09-13-12 07:19 AM
42 12
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  1. anthogag's Avatar
    Nice app. It's great to use the magnetometer

    But obviously this app would be much better if the picture of the sky/stars moved smoothly and 'effortlessly' as the pb is moved around. I find the jerky movement really takes-away from the experience

    But I think you mentioned this will be fixed when the proper api for the magnetometer is released in February

    You stated the app currently gets an update from the magnetometer every second...
    Last edited by anthogag; 01-27-12 at 09:58 PM.
    01-27-12 09:52 PM
  2. djdnz's Avatar
    Oh I can't wait to go and try it out. I saw that there was an update today but haven't had time to check it out.
    01-27-12 10:07 PM
  3. BuzzStarField's Avatar
    Nice app. It's great to use the magnetometer

    But obviously this app would be much better if the picture of the sky/stars moved smoothly and 'effortlessly' as the pb is moved around. I find the jerky movement really takes-away from the experience

    But I think you mentioned this will be fixed when the proper api for the magnetometer is released in February

    You stated the app currently gets an update from the magnetometer every second...
    I answered a question about panning in post #11 of this thread. Here is the text:

    "Due to current limitations though, the panning is nowhere near as smooth as a movie because the updates from the sensor are received every second or so"

    I will indeed be working to make the auto-panning as smooth as I can as soon as I can. Having said that, the 80% rule of programming states that the last 20% of function takes 80% of the effort so I must ask for your patience. It may seem simple to the layperson, but getting animations of any sort to appear "effortless" takes a lot of effort on the developer's part.

    This is especially true for a sensor like the magnetometer which has a tendency to send me a stream of quite erratic data that my program must smooth out before presenting a pretty picture to the user. It's a bit of a balancing act.

    Most of the apps that I have tested delay the animation in order to improve the smoothness but, as a result, the animations are quite laggy - starting a second or two after the user pans the device and stopping somewhat after the user stops moving the device. I want to do better than this if I can, but the outcome depends on how well RIM's API performs while the user does unpredictable things.

    One thing I will say though is the the app's price will increase by some unknown amount when it's performance becomes nearly "perfect". Another thing that is certain that future upgrades will always be free.
    01-27-12 11:44 PM
  4. Mikey_T's Avatar
    Fantastic Buzz, great work! Can't wait to get to some wireless coverage so I can download the upgrade.

    Are you planning a seperate simple magnetic compass app once the the API's come out? I'm sure a bunch of them will launch eventually but I'd rather buy one from you after all the work you put into the magnetometer implementation.
    01-28-12 11:13 AM
  5. BuzzStarField's Avatar
    Fantastic Buzz, great work! Can't wait to get to some wireless coverage so I can download the upgrade.

    Are you planning a seperate simple magnetic compass app once the the API's come out? I'm sure a bunch of them will launch eventually but I'd rather buy one from you after all the work you put into the magnetometer implementation.
    Actually, the compass rose (and code) that appears on the "Magnetometer" page of What's up was lifted from an early version of my simple compass app. I'm going to add some "simple" navigation features such as saving waypoints/points-of-interest to the app before I publish it to App World.

    With all that's going on right now, I don't have much time to work on my PB apps so it'll be a few weeks at least until I submit the "simple" compass. In the meantime, please use the "simple" compass included in What's up - takes a while to load because it's wrapped in a complex astronomy app but it works great.
    01-28-12 11:31 AM
  6. djdnz's Avatar
    Hi Buzz, I'm having difficulties getting the point and view functionality to work. Is there a way to enable it? I've updated to 1.5 but it functions the same as the previous did, tried calibrating the magnetometer, but I don't seem to have any luck.

    Tips? I tried deleting the app and re-installing already, as well as restarting the playbook.
    01-28-12 09:56 PM
  7. BuzzStarField's Avatar
    Hi Buzz, I'm having difficulties getting the point and view functionality to work. Is there a way to enable it? I've updated to 1.5 but it functions the same as the previous did, tried calibrating the magnetometer, but I don't seem to have any luck.

    Tips? I tried deleting the app and re-installing already, as well as restarting the playbook.
    You need to open the navigation bar and use one of the two buttons with arrows. Open the navigation bar by tapping any of the three info areas at the bottom of the main screen and the nav bars will slide into view.

    To begin auto-panning tap the button with 2 arrows. To stop panning just touch the screen. I found this process to be somewhat amusing and fun but it's not as useful as the second mode of operation:

    To automatically point the display to a particular celestial object, point the device at the object and tap the button with the single arrow.

