Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Mapping the grid squares you've worked on VHF/UHF

I was playing around in the RSGB's 432MHz activity contest last night (enjoyable but no-one terribly distant worked) when I saw a tweet go by, from AI4RI, I think, asking if anyone knew any tools for mapping the grid squares that they've worked at VHF.

I use the Winlog32 logging program, written by Colin, G0CUZ which has some grid mapping capability built in - although it does not overlay the squares onto a map.

Another tweet from AI4RI quickly appeared saying that he'd found the WorkedGrids software from VE2ZAZ. I'd seen it mentioned before but not tried it.

The software installed quickly and I was able to point it at an ADIF file that Winlog32 had created. If you have a logging program that keeps the log in plain text, ADIF or Cabrillo then you can use WorkedGrids to scan the file automatically and plot your grids on a map. Winlog32 keeps the log in an Access database so I had to create an ADIF export and point WorkedGrids at that.

WorkedGrids setup allows you to select which bands you are interested in, I chose 50,70,144 and 432MHz, but you could just as easily select other bands. Having done that, a basic but effective map was displayed, showing the grid squares I'd worked on each band.

I seem to remember that DX Atlas by Afreet Software - as used by the FSDXA's 3B9C expedition some years ago has a similar capability.

1 comment:

David, K2DBK said...

I've been looking for something like this for a while, thanks for posting it. The one issue I've seen so far is that if you change the map at all (most it, resize it, etc.)it has to re-read the ADIF file. As a test I was using an ADIF with almost 20,000 entries (most not VHF/UHF) and it was very slow. Using a much smaller log (around 2500), it was better, but even so it can be slow to try to move to another map view. Still, I think it's useful and during a contest would be a nice way to see what you've worked if your logging program doesn't already do that.


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