Feature Request - SPOTS integrated into the Spectrum Display

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  • Updated 3 years ago
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Please integrate SPOTS as a user selectable option into the spectrum display – so that spotted call signs show up -

Can you provide more information for this feature request. Where does the spotting data come from?

Currently I use two programs for contests and one for DXing;

1. VE7CC – as my source of spots because it has excellent filtering capabilities to limit both the spotting sources and spotted calls to ones that would be useful for the contest Or for those DX Spots that I need for DXing

2. Writelog Bandmap - this takes the spots from VE7CC and displays them on a visual bandmap. It has the extra benefit of display worked and unworked call signs in different colors and even mults in a different color

Where on the screen should the spots go?

3. Bottom of the screen.... (Writelog bandmap and CW Skimmer are pretty good examples of how to do it) Basically raise the line below where the frequency is displayed and insert a spotting window to display call signs.. in different colors (Worked, Unworked, Needed(Mult))

How do you handle a crowded band so that the spot data does not obscure spectrum data?

4. Bottom of the screen (below the spectrum)... Writelog has user selectable persistence so old spots disappear after a selected time (5 min, 10min, 15min, etc) – this prevents overcrowding.

How do you handle spot data when there are 8 panadapters on the screen, some of which may be displaying the same frequency spread?

5. Good Question... I suspect that users will want to have the display of spots on to be user selectable.
a. So rather than having spots on every display, I would like to see an option to select if spots are displayed on a particular panadapter

During a contest, to maximize my Q’s during a search and pounce, I use the Writelog bandmap exclusively.

Also for searching for rare DX, spotting window would be extremely useful

During contests, I want as few distractions and as few screens as possible on my screen...so if the spots were integrated into the spectrum display then it would be one less mouse movement to get to the spot.

It should be a user selectable option... if you don’t want it don’t click on it and the spots will not be displayed...

My dream is to have the ideal contesting machine...

Which I would envision to be the Flex 6000 spectrum screen with spots and logging integrated into the same screen

Not 2 different screens but one screen...

So to work a Q...you click the spot, the frequency changes and it is logged automatically.

That would require the minimum number of keystrokes and the minimum of mouse movements...

Frankly having an integrated spotting display would put the Flex 6000 series head and shoulders above every other radio for contesting.
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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Posted 5 years ago

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Photo of Richard Clafton W4/G7EIX

Richard Clafton W4/G7EIX, Elmer

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I like this idea. Something simple for me like being able to look at the whole band and see markers or an overlay with markers of different levels of opacity dependent on the age of the spot would be a nice addition to the Panadapter display. Toggleable of course.

If not integrated into SmartSDR itself, the ability to create a layer in SmartSDR over the panadapter using the SmartAPI in the future would be nice as this would be something a third party developer could easily provide and manage the code for. The nice thing about WPF is that you can easily add layers.
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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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This could be an exciting possibility, but seems to me that it would be very code-hungry. I would like to see something like this, but it would be very "down the pike" on the roadmap.
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Richard Clafton W4/G7EIX, Elmer

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Yup - agree. But as an option that a 3rd party developer could concentrate on and then also manage the connectivity with the dxclusters and other 3rd party data sources I think it would be a great addition as a plugin. This is the sort of tool/plugin I see coming thick and fast once the SmartSDR API becomes available once SmartSDR itself is a stable product.
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Santos Rodriguez

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Great idea!. Hopefully not so much "down the pike". This type of integration is at the heart of the "game changing" idea of the Flex6000 platform. I think.
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Michael - N5TGL

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I don't know about you guys, but I'd rather have a working NB, DAX and AM transmit capability LONG before having spots show up on the spectrum display. In fact, I'd rather have ALL of the roadmap in place before Flex were to start working on a spot display. There's "need to have" and "nice to have." We "need to have" a working NB. A spot display is "nice to have."

Besides, this functionality is available NOW with Ham Radio Deluxe. Start HRD, start Logbook, connect to a spot server and all the spots show up along the right side of the log screen. Open a log entry form and then double click on any of the callsigns in the spot list on the right hand side. The spot will be entered into the log form, and the radio will automatically tune to the spot. Pretty darn spiffy and works NOW.

