Initial support for WAEDC entrants outside Europe. I’ll document the QTC user interface for entrants from either side sometime before the CW event in August.
SkookumLogger offers completions for items in the Info data entry field (type one or more characters and press option-esc). The list of completions was formed from the keys in the dictionary of region multipliers; for example, New England county codes in the NEQP contest. Now, if the contest has no region multipliers, the list of completions is formed from the list of other multipliers, providing completions for IARU society codes in IARU HF Championship.
Logging preferences has a new checkbox, Automatically turn rotator, default unchecked. When checked, SkookumLogger will tell your antenna rotator to point at the target bearing each time you cause an update of the QSO information line in either of the two data entry wells. Typically this happens when you change keyboard focus away from a call sign entry field by tabbing or pressing spacebar. Feature request by K2MIT.
IARU HF Championship was counting the zone of HQ stations as a multiplier, contrary to the rules. Now, there is one list of “other” multipliers, containing all ITU zones and all IARU society abbreviations, so that each QSO is identified as zero or one multiplier.
The list of “other” multipliers for IARU HF Championship was missing the International Secretariat club station (NU1AW), code IARU.
Previously, SkookumLogger began presenting known calls containing the characters in the data entry field when you typed a second character. Now, SkookumLogger waits until you have typed three characters, which reduces a small pause when typing call signs. Also, SkookumLogger now excludes the ‘?’ character when counting the number of typed characters, in order to prevent a much more obnoxious pause.
Changing the contest name in the log settings sheet was failing to change the default event choice before enabling Category items like Mode. The consequence was that, for example, if a single-mode contest was previously selected and a mixed-mode contest was chosen, only the mode menu item for the original contest choice would be available. Thanks JH5GHM.
This release has a schema change. Do not be alarmed if you open a log created with earlier releases, a dialog will guide you through the schema migration process.
Renamed Category class to ContestCategory in order to avoid clash in the forth-coming Lion with a new Objective-C declaration of a struct named Category.
Revamped export code (Cabrillo, ADIF, CSV) to avoid using deprecated Cocoa methods.
Changed function key binding for Log ▶ Grab Pounce Frequencies from ⇧F9 to ⌥F9 to remove conflict with Radio ▶ Band ▶ 2m.
The Reverse Beacon Network connection now uses the AR-Cluster port instead of the telnet (DX Spider) port. The consequence is that the commands for filtering spots are much different. The new Window ▶ Reverse Beacon Network Filtering menu item opens the relevant web page; study the Set DX Filter section. Also see the “A New Way to Access the RBN, and Why You Should Care” blog entry at http://reversebeacon.blogspot.com/ for examples that include filter items not documented on the web page. My motivation for doing this is the ability to select only spots from specific skimmers, which can significantly reduce the processing load in SkookumLogger as it tests each spot to detect duplicates.
Reinstated support for IARU HF Championship, on request of JH5GHM, K5ND.
In contests that have Maidenhead locators as part of the exchange, tabbing out of the locator field now updates the QSO entry status text, in order to provide distance and bearing to the entered locator whether or not there is a valid entry in the call field. If the locator itself is incomplete, the default of JJ00AA is assumed. Requested by GØDVJ.
QTC logging for WAEDC entrants in Europe is now supported, including Cabrillo export. The user interface for this facility is encapsulated in the Receive QTCs window, and has quite a few subtleties. Documentation will be addressed after the facility has been more thoroughly evaluated.
Added Logging preference: Automatically rebuild log. The preference is checked by default, so that SkookumLogger behavior is unchanged. A log needs to rebuilt when first loaded, when the contest rules choice is changed, and whenever a logged QSO is changed or deleted, in order to maintain correct data structures for duplicate testing, multiplier checksheets, and known calls. The process can block SkookumLogger with larger logs. For example, rebuilding an ARRL Field Day log with 1900 QSOs blocks for 7 to 10 seconds. To avoid this delay while contesting, turn off the new preference, and manually execute Log ▶ Rebuild when you can tolerate the delay. The function is always run when loading a log, regardless of the preference setting. Thanks W2CS and W2RU.
Toggling between data entry wells was forgetting K3 RIT on/off state. State is now preserved unless the offset is zero. In that case, RIT is turned off so that QRQ mode is enabled. Thanks W2RU.
