(PST V2.0) Help Desk Comments - October 2007

Main Problem Areas

  1. Login/Registration.
  2. Adding Authors/Institutions.
  3. Uploading the Scientific Justification and the Preview.
  4. Sessions Page.

Reports


Administration

1. it would be nice to have a user definable timeout, from 1 minute to at least one day

2. The NRAO user data base (my.nrao.edu) isn't accepting my institution (Bryn Mawr College). I tried to put it in several months ago, and I ended up clicking "please contact me to add my institution." But nobody ever contacted me. What do I need to do to fix this?

3. I try to log in (correct user/passwd) and it says:
 
HTTP Status 404 - /nrao-2.0/garbage
type Status report
message /nrao-2.0/garbage
description The requested resource (/nrao-2.0/garbage) is not available.
Apache Tomcat/5.5.15
 
the above is from opera, which I've been using for the past two days with no problems. i switched to netscape, and it let me in. (username was skurtz)

4. I am preparing a VLA proposal for the October 1 deadline. I have recently moved institutions and edited the "General Information", User Preferences", "Email Addresses", "Addresses" and "Phone Numbers" pages of my profile in the online NRAO database (under the "Administration" tab). However, my new institution, Macalester College, is not in the database of known institutions; I have a link in the "Organizations & Affiliations" tab that says "Please contact me to add my Institution" but I cannot seem to get it to accept Macalester College as the correct one to use. As such, the cover page of the proposal, when printed, shows no Institutional Affiliation, which is obviously undesirable.

5. Hi - I am just trying to login and the system is taking a long time to "load". Are there problems? I'm using a username and password from the previous PST system - should it be recognized?

6. i'm trying to register for NRAO interactive services. i seem to get stuck at the affiliation box. can armagh observatory be added to the list of institutes?

7. When I tried to log in, I got a page of html. Maybe I forgot my password, but this isn't what I expected. Is something wrong with proposal submission so that I cannot log in?


General

1. when editing the cover page, there is a separate 'save' button to save the whole page and not only subsections of the cover, whereas on other pages there is a 'save/delete/etc' per section and sometimes it is not evident that it is saved automatically. This should preferably be made consistent as now it is not clear when data is saved automatically and when it needs to be done by hand. I guess this mainly applies to the cover page where I suggest to have a 'save' button next to the abstract field.

2. What is meant by "Your proposal must have at least one observing type "

3. I've just editted the title/abstract, I want to submit, I click on My Proposals in the options column, and it loads a proposal for somebody named Ian Smith, who I've never heard of! When I do a load previous page and re-try it, it works OK, loading my own proposals. This was with opera, and I couldn't reproduce it later because i couldn't log in. Netscape didn't do it.
NOTE: there's something screwy in my browser installation, so both opera and netscape hang frequently. But loading Ian Smith's proposal (something to do with HST) doesn't seem to be the fault of my machine!

4. Even though I am several characters (7, I think) below the limit for the title, when I print my proposal the last word gets dropped off (doesn't show up). Is there a user error here ? The proposal is GBT/2007-08-006.


Authors

1. I added an author who wasn't registered with @nrao.edu This author was invited to register and then registered with @aoc.nrao.edu (with aoc added). This caused a problem in the sense that the author couldn't see the proposal at all though he thought he had done everything right. Then also the fix was not to use the update author infromation, but to first delete the author before the update was okay which was confusing

2. There are two authors on my proposal. I wanted to change the PI from me to my co-I, but no matter which name I selected (highlighted in the pull-down menu) it would only accept me as the PI. Not sure if this is a feature or a bug. Maybe he has to do it?

3. i am trying to submit a proposal for data for my thesis, but under "authors", it prints under "status": "graduating 2009, thesis: false". is there any way to make this read "true"?

4. I am having issues with the "Authors" section of a proposal I will be submitting. John Salzer is a co-author on this proposal; I have entered him into the database but I am unable to edit his information. His affiliation should be listed as Wesleyan University and his email address should be slaz@astro.wesleyan.edu. Can you please update this, or tell me how?
Following the instructions in Section 3.2 of the help guide does not solve the issue; specifically, no "Modify" button appears when selecting an author that has been located in the database. Thus, I can add & remove this co-author to the proposal, but cannot edit his information.

5. On the author list, I cannot delete myself or update myself within the proposal tool. This might be intentional since I should use the Administration link for changes to my own changes. The author list shows me observing for a thesis, although this doesn't appear in the printed version.

6. just to let you know that i appear unable to edit the characteristics of my co-Is once they have been entered into a proposal. it offers me the chance to edit/delete when i click on their name, but simply deletes the institution when edit is selected.

