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Primary and Alternate ID's
#1
Is there some reason that the Primary ID is not always the catalog number?  It's a bit clunky if I'm looking for, say, a Messier object, and I have to first sort the primary ID column and scan it, and then sort by the Alternate ID column and scan a second time.  

Other thoughts - would be handy to have a search function for the target list - i.e. if I entered M45 it would bring up that target regardless of which column the characters M45 were in.  

Perhaps filtering results by column values in general (like Constellation) but a single field, search everything would probably suffice and might be easier to fit into the UI.

Cheers,
Rowland
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#2
Hi Rowland,

You have complete control over how designations work. See the Designations tab of the Preferences (top level Setup dialog).

It is always important to use the right tool for the job. If you want to look up an object, use the Designation Search tool. Searching for specific targets in a target list does not fit into the purpose of the Target Selection Tool... remember it is meant to be used to select target objects, and it is focused on that purpose.
Clear skies,
Greg

SkyTools Developer
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#3
Hi Greg,

I missed that capability in the Advanced tab of Preferences -> Designations. That's a nice way to prioritize the presentation of the formal catalog designations for an object.

I'm not sure it actually addresses my issue though, which is wanting to sort and scan one column in the target list to find an object. Since not all objects have all designations, it seems that a particular designation may appear in either column. I typically think of my targets as having a catalog designation and, optionally, a common name, e.g. "M42 - Orion Nebula." If I could specify Messier as top priority, and have the common name appear in a dedicated "Common Name" column, I think it would be easier to find things. Minor issue, just some food for thought.

I understand that the Designation Search tool is the best way to look up an object. My goal was to find something in the target list. I.e., to answer a question like "did I already add this to my target list?" As the list gets longer, a search of the list will be helpful. The Project Manager could use one too, as over time there will be a lot of completed projects that I will want to refer to.

Maybe I'm trying to use ST4 for something beyond your envisioned use case? My thinking was to use it as an archive of all my completed imaging projects as well as a list of all the interesting objects I encounter that I want to image in the future. And of course, to plan a night's observing schedule and keep track of the status of my ongoing unfinished projects.

Am I using the wrong constructs to organize these things?

Thanks,
Rowland
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#4
(2018-11-26, 02:17 AM)Rowland Wrote: Hi Greg,

Maybe I'm trying to use ST4 for something beyond your envisioned use case?  My thinking was to use it as an archive of all my completed imaging projects as well as a list of all the interesting objects I encounter that I want to image in the future.  And of course, to plan a night's observing schedule and keep track of the status of my ongoing unfinished projects.

Am I using the wrong constructs to organize these things?

Thanks,
Rowland

Yes, that is of course exactly what ST4 Imaging is for--on the whole. But the Target Selection tool is not a general purpose tool designed for every use imaginable. It is only meant for selecting new targets. No searching should be necessary if used the way it is intended. Once you filter the list, and want to create an imaging project for a target, it should be obvious whether or not you have already created a project for it.  

If you already know what target you are interested in, use the Object Info. It has every tool imaginable.
Clear skies,
Greg

SkyTools Developer
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#5
Hi Greg,

OK, I'll run with this as you suggest, I don't think it impedes my current use of ST4 as my lists are still small (one screen's worth at most). As my lists grow larger - completed projects, active projects, and hopeful targets, I think there are some use cases that might be expedited with a quick search capability.

Just to record them while they are fresh in my mind, these are the use cases I'm thinking about:

1) I keep the objects I want to image in the future in a single list, let's call it "Wishlist". Eventually it grows to quite a few pages. I see an image somewhere (Astrobin e.g.) that I want to add to my wishlist but I'd like to quickly determine if it's already there. I believe today I have two ways to do this - a) sort the Primary ID and Alternate ID columns and then visually scan for the object, or b) click Add Object, type in the object designation to find it, click "More Object Information," click "Target Lists" tab, and see if "Wishlist" is there. A quick search of the "Wishlist" would be a quicker way to answer my question, "is the target already on my list?"

I understand that Target Selection is just that, and by definition doesn't display everything in the list. So maybe, eventually, we need a "List Editor" function that lets me view and search a list?

