[eagle] Re: ACP questions on Eham forum

Michelle w5nyv at yahoo.com
Thu Jun 5 11:14:43 PDT 2008

Here's my thoughts on documentation and the challenges you are facing. 
I strongly prefer simple and completely configurable work areas. This usually means doing something on a server I know I'm going to have access to for the foreseeable future. For example, I do recording projects for another organization. After three server moves due to people quitting, deciding they wanted to use the space for other projects, or getting evicted because someone accidentally didn't pay the bill and no one could decide what to do about it, I moved everything to my own server and that worked until we combined sites and things were run well enough to where I could move the project to the organization's servers. Now they complain about disk space, so it's not perfect, but the lesson learned was if you need something to be reliably available, you may have to do it yourself. Depending on another person's server is like depending on borrowing a car for getting to work. Sooner or later, it won't be available, for often very
 legitimate reasons, like getting to the hospital. Sometimes not, like the car is still parked at the bar they went out last night to. Anyway, you get the point.
Simple in this case means that not all functions are going to be available. However, simple means it's easy to set up and maintain. 
OpenKM seems good for specific and/or closed teams. It's accounts-based, no? The good side of this is that it puts up a barrier to entry and prevents someone from checking out all your documents and doing whacky things with them for fun. The bad side of this is that it also provides a barrier to entry for interested persons or casual contributors, which are absolutely definitely desired and needed if the project is to be finished before the year 2025. Those casual drop-by, non-amsat people are high grade ore - especially the ones that are looking for just this exact hobby. It's not as useful as a public presence place for documents. Putting them there won't help the collaboration unless everyone has an account. 
The fact that the Eagle list was secret is one of the two reasons why namaste-dev was started. The other is that Eagle is about a satellite thingie, and I didn't want to piss off a bunch of people by hijacking the list for my own nefarious groundling purposes. 
I hate flying in airplanes. I don't like satellites. I don't like spaceships, have never wanted to be an astronaut, don't like the shuttle, and the ISS can suck it. I love ground stations. 
The goal with the website is to make all engineering documents available to anyone that wants to read them and then hopefully participate, and then archive all documents to amsat servers as soon as possible so that they're there, for the foreseeable future. The website continues to be the public front-end for the project, which allows anyone to interface with the developers, etc. and I'll maintain it as long as there is interest in the project. 
Setting up something like the ground station website for the payload project should be an easy thing to accomplish on the amsat server, if you don't have another one available. The amsat server already has stuff like subversion and trac on it. I'm happy to help solve the challenges in any way I can. Is there anything that you can think of that I can do to help? 
Making the Eagle list public should be easy enough, and would greatly help solve that issue. Your goal seems to be to publish the work that you are doing, and that's great news. 
 -Michelle W5NYV

----- Original Message ----
From: Matt Ettus <matt at ettus.com>
To: Michelle <w5nyv at yahoo.com>
Cc: Andrew Glasbrenner <glasbrenner at mindspring.com>; eagle list <eagle at amsat.org>
Sent: Thursday, June 5, 2008 10:12:38 AM
Subject: Re: [eagle] Re: ACP questions on Eham forum

> I have the powerpoint presentations from Matt, and I have a paper for the physical link that is based on the content of the presentations, but I don't have any other engineering work for ACP to show people or that can help us with ground station design. We need to see the results of payload engineering work in order to continue to make progress on the ground station. 

We have been running into a number of problems here --

- I have asked repeatedly for a Trac and subversion setup for a wiki and 
to post less formal documentation, actual code, sims, and other work.  I 
still don't know the status of it, but I am assured it either has 
materialized or will soon, along with a password for me to use it.  I 
presented an alternative outsourced service, and even offered to pay the 
bill, but that was vetoed.

- OpenKM is great, but it doesn't let you post python or matlab code, 
and isn't really the right vehicle for that anyway.  I have posted some 
documents there.

- Most of my team members are not on the Eagle list, and can't get on 
there because it is invite only, and the inviter has been hard to get a 
hold of.

- I have asked for an ACP mailing list as an alternative, but that 
hasn't happened either.

So developments have been proceeding informally and in [unfortunately] 
private email and phone conversations.  There is no desire to keep 
anything secret, closed, or difficult to find.


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