7. I have two entries in the author's database for proposals. When you get the chance, could you delete the inactive one? It's not a hurry; my collaborators have hit upon the correct entry.

8. I made typing error at the author option. as a matter of fact, I wrote my name, twice.(each name has different email address) Though I tried to remove one of my name(email) on the author list, I could not. (Just i found eddit filed) What do I have to remove the one of the author list?

9. I am using the new PST system and have question. How can I modify the personal information of a co-investigator in the authors list? For example, I have a co-I named Dominik Riechers, who is no longer a student. So I want to delete the information 'observing for thesis:false' listed on the cover page. How can I do this?

10. I have encountered a problem using the Proposal Submission Tool. While in the author section it appears, correctly, a check box in which I have indicated that the proposed observations will be part of my thesis, when I print the proposal this information (and the whole box) disappears from the cover sheet. The same happens for the indication of my plan of dissertation research. I have validated the proposal before printing.

11. How do I re-arrange the author order in a proposal? The proposal tool seem to pick its own oder when the proposal is printed... The help file claims:
 
You can rearrange the order of the authors by using the numerical menus in the first column of the table of authors.
 
The I don't get any numerical menus on the first column.

12. Another author realised that her contact info listed her fax number as her phone number whereas the phone number is correct on the administration tab page. Deleting and adding the author again as above did not fix this - it still lists the fax number


Scientific Justification

1. BUT if you click on the PST options page and then on the scientific justification that is displayed there in four small unreadable pages, the text shown is clearly that of the original draft.So, my hypothesis is that for files uploaded with the exact same fully qualified file name from a specific host computer, this part of the PST has this bug: it does not replace the file in this part of the tool but apparently does it correctly in that part of the tool that matters....Now, one wonders why the PST has the file in two places...

2. I changed my Justification file. I tried removing the old one, replacing the old one, but nothing seems to work: the submission tool keeps showing me an old version of the file, even though on my local machine, I only have the new version! Hope this can be solved quickly.

3. Sorry to be a nag... I tried uploading my justification three times between 4:30 and 5, and I was not hearing back from the server after five minutes each time. Just after 5, it uploaded quickly, and I submitted the proposal. Will this be a problem for me?

4. when uploading a slightly revised pdf document the miniature preview of the uploaded file is unreadable to check whether the changed document is the one uploaded. An inteactive zoom in any form available (or bigger previews) would help in such cases

5. when multiple people are editing a proposal, it is inconvenient for more than one person to edit the pdf - this always has to go back to someone editing and uploading. It should be possible to enter the justification as ASCII text so that it can be edited easily over the web by different persons as can be done with the abstract and another section where one can upload figures to the text

6. Is there a way to view the thumbnails at a bigger size ? I've tried clicking on them, etc. but can't seem to do so. It seems there ought to be a way to view them in a readable form; otherwise I guess I don't understand their utility.

7. I'm contacting you because while uploading a proposal into the PST system, I find a problem when I try to load the Science Justification. Every time I press the Load button, the following error message at my the Dashboard appears:
 
java.lang.ClassCastException: org.acegisecurity.wrapper.SavedRequestAwareWrapper
 
WOuld you please advice me on what to do to overcome this? The rest of the proposal, in draft status, is already filled.

8. Also, when I load the scientific justification, the pages appear out of order in the thumbnails. They do show up correctly in the printed version.

9. I finall was able to get into the PST so that I could update my scientific justification and submit the proposal. When I used the "replace" button on the scientific justification page, it acted like everything worked but it did not replace my old scientific justification with the new one. What I had to do was to remove the old justification and then add the new one.

10. I am attempting to upload a pdf of my Scientific Justification from my laptop (Windows XP). After using "Browse" to select the file, when I hit "Upload" I am logged out of the proposal system and the file is not uploaded. I've tried several times. On my Linux machine, I can upload the pdf but in the preview the pages are displayed in the wrong order (I've checked the page order in the original pdf).

11. Among the options at the https://my.nrao.edu/nrao-2.0/secure/ProposalList.htm, site, I saw the "Science Justification". then
1. should i only write science filed by latex?
2. where can i find the latex template? I think I searched whole page of NRAO, but I could not find that.


Sources

1. it should be possible, after entering a source list, to sort on e.g. the RA column (or source velocity or source name) and save this sorted list for use in the proposal from then on

2. I'm trying to delete entries in my PST sources/sessions forms and the form will not let me. I get the following error when I try:
 
Error The database rejected this operation. The most common reason is a referential integrity violation (for example, when you attempt to delete a resource that is in use by a session). Please try again.
 
