve this
problem. I look forward to seeing your prefixing solution.

Keep up the good work,
DSK

--- Larry Fish  wrote:

> Devon,
>
> Thanks for your letter. I think I can help.
>
> > Compass does not appear to have a means of distinguishing
> > between two different stations that have the same name. Thus
> > I am forced to manually edit dozens of survey files,
> > containing thousands of redundantly named survey stations,
> > and by-hand rename each of those survey stations (which
> > coincidentally means they no longer match the hard copy
> > survey notes stored in our club's archives).
>
> Actually, Compass can deal with duplicate station names and
> you should not have to edit the individual stations to deal
> with the problem. The only requirement is that you cannot
> have duplicate stations in the same file.
>
> In Williams Canyon we have about 30 different caves and
> nearly everyone of them has an "A" survey and so there are
> lots of duplicates like "A1, A2, A3, etc."
>
> Compass uses a "linking" system to isolate one file from
> another. With the linking system, the Compiler "forgets" all
> the stations in a cave after it processes each file. The only
> stations it remembers are the "Links" between caves.
> Typically, these are entrance stations of the caves. If you
> have duplicate entrance station names, you might have to
> rename them, but that is all the editing you would have to
> do. For example, we had a lot entrance stations that were
> name A1, so we had to rename them.
>
> The linking system is a little tricky if you don't understand
> what the Compiler is doing. Basically, with each file, you
> have to tell the Compiler which stations it should remember
> from the previous file(s). The part that confuses people is
> that you have to attach the link stations from previous files
> to the current file. You also may have to carry links across
> several files to the file where it is needed.
>
> If you have stations fixed to GPS coordinates, they should be
> attached to the first file. They also may need to be carried forward
> to other files using the links.
>
> I have attached some pages from the Compass help files that
> describe how the linking is done. Let me know if you need any
> help with the process.
>
> > It seems to me that Compass could easily keep track of
> > individual stations in memory if it gave each station in a
> > data file a unique identifier. It could even be a two part
> > identifier. The first part would id the cave that the survey
> > is a part of, and the second part would id the unique
> > station.
>
> I am planning on adding a "prefixing" system similar to your
> suggestion. I am not sure that it will use the filename as
> the prefix, since filenames can be 256 characters and that
> would consume a lot of memory and probably slow processing.
>
> Larry
> ===========================================================
>
> What Are Links?
>
> Linking is an optional feature that allows you to combine
> survey files that have duplicate station names. With linking,
> you tell the compiler which stations are to be used to
> connect two cave files together. Linking tells the compiler
> to remember only the linking stations and forget all other
> stations between files. This way, duplicate station names do
> not interfere with each other.
>
> Linking is only required when you have duplicate station
> names. However, there are some other circumstances where
> linking can be useful. For one thing, linked files compile
> slightly faster because the compiler doesn't have to remember
> so many stations at one time. For another, the DOS version of
> COMPASS requires linking on large files because of the memory
> limitations of DOS. Windows does not have memory limitations,
> but if you plan to use your files with COMPASS for DOS, you
> may want to use links.
>
> Links specify the station or stations in an old file that
> makes the connection to the new file. You can have up to 500
> links between files. The value of linking is that after the
> compiler has been given all the linking stations, it can
> forget all other stations in the old file. This also frees up
> a large block of memory.
>
> As an example, here are two very simple survey files, with
> the shots shown afterward:
>
>  COW.DAT -     A1->A2      A2->A3      A3->A4
>  TREE.DAT -    A3->B1      B1->B2      B2->B3
>
> You will notice that the station A3 is first defined in
> COW.DAT. It appears again in TREE.DAT where it defines the
> connection between COW.DAT and TREE.DAT. That means that to
> process TREE.DAT, the only thing the program needs to know
> about is A3. It can forget about everything else in COW.DAT
> but A3. For this reason, we need tell the program that A3 is
> the connection. As a result, the linking information for the
> two files would be:
>
>   COW.DAT  --  No Links
>   TREE.DAT --  A3
>
> You will notice that the link A3 is specified for TREE.DAT,
> not COW.DAT. This is because the program does not need any
> links to process COW.DAT because it is the first file to be
> processed. Since the program only needs to know that A3 is
> the link when it begins processing TREE.DAT, you must put the
> linking station with TREE.DAT.
>
> Carrying Links Across Files.
>
> If you have more than two files, some links may need to be
> carried across files. Here is a set of files showing the
> survey shots:
>
> COW.DAT      A1->A2    A2->A3    A3->A4    A4->A5
> TREE.DAT     A3->B1    B1->B2    B2->B3    B3->B4
> DOG.DAT      A4->C1    C1->C2    C2->C3    C3->C4
>
> In this situation, there is a connection between the first
> file and the two remaining files. The important thing to note
> is that one station has to be "carried" from the first file
> to the third. This is because the Compiler "forgets" stations
> between files. In the example above, station A4 in the first
> file, is the link to the third file. Since the compiler
> forgets all stations after processing COW.DAT and TREE.DAT,
> you must to tell the compiler not to forget A4 after
> processing both COW.DAT and TREE.DAT. In other words, we need
> to "carry" A4 from COW.DAT, through TREE.DAT to DOG.DAT. Here
> are the links for these files:
>
>   COW.DAT -- No Links
>
>   TREE.DAT -- A3, A4
>   DOG.DAT -- A4
>
> As you can see, A4 is linked into TREE.DAT, but it is not
> used by TREE.DAT. It is simply carried forward so it can be
> used in DOG.DAT.
>
> Mixed Linked And Unlinked Files.
>
> You can combine linked and unlinked surveys in the same
> project. For example:
>
> DOGCAVE.DAT -- No Links
>
> CATCAVE.DAT  -- No Links
> PIGCAVE.DAT  -- EF23
> COWCAVE.DAT -- No links
>
> Here, there are no links between DOGCAVE and CATCAVE, so the
> compiler remembers all the stations in DOGCAVE while it
> processes CATCAVE. However, when PIGCAVE is processed, there
> is one link, EF23. As a result, the compiler "forgets" all
> the stations in DOGCAVE and CATCAVE except EF23. Finally,
> there are links from PIGCAVE to COWCAVE, so the compiler
> remembers all the stations in PIGCAVE when it processes
> COWCAVE.
>
> Entering Links Into The Grid
>
> To create links, just type the connecting station name into
> the grid at the bottom of the Node Editor. Linking station
> names go in the left most cells of the grid. The three right
> cells are used to create fixed stations. Here is an example
> of linking two files:
>
> OLDCAVE.DAT -- No Links
> NEWCAVE.DAT -- B22,  C17
>
> In this example, B22 and C17 are linking stations between
> OLDCAVE and NEWCAVE. You will notice that OLDCAVE has no
> links. This is because it is the first file to be processed,
> and it does not need to be connected to a previous file. If
> you are working with three or more files, you may have to
> carry links between files.
>
>
>

Devin S. Kouts
devinkouts@yahoo.com
Potomac Speleological Club
http://psc.cavingclub.org




From: "Christian Chenier" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Developed cross section
Date: Friday, August 26, 2005 7:00 AM



At 05:03 AM 08/26/2005, Larry Fish wrote:

>If send the "Developed Radius" to Viewer in the plot file
>(plt) then the Viewer can do all the work. However, this
>would mean changing the Plot File format. It would also be a
>lot of work for me to integrate the the Developed Profile
>into all the other features of Compass. For example, I would
>have to write special "Developed Profile" routines for
>Station Labels, Elevation Marking, Passage Wall Modeling,
>etc.