If CW sending via your WinKeyer sporadically gets into an odd state, try adding ferrite snap-on beads to the USB cable. Symptoms of RF causing garbage that confuses SkookumLogger are stalls and wedges, where nothing happens when you hit a message function key, or sending stops in the middle of a message and restarts when you do something seemingly unrelated, or the Keyboard morse feature misbehaves.
FTDI has posted an updated Mac OS X driver for USB-serial devices using their chip (such as the WinKeyer). The changes have no effect on SkookumLogger, but you do want to update if you use a RigExpert antenna analyzer.
Activity needed flags are now updated only for bands where the corresponding activity windows are open. If you sense that the SkookumLogger UI is being bogged down by many Reverse Beacon Network spots, try closing Activity windows for bands you don’t really need to monitor.
In any case, you should use DX Spider filter commands to limit the traffic between RBN and SkookumLogger. The online spider user manual (link in SkookumLogger Help menu) provides details, but here is what I did for CQ WPX CW as an example:
Filter 0 eliminates spots not on the HF contest bands, and passes all spots for me. Filter 1 then eliminates any spot by a skimmer not in my CQ zone.
By the way, I noticed rather substantial backlogs in spots from RBN during WPX. Nothing would be received for sometimes several minutes, then a massive number of spots would arrive. Often, at least one of the spots in the batch would be malformed with a spurious line break in the middle of a spot record, probably due to a buffer size limit somewhere. SkookumLogger simply discards such records and carries on.
Attempted to regularize the appearance of all SkookumLogger windows.
Added support for ARRL Field Day. This is not a contest, and SkookumLogger doesn’t try to deal with the bonus points, but QSO entry and Cabrillo generation are implemented. The QSO entry fields are “check” for the entry class, and “info” for the ARRL section.
Beginnings of Worked All Europe DX Contest (WAEDC) support. Inside/outside Europe entrant status is inferred from the Sent Exchange call in the Log Settings sheet. Duplicate and multiplier tracking should be working, along with scoring and Cabrillo output, sans QTCs. QTC support remains (SMOP) accompanied by thorough testing.
When starting SkookumLogger and reopening Activity windows, the log window is made key after all windows are open.
Subordinate window titles show their purpose instead of their parent log, now that there can be only one open log.
Log ▶ Show Locator Checksheet is now disabled when the log’s contest doesn’t have locator multipliers.
Activity needed status for new activities is updated by asking the current log for that status. If the log is in the midst of being rebuilt, perhaps because you just edited a QSO, then the status is likely to be wrong. Worse, query-while-rebuilding appears to sometimes cause very long stalls. Now, SkookumLogger blocks the queries while rebuilding, and updates status for all activities (as before) when the rebuild is complete.
When an edited QSO is committed, the log table is now scrolled to the end.
The exchange-guessing feature for the check field was broken.
When a QSO commit was aborted by the Refuse to log incomplete QSOs Logging preference, the content of the active data entry field was selected. The behavior has been changed to leave the selection untouched. Thanks GØDVJ.
The 1.1.8 upload is broken (missing a required library). Thanks K5ND.
SkookumLogger will now refuse to open more than one log at a time. This is a prequel to internal changes that will considerably simplify code and perhaps make some things faster. Hasn’t been tested much, because I want to get a working version uploaded quickly to address my 1.1.8 goof.
Logging preferences has a new checkbox titled Confirm Quit. When checked, SkookumLogger will post a dialog each time you choose File ▶ Quit, asking whether or not you really mean to terminate the application. The default is unchecked. Feature request by JH5GHM.
The target dot on the great circle map was not being erased when committing an edited QSO. Thanks GØDVJ.
When an activity arrived while editing the Notes field in the Log table, the field would get cleared and lose keyboard focus. Worse, keyboard focus would not return to any QSO data entry field.
When a log was reopened and its contest type had more than one event, the log’s event was being reset to the first one in the list. For example. a WPX CW log was being reset to WPX SSB when reopened. This had various nasty side-effects, such as marking all QSOs as suspect because their mode (CW) didn’t match the log’s category’s mode (SSB). Thanks KH6CW and GØDVJ.
The code for building the list of partial-match callsigns has been, I think, made somewhat faster, and now begins displaying matches after two characters are entered in the call field (was three). I’ve been bothered by sporadic cases where callsign type-ahead was failing to notice characters typed after the first two. With this change, an hour of running in CQ-M at 35 WPM had zero misses.
