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PointBlank for Android features & Design discussion
Help / Support / How-to's / Discussion related to PointBlank Software and External Ballistics in general
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DallanC
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2011 2:04 pm    Post subject: PointBlank for Android features & Design discussion Reply with quote

So I have spent some preliminary time learning to program for the Android OS. At the moment, I have the ballistics engine from PointBlank working and generating proper data. There is much to learn still but the bare roots ballistics calculations from PointBlank is working.

What I need to design now is how much functionality we want in an Android version, so it comes down to a question of “use”.
IMO, it should at the very minimum:

1. allow ballistics calculations & data viewing

2. allow graphical target results tracking. Including shot strings and velocity info

3. allow data to be exported / imported back into PointBlank

I don’t believe it should retain the entire functionality of the PC version, primarily due to tiny screen size (phones). It should be a useful “at the range” type of tool. And I’m viewing this version in that light. Complex computations and data tracking should be done on the PC version.

As always however I welcome input from others. Hopefully we can identify all of the needs and wants up front and work that into the design from the beginning when its easier.

Lets hear your thoughts!

-DallanC
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Pumpkinslinger
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2011 2:27 pm    Post subject: Re: PointBlank for Android features & Design discussion Reply with quote

Dallan, I think you're on the right track! I don't think we need all of the bells and whistles for the "at the range" version. I'd be tickled to have a "stored load" that could be imported from the PC version along with an "entered load" you could input in the field and then save back to the PC. If you were using it while hunting you'd be using one load, at least 99% of the time. If you were testing loads at the range you'd have to enter at least some of your info anyway. Making the wind velocity/angle a enterable variable might be nice, if possible.

I haven't played with any of the available ballistics aps that I've seen (after reading the reviews) so I'm not sure what the other guys have done or have to offer.

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Ominivision1
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2011 2:51 pm    Post subject: Re: PointBlank for Android features & Design discussion Reply with quote

+1 what Pumpkin said.

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PaulS
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2011 8:22 pm    Post subject: Re: PointBlank for Android features & Design discussion Reply with quote

My phone doesn't have a screen... but it does have a cord that goes into the wall.
I think its great that you are taking on the job of putting together a version that will work on the phone - for those that have them but it is not something I see in my future.
Have fun with it!
Paul

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bigJake165
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 12, 2011 11:48 pm    Post subject: Re: PointBlank for Android features & Design discussion Reply with quote

I would like to see a full version for those of us who only have the android os tablets if that could be done
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MacD
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 11:58 am    Post subject: Re: PointBlank for Android features & Design discussion Reply with quote

I have looked at all the available Droid shooting apps @ Android Market. I even looked at developing my own apps. The PC version of PB is great for the heavy lifting of load development, record keeping etc. I am generally a stand hunter. In the field I want something that helps me make that one shot kill without punching in numerous variables while my prey wanders into the next time zone. At the range I am looking for a simple means to record results.

My ideal phone/tablet app for the field would:

1. Store my loads by firearm complete with computed trajectories by sight-in range just in case I change the range to suit the area I am hunting.
2. Allow me to use my mil-dot scope to compute range by inputting target size and mils or to input a range manually. Even better if it can store animal sizes by name.
3. Allow me to input once for the day, stand or location the environmental variables.
4. Allow a one button, choose the load - firing solution that gives windage and elevation adjustments or hold off/over points.

My ideal app for the range would allow me to simply record the information that I would need to input into PB back on my PC in a format I can import into PB. For me this is:

1. List the firearm(s) and load(s) as recorded in the PB database.
2. Allow for the input of environmental conditions with the option of inputting once or for each shot or string.
3. Input of the target/results data identical to that input into PB including range.

My last foray into the field I carried my .223 and four different cartridges each with a different bullet based upon my load development with this rifle. I want a quick answer to, 'yote, 1.5 mils, 60 grain Hornady, Load XXX or snowshoe hare, 200 yards,45 grain Nosler BT Load XXX. I want to be able to see adjustments or holdover so I can choose either based upon circumstances.

I would pay the going rate for this type of app without hesitation based upon my satisfaction with PB.

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Eremius
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Joined: Dec 04, 2011
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Location: Owosso, MI

PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 2:20 pm    Post subject: Re: PointBlank for Android features & Design discussion Reply with quote

I think ease of importation/exportation would be one of the key features. Possibly an option that can grab the data from your phone/tablet and sync it from the main PB app?

