The official web site for ordering Featherweight Altimeters
is >> here
<<. This page is just a link to the Featherweight Interface
Program software as well as a little background / history.
Note: As of July 2011, Norton 'SONAR' may report the
FIP program as a false positive and remove it without asking.
Googling for 'Norton SONAR False Positive'
yields many hits for small developers having problems with frequent
software updates being removed by Norton SONAR as false positives.
As such, if you have Norton installed and if it deletes FIP as
soon as you get it installed, then you may want to read about
how to disable Norton 'SONAR' >> here
FIP 2.0: Support for Parrot
& Raven / Includes FTDI Drivers >> here
<< [SELF UPDATING INSTALLATION - see note below]
[SELF UPDATING INSTALLATION]
Note the FIP downloads above include a self updating
feature where the first thing it does is check if it is the latest
version, and if there is a later version available, it will prompt
you for whether you want to download and install it. The link
above is to an earlier version that includes the FTDI drivers
so the first install from above will almost certainly tell you
there is an update to install.
==> This self updating installation may be affected
by firewalls and/or security settings on your system. Please
let >> me
<< know if you encounter issues.
The 'DEVEL' build with newest features / possible newest
bugs >> here
<< [SELF UPDATING INSTALLATION - see note above]
(Installs as separate program / ICON - can be installed in parallel
with 'Production' release above.)
FIP 1.0: Support for Parrot only / Includes FTDI Drivers
For the three people that had the 3 output Beta Raven
units, the last build supporting that altimeter is >> here
FTDI USB Drivers (included in standard FIP installations
so this is only for reference) >> here
Background / History
This page started out as an investigation of different
altimeters now that I could no longer get the BlackSky AltAcc
(my prior personal favorite). As fate would have it, after some
initial review (original page >>here<<)
I purchased a Featherweight 'Parrot' as my first one to try. It
seemed in the price range of the AltAcc I was replacing and had
similar recording capabilities. Upon receiving it and looking
over the manual, I discovered that the communication to it was
via 'HyperTerm' (Windows PC app for serial port communications).
I also noted that the 'analysis' of the data was done in Excel.
Being a programmer in my 'day job', this meant one thing in particular
to me, and that was: "The communcations interface is
documented as well as the analysis in Excel - I can write my own
program to do this!"
Long story short - thus began a journey in writing an application
to interface to the Featherweight Parrot, which led to working
with Adrian from Featherweight Altimeters on making the program
available to other Parrot owners (and plans for working with the
future 'Raven' altimeter that Adrian is currently working on).
So, now I'm biased - you can look at the original page and the
links from there, but going forward, most of my time will be spent
working with the Featherweight Altimeters and improving the FIP
(Featherweight Interface Program) to work with them.