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PostPosted: Tue Jan 24, 2012 10:57 pm 
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Hello,
my name is Giancarlo Todone, and i developed an android application that allows you to do truly amazing things with your merlin/acuter/skywatcher/... motorized head.
It gives you the options to create complex programs to execute on a mobile device to drive your head through bluetooth.
It has specific instructions to precisely move the head and it has a "sensors" section that allows you to control the program flow depending on your Android mobile's sensors, too, such as motion detection through phone's camera as well as sound detection.
Think about automatically starting your time lapse when the sun rises, or shooting a sequence at a clap of your hands, or taking panorama parts only when nothing is moving.
It allows to move your camera and shoot at timed intervals to create beautiful moving time lapses you can plan on a pc but run on a mobile; i even created a PC cross-platform application to automatically generate those programs given a movement curve to follow, and a few other parameters.

Now: i coded this software for myself, so it's a little bit "rough" by now. The purpose of this post is to ask if merlin's user community could be interested in this being released as a proper, polished app. Depending on the amount of interest, chances are my work could have a very low price, even no price at all if interest is enough; i'm sure you'll understand: it takes a lot of time and effort to come up with a decent piece of software, time that has to be subtracted from a very time-lacking life of mine.

So: would it worth the effort? Would you like to use such an application?

disclaimer: this post has no commercial nature. I'm just asking users if they'll like a work i'm developing, to understand if i have to continue develop it.


Last edited by jean80it on Tue Jan 24, 2012 10:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2012 1:37 am 
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Bella lଠGiancarlo! detto in termini feisbukkiani: I LIKE IT...VERY VERY MUCH!
...di dove sei?
That's a good new Giancarlo!


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2012 7:43 am 
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Definitively very interested being myself an Android devices owner and user of Merlin head :) A chance to get a copy of the APK to test it ?

Thanks,

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2012 11:53 am 
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YES Please Giancarlo .....

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2012 7:11 pm 
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Hi Giancarlo,
as one of the very first users of the Merlin I would appreciate it very much to have an android solution to drive the Merlin.

If there is any chance to test your app, please let me know. Also translation (to german language) may be a task, where I could help if needed.

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close, but no cigar ... ... ...


Last edited by Paul on Wed Jan 25, 2012 7:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2012 8:47 pm 
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Grande Giancarlo!!!!!! If you need a beta tester I'm totally in :)


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 26, 2012 10:25 am 
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:D Yes...good job!!..i hope you can add "Panoduino Plugin" too (controlling USB pololu mini maestro servo controller).....:lol:


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 26, 2012 10:36 am 
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Hello Giancarlo,

Can we allready have a look on the actual development ?

Thanks.

Claude

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 26, 2012 11:49 am 
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@claudevh: of course you can! I will post some screengrab/video as soon as possible (consider i have a dayjob, very little time AND that I am a perfectionist, somehow).
I was just considering it premature given the private/rough stage of development and the small amount of time passed since i called headsup with the first post here...
Maybe you would like to follow development on my G+ stream (you can find it searching for my name; i'll use #Android, #Appdev, #panorama and #photografy hashtags, probably)


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2012 7:13 am 
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How's progress on this going? Would love to see an android app that can control my merlin. Focus for me would be panos and time lapse.

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Focus Time Lapse and Spherical Pano's/pano tours (Autopano gig and Tour). Dynamic Perception Dolly with MX2.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2012 1:43 pm 
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Of course i started from the same code base as its license does indeed allow it, but Panorama App is nothing but an API usage demo, and is nowhere near a usable professional tool, for me. While I have somehow to apologize for the time it's taking, i'm doing progress and I'm currently developing a user friendly interface supposed to perform well on every android smartphone and tablet (or, well, most of them). The scripting language is being refined, too, and currently allows near everything that papywizard allows you to do, plus a couple of extras.
I should really shoot a footage of what i have by now... maybe later this evening...


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2012 1:47 pm 
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jean80it wrote:
I should really shoot a footage of what i have by now... maybe later this evening...

or perhaps release a beta apk of it so android users can play with it and give you feedback ;)

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2012 2:07 pm 
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Ok, look: today is friday, and weekends are always productive for me. If for monday i'll have something barely usable for anyone that's not a rocket scientist, then i will release a beta demo. Beware, however: it will still be - almost certainly - severely limited.


