Problem upgrading databases

It has been brought to my attention that my code which upgrades database schemas is dud! This will affect you if you are trying to open a database created in v0.0.1.x of Nature Recorder or if you have downloaded a fresh copy of the template databases, and the program will say “Opening Data” and then hang.

I’ve identified and fixed the bug and will make available v0.0.2.4 at the weekend (incorporating a couple of other minor bug fixes), meanwhile if you are trying to create a new database using the templates on the website I have updated these so you can download fixed versions.

Apologies for the inconvenience but this is why we do test versions!

Website updated… v0.0.2.3 available

Further to my post of yesterday, my web host is back playing nice and so I’ve been able to get the new release back online. Check out http://www.naturerecorder.com and download v0.0.2.3 to get the major changes since v0.0.1…

You can now create and edit real locations rather than being tied to the dummy Site A, Site B, Site C from the earlier releases.

I’ve had a small number of people using the new features for a while but I’ve finally got it to a point where I’m happy for a wider audience to have a play.

This marks a major extension to functionality and brings it much closer to a system you can actually use for real recording.

Further developments are on the way.

v0.0.2.3 ready… shame about the website

OK… after months of delays and slow progress due to other factors, v0.0.2.3 is ready to go… and in fact I’ve uploaded up to the website www.naturerecorder.com.

Only problem is that my web host have been suffering some problems and it seems they are still ongoing… despite the fact that the download is there, you cant (at least at the time of writing) see it.

Bugger.

I will try and get through to my web host tomorrow and if there’s no joy then I will upload it to a temporary location on another site until EUKhost get their acts together.

Apologies – wrong kind of work on the tracks

Many apologies to those waiting for 0.0.2.0… progress has been a little slow lately.

The day job has been very hectic with many deadlines over the last three months plus an internal reorganisation meaning I have had to hand over my team and workload to another manager and prepare to pick up a new team myself.

This has meant a few long days (and weekends) and i’ve not had chance to move things forward like I’d like to, however there have been some fairly big steps forward in the codebase that I’ve had a few guys testing in earnest before I roll them out to the world (there are over 100 users already – not too bad for an alpha release!)

It will probably be another couple of weeks before i manage to get to where I want to be for the next release so please bear with me and we’ll get there as soon as possible.

As a side thought – I’ve had a few requests later for functionality to support other realms of nature such as butterflies etc. The program is designed in such a way that it can be used with virtually no modification (just a different taxonomy database) for any order of creatures.

If this is something you’d be keen on please let me know and I’ll try and schedule a release that incorporates butterflies, mammals etc.

More lists….

Version 0.0.2 is undergoing some preliminary testing with a couple of crack testers to iron out any glitches with managing regions and locations, but should be available for public consumption very soon.

As well as location managment there are a few lists coming along to help you understand your data.

I mentioned in an earlier post you can see your life list, plus regional lists, however I’ve added to that some comparitive lists…

Image

So now… you can compare your life list to your year list to help identify target species, and equally you can compare your current and past year lists to see where you’re doing well or not so well.

Anyway… v0.0.2 will be with us in a week or so…

Regional Lists – coming in v0.0.2.0

Just a quick update… coming soon in v0.0.2.0 is the ability to manage locations, and to produce lists on a regional basis taking advantage of the hierarchical nature of locations.

My own database is set up with the World at the top level and then beneath that is Europe (I haven’t made any real records of sightings outside of Europe), and beneath that the UK which in turn is split into England and Scotland, and England is split into the counties I have records for. The benefit of this hierarchy of sites is that you get multiple lists for free… add a report to Cresswell Pools and not only do all the records count for my Cresswell list but also for my Northumberland list, my England list, my UK list, my Europe list, my Life list and my Year list.

Now you can already report on species on a site-by-site basis, or globally via the Life List and Year List options but what you can’t do with the current release is report on *all* sites in a county, or a country, or a continent. That changes in v0.0.02.0 :

Lists dropdown

I’ve also made a change to the year list options – it now gives you the option of current or previous year’s year lists rather than just the current one. If there’s demand I can expand that to offer year lists for each year that contains any records within the database.

100 downloads!

Forgot to mention… according to the stats from the website (www.naturerecorder.com) i’ve now had 100 downloads – from different people not just upgrades. I have users in 11 countries on three continents – from Canada and the US – through Europe (UK, Sweden, Germany, Belgium, Spain, Poland, Russia and Turkey) to New Zealand.

Many thanks to all who have offered their time and constructive criticism (and touch wood so far all the feedback has been constructive)…

I’m aiming for a proper beta launch with a full set of usable functionality by Easter, through to a full lauch in the summer.

I say “full launch” – I’ll be wielding the full force of my corporate marketing machine (ie me) to publicise… so word of mouth is going to be important. At some point I’ll be drawing up a feature comparison between what I’m offering for free and what the commercial offerings have and I hope that will show in a favourable light what you get with Nature Recorder.

Thanks again for the invaluable support and encouragement- without the interest shown by people I’ve never met this project would never have got off the ground and I’d still be using a spreadsheet and shaking my head at what people expect you to pay for!

The next 12 months should be pretty exciting with lots of cool new stuff on the way including integration with Google Earth and Google Maps and online functionality to allow you to share your data if you’re in a club or just with your mates.