It is important that you provide sufficient information to identify yourself as a Client or Server when using this program. This does not mean that you must provide personal information such as name or address, but the sharing of scientific data has little value if the source is unknown. Your location is important for many types of data, as is the nature of the apparatus used to gather the data.
Identification is configured by selecting Options from the main screen and then selecting the General tab.
The Local Name is a 20 character or less name which you apply to your computer or observatory. This is a bit like a nickname which others will know you by.
The Observer name (20 characters or less) is the person responsible for the data and is the ultimate authority for inquiries regarding the observation.
This refers to the place at which the data is collected. As with other parameters, you may supply more specific information in the Notes File (see below). The limit for Location is 40 characters.
These parameters are important for many types of scientific observations. This should be the coordinates for the sensing mechanisms you are monitoring, which is not necessarily the same as location of the Observer. Use the prescribed entry formats of degrees, minutes, and seconds. You may select West or East longitude format using the E-W button.
All data points are referenced to specific times taken from the computer's clock. In addition, file names reflect the date that the data was collected and this too is derived from the data collection computer. If the computer's clock is set to the local time of the observer, then a time zone offset should be provided so that recipients of the data can reference the time to Universal Time or Greenwich Mean Time. If you set the computer's clock to UT then the offset is 0 (zero), but otherwise the time zone should indicate the number of hours by which the local time differs from UT. Also see Logging for a description of the Log in UT option. You can have the time zone detected from the computer settings.
This refers to a text file which includes other important information you wish to share with others about your observation. This file should be standard ASCII or text as produced by Notepad, for example. You may also edit and save right from this text box in the most recent releases. Keep it as short as possible while supplying the needed information. Use the browse button to select the text file after you have created it. You may use different files for different equipment and observation types. You may also wish to put website and email information here. If you do not point this parameter to a legitimate file on your computer, clients will see an error message in their information panels regarding your set up.
You may include URLs in your Notes area. These will be clickable in SkyPipe when received. they must have the http:// prefix to be recognized. You can also include the text INTERNETIP in your notes text. This will be replaced by your detected internet IP, thus giving people a way to find sound streams or video, or even a web server located on your PC. Be sure to have a good firewall in place and open only those services that want to be public.
This is information about your observation which uniquely identifies its nature for those who are unfamiliar with your Local Name and yet might want to see your data. For example, a person is looking for others who are observing Jupiter noise storms, but does not know your Local Name may want to attach to your information stream if she/he sees Jupiter at 24 MHz in your Server Text Information. Keep this short. I will appear in the drop-down list along with your Local Name for all on-line users in Client Mode.
This button takes you to screen where you can add user defined meta-data fields to your file headers.
Clicking Save makes your selections the defaults for the next time you start the program.
Clicking Done simple changes the settings for the session you are in.
Clicking Cancel discards any changes and takes you back to the main screen.
Most amateur scientists are hobbyists who greatly enjoy learning and sharing with others. Amateurs and students can occasionally make significant contributions to the growing body of scientific understanding. Your openness and willingness to share your methods as well as your data are very important if you which to take part in this process. Faked data and hoaxes, hurt everyone. A few bad seeds ruin the reputation of many. Please be careful and rigorous in your contributions.
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