Last edited by jean80it on Fri Feb 17, 2012 2:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2012 2:09 pm 
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jean80it wrote:
Ok, look: today is friday, and weekends are always productive for me. If for monday i'll have something barely usable for anyone that's not a rocket scientist, then i will release a beta demo. Beware, however: it will still be - almost certainly - severely limited.

:D cool thanks a lot ;) we know it's a beta but we can give you feedback and help you move forward perhaps faster ;)

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 10:24 am 
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Ok, i should be done with a first beta... i only have to solve some problems related to the release of the actual APK... speaking of which: are you able to install yourself an APK? I would like to avoid publishing this demo on the market (because it is too early for proper publishing, and because of technical problems related to multiple applications having the same name in the market)
With respect to the final version, this release will have the following problems/limitations:
1)the analog jog to manually move the head is still nearly unusable (not completely my fault: there are hardware limitations i have to circumvent)
2)"sensors" (video, audio) have been disabled, because a proper user calibration procedure is missing
3)scripting language is limited to basic operations (move, wait, shoot); no expression resolver or complex flow, for now
4)"radar" section, depicting current position and programmed targets is still pretty simplistic
5) i don't know wheter or not i'll be able to thoroughly test the high resolution (=tablet) layout, so for now the app running on a tablet could make it look like a giant phone :)

I'll post here a link as soon as I'm done.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 5:21 pm 
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Hey Jean,

Some news about your app so we can give our advises and opinions on it ? because you have spoken a lot about it but we have not been able to see anything till now :(

Thanks,

Vincèn

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 10:48 am 
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Hello Jean,

Any news about your development ?

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Merlin + Papywizard on Windows 7 & Nokia 770 § N810 & Acer (Netbook) + PanoramaApp Androïd + Deltawave PapyMerlin BT + Autopano
Spherical Pano (180 x 360) with Canon 40D + Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 Zoom & Pôle Pano with Canon 5D MK2 and shaved Tokina 10-17 3.5-4.5 AF DX Fisheye
Gigapixel photography with Nikon D200 + Sigma 70-200 F 2.8 EX DG APO HSM


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 10:52 am 
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claudevh wrote:
Any news about your development ?

Looks like Jean forgot the forum or stopped his work on the android app :( some new updates about your Android App Claude ?

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2012 12:38 pm 
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vincen wrote:
claudevh wrote:
Any news about your development ?

Looks like Jean forgot the forum or stopped his work on the android app :( some new updates about your Android App Claude ?

Yesterday i saw "Panorama App" running on a Samsung phone - works well!

best, Klaus

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PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2012 7:54 pm 
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I didn't quit development, but it indeed slowed down because i had some very serious family problems so i had to reorganize my priorities :(
Hence, i gave up the initial idea to pack a beta for your consuption.
Application has been tested anyway and works quite well. Aside from little interface issues, there's one major problem still bugging me: if i shot a picture then i make head do a 360° turn longitudinally, then i take another picture, the two do not align perfectly (shift appears to be less than a degree, however) so chanches are positioning is not perfect.
Now, there are three possibilities:
1) my head is flawed
2) my head behave just like every other, and all heads of this type are not good at precise positioning
3) my head is perfect but my software doesn't drive it correctly (unlikely, because i use "official" API)

What do you think? Does a similar issue occur to you using papywizard or other software?
From here, i will do the following: perform some tests to measure the error with different driving softwares, then i will publish the beta so those of you willing to help can perform some tests, too.


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PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2012 8:49 pm 
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jean80it wrote:
What do you think?

all heads of this type are not good at precise positioning

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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2012 4:27 pm 
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jean80it wrote:
then i will publish the beta so those of you willing to help can perform some tests, too.

We are ready to help, when do we have the Beta ?

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Merlin + Papywizard on Windows 7 & Nokia 770 § N810 & Acer (Netbook) + PanoramaApp Androïd + Deltawave PapyMerlin BT + Autopano
Spherical Pano (180 x 360) with Canon 40D + Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 Zoom & Pôle Pano with Canon 5D MK2 and shaved Tokina 10-17 3.5-4.5 AF DX Fisheye
Gigapixel photography with Nikon D200 + Sigma 70-200 F 2.8 EX DG APO HSM


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 5:31 am 
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claudevh wrote:
jean80it wrote:
then i will publish the beta so those of you willing to help can perform some tests, too.

We are ready to help, when do we have the Beta ?

hear hear! Ready and willing sir!

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2013 3:47 pm 
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Any news on this hopeful approach?
It ´s hard to believe that nobody is able to code a Merlin Head Application similar to Papywizzard for Android :|


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