My body is still trying to operate on three time zones away and I have over 1,000 unread emails (mostly spam of course).... but I'm back, heavily caffeinated, and getting back to work.
This year's AIC reboot I think was fantastic. Close to 400 astro imagers converged on San Jose for workshops, vendor presentations, and a product expo. For me, the biggest news of the conference was our new Paramount Taurus equatorial fork mount. This garnered a lot of attention and visitor's to the booth!
Much of the first day I was away from the booth giving my own talks at AIC on DSLR imaging, and talking to other vendors and customers about what's new in the industry and imaging best practices. I also snuck away a few times to just check out the other booths, I am a gear head at heart sometimes!
On Saturday we also had a short vendor talk where Steve talked about the Taurus and I talked about what was new on the software front. I was very excited to announce a couple of new things. First, the coming availability of the new Backyard EOS/Nikon plug-in (see my previous blog). Second, we are releasing TheSkyX Pro for 64-bit Linux and Raspberry Pi in just a couple of weeks!
You should consider our first release of these as "beta", but they have been well tested in house for over a year now. I even won the Winter Star Party imaging competition using the Linux release in fact. Both apps will require a Universal Subscription as well, and we should have the downloads and some documentation ready very soon. The Linux is for 64-bit Ubuntu and will include just TheSkyX files (which include the Camera and TPoint Add Ons) and supporting plug-ins and a rules.d file for device permissions. The Raspberry Pi will be a complete image file that you burn to an SD card. It will include the OS, TheSkyX, and all the necessary configuration files and settings ready to go. It should be an almost turnkey installation.
There will be a blog with more details soon. A quick summary of device support is as follows:
- Starlight Xpress cameras and filter wheels.
- QSI cameras and filter wheels
- FLI cameras, filter wheels and focusers.
- RoboFocus focusers
- Keyspan/Polific USB adapters
- Native MKS 5000 (the Paramount control system) support
- Wi-Fi broadcast/VNC/native Serial support on the Raspberry Pi
You should also be able to control any serial-based mount that TheSkyX for desktop presently supports.
AIC took a year off to regroup, and I must say I like the new venue better. There may have been one or two minor "bumps" or growing pains, but I think the net was a great come back for the conference, and the improvements outweighed the minor glitches with the new venue. I'll be looking forward to next year... oh, and we are looking forward to what we will be talking about then! Two new mount models released in less than a year's time, and TheSky is now running every computing platform that matters (desktop, mobile, and embedded). The innovation wheels at Software Bisque are fully in motion!
10-19-2015 9:29 AM