View Full Version here: : Observation logbook?
18-05-2012, 01:10 PM
Just wondering if anyone knows of or can recommend a logbook or template or something I can use for noting observations? Since I am just starting out, I'd like to cultivate some good habits from the start! :thanx:
18-05-2012, 03:32 PM
I'm sure you'll find that there are a multitude of ways that they guys and gals here log their observations. Here is a handy resource for hand written logbook templates that you might like:
I used to hand write my logs a long time ago on templates similar to the ones here. I had a bound book made up of observation sheets that I would keep at the telescope.
Others may use computers as their log books, using software like:
and many many more apps. I like Skytools, but still own Deepsky as well (it has a lot of my old observations in it). There is always the problem of preserving night vision if you use a computer at the telescope for logging observations. Some people like to use a red screen overlay.
I'd be interested to know if anyone is using an iPad to log their observations, and what software they're using to do it with.
In years gone by, I used to log my observations into a minidisc player using a headset mic, and then play my observations back into my computer the following day, letting Dragon Naturally Speaking turn it all back into text for me. It worked surprisingly well. That's how all of the observations in my copy of Deepsky came to be.
I expect to be logging my observations again in the future and will probably head down the same path (but probably using Skytools), as it allows me to speak my observations whilst I view the object, rather than looking away from the eyepiece to write things down.
Of course, if you like to sketch, that's a different story, and then the templates at the top of this post might be handy for you. There are some really talented sketchers on the forums here and I'm sure that they would help you with the templates that they use at the eyepiece if you wanted to sketch.
18-05-2012, 03:50 PM
Thanks Dean, I'll investigate all the suggestions you put forth! :thumbsup:
18-05-2012, 05:45 PM
I let my camera log my observations.
There is also a observing template in resources section of IIS
18-05-2012, 05:55 PM
I simply have a notebook that I keep. I note the date, time and weather conditions and how good/bad the transparency and seeing are.
I then note the objects catalogue number (NGC/IC or M number usually and a brief description, for example "GX (galaxy) in Virgo".
I then give a quick synopsis of how I found object by starhopping. This enable me to verify later that I have found the correct object. I then make some notes on its visual appearance and how it varies at different powers. If using different eyepieces or filters I note those also.
I have an excel database of all the NGC/IC objects that I have observed that I update regularly. It contains the dates of my observations so I can find my notes if I need to. I keep a copy of the printout in my observing kits so I can refer to it when at the telescope.
Anyways that's what I do. Others like to use computerised systems, but I find notebooks easier to use at the scope. To date I have notes on about 550 objects.
I use Astrobyte, it's a logging database that I find quite easy to use and can hold lots of notes and be added to in later sessions.
19-05-2012, 10:39 AM
I haven't seen that program before Ric. It looks great.
19-05-2012, 11:15 AM
The way I log is even simpler :), I made a Messier list, with all the numbers from M1-M110, all the images near the numbers and a seperate table where I would write if i had seen the object or not, or if it doesn't appear from my location.
19-05-2012, 12:51 PM
Like Malcolm I make rough notes at the scope on a plain sheet, type it up into a word document for the session and then copy that into a spreadsheet for all sessions. Very easy to find past notes and compare when I revisit an object or read someone else's notes.
19-05-2012, 07:24 PM
The astronomical league in the US publish a simple but good logbook, they have an online store
22-12-2012, 12:37 PM
I am currently writing a Database windows program in Visual Studios just for the Astrophotographer. I have all my tables up and running but still have a little bit to do yet. I want to make sure that it will run on 64bit OS. There really is not a lot out there in high end professional software just for the Astrophotograhper, and I have been using a excel book which I made up for my log book, but is cummbersome and dose not have enough scope.
I have been ill for awhile and stuck at home, so I decided to code one nice application dedicated just for the Astrophotographer. The program will have the targets information, magnitude, distance, photo etc..and the imaging sessions, including, frames, file type, Filters, Camera Temp, Exposure, Equipment and location and conditions.
It will also keep a data log of Photos of frames and final processed shots with appropriate fields for Calibration used, and Processing used.
This will take about 12 months to have it available to the public, after the programing, Formatting and a solid debbuging :)
I will release a demo as soon as it is up to scratch.
At this stage it will not have any features for control of camera's or mounts etc or a Planetarium. I would like to access any Astronomical Catalogues which proberbly will not be too hard to do at this stage, might add the others in another version.
24-12-2012, 12:13 PM
:) I just write it down is a note pad , I have about 1/2 a dozen of these filled up over the years and sometimes I just grab one at random and read thru it , its like a trip down memory lane .
So yes start a log book as we forget so much its scary :question: .
My writing looks like a Doctors script , now that's real scary :rofl: . but some drawings aint to bad . :thumbsup: .
28-12-2012, 08:13 PM
My programming is comming along fine and some of the formating is looking Ok :). I'm just making sure I have allowed for all types of input the user might like, such as the Sites current conditions, Equipment used, Site Location etc
I have included three screen shots of the program running, the secound screen shot I am not happy with the formating and look of but all the relevent info I think is available to the user.
Front end where you can select the target thats logged. It will have a default target for first time use.
This diplays the different dates and times and associated info for all different imaging sesions you have for the target The default will be empty for first time use.
This page displays the detailed information about a particular Imaging session as regardsto date and time. The default will be empty for first time use.
There will be a Detailed Photos page liked to this page.
I am currently working on the editing and saving of user the input Functions which will require a bit of code as far as validating the data :sadeyes: before being saved to the database. It will allow various picture formats including Fits to be saved to the database.
vBulletin® v3.8.7, Copyright ©2000-2013, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.