Although the most difficult, it would probably be the best solution.  But
since you are working on a new data format, it is probably best to just be
patient for now.

>Another strategy would be to have the Compiler generate a
>special plot file that only contains Developed Profile
>information. I have experimented with idea a lot and it
>requires some fairly big changes to the Compiler. This would
>allow the Developed Profile to work with all the features of
>the Viewer including color-by-depth, passage modeling etc.
>One problem is that you have to recompile the cave every time
>you want to make a change. You also can't quickly switch
>between the Projected Profiles and non-Projected Profile.

A variation to this would be to create 2 plot files: the normal .plt, and a
second one (with a different extension) just for the developed cross
section.  But it doesn't make it any simpler to program.

>I notice in Visual Topo that in this mode the
>passages are pretty clutted and since they are distorted from
>the normal positions and shape, it is hard to identify which
>survey you are looking at.

The cluttering of the screen varies depending on the complexity
(connectivity) of the cave.  Maze caves (like many of the world's longest
caves) don't come-out well on developed cross-section.  I've always thought
that developed cross-sections were not too popular in the US simply because
most of the big caves there are too inter-connected; which explains why
Compass (and most US cave survey software) have never supported those.  On
the other hand, European software almost always do (but each have other
drawbacks which I won't get into here) because developed cross-sections are
well adapted to deep and relatively "simple" caves, many of which are found
in Europe.  The more loops you have in a cave, the less useful is a
developed cross-section.

So, if you have too much clutter, it is probably because you are viewing a
cave with many loops (or that "switches" in the direction in which the
passages are drawn (to the right or to the left) are badly chosen).

There is a way to color by survey in Visual Topo (although you have to
manually assign a color to each survey) which might help visualizing
this.  But a highly connected will always be hard to visualize!

>  I'm wonder if the Extended Profile
>would be more useful if you only looked at one survey at a time.
>That would be somewhat easier to do and would allow me to
>do it all in the Viewer. What do you think?

This might be useful when drawing small areas of the cave, but developed
cross-sections are very useful to view entire caves, especially when
they're deep.  It lets one visualize the cave in the same way as when
traveling through it.  For this reason, viewing just one survey at a time
is not sufficient.

A note about terminology: "Developed cross-section" and "Extended profile"
mean the same thing.  I personally like to think of cross-sections as being
what you sketch as the "shape" of the passage and profiles as being more
"global" to the entire map (eg. a projected profile looking at 75
degrees).  Now that may just be me!

Good luck with the new data format for Compass.

Chris

---------------------------------------
Christian Chénier
Cantley (Québec), Canada
(819) 827-5201




From: "Larry Fish" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Multi-page maps
Date: Monday, September 12, 2005 9:25 PM



Barry,

Thanks for your letter.

> I am having trouble printing a multi-page map. When I click OK the
> page viewer window flashes several times and the map shifts to the
> left. The first page prints fine and the rest of the pages have the
> correct layout but the station dots are much larger then normal. The
> labels are fine, it is just the dots.

This problem has been reported before with certain printers.
Apparently the printer loses part of the formatting
information between pages. This is often caused the printer
driver.

I would suggest that you try to find a new or different
driver for the printer. You might what to start by going to the
printer manufacturer's web site. If you can find a new driver
or if the new driver doesn't help, you might want to switch
to a generic Windows driver.

You can do this by going to the Control Panel and selecting
the "Printers/Faxes" applet. Select the "Add Printer" option
and following the wizard. This will put a new printer in the
list of printers, based on the generic Windows driver. Try
printing from this printer and see if that solves the problem.

If that does not work, you may have to remove the old drivers
completely. You do this by going to the Control Panel and
selecting the "Add/Remove Programs" applet. Remove any
drivers that pertain to your printer. You also may have to
remove any support programs for your printer. (Make sure you
have a CD that contains the programs so you can reinstall them if
necessary.)

This final step worked to fix a similar problem I was having with
with my HP printer.

Larry




From: "Barry Horner" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Multi-page maps
Date: Tuesday, September 13, 2005 1:22 PM



Larry,
Thanks for the info. I figured it might be a printer problem.
b

Larry Fish  wrote:
Barry,

Thanks for your letter.

> I am having trouble printing a multi-page map. When I click OK the
> page viewer window flashes several times and the map shifts to the
> left. The first page prints fine and the rest of the pages have the
> correct layout but the station dots are much larger then normal. The
> labels are fine, it is just the dots.

This problem has been reported before with certain printers.
Apparently the printer loses part of the formatting
information between pages. This is often caused the printer
driver.

I would suggest that you try to find a new or different
driver for the printer. You might what to start by going to the
printer manufacturer's web site. If you can find a new driver
or if the new driver doesn't help, you might want to switch
to a generic Windows driver.

You can do this by going to the Control Panel and selecting
the "Printers/Faxes" applet. Select the "Add Printer" option
and following the wizard. This will put a new printer in the
list of printers, based on the generic Windows driver. Try
printing from this printer and see if that solves the problem.

If that does not work, you may have to remove the old drivers
completely. You do this by going to the Control Panel and
selecting the "Add/Remove Programs" applet. Remove any
drivers that pertain to your printer. You also may have to
remove any support programs for your printer. (Make sure you
have a CD that contains the programs so you can reinstall them if
necessary.)

This final step worked to fix a similar problem I was having with
with my HP printer.

Larry




From: "bcavin57" 
To: 
Subject: [compass-users] Multi-page maps
Date: Monday, September 12, 2005 7:24 PM



Larry,
I am having trouble printing a multi-page map. When I click OK the
page viewer window flashes several times and the map shifts to the
left. The first page prints fine and the rest of the pages have the
correct layout but the station dots are much larger then normal. The
labels are fine, it is just the dots.

Barry




From: "Larry Fish" 
To: 
Subject: [compass-users] Compass Newsletter
Date: Thursday, October 06, 2005 9:52 PM



COMPASS NEWSLETTER

Judging from my emails, there seems to be quite a bit of
interest in the changes I am planning for Compass. As a
result, I thought it might be useful to list in detail the
changes I am planning on making over the next year or so.