Could you please tell me how to delete entries?


Resources

1. I created and filled 36 resources, with their names in alphabetical order, but the displayed list was jumbled. I could not find a way to re-order the resources so that they followed the order that I created them. The same thing happens when "adding resources" inside a "session", leading to a differently jumbled list. This persists to the final "Proposal.pdf" file... with the order slightly different from both of the above.
For this observation setup, I plan to synthesize a wide bandwidth by stepping through the band. The order in which this list appears shows how I plan to step through the band. It is not crucial, but is easier for the reviewer to interpret, when it is in correct order.

2. I've noticed that when you edit the setup page, you are asked to give the frequencies in MHz. When you exit the editing mode, the page reports the frequencies exactly as they were just typed in, but says they are GHz. The same is true in the printed version of the proposal (under the header VLA resources - column 'setup'). In the same resources section, in the printed version of the proposal, the entries listed under 'setup' are shifted downwards by 1 line. The frequencies are listed (although instead of MHz it says GHz - see above), but next to 'bandwidth' is a blank, next to 'spectral resolution' there is the number for bandwidth, and so on.
Then there are are a number of cliccable buttons that are mentioned in the Guide that do not seem to be present in the actual Tool. However, as I am mailing this from home I do not have access to my notes (in my office) and I cannot give details at this moment. I shall do that later.

3. (1) The "Rest Frequencies" box is labelled in "MHz", but when the setup is saved and then viewed, the label changes to "GHz" but the number remains the same.
(2) I would like to synthesize 600MHz bandwidth at L-Band by observing in spectral-line mode with 24 pieces of 25MHz (32 chan) each. I could not specify 24 frequencies in the "Rest Frequencies" list, but I was able to enter the string " 1212.5 to 1787.5 in 24 pieces spaced by 25 (MHz) " to convey this. Will this suffice, along with a "Comment" entry with an explanation ?
(3) If one "resource" would suffice, then can I get the number of channels to appear as "32 x 24" when viewed ?

4. I have some problems understanding all the stuff corresponding to the Resources part of the proposal in the PST with the spectral advisor and the sensitivity calculator of the GBT. The spectral advisor asks me for receiver, sensitivity, velocity resolution and range (per band), as well as for the number of bands. Then it gives you a recommendation for the backend. In this you get a T_eff. But if you then go to the sensitivity calculator, it asks for time on source and time off source, which are the basis for the T_eff and it also doesn't ask you for the number of bands. So do you have to say, e.g. number of bands = 2 & bandwidth = 200 in the spectral advisor, is it then 200 or 400 MHz for the bandwidth in the sensitivity calculator? How can I determine the T_on and the T_off out of the T_eff? (Or is it the other way round?) And how do I go from there to obtain the time one asks for in the proposal? Another question regarding the PST is again: Is it 200 or 400 MHz? Do I have to say number of spectral windows = 2, if the number of bands in the spectral advisor is 2? Do I get the time resolution simply out of 1/frequency resolution? And where in the PST do I give the total time I ask for?

5. I am using NRAO PST for preparing a GBT proposal. When I want to add the Ka band MM-F3 reciever (36.0GHz-38.2GHz) in the resources, it did not work. I have tried several times.


Sessions

1. 'suitable for dynamic scheduling' button seems to have disappeared? clearly there still are proposals that cannot be dynamic ones

2. the SESSIONS page of the PST dies when try to Save after entering a separation of 1.5 days, giving the message:
Error: java.lang.NumberFormatException: For input string: "1.5"
Hitting "Back" at this point leads to a completely blank sessions screen, which is rather annoying after typing lots of constraints in.

3. I have put comments in a session (such as "EVLA antennas" and "non-EVLA antenna subarray") but they do not show up in the preview, not under "sessions" nor under "session constraints" - how do I get them in? I don't call them "constraints" as that is not per-se the case, but I can imagine that causes it to not show up?
This is what I thought I did, two resources, one for each subarray, with a comment in each session (two sessions because each uses a different resource), but the comments did not show up - which was my first complaint. I figure I should make one session (I can only assign one resource to a session so that could be a fix) and just not assign the second resource to a separate session - just keep it around for the TAC to see the setup. That does properly keep track of requested time. In my view not entirely correct, but if this is the workaround then this is what I'll do. Another possible fix could be to include subarrays in the session and/or divide the total time by the number of subarrays. The comments show up now (was it fixed in the meantime or because it is now one session only?) and the total time is what I intended so I'll keep it as is.
As a side, I am setting up two subarrays of equal length in time, but the total time reported is twice the time, which thus is misleading to the TAC - I don't know how to deal with this other than to comment on this situation in the justification or to fudge/fake my session times. Which is the preferred way?

