Well, I'm counting down the days until my next vacati... um, working field test trip. I'm leaving at the end of this week for the StarFest star party at Bays Mountain Park and Planetarium in Kingsport TN. After a weekend there, I'm heading to the Mid Atlantic Star Party, but only for a few days. Then whiplash back to Western North Carolina to PARI (Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute) and the PARI Star Party that I help organize. PARI just bought an MX and I've volunteered to "help" install it and set it up for them. I'm a "Friend of PARI" Volunteer, so no, Software Bisque personal installations does not come with all MX purchases! Two friends of mine here in Florida have also bought MX's (see, so confident, I'd sell them to my friends! LOL). They too have gotten a little bit of hands on support... but hey, that's what friends are for, right?
Well, I had the last prototype MX, and I had to send it back. I was only slightly sad by this because in it's place I get a nice brand new production mount. The electronics in my old one were not the same as the production mount, and there were a few "prototype" thingies that stuck out a bit. If I'm going to be showing it off, it should look just like the one your going to get I suppose.
So, about this field test. I have some new software that I personally have been working on, that we plan to talk about at AIC in a few weeks (yes, I'll be there!). If your of the Mac persuation and a DSLR imager, you'll be excited about it. There, now I've gone and said too much! There are also some new features in TheSkyX, etc. that I just haven't had a lot of practice with. A good work out will be a good thing.
I have the smaller of our two 48v batteries and I'm going to give it a run in some colder weather (probably), and I have a new dew control system, and battery system for my Canon DSLR camera (that's what I image with), and spare batteries for my Mac laptop. I use a slightly older Mac laptop for my scope and imaging runs because the older Mac let you swap batteries. Apple doesn't think you need to swap batteries... well, my newer laptop will make it all the way on a flight to the west coast, but it's no match for a full nights imaging run. Running my laptop off a bigger battery (and not using an AC inverter - what a waste!) is a project that is also actively being looked into. Anyway, over a week, skies permitting I'll be banging on our latest hardware some more, using the very latest and some new software bits. Can't wait! I might even get a decent picture or two out of the deal.
Of course I'm also showing off our baby. If you're going to be at any of these events, be sure and say hello. I shouldn't be too hard to find. :-)
"On the road again....."
10-16-2011 7:16 PM