1. NEW FILE FORMAT. I originally developed the Compass file
format around 1979. At the time I was working on a mainframe
computer at the School Of Mines here in Colorado and only had
a few thousand feet of cave data from Groaning Cave to work
on. I never anticipated that it would become so widely used.

Since then, the format has been modified a few times to
handle new data items, but Compass can still read and display
files I have archived from the early 1980's. However, as time
goes on, I am having more and problems adding new features to
the format. For this reason, I am thinking about shifting to
a new XML-based format that will make it much easier to add
new data items and make changes to the format.

I am planning on using some ideas developed by Devin Kouts:

http://www.psc-cavers.org/xml/#designRequirements

For those who don't know what XML is, it is data format
similar to HTML that allows you to create your own
specialized document formats. It uses tags, just like HTML,
except that you get to define your own tags. For example, the
tags for a cave survey file might look something like this:


 Groaning Cave


There are several advantages to XML. First, it is "extensible".
That means it is very easy to add new items without breaking old
programs that don't know about the new data. Second, the general
XML format is already defined so it is easy for people to write
programs that can read any XML file. In fact, there are general
purpose utility programs and libraries that can read an XML file
without knowing anything about the actual data that resides in
the file.

The biggest disadvantage is that it is verbose. This means that
the files can be much bigger than with simpler formats.

I have already written some code to write the new format and
have discovered that the new format would be about 8 times
bigger than the old files. The worst part is that data takes
about 10 times longer to read or write. For example, writing
one of the sections of Lechuguilla takes 0.4 seconds using
the old format and 5 seconds under the new format even on my
2.8 Ghz Pentium-IV. This will be less of a problem as
computers get faster, but it is probably too slow for some
older computer. For example, someone with a 280-Mhz Pentium
would take 50 second to read one Lechuguilla file and several
minutes to read the whole cave. I think I can speed things up
by simplifying the data format for the shot data and not
breaking everything into independent tags.

Even with the new file format, I will continue to support
the old format for a long time to come. I will make sure
all the Compass programs can read the old format and  I will
have programs that can convert the new data back to the old
format.

I have written a test program that reads the old Compass
files and can write either the old or new XML format. If you
would like to look at a sample of the new data or play with
the program, you can down load a copy here:

http://www.fountainware.com/download/xml.zip

WARNING: Be careful how you use this program particularly when
you save the files to the old format. It has not been tested
extensive and it could damage your cave data. Make sure you
only test it on backup copies of your data.

2. USING MEMORY. Up until recently, Compass' strategy for
processing files was to parse the data on the fly, reading
one character at a time and only retaining the data it needed
to address the problem at hand. This reduced the memory
requirements of Compass and allowed it to process large caves
even with the limited memory available to the early Apples
and PC's. The main problem is that you only have a certain
amount of information in memory and this limits what things
you can display. For example, the Viewer only has the shots
and LRUDs data in memory. As a result, it is impossible to do
other things like highlight individual loops in the Viewer.

Today, memory is no longer a limitation and on the typical
PC, it is very easy to allocate multi-megabyte arrays. As a
result, I can now keep a lot more information in memory
including loops, shots, comments, etc. I figure I need about
150 bytes per shot to do everything I want to do. For a cave
like Lechuguilla, that would equate to 7 or 8 megabytes. For
a cave like Mammoth, the requirement would be about 20
megabytes. These number are well within the capability of
modern PCs.

3. UNDERLYING DATA STRUCTURES. Another aspect that will
change is the structure of the data stored by Compass. In the
past Compass used a fairly simple data structure, with just
enough information to keep track of station locations and to
find loops.

The new data structure will be designed to support "graph
theory" operations. Graph theory is the branch of mathematics
that deals with the kind of "networks" of interconnected
lines that cave surveys generate. In keeping with the Graph
Theory model, the new data structure will have "edges,"
"vertices" and an "adjacency" information.

Graph theory will allow Compass to add a bunch of new
features such as finding the shortest distance between
station, and even finding the easiest path between stations.

Most of the new data structure has been built and code has
been written to work with it. The only remaining task,
(probably the hardest part), is to integrate it with the rest
of Compass.

4. NEW LOOP CLOSURE TOOLS. With the new data structure, I
will be able to do a better job of finding loops. Currently,
under certain circumstances, Compass does not find the
smallest set of loops in the cave.

I have already written routines that do a much better job of
finding loops. In fact, I have written an article about the
techniques I am using for the NSS publication "Compass and
Tape." You can get a preview of the article here:

http://www.fountainware.com/compass/FindingLoops.doc

You can also download a test program that generates large
quantities of overlapped and randomly connected loops. The
link is in the article.

4. NEW ROOM MODELING. I am also working on a system for
handling large rooms. It will be based on using "splay"
shots. Basically, you choose a station near the center of the
room and take shots to the wall in various directions.

Since the user might enter any where from one to a dozen
splay shots, the plan is to have Compass interpolate and
convert the splay shots into 8 or 10 evenly spaced pie-shaped
wedges that would describe the room.

Ideally, you would have at least four shots at evenly spaced
angles to the wall, but the system would handle any number
with any spacing. Of course, the more shots, the more
precisely it would define the room.

The splay shots would be entered just like a regular shots
except that the "To" station would be a special symbol.
Currently, the plan is to use a right parenthesis ")" for the
"To" station. (It turns out that parenthesis is one of the
few character that exists on most of the non-English key
boards. It also vaguely resembles a passage wall.)

The Up and Down dimension would apply to the "To" station of
the shot. In other words, the Up and Down dimension would
describe the wall height where the shot makes contact with
the wall. The height of the center of the room would be
controlled by the LRUDs of the "From" station. This should
produce a reasonably realistic room shape which could be
either convex or concaved. However, it would not model a side
branch of the a room wanders around a corner.

I have written test code and it seems to work well and I may
put this feature in Compass fairly soon.

5. RUNNING PROFILES. If you have been reading the Compass
Newsgroup you know that there have been some extensive
discussion about what is know as "Running Profiles" or
"Developed Profiles." These are profiles where the turns and
bends in the cave passage are "unrolled" and the passage is
displayed as though all the shots were in a straight line.

In an ordinary profile, it may not be possible to see all the
ups and downs of the passages because some shots maybe
pointing directly toward or away from the viewer. Rotating
the cave does not help, because as you rotate one shot into
an optimal position, other shots will rotate into a bad
position.

The feature is very popular in Europe where there are lots of
deep pits and not many maze caves. The feature works best in
relatively simple caves that have few loops and
interconnects. In the US where there are lots of maze caves,
the feature is only useful on small segments of a cave.