4. when i get into sessions and click to get one and then edit it, three hypertext things come up:
 
GBT Sensitivity Calculator
Mapping Planner
Spectral Advisor
 
The last two point to the SAME place, the mapping tool. I have submitted a bug report on this. BUT what is the Spectral Advisor for? LST range? this is the place where there should be a link to a source HA calculator....

5. In the SESSIONS page, it is really not clear that the TIME in hours is supposed to the the TIME per session. It is the time per sidereal pass for most projects.

6. I found the "sources" and "sessions" aspects of the online proposal submission tool a bit confusing. I'm not sure if I submitted our target list correctly, so I wanted to check with you and clarify any errors. I'll go through what I did step by step, as best as I can remember it.
Under the sources option, I was hoping to be able to add sources by hand individually, not always as a group, in order to be able to set different exposure times for each one. The online help seems to indicate that I can add sources either individually or within groups, but on my view of the web page at least one has to add a group before even getting to the add source buttons. Hence, I added all of our sources, which are the same type of object, into one source group.
After establishing the "resources" I needed, I moved on to the "sessions" option. After choosing to add a "new session," I figured that under the "available sources" I would see each of my individual targets. (According to the online help, "The source/resource pairs which form the basic units of observing sessions (see 1.9 and 3.5) may refer to source groups or to individual sources.") However, only the one group was available. As I understand it, a session should be a contiguous block of observing time. Since our targets ranged in RA from 01 to 17 hours, I figured I'd break them into 3 sessions. However, with only the one group containing all of the targets, I simply selected that 3 times. For each one I gave the total observing time for the targets I intended and made note of those targets and the RA range in the comment box. I'm afraid, though, that from NRAO's side it may look like we're trying to observe the same set of targets three times. That's not the case. Rather, there are different subsets of the targets in that group that we want to observe in each of the three sessions. Is there anything else I should do, anyone else I should talk to, to make sure that's clear and the proposal is correctly configured?
In hindsigth, I probably should have deleted the single group and made three separate groups, one for each of the RA ranges. However, at the time I wasn't aware of any reason to do this, figuring I could select individual targets later.

7. I entered a few sources into a SOurce group and decided I wnted to delete one of the sources. This gives the following error message: The database rejected this operation. The most common reason is a referential integrity violation (for example... This isn't a particularly helpful error message, not is it a welcome feature... Then I tried to delete the entire source group with exactly the same result...arrgghhhhhh

8. it should be possible to choose more than one VLA configuration for a particular session, including move time

9. in the session/available resources, it should be possible to assign to subarrays (without the total time to be adjusted)

Student Support

1. The proposal submission tool will not let me go to the student support section because it says that my University is not on the list. Is there anything I need to do?


Proposal Processing

1. just saved the .pdf from the PST and see that the student support stuff does not appear in this .pdf.... It is in the PST options pages... Hmmm. Neither proposal with a student support page has that information transferred to the .pdf that one can write out from the page summarizing all one's proposals...

2. Hi, I just thought I would let you know that there was no e-mail notfication received after submitting the proposal Id=GBT/08A-023, though Carl assures me that it has been received. Not sure if this has anything to do with it, but I submitted the proposal from Europe sometime around 3-4 am EDT. ... Apologies, I see now that this was sent to my jwagg@inaoep.mx account, rather than my new NRAO account.

3. it is annoying that when changes are made, one has to go back to the overview page (the one with all the proposals) to see/print (or validate) the whole proposal as pdf document There should be a view option (ie print) button on all sub-pages

4. the validate icon in the proposal overview is confusing - I think this icon (a sheet with a pencil) is generally used for 'edit' I think the validate icon should be a sheet with a question mark

5. there should be an icon for 'replace' proposal - currently you have to withdraw and then submit again, taking up legacy codes ie the old code gets released and a new code assigned, a waste (for this icon I suggest an sheet with rotating arrows)

6. You have put the DELETE and SUBMIT buttons right next to each other. They are small icons so they are VERY close to each other. This is a very bad idea.

7. I was trying to propose for the first time so I created a test proposal just to get familiar with the procedure. I no longer need the test proposal and have been trying to delete it. Everytime I try, I get the message "You are attempting to delete a source or a resource that is in use by a session.". Do you know how I can delete this proposal? The title of the proposal is called "todd test"

8. I can only view/print the cover sheet, no matter what options I use to print, is there a science justification????? I thought proposals couldn't get submitted unless it had a justification??

