Where: Control Panel Screen
Purpose: To save and load move data files in a "text" format which can be used by programmers to transfer move data to other motion-control and graphic systems.
Clicking this commands causes the screen to clear, and the following menu appears. Click on either the "SAVE ASCII FILE", "LOAD ASCII FILE, or "CANCEL" option.
After clicking either the "SAVE" or "LOAD" option, the procedure is similar to the "SaveMove" and "LoadMove" commands.
SAVE ASCII FILE
The "SAVE ASCII FILE" function creates a data file in text format. The first line contains the names of the axes the operator selected to save. All subsequent lines are move positions. Each vertical data column represents an individual axes, in the order shown on the first line. All lines are terminated by carriage-returnl line-feed combination. Here is an example of a "SaveAscii" file for the pan and tilt axes:
Axes = Pan, Tilt
Note that the first line of move data corresponds to the LED "marker frame."
In addition to the familiar "SaveMove" prompts, "SAVE ASCII FILE" produces one additional prompt box:
"SaveAscii" saves only one position per camera frame, regardless of the user's "DATA/VISUAL. setting. The prompt box shown above selects whether the data is to correspond to the axis positions when the camera's shutter is fully closed, or when the shutter is fully open. When data is to be transferred to a graphic system, use the "Center on Blurred Image" response, since this will produce the best match between photographed and graphic image - the graphic image will be centered on the image blur of the "live" photography. "Center Data of Shutter Closed" may be desirable when transferring data to other motion control systems.
LOAD ASCII FILE
The "LOAD ASCII FILE. option reads text format move data files. The input file must satisfy at least two requirements: there must be an "Axes =" line which states which axes are represented by the data columns, and there must be move data. Optionally, there may be one or more "comment" lines containing text, such as instructions to operators, etc AU lines must be terminated with "carriage return, line feed" characters, hexadecimal. "0D OA". No line may exceed 510 characters in length.
The "Axes =" line tells the software which axes should receive the move data. In this example:
Axes = Pan,Tilt,Zoom
The software will load the first three data columns into Pan, Tilt, and Zoom axes, in that order. Up to 32 axes may be named. "Axes" and "=" must be separated by a space, as must "=" and the first axis name. Axis names must be separated by a ",". The "A" must be the first character on the line. The "Axes =" list can state axes names in any order relative to the order of the axis names on the Control Panel Screen. The "Axes =' list must precede all move data in the file. All the axis names in the "Axes =" list must be present by name on the Control Panel Screen, or an error message will result and the data will not be loaded. If this occurs, use the "NameAxis" function to rename axes on the Control Panel Screen to match the names in the "Axes =" list, or text edit the move file to match the axis names.
Data lines are in the same format shown for the "SAVE ASCII FILE" command. The only characters allowed are spaces (hex 20), tabs (hex 09),"-", "." and the digits 0 to 9. Each column must be separated from the next by at least one space. The data is assumed to be in positions. Units are in screen units, so it is essential that the AxisSetup command's "Pulses per Unit" number is set to match the units assumed by the software which generates the move file. There must be one vertical data column for each axis listed in the "Axes = " line. To insure smooth velocity transitions during real time move playback, it is essential to have 4 or more decimal places in the position data The number of decimal places should be selected to resolve the motor position down to a single pulse.
Any line which does not begin with "Axes = " or satisfy the requirements of a "data line" as described above, will be printed on the screen during the move load, but otherwise ignored by the software. This provides a way of embedding instructions to operators, comments, etc. in the data file. The operator should always check that any such displayed lines are in fact messages, rather than a move data line with a "typo."
Data files are always assumed to contain one data line per Visual Frame. Since the RTMC130 software normally stores more than one velocity change (usually 5) per Visual Frame, the software automatically interpolates the required number of move storage elements, depending on the setting of "DATA/VISUAL. when the data is loaded. This process is transparent to the operator. We recommend you use the normal "DATA/VISUAL". setting of "5".
It is possible to edit data files using any text editor which can read and write "ASC" or "DOS" format text files. Axis names may be changed, comments added, or actual motion data edited. Just be careful not to erase any data lines or insert accidental characters in the motion data. The "TurboC" editor is suitable. If you use WordPerfect, save the data in DOS format with the "ctrl F5,1,1" keystroke sequence.
WE RECOMMEND THAT "ASCIIFILE" ONLY BE USED FOR THE PURPOSE OF TRANSFERRING MOVE DATA TO AND FROM OTHER SYSTEMS. DO NOT USE THIS FUNCTION FOR NORMAL MOVE STORAGE, SINCE SOME MINOR MOTION SUBTLETY IS LOST WHEN "SAVEASCII" CONVERTS THE HIGH RESOLUTION RTMC MOTION DATA TO ONE-POSITION-PER-VISUAL-FRAME FORMAT.
In the future, comment lines will be supported. Comments should start with "#", NOT "//". This allows compatibility with C shell scripting and TCL.
LightWave .mot format