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    Richard S. Wright Jr.
    Senior Moderator

    Well, I'm finally home from AIC… yes a week later than everyone else. I flew directly from San Jose to Phoenix, AZ planning to spend a week on Mt. Lemmon with vendor friends imaging and working from the dorms on the mountain. 53 clear nights in a row, and then we showed up… rain, storms, flash flood watches, and deep snow on the mountain. Weather! Not to waste the opportunity, we worked at Starbucks and a friend's house, visited the University of Arizona, gave a presentation to a local astronomy group, and visited the Starizona retail store to show off some new products to the staff there and a couple of customers who just happened to be there when we arrived.

    The big story though is AIC. What a great event it was…introducing five new products! I confided to friends that we had five new products and zero axe murders… if you have never worked in product development, don't worry there was really no risk of the latter – LOL. I've had a very successful career and have been a developer, an engineer, and a product manager at companies both very big and very small. I can tell you with complete authority that delivering four new products at a major trade show is quite extraordinary. This is stress to the fourth power, and the Software Bisque team really came together and pulled it off. I'm so proud to have been a part of this achievement. This team has been tried by fire… look out world!

    My favorite new product, TheSky Fusion, should surprise no one who has been following my adventures for the past decade with the Raspberry Pi.  We chose a powerful computer with enough horsepower to make the user experience ideal.  We also chose the full Ubuntu distribution to open up a few more doors for us in terms of customizations and long term support and features. TheSky Fusion is a professional and polished experience that will revolutionize many people's imaging workflows.

    I also gave two presentations on the topic of imaging with “New Tech.”  It wasn't a commercial for TheSky Fusion, but did build a case for this style of imaging, which is growing in popularity, and is inspiring new products from other vendors as well. I think you'll agree though, we have got our act together when it comes to TheSky Fusion. Integrated power, GPS, and industry- leading device support on an embedded Linux device. No software to install and can be operated on whatever mobile device you have via remote desktop embedded in a web browser.

    Another great new product is the new Helium tripod. It's lighter than the Paramount MYT tripod, supports up to 200 pounds and is easier to level.  Even more, I get the ability to more easily adjust the azimuth of the top plate that I missed from the original Pyramid Portable Piers. I can also put an eyepiece tray under it, which is GREAT for when I do my monthly outreach programs. But wait, there's more! It's not just a MYT tripod, you can also put a Paramount MX+ on it, and we are going to make adapter plates for popular mounts from other vendors!

    Our remaining new products are no less groundbreaking and lay a foundation for years to come. The Paramount Taurus 500 and 600 equatorial fork mount are now available with direct drive. We've worked very hard for a long time to do direct drive “right” and the end result is worth the wait and all the sweat.

    Even more ground breaking is the new Apollo alt-az mount (new product #4) with the new integrated direct drive rotator (new product #5). Nothing on the market rotator wise met Apollo's requirements, so we designed our own (this is actually how the Paramount came to be as well). The Apollo rotator rotates at up to 60 degrees per second so there is no lag at all when changing targets, or when tracking a fast moving target across the sky. The entire system, including the rotator, is expertly modeled by our high-end professional TPoint software. This is the same “secret sauce” that runs most of the world's professional observatories, and now you can have it too in your own observatory!

    Well, my inbox overfloweth, and I as well as everyone here has a lot of work to do to be ready for 2020. Better get back to work….




    Congratulations on an action-packed autumn!

    Looking forward to a MyT2 with the Fusion built in, and all those ports available on a re-engineered “Instrument Panel.”



    Did I read that correctly?  60 degrees per SECOND????

    Ummm I want one

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