Sunday, February 18, 2007

Birth of an Icon

Inkscape is a cool, open-source and free program for vector graphics drawing. It produces output in the SVG (scalable vector graphics) format, which is human-readable XML, and which can be used directly in future web pages. (Version 2 of Mozilla/Firefox, for example.) Inkscape is available for Linux, Windows, and Mac OS X.

I'm not a graphics pro by any means, but I was able to put this program icon together without much trouble. This is for our new project at

Friday, February 16, 2007

New Rigserve Project on Sourceforge

Some of you know that I've been working on "Rigserve", which is meant to be a much streamlined server-style application providing much of the functionality of Hamlib. We avoid most of the cross-platform problems by defining our API over an IP connection, which is human-readable and even testable over Telnet. Rigserve is implemented in object-oriented style using Python, which should allow it to run on many platforms. I am not sorry to jettison low-level C, the GNU Automake stuff, SWIG, and all that!

We have talked about the relationship of this development to Hamlib. Should we think of it as a candidate for "V2 Hamlib"? Well, Rigserve is not a library, and there is no backwards compatibility. Rigserve does share some philosophy with Hamlib, but that's about it. I have concluded that it should stand on its own, but we should give full credit to the many folks who have brought us Hamlib as we have it today.

[There are some alternate approaches, too, such as XML rigCAT descriptions at . These may be useful to both Hamlib and Rigserve down the road.]

There is now a project at with a slightly updated version 0.21 available for download. The files are managed in the Subversion (SVN) repository.

I would welcome anyone who wants to contribute to rigserve to join this project. There shouldn't be a conflict of interest here, because the intersection of hotshot C and Python programmers is probably limited. Though I am neither(!), I will continue to support the TenTec Orion for Hamlib.

It has been interesting to start a Sourceforge project and to learn Subversion and the other tools. Frustrating, too, because SF's shell server and compile farm chose this week to go into meltdown. The project web page is at

73, Martin AA6E

Upgrading the Blog

I finally made the leap into the new Google-authenticated scheme on It was a good thing I did, because I found quite a number of user comments for the blog that were pending. All moderation requests were going to an obsolete email address.

Apologies to readers who made great comments along the way. They should now be posted.