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New logging software PyLogJam optimized for portable ops, in Beta testing

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by KE4ET, Apr 6, 2021.

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  1. KE4ET

    KE4ET XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Hello everyone,

    Screenshot from 2021-04-06 15-45-13.png

    I figured I'd go ahead and make a broader announcement for PyLogJam. This is a logger I've written in Python 3 and licensed under the GPL, so it is free. It is designed to be the fastest logger around, being optimized for dealing with pileups during portable operations such as POTA and SOTA. However it doesn't require one to be portable to use it. The interface is very minimalistic, and some of the fields figure out what you've entered and put the entries into the appropriate log fields.

    PyLogJam produces an ADIF format logfile for submission to LoTW, your POTA coordinator, or whatever use you have for it.

    PyLogJam runs on anything except Apple phones and tablets. Apple broke part of Python 3 as I found out after the development effort was well under way. Bad Apple! I'll have to rewrite to support these, but Apple laptops etc are fine.

    I've been using the program myself for a number of months and have over 3500 contacts with it on over 40 POTA activations over the past eight months. The program has been evolving over that time, and mid February I opened it up to Beta testers. Right now I have 23 Beta testers using various OSs including one using an Android phone.

    I can provide the program to additional people who would like to give it a try.

    If you want to run pileups very quickly without having to think about your logger, as fast as you can type the callsigns, this just might be what you are looking for. The interface is intuitive and should require almost no learning curve. A few minutes getting familiar with it is all you need to be ready to run pileups. There are no configurable options.

    The You field takes your callsign. And, if you have a special event callsign or something similar, put a comma and then that callsign. Both callsigns will be used in the logfile.

    The Here field input is optional. It can take a comma separated list of POTA park IDs, and a SOTA summit ID. Upper or lower case doesn't matter. Typing in the "-" in the POTA IDs is optional - the program will fix it in the log.

    The Info field input is optional. It takes a comma separated list of POTA park IDs, SOTA summit IDs, IOTA island IDs, signal reports, notes. Things which are recognizable are put into the appropriate logfile field for the contact, and everything else is put into notes. You can put the entries in this field in any order. For POTA, SOTA, and IOTA IDs, missing "-" will be added back automatically, and upper vs lower case doesn't matter.

    If the mode and frequency are incompatible, the program will highlight the Freq field yellow, and you will have to either change the frequency or the mode before the contact can be submitted. Right now the program only supports the US frequency allocations and band plan. I am looking at adding the Canadian frequencies and band plan in the future.

    You navigate between the fields using the Tab key. You submit a contact using the Return key, from any field. During rapid pileup operation, just type each callsign and hit return. It's that fast and easy. IMHO, if you have to think about your logging program while operating a pileup, you're using the wrong logging program!

    If you close the program and reopen it within the same date and with the same You and Here, it will reopen the existing log file, read in the frequency and mode, update the counts etc, essentially behaving as if the program was never closed. So you can take a break in operations, shut everything down, have a meal, and start back up if you wish.

    The current released version is 0.6.2. 0.6.3 will be adding optional signal reports to the Info field. Other updates are TBD. One future update will be for operator entered mode. This should be in 0.6.3 or 0.6.4. Currently I release a Beta test version about every two weeks. I've been adding features requested by the Beta testers. So if you want to have any influence on a logging program, become a Beta tester!

    The Instructions are primitive but sufficient for now. I'll make them more professional for the full 1.0.0 public release.

    When the Beta testing is complete, I'll host it somewhere so everyone can grab it rather than having me email it to them.

    Gerald KE4ET

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