Again, I have already written some test code to experiment with
the feature. I think the feature will be easier to implement when
I have the new data structures in place. However, there may be
a way to implement the feature sooner.

6. SVG/BITMAP WARPING. For several years I have been looking
at ideas to help cavers create finished maps. One problem
with finished cave maps is that they become obsolete whenever
a new survey is added or loop errors are corrected. Ideally,
cartographers would like to draw the map once, and then have
a computer program warp the map to adapt it to changes.

There are several ways Compass could address the problem:

A. BITMAP MORPHING. First, it could import scanned bitmap
images of survey sketches and then register various stations
to locations on the bitmap. If a passage moved as a result of
resurveying a passage, Compass would warp the bitmap using
the kind of "Afine" transform used for "morphing" images.
This is the approach used by Garry Petrie's Karst program and
it is relatively easy to do. It works fairly well on small
caves, but it does not really produce finished maps. It is
also tedious to piece together multiple sketches to produce a
full-scale cave map.

I am just finishing up some changes to Compass that will take
the first steps toward adding this feature. The next release
will have the ability to register a bitmap image to the cave
so that no matter how much you zoom, pan and rotate, the
image will stay locked to the cave.

B. ROUND TRIPPING. Another approach is to export and import
cave survey data to a drawing program. For example, Walls
exports and imports cave data in the SVG format; a format
created and promoted by Adobe. The cave data is then imported
into Adobe Illustrator and then passage wall details, symbols
etc. are added. If the cave changes, the SVG data is loaded
back in the Survey Program and the map is warped to match the
changed survey data.

This model has several advantages, the main one being that
with Adobe Illustrator, you can produce very beautiful maps
maps. One disadvantage is that Adobe Illustrator is fairly
expensive and maybe not the best tool for cavers. I also have
questions about how well this works with larger or complex
caves. Finally, there are questions about how universal SVG
will become and whether it will be adopted by other programs.

Another option would be to do something similar using a less
expensive drawing program such as Corel Draw, or Canvas. DXF
would be the ideal format because it is a nearly universal
file format.

7. GLOBAL STATIONS/PREFIXES. One of the problems with cave
survey data occurs when you have duplicate stations. This
usually happens when try to combine several caves into
regional map. As you probably know, Compass uses a "Linking"
system to deal with this issue. Although, it works well,
people are often confused about how to apply it, particularly
when the linking stations have to be "carried" between files.

A different option that might be easier to understand would
be to allow the user to declare certain stations in each file
to be "Public" or "Global". These stations would be the only
stations that would be visible to other files. In practice,
it works similar to the "Links" but it might be easier to
understand and use.

Another option would be to add prefixes to each survey file
or even each survey. The prefixes would then be added to each
station name to help prevent name conflicts. This is what
Survex does to deal with British cave data which often has
duplicate station name even in a relatively small cave.

8. LOOP CLOSURE. As you may know, there has been some
controversy about the efficacy of various loop closure
techniques. I am convinced that the routine described
by John Halleck are superior to other methods:

http://www.cc.utah.edu/~nahaj/cave/survey/

My plan is implement John's ideas after have I changed
the file format and data structures.

9. INCREMENTAL UPDATES. While I am working on all these
changes, I will continue to make updates to the current
version of Compass. I get lots of requests for new features
and many of them are relatively easy to do (or at least fit
into the current data structure.) For example, I have made
about 40 changes to Compass in just the last six months.

Currently, I am working on adding a standard-deviation field
for Fixed Station. This is needed because GPS readings
are often inaccurate and can distort the cave if more
than one entrance is tied to a GPS fix. I am also finishing
up the feature that locks a bitmap image to the cave.
I expect to have these two features finished in a couple
weeks.

Although many of these changes have in place for months, I
will probably make a public announcement in the next few
weeks so that everyone will be aware of the new features.
The big changes will come later.

10. TIME CONSTRAINTS. I work on Compass whenever I have free
time. This depends on how much other work I have. Typically,
I have several months each year when I am between contracts
to work on Compass. As a result, the time frame for
completing all the ideas listed above will depend on how much
other work I have. I'm hoping to have the majority of the
changes done within six months or a year.

In case you are curious about what kind of work I do when I am not
working on Compass, the last five years I have been writing
control software for large astronomical telescopes
manufactured by DFM engineering:

http://www.dfmengineering.com/stan_cass_tele.html

In addition to the Telescope Control Software, we have been
designing Radio Telescope Control Software for colleges:

http://www.pari.edu/OnlinePARIPresentation

We have also been retrofitting NOAA's Satellite Tracking
antennas in Virginia and Alaska with modern control systems
and satellite tracking software:

http://www.fcdas.noaa.gov/facilities.html
http://ivs.nict.go.jp/mirror/publications/ar1999/nsgcgo/
http://www.photolib.noaa.gov/space/spind5.htm
http://www.photolib.noaa.gov/space/spac0185.htm
http://www.photolib.noaa.gov/space/spac0195.htm

Finally, I am doing a lot of work power for a company that
make a very nice power and inexpensive power monitoring
tools:

https://www.doubleed.com/secure.html

Larry




From: "Larry Fish" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Compass Data File Format
Date: Thursday, October 06, 2005 9:00 PM



Hi Stuart,

Thanks for your letter.

> In any case, I'm quite interested in any modifications which
> you may be making to the Compass data file formats. I've
> written a few auxillary codes which interrogate the data
> files, so if you make wholesale changes, I'd really like to
> get some documentation.

The new file format has not been completely defined yet, but
you don't need to worry much about the changes. I know that
many people have written programs that read the various types
of Compass data files so I do not want to leave them high and
dry. The plan is to have conversion tools that will convert back
and forth between the old and new format. This way, people can
adopt the new format at their leasure.

> (You might be interested in folding in my codes sometime - one simply
> lists a summary of the data by surveyor, parsing the surveyor-team
> field for individual names and sorting the list (via a binary tree) by
> number of surveys and total surveyed length...

I have added various people's code to Compass and I would
love to include yours. The DOS version of Compass had a
similar feature and Paul Burger wrote a little Visual Basic
program called "Compass Home Companion" that did the same
thing. I have thought about adding such a feature to the
current version of Compass, but the fact that the first name,
last name, initials and job description are all in the same
field, makes it hard to reliably extract each item.

The new format will separate each person and each item into
individual fields. That will make it much easier to add the
feature.

> which my other uses a recursive algorithm to find all
> possible routes from any given station to any other point in
> the cave. You may recall us discussing this years ago at one
> of Louise's Speleo-Seminars; turns out the solution is much
> more like the classic "rook problem" than a travelling
> salesman problem.