Edit: Incremental conflict resolution might be a good idea as well.
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Fireman_DJ
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 5:36 pm    Post subject: Re: PointBlank for Android features & Design discussion Reply with quote

Ease of syncing just gave me an idea.
Most computers have always on internet.
Most smart phones have always on internet.

What about using that to get cloud based calculations?
Enter the data in at the field and press compute. It transmits the basic data back your personal computer at home via the internet. Your home PC then computes the data with all it's power and then transmits back the basic results.

This would also sync your home PC and smart phone while allowing calculations that a smart phone just doesn't have the power to do.

I do have one major problem with the Android project.
I have an iPhone!!!
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DallanC
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 6:48 pm    Post subject: Re: PointBlank for Android features & Design discussion Reply with quote

Fireman_DJ wrote:
Ease of syncing just gave me an idea.
Most computers have always on internet.
Most smart phones have always on internet.

I'm already well into adding the feature to store data on the HuntingNut website (users choice of course).

Quote::
What about using that to get cloud based calculations?
Enter the data in at the field and press compute. It transmits the basic data back your personal computer at home via the internet. Your home PC then computes the data with all it's power and then transmits back the basic results.

A nice thought, but even using the max range and minimum step rate, the calculations only take a few seconds on any modern pc. I doubt a mobile user will be running as complex computations in the field. They want simplicity from what I've seen. Most people use a 500 yard max with 25 yard increments in their calculations. Using cloud based distributed computing is way overkill for it such use.

Quote::
This would also sync your home PC and smart phone while allowing calculations that a smart phone just doesn't have the power to do.

In the preliminary test program I have working on the android dev kit... I find it ok to use in a pinch, but any serious work will still be via the PC app due to easier interface and other features.

Quote::
I do have one major problem with the Android project.
I have an iPhone!!!

I am strongly concidering making the switch in the development kit I use to one that supports both iOS as well as Android. Unfortunately they are kindof pricey. I will explore it more when we get past Christmas and have time to work on the mobile version more.


-DallanC
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Fireman_DJ
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2011 8:57 pm    Post subject: Re: PointBlank for Android features & Design discussion Reply with quote

How much is pricey?
Would a "donate for the iPhone dev kit" appeal seal the deal?

That would pay for the dev kit in advance. Then you could set a sale price of $10 for the mobile versions, which also unlocks the PC version.

You could use the same unlock key system as for the PC version, meaning anyone who's already donated need not pay again (unless they want to).


Just had a couple of ideas. Not sure how much effort it would take nor how many people would want them, so don't take them as serious requests but rather as ideas you can use if you wish.

* Use the GPS and internet connection to calculate current altitude and atmospheric pressure (pressure at sea lever then calculated for altitude) and apply to the ballistics calculations.
* Use the GPS and compass to apply Coriolis drift correction calculations.
* Allow multiple wind inputs, with either precise or non-precise data entry.
A precise entry would be XX wind at XXX heading and as XXXX range, a non-precise entry would be a couple of picture options with a sliding bar. The grass picture for example for be straight up at slider position 0 and progressively bend over with stronger winds. (A series of animated pictures could simplify this).
Three wind measurements should be enough to calculate for long range shooting.
* Allow ranges up to 1500 yard/metre (I for one shoot at 1000 yards. I'm still having trouble learning the winds).
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Eremius
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Joined: Dec 04, 2011
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Location: Owosso, MI

PostPosted: Tue Dec 06, 2011 9:23 am    Post subject: Re: PointBlank for Android features & Design discussion Reply with quote

I would think, being in the field, the most important features I would use would be:

1) Ballistics chart
2) Adjustments for wind
3) Target grouping marking for loads (I believe I remember PB doing this)

and once you arrive back home:
4) Data sync
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ArXane
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 5:38 pm    Post subject: Re: PointBlank for Android features & Design discussion Reply with quote

Any update on Pointblank for Android?
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DallanC
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Joined: Jan 18, 2005
Posts: 2725
Location: Utah

PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 2:41 pm    Post subject: Re: PointBlank for Android features & Design discussion Reply with quote

Nothing to speak of. The GOOD news is my current project at my job is being extended, so it will give me a bit more free time to work on things like this.

I hope to work a bit more with it this weekend.


-DallanC
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