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IDProjectCategoryView StatusLast Update
0001240SkyChart1-Softwarepublic16-01-10 12:00
Reportertestcy Assigned ToPatrick Chevalley  
Status resolvedResolutionfixed 
PlatformAllOSAllOS VersionAll
Product Version3.8 
Target Version4.0Fixed in Version3.11 SVN 
Summary0001240: Charts quality
DescriptionI appreciate your willingness to solve problems and accept new requests I am however wondering if your software could be improved in order to produce charts similar in quality with the ones found at I am aware that these charts are made using a retail software.
TagsNo tags attached.


Patrick Chevalley

13-12-03 18:49

administrator   ~0002700

Yes it is possible to improve the printing a lot. This point as been neglected for many years.

Can you list what you like in the print you mention? And also list more improvement not in this print.

One I personally like is not related to printing, this is to not draw the comet symbol at each point of the orbit.

But I find strange the choice of the labeled DSO. For example on the Nevsky chart, why label the faint planetary EGB6? and why not label the bigger and brighter galaxies?


13-12-03 19:32

reporter   ~0002701

I don't know about the choice of the labeled DSO, maybe some are labeled because of their proximity to the path of the comet? In the print I like the use of the black dots of variable size depending on the star magnitude and the clean layout of the chart. The print also seems to be of higher resolution making it easier to see finer details like deep sky objects on the chart. The labels above and below the chart (name of the comet, information about the comet, star magnitudes symbols, field of view in degrees) are also nice. The print really looks like a page from a printed star atlas and it reminds me of Sky Atlas 2000 and Uranometria 2000. I am not sure how easy would be to implement such improvements?

Patrick Chevalley

13-12-04 08:01


cdc_default.pdf (57,069 bytes)

Patrick Chevalley

13-12-04 08:01


cdc_25-75.pdf (57,761 bytes)

Patrick Chevalley

13-12-04 08:02


cdc_portrait.pdf (116,590 bytes)

Patrick Chevalley

13-12-04 08:22

administrator   ~0002702

About the star dot size there is some setting you can already use.
I upload three example :
cdc_default.pdf : the print with the default settings.
cdc_25-75.pdf : increase the star size from the menu Setup/Display, click "Star display" = "Line mode", set size=25, contrast=75.
cdc_portrait.pdf : the same in portrait orientation

Do this improve the result for you?

I voluntarily not use very fine line or gray color for the print because a few years back I was using a B/W laser printer that render this thing very badly.
But I can add an option for that because it will lock better on ink-jet printer or on PDF files.


13-12-04 18:48

reporter   ~0002703

Yes the results are better. Maybe you could also add a number scale in Setup > Display > Star display > Line mode for bright star size and contrast? In your pdf examples (cdc_25-75.pdf) I see that some objects/labels overlap for example 40 Leo (near gamma1), UGC5470? (near alpha Leo), M65, M105. Any way to fix this? You could add the option you mention if it will help with ink-jet printers and pdf files.

Mattia Verga

13-12-07 15:54

reporter   ~0002708

I also agree that readability of printed Skycharts maps is not the best, in my opinion the main point to work out is text overlapping lines/objects.
I've remembered that years ago I used to print charts with a small command line program and after searching a lot I found it again:
I admit that compared to Skycharts the amount of data that PP3 prints is much less, butif I remember well, this small program uses some trick in the code to adjust text position to avoid overlapping lines and objects, maybe you can find something useful in its source code.

Another thing I liked in PP3 is the way it renders the Milky Way in grayscale. I think it can be used in Skycharts not only for printing, but also on screen to avoid the mono-chromatic way it is actually rendered.

Patrick Chevalley

13-12-29 14:17

administrator   ~0002716

Reported by emilnp in 0001246 , this points will be examined here:

The "fill milky way" is not working - or am I doing something wrong? I guess that when I press "fill milky way" it should be filled with a solid color (which I should be able to choose).

Another point when it comes to printing. I think that in previous versions (I mean versions from years ago) the grid lines (dash, dash dot, dash dash etc) looked a lot better in print. Now, even with anti-aliasing off, the lines are somewhat blurry and stubby...

Patrick Chevalley

14-05-10 18:42

administrator   ~0002878

The proposition to draw the Milky Way as in PP3 is implemented by revision 2894:


Mattia Verga

14-05-12 19:58

reporter   ~0002879

The Milky Way this way is nice, but a bit bloated.
I made some test in a vector graphic program. I think Milky Way points should be draw with a fade from 100% to 0% opacity. Also the radius should be no less than the distance of the points, the better result seems to be with a proportion radius:distance of 3:2 (see attachment, top result is 1:1, bottom is 3:2).

Mattia Verga

14-05-12 19:58


plots.png (11,573 bytes)   
plots.png (11,573 bytes)   

Patrick Chevalley

14-05-13 18:02

administrator   ~0002880

Right, and I was fooled by the radius value on the first line of the file. It look like it is half the diagonal distance between the points.
With the following change it is much better:

I also plan to replace the data file by using the more recent Milky Way panorama by Axel Mellinger.

Patrick Chevalley

16-01-10 12:00

administrator   ~0003159

I close this issue for now as many point are now improved.

Please start a new issue after the release of version 3.12 if you have other point that need improvement.

Issue History

Date Modified Username Field Change
13-12-03 16:42 testcy New Issue
13-12-03 18:49 Patrick Chevalley Note Added: 0002700
13-12-03 18:49 Patrick Chevalley Assigned To => Patrick Chevalley
13-12-03 18:49 Patrick Chevalley Status new => feedback
13-12-03 18:49 Patrick Chevalley Target Version 0.3.0 => 4.0
13-12-03 19:32 testcy Note Added: 0002701
13-12-03 19:32 testcy Status feedback => assigned
13-12-04 08:01 Patrick Chevalley File Added: cdc_default.pdf
13-12-04 08:01 Patrick Chevalley File Added: cdc_25-75.pdf
13-12-04 08:02 Patrick Chevalley File Added: cdc_portrait.pdf
13-12-04 08:22 Patrick Chevalley Note Added: 0002702
13-12-04 08:22 Patrick Chevalley Status assigned => feedback
13-12-04 18:48 testcy Note Added: 0002703
13-12-04 18:48 testcy Status feedback => assigned
13-12-07 15:54 Mattia Verga Note Added: 0002708
13-12-29 14:17 Patrick Chevalley Note Added: 0002716
14-05-10 18:42 Patrick Chevalley Note Added: 0002878
14-05-12 19:58 Mattia Verga Note Added: 0002879
14-05-12 19:58 Mattia Verga File Added: plots.png
14-05-13 18:02 Patrick Chevalley Note Added: 0002880
16-01-10 12:00 Patrick Chevalley Note Added: 0003159
16-01-10 12:00 Patrick Chevalley Status assigned => resolved
16-01-10 12:00 Patrick Chevalley Resolution open => fixed
16-01-10 12:00 Patrick Chevalley Fixed in Version 0.3.0 => 3.11 SVN