19 March 2009

A Record Month for Software Releases

It has been a busy 4 weeks for releases at Knightware. A new product, SQM Reader Pro, was released in mid-February followed by the release of updates to SQM Reader and Deep-Sky Planner. SQM Reader Pro introduces a new capability for Knightware - digital delivery of purchased software. It will be interesting to see how digital delivery compares to delivery of physical media (CD.)

The early March update to Deep-Sky Planner addressed a problem with using TheSky6 to control a telescope while using the 'Slew To' feature in a Deep-Sky Planner report. This problem was critical for users of Software Bisque's Paramount ME because it can only be controlled by TheSky. With this update, users of TheSky6 should be squared away.

That brings us to mid-March and the second update to Deep-Sky Planner in 4 weeks time - a record for the product. The need for a second update came out of the blue, but was nonetheless worthwhile.

A new version of Redshift was released recently (Redshift 7 Premium) and Deep-Sky Planner needed a minor change to support interoperation with it. Deep-Sky Planner 4 has supported Redshift 6 Premium since Oct 2007.

Redshift 7 Premium is already available (starting in December in Europe and in January in the US market where version 6 was never officially sold), and it is an 'IYA2009 Official Product' - see http://www.astronomy2009.org/resources/products/redshift/ Furthermore, Redshift 7 Premium and Deep-Sky Planner 4 will be demonstrated working together at a star party hosted by United Soft Media (publishers of Redshift) and Baader Planetarium in Munich in early April. Catch that if you can - the event is a part of the worldwide "100 Hours of Astronomy".

And finally, an apology for update madness...
As a customer of many software products, I might find updating my product twice in one month to be excessive, but this has been an unusual situation that I believe merited quick attention. It's too bad that release timing wasn't a little different: testing updates is very time consuming and ranks high in tedium. Hopefully this will be it for a while!