In Morse Keyboard mode, typing the character assigned to the Acknowledge + Log special key now clears the keyboard buffer and closes the keyboard window as soon as sending reaches that character.
Added a new contest for W2RU: CWops CW Open Competition. Needs testing.
Revived support for California QSO Party entrants both inside and outside of California, for KH6CW/K7GQ. There is one Log Settings menu item for entrants from both sides. SkookumLogger assumes that if the contest call is in the United States 6th call area and the sent exchange info matches a California county code, then the entrant is inside California. Needs testing.
Revived support for Salmon run entrants both inside and outside of Washington state, for WD7K. There is one Log Settings menu item for entrants from both sides. SkookumLogger assumes that if the contest call is in the United States 7th call area and the sent exchange info matches a Washington county code, then the entrant is inside Washington. Scoring doesn’t handle bonus. Needs testing.
Revived support for Scandinavian Activity Contest entrants both inside and outside of Scandinavia. There is one Log Settings menu item for entrants from both sides. SkookumLogger assumes that if the contest call is a Scandinavian country, then the entrant is inside Scandinavia. The multiplier list for outside Scandinavia is formed by appending 0, …, 9 to the Scandinavian country prefix (except OHØ and OJØ), regardless of whether or not the result is a legitimate Scandinavian call area. Worked multipliers are listed in the Other Checksheet. Definitely needs testing.
The serial number input field now automatically converts these cut-number characters in either uppercase or lowercase: a e n t u. Helpful to CW operators who type what they hear.
The Log Settings Sheet wasn’t being opened by File ▶ New.
The following contests that were supported in the past are presently not supported: California QSO Party, Florida QSO Party, IARU HF Championship, North American QSO Party, New York QSO Party, Dutch DX Contest (PACC), Scandinavia Activity Contest, Salmon Run, Tennessee QSO Party. I might not be resuscitating any of these unless I receive a request to do so. If you ask for support, be prepared to help test it before the event!
The logic for defining a “base” callsign for duplicate-testing now ignores /M suffixes.
The display of transmit frequency in the two QSO data entry wells now shows the offset of the transmitter from the receiver, in Hz. The offset is positive when the transmit frequency is above the receive frequency, and reddish when not zero.
Log ▶ Reset now changes the event information for the log to the closest future event. All events throughout one year are listed in the Log Settings sheet, ordered by month.
Islands on the Air contest support has been resuscitated. Be very careful to set your IOTA reference in the Log Settings sheet, if you have one, and confirm that it is correct by logging a test QSO before the contest starts (show the Sent Exchange field in the log to see it). This parameter cannot be corrected after you have logged a QSO. If you use the Refuse to log incomplete QSOs option in this contest, you must enter something in the received info (IOTA reference) field; a hyphen will suffice.
The list of event dates in the Log Settings sheet was showing current-year dates instead of future dates ordered by month.
Locator-guessing for RSGB UKAC contests was supplying cty.dat-based grid instead of nothing when the call was not found in the LocatorForCall database. Thanks GØDVJ.
NEQP was listing 160m as a contest band.
NEQP was failing to decorate activities that were duplicates for log with entrants in New England.
Option-double-click on a row in an activity table deletes that activity without moving keyboard focus away from QSO data entry. This adds to the list of activity table gestures: double-click grabs the activity (loads into Pounce data entry and switches radio to activity’s frequency); command-double-click sets the radio subreceiver frequency to the activity’s frequency; shift-double-click sets the radio subreceiver frequency to the activity’s frequency and loads the Pounce data entry but does not switch to it.
The calls arriving from internet spotting networks are no longer altered in any way. Previously, SkookumLogger was attempting to strip suffixes other than /P, but the algorithm was designed to recognize only legitimate suffixes and a few common add-ons like /QRP. So, it was not stripping most county abbreviations in the Florida QSO Party. Sadly, CW skimmers truncate those suffixes to two characters; otherwise SkookumLogger could attempt to extract the county code and do a better job of identifying needed QSOs. With this change, at least you can scan the activity table and apply your own mental skills to find needed QSOs, with help from Log ▶ Find QSOs.
K3 radio was failing to turn on RIT or split for activities with QSX information.
Log ▶ Grab Pounce Frequencies was failing to update transmit frequency decoration (color) in the Run QSO data entry well.
Sartek rotator wasn’t working for some bearings. Thanks GØDVJ.
