I have more than 30 years experience with computers over this time I have used a variety of operating systems including Linux, Windows and Apple Mac. I have written many computer programs in association with the research and development I have been involved in. This includes control software, data logging, database query's, data manipulation and interpretation and web development.
I became interested in programming along with electronics at the end of the 1970's when as a teenager I was playing with new ideas in electronic music. My first project was a very simple synthesizer sequencer using a Jupiter Ace controlling a Transendent 2000 synthesizer which I built (and is still working). These days so much software is around to do this kind of thing, but back then unless you were rich or Jean Michel Jarre you did not have access to sequencers etc.
Projects have included :-
I believe that I have one major advantage over pure programmers in that I often understand the science involved in the project, so am better able to provide a usable solution.
The image on the right is a screen shot from a piece of software called Phi-Drive, it was designed to drive a cheap benchtop microwave plasma system. This program was written in Lazaraus that is an open source clone of Borland's Delphi programming language which is an object orientated version of PASCAL.
One of my main interests over the years has been computer control. I have had to develop some of the signal conditioning electronics for projects I have been involved in. The module on the left is a prototype signal conditioning interface that I designed and built for the benchtop microwave plasma source. This required a range of sensor outputs to provide a 0 to 10v singal for a analogue to digital convertor that interfaced to the computer
Manda is a suite of programs that monitors and controls electrical generator and power grid functions.Features include:
We have two version of Manda up at the moment. Stable long term This is running 24/7 in the Jemelec Ltd test bay in the U.K. We have now had versions running for two years and unless we make a change that cause a crash they have run reliably. Bleeding Edge A version where you can see how Manda is developing, this is the version we are debugging and adding features, so it will not be up all the time.
This is an image showing a proof of concept program written in Jython to display the information from a UV spectrometer. It is clearly not a finished GUI
This program was written because the supplied software did not have a facility to change the sensitivity of the spectrometer which was essential for us as we were looking at variable and intense plasma sources. What we were supplied with was a set of drivers written in Java that allowed for much greater control of the spectrometers parameters over the manufacturers program.
This kind of application always starts with a proof of concept. It is not just about writing the software, you have to understand the whole process of data capture and communication. It is vital that the program can capture your data accurately and reliably. The nice GUI comes after, together with testing, testing testing!
This program was originally developed for a company I was working for that was looking for analysis techniques for Bio-diesel. I was then asked to develop a version for the plethaea of old HPLC units out there that are not computer controlled. The program collects data from analogue output of the HPLC that would normally go to a chart recorder.
The program in written in Lazarus and is currently being updated for use with the windows 10 and the latest versions of Linux.
Over the years one of the most annoying things I find about computers and data is finding the information I want. You put stuff in folders so you have it safe, but then when you want some information you completely forget you may have already got it and go search for it again. The solution is to use a database, but the problem with databases, especially on the web is that they tend to become bloated with features you will never use and the whole thing just gets slow.
I remember years ago using a simple but effective, if not very user-friendly piece of software that created a simple searchable record. With that kind of thing in mind and because one client wanted a simple to use easy accessible database I started to develop SciBase.
O.K. So there are many tools out there that do this, so why do I bother? Simple, I wanted something that worked for me in the real world. I wanted it to be usable, flexible and stand alone. I have versions that allow me to create a searchable record for academic reference with links to the the source, this kind of thing is essential for researchers.
This program is very much in development in my spare time, but if the interest is there I will make it available for download for a small donation.
This program was written as a response to a particular problem, if you have a problem that you think requires a programming solution please contact me to discuss the possibilities.