I remember the conversation well and I have thought about it a
lot. One of the things I plan to do with Compass is to change
the internal data structure to give it a "Graph" structure G(v,e). This
will make it much easier to do things like recursive searches etc.
I have already got the code written and I even have some routines
that will do depth-first searches, which could be used to find
shortest pathes.

I will be sending out a detailed description to the news group
about some of the changes I am working on.

Larry




From: "Stuart W. Marlatt" 
To: 
Subject: [compass-users] Compass Data File Format
Date: Thursday, October 06, 2005 11:31 AM



Hey Larry -

  I haven't been keeping track of this list very well, or I would have
posted a few months ago when some related comments came up.  In any
case, I'm quite interested in any modifications which you may be
making to the Compass data file formats.  I've written a few auxillary
codes which interrogate the data files, so if you make wholesale
changes, I'd really like to get some documentation.

(You might be interested in folding in my codes sometime - one simply
lists a summary of the data by surveyor, parsing the surveyor-team
field for individual names and sorting the list (via a binary tree) by
number of surveys and total surveyed length, which my other uses a
recursive algorithm to find all possible routes from any given station
to any other point in the cave.  You may recall us discussing this
years ago at one of Louise's Speleo-Seminars; turns out the solution
is much more like the classic "rook problem" than a travelling
salesman problem.  I'll probably write a short article for RMC or
similar at some point.)

Cave softly,
Stuart




From: "Evaristo QUIROGA" 
To: ; "Larry Fish" 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Compass Newsletter
Date: Friday, October 07, 2005 2:06 AM



Hola Larry,

Veo que estas bastante entretenido, y con mucho trabajo por delante.
Animo y adelante en las mejoras que nos estas preparando.

Larry Fish escribió:

> <>COMPASS NEWSLETTER
>
>
> 5. RUNNING PROFILES. If you have been reading the Compass
> Newsgroup you know that there have been some extensive
> discussion about what is know as "Running Profiles" or
> "Developed Profiles." These are profiles where the turns and
> bends in the cave passage are "unrolled" and the passage is
> displayed as though all the shots were in a straight line.
>

Como ya sabes estoy esperando impaciente esta nueva y vital función de
COMPASS.

> <>
> 6. SVG/BITMAP WARPING. For several years I have been looking
> at ideas to help cavers create finished maps. One problem
> with finished cave maps is that they become obsolete whenever
> a new survey is added or loop errors are corrected. Ideally,
> cartographers would like to draw the map once, and then have
> a computer program warp the map to adapt it to changes.
>
> B. ROUND TRIPPING. Another approach is to export and import
> cave survey data to a drawing program. For example, Walls
> exports and imports cave data in the SVG format; a format
> created and promoted by Adobe. The cave data is then imported
> into Adobe Illustrator and then passage wall details, symbols
> etc. are added. If the cave changes, the SVG data is loaded
> back in the Survey Program and the map is warped to match the
> changed survey data.
>
> This model has several advantages, the main one being that
> with Adobe Illustrator, you can produce very beautiful maps
> maps. One disadvantage is that Adobe Illustrator is fairly
> expensive and maybe not the best tool for cavers. I also have
> questions about how well this works with larger or complex
> caves. Finally, there are questions about how universal SVG
> will become and whether it will be adopted by other programs.
>
> Another option would be to do something similar using a less
> expensive drawing program such as Corel Draw, or Canvas. DXF
> would be the ideal format because it is a nearly universal
> file format.

Larry estoy encantado que tengas en proyecto añadir esta vital función a
COMPASS. Es una de mis mayores preocupaciones,  pero aún no me habia
atrevido a pedirtela ante tu carga de trabajo.

En mi club llevamos muchos años trabajando en el karts de Arañonera,
donde hemos explorado mas de 50 km de galerias. Hemos tenido que
redibujar varias veces toda la topografia:
-1º A principios de los ochenta cambiamos el sistema de proyección de
LAMBERT a UTM.
- 2º Después en 1987 logramos unir 3 de las grandes cavidades formando
un sistema de 22 km y 1179 m de desnivel, convirtiendola en la travesia
integral mas profunda del mundo). Esto nos obligo a corregir la
poligonal para compensar el error de cierre entre las bocas.
- 3º  En 2003 y 2004 hemos logrado enlazar 2 nuevas bocas con lo que el
Sistema Arañonera, pasa a tener 42,7 km y 1349m de desnivel. Esto nos
vuelve a plantar nuevos cierres de bucles.

Desde principios de  1990 llevamos utilizando AUTOCAD para pasar a
limpio el dibujo de nuestras topografias, tras calcular en los últimos
años la poligonal con COMPASS y exportarla en DXF.

Desde hace unos meses  estoy intentando que un compañero, que ya ha
hechos varios modulos para AUTOCAD, tenga tiempo para poder dedicarse a
hacer un modulo que corrija todo el dibujo si se modifica la poligonal a
la que va ligada.

Hay dos maneras de plantearse la realización:
-1. Desde AUTOCAD, programando un modulo mediante los comandos y
lenguaje interno de AUTOCAD. Para nosotros es el metodo más facil, pero
solo seria útil para los usuarios de AUTOCAD, ya que necesitarias el
programa para poder usarlo.
-2. Fuera de AUTOCAD, corrigiendo los ficheros DXF directamente desde
COMPASS.

Creo que con tu colaboración esta ultima opción puede ser la más útil,
ya que seria compatible con muchos programas de CAD o de dibujo (Corel
Drawn, Canvas, Freehand, Ilustrator, etc), al ser el DXF  un formato
estandar y muy bien documentado.

La realización de una herramienta como esta en COMPASS también supondria
crear unas directrices a la hora de estructurar los trabajos en AUTOCAD
y otros programas. Tendriamos que definir una serie de capas y objetos
que se modifican diferentemente ante un cambio de la poligonal a la que
van ligada. Así por ejemplos los simbolos u objetos como piedras solo
necesitan ser movidos a la nueva localización mientras que las paredes u
otras simbologia lineales necesitan ser deformadas.

Estoy a tu entera disposición si desear comentar problemas o discutir
ideas sobre como implementar esta función en COMPASS, ya que llevo
varios meses dandole vueltas al tema por la cuenta que me tiene (no
quiero tener que volver a dibujar otra vez todas las galerias).

> <>Currently, I am working on adding a standard-deviation field
> for Fixed Station. This is needed because GPS readings
> are often inaccurate and can distort the cave if more
> than one entrance is tied to a GPS fix. I am also finishing
> up the feature that locks a bitmap image to the cave.
> I expect to have these two features finished in a couple
> weeks.

Aunque no has tenido tiempo de contestarme mi email pidiendote esta
nueva función, veo que ya estas trabajando  en ella. Gracias.