9. I began by making a copy of an old proposal and attempted to edit/modify it. My previous abstract was longer than the newly allotted 200 words, so it would not let me to initially save the copied proposal; refusing to allow a save of a proposal because the abstract is too long seems to be a poor design, as one may wish to put extra information in the abstract while editing and remove it later. Furthermore, if one modifies information on the "general" page of the copied proposal and then goes to another section without saving, all changes are lost without warning.

10. It would be really nice if there was a way to print a clean copy of an old proposal.


Miscellaneous

1. I note also that in my browser (Mozilla) the "Help" "Cancel" "Save" buttons are drawn on top of the navigation arrows which makes it quite difficult to hit the desired one.
I was attempting to run the proposal tool on a Sun, and we have a somewhat older version of Mozilla on our Solaris machines, so this may explain the difference. "About Mozilla" shows: Mozilla 1.4, Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; SunOS sun4u; en-US; rv:1.4) Gecko/20030701. Unfortunately we don't have Mozilla installed under Linux so I'm not able to compare with that version. However, I just tested Firefox under Linux and that looks fine.

2. By the way, one other thing I forgot to mention is that when I go to the proposal tool, my browser gives a warning that it is "unable to verify my.nrao.edu as a trusted site".

3. I would like to submit a large proposal for the deadline of October 1st, because we need 44h 20cm continuum C array observations (in addition to 198h of 6cm D array observations). Why is this impossible? Does our team really have to wait for the next large proposal deadline in june? This would mean that we lose precious time. Submitting this project as a normal proposal would not allow us to make a proper argumentation for our case.


Requested Feedback

1. A colleague noted tht it was not easy to indicate that undergrads were part of a proposal. Their date of PhD made no sense for them. For myself, one problem with the latest version of the tool is that you have to explicitly "save" entered data before moving to another page. I lost several pages several times before realizing this, and a couple times after when I simply did not remember. Why not default "save" and give a "clear" button?

2. Just two comments (well, maybe three): 1. Loading a new target list appends to the old one, so if I want to update/correct/replace my targets, I have to manually delete each one by hand before reading in a new list. This is a bit of a pain when there are many targets! 2. Putting targets into groups and then into sessions often results in having targets in sessions I don't want. I'm not sure how this could be fixed, given the current PST structure. 3. The PST is much improved from previous incarnations, and is overall a nice tool. It would be really nice to integrate all of the work of getting all targets, sessions, etc into the PST with actual observing with Astrid. As thing stand now, I have to basically redo my work from the proposal process when getting my observing scripts together.

3. Overall, the submission with the PST went rather smoothly, and we appreciate NRAO's work in making a nice tool. I already emailed some confusions I had to Lori Appel and Joan Wrobel right after submitting the last proposal. I append them below for completeness; apologies if these have already been passed on to you.
I found the "sources" and "sessions" aspects of the online proposal submission tool a bit confusing. I'm not sure if I submitted our target list correctly, so I wanted to check with you and clarify any errors. I'll go through what I did step by step, as best as I can remember it.
Under the sources option, I was hoping to be able to add sources by hand individually, not always as group, in order to be able to set different exposure times for each one. The online help seems to indicate that I can add sources either individually or within groups, but on my view of the web page at least one has to add a group before even getting to the add source buttons. Hence, I added all of our sources, which are the same type of object, into one source group.
After establishing the "resources" I needed, I moved on to the "sessions" option. After choosing to add a "new session," I figured that under the "available sources" I would see each of my individual targets. (According to the online help, "The source/resource pairs which form the basic units of observing sessions (see section 1.9 and section 3.5) may refer to source groups or to individual sources.") However, only the one group was available. As I understand it, a session should be a contiguous block of observing time. Since our targets ranged in RA from 01 to 17 hours, I figured I'd break them into 3 sessions. However, with only the one group containing all of the targets, I simply selected that 3 times. For each one I gave the total observing time for the targets I intended and made note of those targets and the RA range in the comment box. I'm afraid, though, that from NRAO's side it may look like we're trying to observe the same set of targets three times. That's not the case. Rather, there are different subsets of the targets in that group that we want to observe in each of the three sessions. Is there anything else I should do, anyone else I should talk to, to make sure that's clear and the proposal is correctly configured?
In hindsigth, I probably should have deleted the single group and made three separate groups, one for each of the RA ranges. However, at the time I wasn't aware of any reason to do this, figuring I could select individual targets later.

-- DanaBalser - 02 Nov 2007
Topic revision: r2 - 2007-11-19, DanaBalser
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