I also want to clarify that I think this is a great idea, i'm not against the idea one bit. I just don't think it warrants being done before the released roadmap is finished, particularly since it can be done with 3rd party apps already.
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Richard Clafton W4/G7EIX, Elmer

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Could not agree more. I see these sorts of things as additions in the way of third party software not functionality that I would see built in to the "radio" or core Client as such. There is so much scope for third party applications that would seamlessly integrate into SmartSDR.
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Burch Akin

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Yes, a better working NB would great.

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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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You are missing the point... I already use the various bandmap tools such as found in HRD, Writelog, CWSkimmer and Mixw. The issue is having multiple windows open at the same time... so you have to mouse over to that screen to switch frequencies...

I am looking for the ultimate contest tool... minimal mouse movements, minimal keystrokes...Yes I can do much of this in Writelog during a contest, but Writelog is limited in its bandmap...

It just would be a heck of a lot more convenient to have the spots integrated into the SmartSDR window....
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Richard Clafton W4/G7EIX, Elmer

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I have created this simple mockup of what I think you are suggesting (it's how I would visualize it working anyway - in the simplest possible form).

The more opaque callsigns are the ones that are the oldest, whereas the yellow spot is the latest. Hovering the mouse over a callsign would bring up the detail on the spot. Double clicking would jump to the frequency and mode.

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Howard -W6HDG

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I realize that this is an old thread.   I'm using NaP3 (PowerSDR variant), an LP-PAN2 with my Yaesu FTdx3000 and HRD6.   DX Cluster overlays were just added yesterday to NaP3 - see below.  I hope to see this soon on my Flex 6300 as well.  It is a handy feature.


(Edited)
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Michael - N5TGL

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Yep, that is pretty cool.
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Al / NN4ZZ

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Here is another display option to consider.  It is based on the idea to combine the panadapater/waterfall/skimmer for CW.  For the non CW-modes display the live spots instead.  Displaying the call signs below the waterfall would keep panadapter less cluttered.  Here is a link to the CW idea:

https://community.flexradio.com/flexradio/topics/pfskimer_what_is_the_possibility_for_a_smartsdr_display_that_combines_panadapter_waterfall_cw_skimmer
 
Regards, Al / NN4ZZ  
al (at) nn4zz (dot) com





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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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Clearly NaP3 with Spots integrated into the display BLOWS AWAY the Flex display for both Contesting and DXing.

Maybe the fact that the COMPETITION has this incredibly valuable feature will,spur Flex into action

I definitely prefer Spots on the display over CWSkimmer.
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Al / NN4ZZ

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Hi Ed,
My preference is to display the spots below the spectrum or waterfall rather than up in the spectrum part of the display.  This would keep the spectrum from being cluttered.   

On a related note, with all of these options "display persistence" is really a necessity.   Users should be able to select what they want to see (and NOT see)  by mode.  And using persistence, the system should remember the setting.  Some examples:

- Panadapter spectrum only
- Panadapter spectrum and waterfall
- Panadapter spectrum, and live spots (spots below the panadapter spectrum display)
- Panadapter spectrum, waterfall, and live spots
- Panadapter spectrum, waterfall, and Skimmer (for CW mode)
- Panadapter spectrum , waterfall, Skimmer, and live spots (for CW mode)

Regarding the last example, color coding could indicate when a call sign is from Skimmer or a Live Spot.

Options and Persistence should give everyone the display they want, for the mode they use.  
 
Regards, Al / NN4ZZ  
al (at) nn4zz (dot) com

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Gene - K3GC

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I am a new 6700 owner (it is still in transit).  I presently have a Yaesu FT DX500 with LP-Pan and NaP3 version 4.  The spot option on NaP3 is at this time the only thing I can identify that I will seriously miss.  I would favor a similar implementation to that used by NaP3.
It is a feature that once used you never want to lose it.
73,
Gene K3GC
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Barry N1EU

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Below is an NaP3 image from the ARRL 160M contest in full swing.  The only thing I'd do differently is have the spotted callsign text be oriented vertically, extending upward from the spectrum, and have the font size be user configurable.  (click on the image to enlarge)



73, Barry N1EU
(Edited)
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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Now that the API for SSDR Has been released into the Wild, maybe some innovative programmer will write the code to integrate Spots. Into the display.