The background region of the Great Circle Map window is now light gray instead of white.
The QSO information string now includes the continent abbreviation.
Added exchange guessing (continent abbreviation) for the Manchester Mineira DX Contest.
Restored click-on-map-chooses-receive-antenna gesture, equivalent to Antenna ▶ Receive Antenna ▶ commands.
Refactored rotator-related code and added second rotator type: Sartek. The Sartek rotator interface is write-only; it does not provide access to the actual rotator bearing, so the Show Transmit Antenna preference does not apply.
Repaired a misspelled contest name that was causing lookup of rules for Manchester Mineira DX Contest to fail.
The Activity table age filter was failing to remove entries for self.
Contests with more than one multiplier list were displaying Excluded Multiplier in the QSO information string under some circumstances. Now SkookumLogger instead displays the DXCC country information.
QSOs are now per-band in RSGB NFD contest. Thanks GØDVJ.
Added Radio ▶ Toggle Tune, which turns radio tune mode on and off via CAT, for radios that support that function. Currently implemented for Elecraft K3. Different from the Morse ▶ Tune Mode command, which simply closes the CW key line, in that the CAT command may use a preset tune power level, and works regardless of radio mode. Tapping the escape key aborts Tune if it is active.
Additional fussing with K3 frequency control. The previous change uses RIT offset to implement splits within the range of the offset. That change supports listening on the sub-receiver with VFO B while running on VFO A and tuning near the run frequency with RIT. I hate the tiny RIT knob (common to all radios), so I set up a Griffin PowerMate so that knob rotation triggers the Radio ▶ RIT/XIT ▶ Offset Up/Down commands, and changed those commands so that they turn on RIT and turn off XIT when appropriate. Pressing the PowerMate knob is bound to the Radio RIT/XIT ▶ Clear command; that command is changed to also turn off RIT so that K3 CW QRQ mode is re-enabled. The general frequency-setting method also now turns off RIT when the offset is zero.
Added a keyword to each great circle map image that provides the Maidenhead locator for the map center. That keyword, when present, is used to correctly set the corresponding locator for computations, rather than assuming that the map image center corresponds to the sent exchange grid preference value. Re-download your map image to take advantage of this feature.
Now set the mode for internet activities generated by Reverse Beacon Network messages to CW. For other sources, the mode is set to to the radio mode when the internet message is received. Thanks, JH5GHM.
The recent change to make Needed QSOs the default activity filter was incomplete; it set the selected popup item but failed to apply the appropriate filter. Thanks JH5GHM.
ADIF export has been updated to spew a few more fields, and to remove redundant items from the SRX_STRING and STX_STRING fields.
Re-added Yuri Gagarin DX Contest.
In Helvetia contest from HB side, the Info (Canton) field is pre-filled with “--” when the station being worked is not in Switzerland. So, you can set the Refuse to log incomplete QSOs logging option without being forced to enter something in that field for every non-HB QSO.
Clearing a QSO entry field with the Clear removes entries near current receive frequency Activity table option enabled was temporarily setting the activity filter to All. Thanks GØDVJ.
Now restrict multipliers based on Maidenhead locators to the first four characters of the locator string, known as the “square.” Thanks GØDVJ.
Restored missing information in Cabrillo export for RSGB UKAC contest. Thanks GØDVJ.
QSOs that are not needed multipliers, are not needed (for points) QSOs, and are not duplicates, are labeled *** NO-VALUE QSO *** with zero QSO points in the QSO Information string.
The Pass Information window is updated whenever QSO status changes, rather than only when the call entry field is unfocused.
Receive exchanges are guessed for new activities, so that internet spots that are multipliers can be identified in contests where the multiplier isn’t know from the call alone.
Needed QSOs is now the default filter for Activity tables.
The new Log ▶ Grab Pounce Frequencies command copies the frequencies of the pounce entry well to the run entry well.
Handling of K3 radio split frequencies has been revised to enable more fluid SO2V operation with the run and pounce wells.
An expensive reconstruction of the internal list of known calls when rebuilding a log after editing a QSO has been recoded to significantly reduce SPOD duration.
Editing a logged call which is not in the SCP database now removes the call from the internal list of known when the log is rebuilt.
Tabbing in the Me preferences pane was getting stuck in the Email field. Thanks GØDVJ.