    There are two options for "pointing the device":
    (a) point the media buttons/camera lens at the object or;
    (b) Hold the PB aloft and point the back of the device at the object.

    (I prefer method (a) since it saves my neck from strain.)

    The object should be more-or-less in the centre of the screen after you hit the arrow button. Select the object to display its info on the screen.

    I hope this helps. You can get further information in the help screen under "Point & View"
    bluetroll likes this.
    01-28-12 10:57 PM
  8. BuzzStarField's Avatar
    A few people have asked me for clarification about "calibration". The following is a repeat of my post on Facebook:

    The magnetometer basically runs all the time and continually updates its calibration data. The rotations spped up the calibration process so that the chip can return valid values sooner. There's no "right" way to do the rotations. You could just start scanning the sky - it would just take a little longer to complete the recalibrtion, that's all.

    It's best to do the procedure just after the app starts up. You don't even have to visit the recalibration page to hit the reset button when the app has just been opened.

    In order to regain accurate readings when readings become erratic, just tap the reset button on the Magnetometer page and then turn the device around both axes - speed of rotation can be slow or fast, it doesn't matter. Then turn facing a different compass direction and repeat. No special pattern is required and it doesn't really matter if you initially face north, west or any other direction.

    Practice makes perfect. Once you get the hang of it you can just tumble the device randomly for a few seconds and you're good to go.
    01-28-12 11:17 PM
  9. pigdude's Avatar
    Thanks for all you're work on this! Not sure when i'll get a chance to try it, but looking forward to!

    I still remember downloading the free version just after getting my PB and not having the chance to use it. On the cool factor alone, I just bought the app.

    Seeing as you are in the GTA, I will have to buy you a beer one day!
    Last edited by pigdude; 01-29-12 at 06:36 AM.
    BuzzStarField likes this.
    01-29-12 06:34 AM
  10. TheScionicMan's Avatar
    02-24-12 05:02 PM
  11. bluetroll's Avatar
    omg... i've been trying to figure out how to get it to auto-pan since the first day you updated to 1.5!

    after going through this thread, i've finally figured out the button with the -> and <- is what is used to turn it on!

    thanks for this wonderful app!
    03-01-12 04:29 PM
  12. djenkins6's Avatar
    What's up is currently showing in top left corner of the top paid apps screen, does that mean you have the number 1 selling app?
    03-11-12 05:24 PM
  13. BuzzStarField's Avatar
    What's up is currently showing in top left corner of the top paid apps screen, does that mean you have the number 1 selling app?
    The placement means that What's up is currently the top selling PlayBook app. A quick look at the overall standings indicates that it is in second place out of all PB apps/games and fourth place overall (all BlackBerry devices).

    http://appworldstats.com/http://appworldstats.com/

    Now I don't believe that this is a permanent situation although I hope it lasts a little while longer.
    Barljo likes this.
    03-11-12 05:57 PM
  14. djenkins6's Avatar
    The placement means that What's up is currently the top selling PlayBook app. A quick look at the overall standings indicates that it is in second place out of all PB apps/games and fourth place overall (all BlackBerry devices).

    http://appworldstats.com/http://appworldstats.com/

    Now I don't believe that this is a permanent situation although I hope it lasts a little while longer.
    That's great, congratulations on your hard work paying off.
    03-11-12 06:11 PM
  15. Marauder2's Avatar
    I know I sound quite stupid, but could some one please give me a brief overview of how to use this app properly? I read the notes but I'm still having trouble.
    06-19-12 09:54 PM
  16. BuzzStarField's Avatar
    I know I sound quite stupid, but could some one please give me a brief overview of how to use this app properly? I read the notes but I'm still having trouble.
    I'm the app's author and I'd like to help but I need some specifics. First, are you using the latest version which is 1.5.5? If not you should get it from app world. I've made Point & View very easy to access in the new version. If you are already using 1.5.5, perhaps you can describe what specifically you are having problems doing? As soon as I get this information, we can take it from there and hopefully get you up and running.
    Last edited by BuzzStarField; 06-20-12 at 12:24 AM.
    06-20-12 12:04 AM
  17. Boight's Avatar
    Is there an issue with OS 2.1? Standing outside with no metal around, my magnetometer no longer adjusts for declination. It's about 30 degrees off (declination is ~16 degrees here).
    When the last update came out it would line up nicely, I THINK it started after I installed 2.1 but not 100% sure. It's not an app I use every day and highly likely several other apps were installed in the meantime.
    Mappau Compass which I think uses the same algorithm standing on the same spot seems fine.
    Mainly just curious whether 2.1 is the issue.
    09-13-12 07:19 AM
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