MacOS X (Intel) native, that is. It only took my last Mac laptop, a
2003 epoch Powerbook
capable of running the MacOS 9 “classic” emulator, going belly up
(fried CPU board) to motivate me sufficiently to invest the time
bring UMBRAPHILE into the 21st century. UMBRAPHILEX has
been tested for MacOS X up to and including version 10.5.7 or
automated eclipse imaging.
DOWNLOAD the most recent
version of UMBRAPHILEX (.zip
file) -> HERE
The "Classic" UMBRAPHILE page describes and details the basic use and
functionality of the application.
closely replicated the flavor, feel and functionality, of the "Classic"
UMBRAPHILE in the (Intel) MacOS X version. Anyone with
an Intel- (or PPC) based Mac laptop who may want to consider automating
eclipse photography can download thet current (2009A-RT001) version.
The classic version of the S/W (most recent 2006 B) still
work pre-Intel Macs with classic (Mac OS 9) environments. An
UMBRAPHILE data file for TSE 2009 can be downloaded on the UMBRAPHILE
2006B page. At this juncture, all future development for
UMBRAPHILE will be for MacOS X machines. "Classic" users (native
or in a classic shell in Mac OS X on those machines which support that)
can continue to use the 2006 B version of UMBRAPHILE.
With UMBRAPHILE X, you will find lots of little things that are a bit
mention just the important ones here so anyone interested can
understand how to get it up and running with their camera
interface. The primary camera interface philosophy remains
unchanged. I.e., to drive the shutter control line of any camera
an electronic/electrical shutter interface you will need to build a
SIMPLE circuit such as shown on the above referenced web
That circuit needs to be hooked up to a MacOS X computer through a
USB-to-serial port converter, such as the Keyspan Twin Serial Adapter
USA-28XB (that is the one I use, but other similar ones should work)
plugged into a USB port… and the driver for the adapter
Keyspan’s drivers are here: http://www.keyspan.com/downloads .
USB-to-Serial adapters made by other vendors may also work (I just do
not have first-hand experience with them).
NOW… Here are main the differences:
1. USB-to-Serial Port Device
With the adapter plugged in, you need to tell UMBRAPHILE the
name of the USB-to-Serial adapter device you are using. The
device (adapter) will automatically “register” itself with MacOS
X when plugged in, but UMBRAPHILE won't know what device that
is until you tell it. There is a new Umbraphile menu item to SET
USB PORT to do that. The simplest way to get the name of the
device (once it is plugged in) is to open a terminal window (e.g.,
launch the Terminal application from the Mac finder) and type the unix
command: ls /dev
You will see a long list of terminal "tty", "pty" and other device
names. If you
are using a Keyspan 28X adapter look for a name (or names if a
multi-port adapter) like: tty.USA28X3d1P1.1
The numbers may be different but should be easy to spot. This is
the name you need to specify in the Umbraphile SET USB PORT dialog
box. When you do that you may need to prefix that with
/dev/ so what you enter is, for example: /dev/tty.USA28X3d1P1.1
. There is a default device name in the dialog (to show you the
syntax) that you probably will need to edit with the name of your
Umbraphile wont be able to talk to your
camera(s)). NOTE: One UMBRAPHILE user (Joel Moskowitz) reports
that with his different model USB-to-Serial port converter, when the
device is plugged in, it registers port names with both a "cu" and
"tty" prefix; and only the "cu.PORTNAME" device works - and the
tty.PORTNAME device (which also shows up in /dev) will cause
UMBRAPHILEX to "hang". I have no "fix" for that. If you
give an incorrect port name (that is not in /dev) UMBRAPHILEX will let
you know - but if you give the name of a port that does not function as
UMBRAPHILE expects it may hang the application, and you will need to
"Force Quit" from the MacOS Finder and try the "other" port name (if
more than one).
2. Interrupting an Exposure
Sequence In Progress and "Unhiding" the UMBRAPHILEX Menu.
To interrupt an UMBRAPHILEX automated eclipse imaging
controller, or the intervelometer* sequence in progress,
progress you have to:
(a) click anywhere in the main UMBRAPHILEX window
(b) select INTERRUPT from the Umbaphile menu OR hit "Command" +
In either case you must FIRST click in the UMBRAPHILEX window to "bring
seem a bit cumbersome; but is done so you won't accidentally interrupt
an exposure sequence in progress with a simple mis-stroked key (which
could be quite disastrous during totality!).
Can't find the UMBRAPHILEX menu? The
Umbraphile menu will be "hidden" (removed from the menu bar), unless
you bring the main UMBRAPHILEX window "forward" by clicking on
it. If you are using UMBRAPHILE and don't see its menu, that is
why – just click in the main window.
3. New Camera Control
Parameter (entered in data file): DEPULSE.
There is a new camera control parameter in the Umbraphile data file
in the Camera Controller section called DELPULSE. In UMBRAPHLEX
this replaces the ZEROPULSE parameter (still needed in the "Classic"
version of Umbraphile, but ignored in UMBRAPHILEX) . You will still see
in the template
01AUG2008 Umbraphile data file zipped up with the Intel MacOS X
application (or separately downloaded). DELPULSE, like some of
the other camera-specific
parameters may need some tuning, but generally should be about 10% less
than the MINCMD value as documented on the "classic" umbraphile web
That's it except to say thanks to Simon Marsden of Micro APL Ltd. For
his help in enabling a critical piece of the MacOS X S/W interface
within the UMBRAPHILE code.
12 June 2008
The latest version on UMBRAPHILE X, 2009A-RT001, was released on
24 May 2009. This release:
a) fixes an earlier reported incompatability with (some) Keyspan
USB-to-Serial device drivers limiting exposure duratiaons under
native MacOS X 10.4-10.5 to < 1.024
b) adopts ecomputational elements for the 22 July 2009 TSE as the
default set for the computation of eclipse circumstances
(others can be imported as before).
c) provides a new data/camera control parameter file for TSE 2009.