Feedback from Ron Maddalena

I gave the PST a quick 1 hr spin. A very impressive change and significant improvement in look and feel!! Very intuitive, even if I pretend that I have never used the prior versions of the toll. Never once did I have to read the documentation.

Here's the bumps I came across

. The way to delete authors is not obvious enough., I think. One clicks on a name, then a 'Delete' button appears. Then you can click on delete. Only by accident did I discover step 1. I would think one might want to go with the same model that commercial web sites use for deleting items fro a shopping cart. For example, a last column that has a garbage can icon, or a column containing always-present delete checkboxes and a 'Update' button that will delete the checked items.

. I would still like to see the ability to specify galactic coordinates. I appreciate that the PSC will want RA's to resolve oversubscriptions at some LST's. But, for reviewing the scientific justifications, it would be best if the specified coordinates matched how one scientifically thinks about the locations of objects.

. In adding sources, I did the same 'mistake' twice in adding just three sources. You add a group (much more obvious how to do this then before), you go to that group and add a source. Edit the source info. And, instead of hitting the 'Save' button, I hit the 'Add' button instead. That deletes my edits and I went -- what the hey!!! I didn't figure out what I was doing wrong until I made the 2nd mistake. Maybe it would be sufficient to rename the 'Add' to 'Add New Source'. But, I think moving the "Save', 'Delete', 'Cancel' buttons from the last column to the first would have guided my eye to what I should have been doing.

. I think there's a bug in adding resources and sources. I wanted to create my resource groups and then edit each in turn. Seems like a reasonable thing people will do -- it's like creating an outline before filling in the text. I created my first resource group but didn't add anything to it. I added my second and my empty first group disappeared. Went back and saw that adding multiple blank source groups isn't possible.

. There used to be links from the PST to the various GBT calculators (sensitivity, mapping). These seem to be missing.

. The current definition of sessions doesn't allow one to specify things like: 2 back-to-back days of 12 hrs each repeated 5 times, separated by 30 days. I've seen a few proposals ask for such a scheduling but I'm hesitant to say that this is a common enough session type that warrants changes to the tool.

. Total time seems to be calculated improperly. I asked for 5 repeating sessions of 12 hrs each. The 'Cover Sheet' gave 12 hrs as the "Total Time' when it should have been 60.

. Here's a plug for future work. You've heard this before and I know you agree with me. But squeaky wheels.... The logic behind the GBT resources remains the same as the old tool. As we've stated before, it's far from being correct. Typical, even sophisticated users will still be specifying physically impossible hardware configurations. In reviewing proposals, we will still have to continue our practice of ignoring what people enter into the resource part of the PST and rely solely on the text of the proposal. We've agreed to continue with the old logic because there were larger fish to fry. The fish is about ready to come off the grill. So, I look forward to getting the resource stuff that Toney has been working on into the next version of the tool.

Probably this will be all the time I have for the PST until late next week. Except for these quirks, I really, really like the new tool. Ice cream for all!!

-- DanaBalser - 02 Nov 2007
Topic revision: r1 - 2007-11-02, DanaBalser
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