Cabrillo export for the SPDX contest was missing the sent serial information. It seems to me that I’m spending a great deal of time dealing with export challenges caused by unique sponsor-defined Cabrillo QSO record formats. That’s making me testy, so beware of asking me about ADIF export.
This release is not able to read log files created by prior releases.
SkookumLogger keeps track of any combination of six kinds of multipliers: Country, Locator, Other, Prefix, Region, and Zone. The log table has columns for each kind of multiplier; only the relevant columns for a contest are shown. Country multipliers are determined from the cty.dat database, for the ARRL DXCC list, the WAE Country list, or both. Locator multipliers are Maidenhead “grid squares,” determined by an intricate lookup scheme involving the QSO locator entry field, possibly a user-supplied list of calls and their locators, and the cty.dat database. Region multipliers are contest-specific lists of multipliers like states, counties, oblasts. Other multipliers are like Region multipliers, for handling contests that have two multiplier lists, such as states and counties. Prefix multipliers are formed from call signs using the CQ WPX definition of prefixes. Finally, the Zone multiplier is either CQ zone or ITU zone depending on the contest.
SkookumLogger displays checksheets for each of the six kinds of multipliers. A checksheet lists all of the possible multipliers, with checkmarks for bands and modes where you have worked them. Exception: the prefix checksheet lists only prefixes that you have worked at least once. Checksheets for multiplier types that do not apply for a contest are disabled. Exception: the Locator checksheet is useful in contests where locators are not multipliers but are part of the exchange; in those cases the checksheet shows worked locators.
SkookumLogger keeps track of a sent exchange and a received exchange for every QSO. An exchange has some combination of these fields: call, check/age, club status, club name, info, locator, name, power, precedence, report, serial, zone. The QSO data entry wells have text-entry fields for the received exchange components relevant to the chosen contest. The Log Settings sheet similarly shows fields for the sent exchange components. The Log Settings sheet also shows the Morse exchange message derived from the sent exchange components with placeholder tokens for report, serial number, and so on.
The Log Settings sheet has a popup list at the top, next to the contest name popup, that lists event information for the chosen contest. The event information includes contest dates in the current calendar year, and the mode(s) and band(s) for each date. Choosing one of the events sets up information for the Time Tracker, and defines the available mode and band choices in the Cabrillo Category popup lists.
Double-clicking on a log table row, in any column other than Notes, transfers the information for that QSO to the Pounce data entry well and changes that well to Edit status. Any changes made in the data entry wells are immediately reflected in the log. You can also change the mode and/or frequency of a QSO by changing the radio mode and/or frequency while the Edit well is active. When you press return or choose Log > Clear QSO while the Edit well is active, the Edit well reverts to Pounce and the log is rescanned to pick up the possible effects of edits on dupes and multipliers. You can toggle back-and-forth between the Run well and the Edit well (Log ▶ Toggle Active Entry Well) to interleave making new QSOs and correcting old ones. You can edit Notes for logged QSOs directly in the table, as before.
The QSO Information window has been replaced by the Pass window. The title of the Pass window shows the call for the current QSO and a matrix of checkmarks showing the bands where you have worked the call and the multiplier(s) for that call. Use the empty cells in the matrix to decide whether or not to ask the station to QSY to another band or mode.
Morse messages recognize new token, the tilde character (~), as a placeholder for “my call.” Message preferences now use this token for the F1, F3, and F4 messages.
The calls of activities arriving from the internet are cleaned up using an algorithm provided by K1EA. The algorithm discards useless /suffixes and repairs obvious typos involving oh and zero.
The display of serial numbers in the log table is padded on the left with zeros as needed to show at least n digits, so that exchange information is vertically aligned. The number of digits, n, is determined by the Serial Number Precision item in the Logging preferences panel.
The code related to implementing contest rules has been massively revised to simplify maintenance and ease adding new contests. Only a subset of the prior rule sets have been migrated to the new scheme. The others have been removed from the contest names list until their time arrives.
Updated the ICOM radio module. Thanks WD7K.
Updated the Kenwood radio module. Thanks JH5GHM.
The Log ▶ Show QTC Window is a never-enabled placeholder for WAEDC.
Modified FT-847 module to work reliably with microHAM USB II/III interfaces. Thanks GØDVJ and G6NHU.
Improved extraction of prefixes and duplicate detection for calls containing suffixes like /P. Thanks GØDVJ.