2) I want to find a completed project for an object, say "M5." I was thinking I would move objects from my "Wishlist" to a "Completed" list once I had finished the project, and search the "Completed" list to find the project. Here again, a way to view and search the "Completed" list would be handy since the Target Selection pane is oriented toward selecting targets, not viewing the full list.

2a) Same goal - find a completed project for "M5." I use the Project Manager tool and leave only "Completed Projects" checked. I see that the function I want is there under the "Any Target Object" drop-down list. At first I didn't notice it because it looks like a list of object classifications - Galaxy, Quasar, etc. But at the bottom of the drop-down list there is a choice to "Select Specific Object." Choosing this, I can type in M5, and get my result. So the functionality I want is there, but a little hard to find. I'd like to have the ability to invoke this search visible on the main "Project Manager" tool. Perhaps a "Search" button to bring up the "Object Requestor" dialog?

Cheers,
Rowland
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#6
(2018-11-26, 11:50 AM)Rowland Wrote: Hi Greg,

OK, I'll run with this as you suggest, I don't think it impedes my current use of ST4 as my lists are still small (one screen's worth at most).  As my lists grow larger - completed projects, active projects, and hopeful targets, I think there are some use cases that might be expedited with a quick search capability.

Just to record them while they are fresh in my mind, these are the use cases I'm thinking about:

1)  I keep the objects I want to image in the future in a single list, let's call it "Wishlist".  Eventually it grows to quite a few pages.  I see an image somewhere (Astrobin e.g.) that I want to add to my wishlist but I'd like to quickly determine if it's already there.  I believe today I have two ways to do this - a) sort the Primary ID and Alternate ID columns and then visually scan for the object, or b) click Add Object, type in the object designation to find it, click "More Object Information," click "Target Lists" tab, and see if "Wishlist" is there.    A quick search of the "Wishlist" would be a quicker way to answer my question, "is the target already on my list?"

I understand that Target Selection is just that, and by definition doesn't display everything in the list.  So maybe, eventually, we need a "List Editor" function that lets me view and search a list?  

2)  I want to find a completed project for an object, say "M5."   I was thinking I would move objects from my "Wishlist" to a "Completed" list once I had finished the project, and search the "Completed" list to find the project.   Here again, a way to view and search the "Completed" list would be handy since the Target Selection pane is oriented toward selecting targets, not viewing the full list.

2a)  Same goal - find a completed project for "M5."  I use the Project Manager tool and leave only "Completed Projects" checked.  I see that the function I want is there under the "Any Target Object" drop-down list.  At first I didn't notice it because it looks like a list of object classifications - Galaxy, Quasar, etc.  But at the bottom of the drop-down list there is a choice to "Select Specific Object."  Choosing this, I can type in M5, and get my result.  So the functionality I want is there, but a little hard to find.  I'd like to have the ability to invoke this search visible on the main "Project Manager" tool.  Perhaps a "Search" button to bring up the "Object Requestor" dialog?

Cheers,
Rowland

Rowland,

All of these things that you are trying to do already have standard solutions, and the solutions provided work much better than the kludges that you are so creatively inventing! Please listen to me, as you seem to be going around and around on this: the Target Selection Tool is not the right tool to be using for most of these tasks.

Please tell me what you want to do and then I will provide you with the solution that has already been worked out.

1) It is fine to have a wishlist of objects that you have not yet decided to image, but if you really are going to image them, then I recommend taking them to the next step and create a project. Then allow them to be Scheduled when SkyTools says they are ready to be imaged. Don't make lists, make projects.

As for a specific target object, the Object Info has a tab that displays all of the Target Lists that an object appears in.

2) Use the Project Manager to look for completed projects. You can filter to show only the completed projects that are globular clusters and sort by designation. Finding M5 is easy.

Please spend some time looking at the Object Info as I already suggested. It has many very useful tools!

Target Selection = finding targets to image that you don't already know about
Object Info = exploring a target that you already know
Clear skies,
Greg

SkyTools Developer
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#7
Hi Greg,

Thanks for the detailed response. I have used the tools you mention quite a bit - I can't claim to know every detail, but I've been through most of them.

With your help, I think I've found everything I need to get things done. My own bias is to make frequently done tasks as easy (= few keystrokes / mouse moves) as possible, and that's what you're seeing from me in these posts. I know that's subjective and I won't harp on it.

Cheers,
Rowland
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