Enhorabuena por todo el trabajo realizado en COMPASS y compartirlo con
todos nosotros, y animo para poder seguir haciendo de este programa una
de las mejores herramientas para la topografia subterrànea.

Salu2.

Evaristo Quiroga
Espeleo Club de Gràcia
Barcelona (Spain)




From: "Ing. Amedeo Gambini" 
To: "compass-users" 
Subject: Re:[compass-users] Compass Newsletter
Date: Friday, October 07, 2005 4:26 AM



Hi Larry,

it's very interesting to know what you are planning for next
updates of COMPASS.

I'm very interested in the "room modeling" feature because it
fit very well for my present survey activity in a cave with
many rooms that I would like to show in a way the more
precise possible. I built a sort of device that fixed on a
tripod in the center of the room quicly allow to rotate of
precise angular value a laser measuring instrument (a "Disto"
by Leica) making in this way a polar measurement of the room.
In this way to take a lot of measure (I can measures up to
360 point spaced by 1 degree) I don't spend too much time but
I cannot have these measure on COMPASS, I can only have draw
the room survey plan using AutoCAD. Now with this feature I
will have a better reproduction of the rooms shape having my
measures inside COMPASS.

Have you a forecast about the implementation date of this
feature in a new version of COMPASS? or it's possible to have
a beta version?

