About FlightTrack in general
Is there a list of future features?
I have lots of ideas of new features for FlightTrack but little time to
develop them. Among those features are (in no particular order):
- Ability to manage waypoints.
- Support for more logger devices. This means that people help me
because developping a driver for a device you don't have at hand is not
easy and takes a lot of time.
- More geographic features on the 3D view
- Airspaces and airports
- ... and many other
In what language is FlightTrack written?
FlightTrack is a mix of pure C++ code and Objective-C++. The core of FT
use exclusively C++ while the interface is based on the Cocoa framework
and therefore Objective-C. In order to communicate with the C++ core,
the interface has to be written in Objective-C++.
Will FlightTrack ever run
under Linux, Windows...?
Since the beginning, I thought that having FlightTrack running under
Linux would be nice. The development on a linux branch has not started
yet. It would be great if the GNU C++ compiler worked with
Objective-C++, since I could use the GNUStep project and compile
FlightTrack under Linux with only little code change.
In the mean time, you can check KFlog
These two program have something in common with FlightTrack.
Regarding Windows, I'm not a fan of this system and there are already
plenty of alternatives.
About the 3D view
How do I change the 3D view?
The 3D view is controlled through your mouse and the buttons in the top
right of the main window.
- When the first button is selected (Rotate), clicking and dragging
the mouse in the 3D view will rotate the tracks and terrain around the
center of the screen.
- The second button (Translate), is used to move the center of the
terrain relative to West/East and North/South position. This allows you
to position the center of the view on a particular point.
- The third button allow you to translate the terrain along the
- The last button allows you to Zoom in or out. Dragging the mouse
up will zoom in and dragging it down will zoom out.
If you have a 3-button mouse with a wheel, you can access all these
functions without worrying about the buttons:
- Left button: rotate
- Right button: set center altitude
- Middle button: set center position
- Scroll wheel: Zoom in/out
Why does the terrain looks
good under a small track and bad under a large track?
The current way the terrain is rendered is with a constant number
points (vertex). Therefore, if the area covered is large, the
of the terrain will be quite low. The amount of points used can be
adjusted in the preferences. Setting a value too important (more than a
few hundreds depending on your system) will make FlightTrack very slow.
About logger devices
How do I download tracks from my Garmin GPS?
Garmin GPS should be set to GARMIN host mode. The speed selected in FT
panel should match the speed indicated on the GPS. For Garmin GPS, this
is usually 9600 bps (this partly explains why it is so slow).
One all this settings are correct, you just have to click the Download
button. Once the download
is over, clicking the OK
will add all the tracks to the view.
How do I download tracks
from my MLR SP 24XC GPS?
Serial port of the GPS should be active and the protocol set to NMEA.
There are several NMEA modes, I used the one that says NMEA183 2.0.
Other probably work too. The speed only has to be set in the FT
interface. Supported speeds are 19200 and 38400 bps.
How do I download tracks
from my Brauniger IQ Compeo / Flytec 5030?
In order to download from Brauniger IQ Compeo (also know as Flytec
5030), the speed should be set to 57600 baud and the device set to the
page of the flight to download (menu mode).
How do I download tracks
from my Palm?
works with a special software called GPS Logger. You can have more
information about and download it on this page: http://mitglied.lycos.de/pnolle/
. Unfortunately, the current version (0.61) has a bug. The flights are
never really erased from the Palm. Even if you erase the flights with
the program, they will remain in the Palm memory and you won't be able
to download your latest flights. At least that's what it does on my
III. The workaround I use is reinstalling it each day I plan to use it.
Besides this, it is very useful because it allow you to log position +
altitude with a 4 seconds period with any GPS able to output data in
NMEA format (probably all of them do). Given the memory of Palm
you can log hours of flight.
download the tracks into FT, you have to select the Send Data...
menu in the Palm
application, Set the output format to Standard
set the baud rate to whatever you want but make sure it is the same on
the mac. Leave hardware handshake on. Then press the Download
button in FT and within 10
seconds, press the Send
for trackpoints on the Palm.
About Digital Elevation
Model files (DEM)
I have downloaded the DEM
file but the terrain doesn't show up under my track
the DEM file is recognised, it will appear in the list when you select
"Show DEMs…" in the Options menu. One important thing to know is that
terrain will not show up if the DEM file does not cover at least 10%
more than the area covered by the track.
If the terrain does not show up, make sure that you have properly
followed the instructions on the DEM page
might have to directly download the header file (usually performed by
pressing Control and clicking on the hyperlink) so as to avoid line
endings from being converted by your browser. This would lead to an
unusable file. You can also make sure that unix file endings are used
by using a tool such as BBEdit Lite (free).
How do I use a map that was not downloaded using FlightTrack ?
For details on how to use map, please go the the Maps
I selected a map that matches the displayed area but it does not
There are a few lingering bug that appear randomly with maps. What
happens is that the map does not appear above the terrain even though
it is properly calibrated. This can also happen when switching to full
screen. in order to avoid this bug, resize your FlightTrack window to
the minimum size, select the 'More compatible
scaling' option in the Maps Info window and select the map again.