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I agree

Now starting on the new AstroBin equipment module

12 Dec, 2018 03:14
My other comment related to the camera lens category is that, for the equipment search to be meaningful, the information section has to allow easier inputs for aperture stops (and focal lengths for zoom lenses).  This probably has less to do with ACEI, but can have important consequences to those who search and want to understand the performance of a lens. Without knowing the aperture used by the photographer, even if I can find an image taken by a certain lens, I can't judge its performance.  I personally always write down the aperture I used in the image description, but not many people remember to do so.  I hope this can be implemented somewhere.

Finally, I can volunteer to review the equipments.
12 Dec, 2018 21:29
I support the argument of Wei-Hao that knowing the applied aperture stop of a lens is significant to judge the performance of a lens.
If possible, please implement a field with this specific information, as it was also proposed earlier here:

14 Dec, 2018 02:11
As a widefield camera lens shooter, I second  (third ?) Wei-Hao's points.

I believe the gear database deduplication and organization will be a fantastic improvement to this website. Thank you Salvatore for the hard work! If I can help in any way possible, I'd gladly be a equipment reviewer.
12 Mar, 2019 17:24
Salvatore Iovene
I actually have a lot to comment on, but I don't quite have the time now. One thing I did want to touch on now, though, was the filter stuff here. I think we should allow for more flexible filter selections. This list seems very restrictive. As someone who has been exploring different filter options, and has also been exploring Hubble image data, the listed filters here do not really cover much.

For one, a lot of people share Hubble data here, and Hubble has a wide range of very specific filters for its data. Being able to choose which Hubble filters you used in your own processing would be very useful. There are also image databased from other telescopes around the world, and many of these telescopes use different kinds of filter sets. Some use an increased number of visible spectrum filters (I was just reading about one the other day that uses a 7-band filter set across the 390nm to 710nm visible spectrum range). It would be nice to be able to be explicit about which filters are used if someone shares an image from such data repositories.

There are also other kind of filters not listed here. Aside from your standard LRGB, there are also two key photometric filter sets: Sloan and UBVIR. These filters do not really line up with classic RGB color filters, and it would be nice to have the standardized Sloan and UBVRI filter names in the list. Further, there are other narrow band filters that people do use…such as NII. It is also possible to have NB filters made in other less common bands such as Helium, Argon, etc. that can and have been used for Planetary Nebula imaging. For solar system imaging, there are also additional types of filters that are often used, including a range of IR bands, UV, as well as various different kinds of visible spectrum filters.

Finally, there is no slot for LP filters listed here either.

I wonder if the choice being made here, to be highly specific, may not be the best choice? At the very least, I think we need more slots for filters. I wonder, though, if perhaps a more general approach could be used. Instead of OPTICAL_FILTER_R, OPTICAL_FILTER_G, OPTICAL_FILTER_B, perhaps we use generalized terms. OPTICAL_FILTER_C1, OPTICAL_FILTER_C2, …, OPTICAL_FILTER_Cn? And for narrow band, something similar…OPTICAL_FILTER_NB1, …, OPTICAL_FILTER_NBn? I am not sure how to extend that to other kinds of filters, though. Perhaps for photometric filters, instead of "OPTICAL", perhaps "PHOTOMETRIC"? Photometric filters are highly standardized, so we may be able to stick with explicit filter slots for them. SLOAN_U, SLOAN_G, SLOAN_R, SLOAN_I, SLOAN_Z, SLOAN_Y. For Johnson-Cousins filters, perhaps just JC_U, JC_B, JC_V, JC_R, JC_I.

Anyway…I like to accurately annotate my images. A very restrictive database…would pose a problem to that. It would force me to fit my accurate data into inaccurate data fields, and I feel that would be in ways a step back from what we have now.

I have more thoughts, including thoughts about how to make a more organized database, without being so tightly restrictive. Using things like synonyms to allow more flexible data input, while still organizing information under a more organized moderated database.
12 Mar, 2019 21:53
Jon Rista
There are also other kind of filters not listed here.
Thank you Jon for bumping this thread. I somehow missed it in December. I agree that the specificity of listing different kinds of filters at the subcategory level could potentially create problems. It depends on how this classification of equipment is implemented though. To my eye it would make more sense to have just: EQUIPMENT_ITEM_SUBCATEGORY_OPTICAL_FILTER = "OPTICAL_FILTER" and stop there. For instance, telescopes are not further broken down in to: refractors, reflectors, cassegrains, etc. at this subcategory level, so why should filters?

There are other potential questions like this that would need to be resolved. For example, currently there is one subcategory for field correctors and one for focal reducers. Where would I place a reducer/corrector? Can a piece of equipment live in two subcategories? Again, I don't know if this is an important questions without knowing how categories and subcategories of equipment would be implemented on the site.

Salvatore Iovene
I don't have time to coordinate any of that, but I am willing to facilitate the content creation via a wiki/articles section.

Hi Salvatore. I know you are busy with many things, and I appreciate all your work on your site. If you did create a wiki/articles section, I would be happy to contribute to it, and I do think there is a need for that on AB. For example, I've been working in GoogleDocs with other IOTD staff, but if we had a wiki on the site, I would gladly switch to that!!

Salvatore Iovene
Any volunteers for the review team?

I gladly volunteer for the review team. I am an academic librarian so I love researching/ organizing information and this is something I would be very excited to help out with.  smile
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