Thanks

Amedeo Gambini

Italy

> COMPASS NEWSLETTER
>
> Judging from my emails, there seems to be quite a bit of
> interest in the changes I am planning for Compass. As a
> result, I thought it might be useful to list in detail the
> changes I am planning on making over the next year or so.
>
> 1. NEW FILE FORMAT. I originally developed the Compass file
> format around 1979. At the time I was working on a mainframe
> computer at the School Of Mines here in Colorado and only had
> a few thousand feet of cave data from Groaning Cave to work
> on. I never anticipated that it would become so widely used.
>
> Since then, the format has been modified a few times to
> handle new data items, but Compass can still read and display
> files I have archived from the early 1980's. However, as time
> goes on, I am having more and problems adding new features to
> the format. For this reason, I am thinking about shifting to
> a new XML-based format that will make it much easier to add
> new data items and make changes to the format.
>
> I am planning on using some ideas developed by Devin Kouts:
>
> http://www.psc-cavers.org/xml/#designRequirements
>
> For those who don't know what XML is, it is data format
> similar to HTML that allows you to create your own
> specialized document formats. It uses tags, just like HTML,
> except that you get to define your own tags. For example, the
> tags for a cave survey file might look something like this:
>
> 
>  Groaning Cave
> 
>
> There are several advantages to XML. First, it is "extensible".
> That means it is very easy to add new items without breaking old
> programs that don't know about the new data. Second, the general
> XML format is already defined so it is easy for people to write
> programs that can read any XML file. In fact, there are general
> purpose utility programs and libraries that can read an XML file
> without knowing anything about the actual data that resides in
> the file.
>
> The biggest disadvantage is that it is verbose. This means that
> the files can be much bigger than with simpler formats.
>
> I have already written some code to write the new format and
> have discovered that the new format would be about 8 times
> bigger than the old files. The worst part is that data takes
> about 10 times longer to read or write. For example, writing
> one of the sections of Lechuguilla takes 0.4 seconds using
> the old format and 5 seconds under the new format even on my
> 2.8 Ghz Pentium-IV. This will be less of a problem as
> computers get faster, but it is probably too slow for some
> older computer. For example, someone with a 280-Mhz Pentium
> would take 50 second to read one Lechuguilla file and several
> minutes to read the whole cave. I think I can speed things up
> by simplifying the data format for the shot data and not
> breaking everything into independent tags.
>
> Even with the new file format, I will continue to support
> the old format for a long time to come. I will make sure
> all the Compass programs can read the old format and  I will
> have programs that can convert the new data back to the old
> format.
>
> I have written a test program that reads the old Compass
> files and can write either the old or new XML format. If you
> would like to look at a sample of the new data or play with
> the program, you can down load a copy here:
>
> http://www.fountainware.com/download/xml.zip
>
> WARNING: Be careful how you use this program particularly when
> you save the files to the old format. It has not been tested
> extensive and it could damage your cave data. Make sure you
> only test it on backup copies of your data.
>
> 2. USING MEMORY. Up until recently, Compass' strategy for
> processing files was to parse the data on the fly, reading
> one character at a time and only retaining the data it needed
> to address the problem at hand. This reduced the memory
> requirements of Compass and allowed it to process large caves
> even with the limited memory available to the early Apples
> and PC's. The main problem is that you only have a certain
> amount of information in memory and this limits what things
> you can display. For example, the Viewer only has the shots
> and LRUDs data in memory. As a result, it is impossible to do
> other things like highlight individual loops in the Viewer.
>
> Today, memory is no longer a limitation and on the typical
> PC, it is very easy to allocate multi-megabyte arrays. As a
> result, I can now keep a lot more information in memory
> including loops, shots, comments, etc. I figure I need about
> 150 bytes per shot to do everything I want to do. For a cave
> like Lechuguilla, that would equate to 7 or 8 megabytes. For
> a cave like Mammoth, the requirement would be about 20
> megabytes. These number are well within the capability of
> modern PCs.
>
> 3. UNDERLYING DATA STRUCTURES. Another aspect that will
> change is the structure of the data stored by Compass. In the
> past Compass used a fairly simple data structure, with just
> enough information to keep track of station locations and to
> find loops.
>
> The new data structure will be designed to support "graph
> theory" operations. Graph theory is the branch of mathematics
> that deals with the kind of "networks" of interconnected
> lines that cave surveys generate. In keeping with the Graph
> Theory model, the new data structure will have "edges,"
> "vertices" and an "adjacency" information.
>
> Graph theory will allow Compass to add a bunch of new
> features such as finding the shortest distance between
> station, and even finding the easiest path between stations.
>
> Most of the new data structure has been built and code has
> been written to work with it. The only remaining task,
> (probably the hardest part), is to integrate it with the rest
> of Compass.
>
> 4. NEW LOOP CLOSURE TOOLS. With the new data structure, I
> will be able to do a better job of finding loops. Currently,
> under certain circumstances, Compass does not find the
> smallest set of loops in the cave.
>
> I have already written routines that do a much better job of
> finding loops. In fact, I have written an article about the
> techniques I am using for the NSS publication "Compass and
> Tape." You can get a preview of the article here:
>
> http://www.fountainware.com/compass/FindingLoops.doc
>
> You can also download a test program that generates large
> quantities of overlapped and randomly connected loops. The
> link is in the article.
>
> 4. NEW ROOM MODELING. I am also working on a system for
> handling large rooms. It will be based on using "splay"
> shots. Basically, you choose a station near the center of the
> room and take shots to the wall in various directions.
>
> Since the user might enter any where from one to a dozen
> splay shots, the plan is to have Compass interpolate and
> convert the splay shots into 8 or 10 evenly spaced pie-shaped
> wedges that would describe the room.
>
> Ideally, you would have at least four shots at evenly spaced
> angles to the wall, but the system would handle any number
> with any spacing. Of course, the more shots, the more
> precisely it would define the room.
>
> The splay shots would be entered just like a regular shots
> except that the "To" station would be a special symbol.
> Currently, the plan is to use a right parenthesis ")" for the
> "To" station. (It turns out that parenthesis is one of the
> few character that exists on most of the non-English key
> boards. It also vaguely resembles a passage wall.)
>
> The Up and Down dimension would apply to the "To" station of
> the shot. In other words, the Up and Down dimension would
> describe the wall height where the shot makes contact with
> the wall. The height of the center of the room would be
> controlled by the LRUDs of the "From" station. This should
> produce a reasonably realistic room shape which could be
> either convex or concaved. However, it would not model a side
> branch of the a room wanders around a corner.
>
> I have written test code and it seems to work well and I may
> put this feature in Compass fairly soon.
>
> 5. RUNNING PROFILES. If you have been reading the Compass
> Newsgroup you know that there have been some extensive
> discussion about what is know as "Running Profiles" or
> "Developed Profiles." These are profiles where the turns and
> bends in the cave passage are "unrolled" and the passage is
> displayed as though all the shots were in a straight line.
>
> In an ordinary profile, it may not be possible to see all the
> ups and downs of the passages because some shots maybe
> pointing directly toward or away from the viewer. Rotating
> the cave does not help, because as you rotate one shot into
> an optimal position, other shots will rotate into a bad
> position.
>
> The feature is very popular in Europe where there are lots of
> deep pits and not many maze caves. The feature works best in
> relatively simple caves that have few loops and
> interconnects. In the US where there are lots of maze caves,
> the feature is only useful on small segments of a cave.
>
> Again, I have already written some test code to experiment with
> the feature. I think the feature will be easier to implement when
> I have the new data structures in place. However, there may be
> a way to implement the feature sooner.
>
> 6. SVG/BITMAP WARPING. For several years I have been looking
> at ideas to help cavers create finished maps. One problem
> with finished cave maps is that they become obsolete whenever
> a new survey is added or loop errors are corrected. Ideally,
> cartographers would like to draw the map once, and then have
> a computer program warp the map to adapt it to changes.
>
> There are several ways Compass could address the problem:
>
> A. BITMAP MORPHING. First, it could import scanned bitmap
> images of survey sketches and then register various stations
> to locations on the bitmap. If a passage moved as a result of
> resurveying a passage, Compass would warp the bitmap using
> the kind of "Afine" transform used for "morphing" images.
> This is the approach used by Garry Petrie's Karst program and
> it is relatively easy to do. It works fairly well on small
> caves, but it does not really produce finished maps. It is
> also tedious to piece together multiple sketches to produce a
> full-scale cave map.
>
> I am just finishing up some changes to Compass that will take
> the first steps toward adding this feature. The next release
> will have the ability to register a bitmap image to the cave
> so that no matter how much you zoom, pan and rotate, the
> image will stay locked to the cave.
>
> B. ROUND TRIPPING. Another approach is to export and import
> cave survey data to a drawing program. For example, Walls
> exports and imports cave data in the SVG format; a format
> created and promoted by Adobe. The cave data is then imported
> into Adobe Illustrator and then passage wall details, symbols
> etc. are added. If the cave changes, the SVG data is loaded
> back in the Survey Program and the map is warped to match the
> changed survey data.
>
> This model has several advantages, the main one being that
> with Adobe Illustrator, you can produce very beautiful maps
> maps. One disadvantage is that Adobe Illustrator is fairly
> expensive and maybe not the best tool for cavers. I also have
> questions about how well this works with larger or complex
> caves. Finally, there are questions about how universal SVG
> will become and whether it will be adopted by other programs.
>
> Another option would be to do something similar using a less
> expensive drawing program such as Corel Draw, or Canvas. DXF
> would be the ideal format because it is a nearly universal
> file format.
>
> 7. GLOBAL STATIONS/PREFIXES. One of the problems with cave
> survey data occurs when you have duplicate stations. This
> usually happens when try to combine several caves into
> regional map. As you probably know, Compass uses a "Linking"
> system to deal with this issue. Although, it works well,
> people are often confused about how to apply it, particularly
> when the linking stations have to be "carried" between files.
>
> A different option that might be easier to understand would
> be to allow the user to declare certain stations in each file
> to be "Public" or "Global". These stations would be the only
> stations that would be visible to other files. In practice,
> it works similar to the "Links" but it might be easier to
> understand and use.
>
> Another option would be to add prefixes to each survey file
> or even each survey. The prefixes would then be added to each
> station name to help prevent name conflicts. This is what
> Survex does to deal with British cave data which often has
> duplicate station name even in a relatively small cave.
>
> 8. LOOP CLOSURE. As you may know, there has been some
> controversy about the efficacy of various loop closure
> techniques. I am convinced that the routine described
> by John Halleck are superior to other methods:
>
> http://www.cc.utah.edu/~nahaj/cave/survey/
>
> My plan is implement John's ideas after have I changed
> the file format and data structures.
>
> 9. INCREMENTAL UPDATES. While I am working on all these
> changes, I will continue to make updates to the current
> version of Compass. I get lots of requests for new features
> and many of them are relatively easy to do (or at least fit
> into the current data structure.) For example, I have made
> about 40 changes to Compass in just the last six months.
>
> Currently, I am working on adding a standard-deviation field
> for Fixed Station. This is needed because GPS readings
> are often inaccurate and can distort the cave if more
> than one entrance is tied to a GPS fix. I am also finishing
> up the feature that locks a bitmap image to the cave.
> I expect to have these two features finished in a couple
> weeks.
>
> Although many of these changes have in place for months, I
> will probably make a public announcement in the next few
> weeks so that everyone will be aware of the new features.
> The big changes will come later.
>
>
> 10. TIME CONSTRAINTS. I work on Compass whenever I have free
> time. This depends on how much other work I have. Typically,
> I have several months each year when I am between contracts
> to work on Compass. As a result, the time frame for
> completing all the ideas listed above will depend on how much
> other work I have. I'm hoping to have the majority of the
> changes done within six months or a year.
>
> In case you are curious about what kind of work I do when I am not
> working on Compass, the last five years I have been writing
> control software for large astronomical telescopes
> manufactured by DFM engineering:
>
> http://www.dfmengineering.com/stan_cass_tele.html
>
> In addition to the Telescope Control Software, we have been
> designing Radio Telescope Control Software for colleges:
>
> http://www.pari.edu/OnlinePARIPresentation
>
> We have also been retrofitting NOAA's Satellite Tracking
> antennas in Virginia and Alaska with modern control systems
> and satellite tracking software:
>
> http://www.fcdas.noaa.gov/facilities.html
> http://ivs.nict.go.jp/mirror/publications/ar1999/nsgcgo/
> http://www.photolib.noaa.gov/space/spind5.htm
> http://www.photolib.noaa.gov/space/spac0185.htm
> http://www.photolib.noaa.gov/space/spac0195.htm
>
> Finally, I am doing a lot of work power for a company that
> make a very nice power and inexpensive power monitoring
> tools:
>
> https://www.doubleed.com/secure.html
>
> Larry
>




From: "Larry Fish" 
To: 
Subject: Re: Re:[compass-users] Compass Newsletter
Date: Friday, October 07, 2005 1:52 PM



Amedeo

Thanks for your letter.

> Have you a forecast about the implementation date of this
> feature in a new version of COMPASS? or it's possible to have a beta
> version?

I don't know exactly. As you can see from the newsletter, I have a
long list of changes to make. Some of the changes have to wait until
other, more fundamental reorganizing has been done. Right now I am
adding a Standard Deviation option for fixed stations and bitmap
registration
feature for the Viewer. I would like to put the Room Modeling feature
in right away, but I may run out of time and have to do "real" work.
In any case, I hope to have that feature in within in the next six months,
but
there is no guarantee.

Larry




From: "hkalnitz" 
To: 
Subject: [compass-users] Actual Profile Surface
Date: Monday, November 07, 2005 8:45 PM



Folks
I am trying to show the actual surface over the real profile (as
rotated and not projected through various angles). I have combined the
cave map with the proper DEM but how do I show a 'cross section' of
the DEM above the cave. I have not been able to figure how.

So I am culling the data from the DEM (by showing elevation on the
cave viewer I can match the cave to the topolines over it and hand
transcribe the surface elevations registered to the entrance) not very
hard. But now, can I get this data (X,Y of the station and Z of the
surface) back into compass? I note there is a DOS program that could
convert XYZ data into compass, but is there a way for a windows
version to import XYZ data into survey data? I would rather get it
into survey data as then I can import it into illustrator directly
with J. Olsens plug-in

Failing that I think I can force it into plt file, but a guide to a
plt file  format would be helpful.

Thanks for any help along this path
Howard Kalnitz




From: "hkalnitz" 
To: 
Subject: [compass-users] Re: Actual Profile Surface
Date: Tuesday, November 08, 2005 9:31 AM



Larry
Thanks for the reply.

> I assume that what you are trying to do is slice a section of a DEM
> file to make it easier to see a profile of the terrain without
> extraneous surface data blocking your view

Yes - this is exactly what I want to do - I know I can force it,
through one or more of the techniques we talk about, but I have
often seen it on maps, and was wondering how others did it.
Freehand? Approximation? DEMs seem to be a wonderful method, so I
was hoping someone had already jumped over this hill. Intrested to
hear how others do this. Getting the data is straightforward -
getting it back into compass is the issue.

> You
> could select specific surface elevation points and enter them
> into Cart2CSS along with X and Y location of the points. This
> would create an artificial survey line that would display the
> surface elevation along that line. Because you would have select
> the precise points you want, the line would run right where you
> want it. The line will display and export just fine from the
Viewer.

Guess I'll dig out my cd (hope I still have it). This will allow me
to import directly into Illustrator via Olsens plugin

Thanks agian
Howard




From: "Larry Fish" 
To: 
Subject: Re: [compass-users] Actual Profile Surface
Date: Tuesday, November 08, 2005 4:24 AM



Howard,

> I am trying to show the actual surface over the real profile (as
> rotated and not projected through various angles). I have combined the
> cave map with the proper DEM but how do I show a 'cross section' of
> the DEM above the cave. I have not been able to figure how.

I assume that what you are trying to do is slice a section of a DEM
file to make it easier to see a profile of the terrain without extraneous
surface data blocking your view.

Compass has several ways you can accomplish this. The easiest
way is to use the Complex Plotting feature. The "Exclude
East/West" and "Exclude North/South" options will allow you
to trim away parts of the cave, including any surface
modeling data that is being displayed. The newest version of
Compass allows for more control of how things are displayed,
so you can color different segments of the cave in different
ways.

The disadvantage of this technique is that clipping is
along East/West and North/South lines. As a result, you
cannot clip the data diagonally. Also, the Complex settings
cannot be exported to other programs like Illustrator.

Another option would be to use the DEMReader program to edit
the data. The DEMReader has an edit option that displays the
DEM elevation points as a grid of data. You will find the
option by pressing the the "Edit" button on the tool bar.
Next, select the Actions/Parameters page and finally press
the "Edit Grid Button."

You can delete rows and/or columns of data by deleting the
numbers from the grid cells. Once you have edited the grid
cells, you can attach the newly edited data to Compass using
the normal "linking" features of the DEMReader.

You can also manually enter elevation values into the grid to
create your own elevation models. It is tedious if you have a
lot of points, but it can be done. I know people who have
manually entered thousands of point for cave areas where
there are no DEM files.

The advantage of this technique is that the modified
elevation data can be exported through the Viewer to another
program like Illustrator. The only problem I can see with
this approach is that again, the surface terrain has to be in a
rectangle. Thus, it you are trying to produce a diagonal
slice of elevation points, the editor won't work for you.

Finally, you could go into the PLT file, (as you suggested)
and edit out the portions of the surface data you don't need.
If you are careful, PLT files can be edited with a text
editor such as Notepad. The surface data appears as a series
of shots with a "." for a station name. You can find a
detailed description of the file format in the Viewer's help
file. The tricky part will be figuring out which shots you
should remove.

The advantage of this technique is that you can be very
selective in what you remove and take out. You can even
create diagonal or random patches of elevation data. Also,
all the data can be exported through the Viewer to other
programs.

>  But now, can I get this data (X,Y of the station and Z of the
> surface) back into compass? I note there is a DOS program that could
> convert XYZ data into compass, but is there a way for a windows
> version to import XYZ data into survey data?

There is an old DOS program called Cart2CSS, that will
convert cartesian coordinates to simulated survey shots in the
form of a Compass DAT file. (It is available on the Compass CD-Rom.)
Windows Compass will read this data just fine. The program
dates from 1988 and is a bit crude, but it does work. You
could select specific surface elevation points and enter them
into Cart2CSS along with X and Y location of the points. This
would create an artificial survey line that would display the
surface elevation along that line. Because you would have select
the precise points you want, the line would run right where you want
it. The line will display and export just fine from the Viewer.

Let me know if you have more questions.

Larry