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    Richard S. Wright Jr.
    Senior Moderator

    Last weekend was the fourth annual Pacific Astronomy and Telescope Show (PATS). It was great fun and I got to meet a lot of our customers. Of course the new Paramount MX was the star of our booth (see below). Working from Florida, these kinds of events also give me a good chance to catch up with Steve, Tom, and now Sarah Bisque. Yeah, we talk on the phone, exchange daily emails, and there's the occasional meeting via Skype, but there's nothing like discussing the industry and future plans over sushi or some good Italian food!

    Another good reason for doing these kinds of shows is the face to face interaction with our customers. On the one hand, there's the guy who shows up and tells me my Gas Giants app was the greatest app ever made by man… well, not quite, but he was quite happy with it and it was very gratifying. On the other hand, there's always someone who wants to show up and be the “trouble maker”. Thing is, even with the occasional “trouble maker”, when it's face to face, both parties realize the other guy is really just another human being trying to do the best they can, either to deliver great products, or to use your product (which they may think is less than great). Face to face tends to open everyone's eyes. I suppose this is why we have diplomats… much harder to launch a missile at someone you've had dinner with, and have met their kids.

    Running up to PATS was RAW (Riverside AstroImaging Workshop). I went out early to attend these workshops on Friday, and it was well worth it. I've come a long way on my imaging trail, and I picked up some great new imaging tips from Greg Crawford, Warren Keller, and R. Jay GaBany.

    Speaking of imaging, I have a personal project I've been working on “off the clock”. I've been working with the Canon SDK and I'm hoping to have an X2 driver for any other aspiring DSLR imagers out there with Canon cameras. My personal goal is by AIC (yes, I'll be there too)… and get this, we are going to give away the source code to it for free. Hopefully this will help others make X2 plug-ins for their favorite camera's too. The Canon SDK is 99.99% cross platform too, so the same source will work on Windows and Mac OS X. I'm hoping to set an example that others will follow. It seems to me that camera support is the biggest hold up on more widespread adoption of Mac in Astronomy. My own personal opinion…. Parallel's and/or Bootcamp don't count ;-)

    Well, star party season is almost upon us! I'll be at StarFest, Mid Atlantic, and PSP next month with a Paramount MX. Stop by and say hello! I'm actually co-chair of PSP, so I want to especially invite anyone who's in the area to come to that one! See http://www.pari.edu/psp for more info.

    See you at AIC too!




    Sorry guys, I didn't stop by the Software Bisque booth at all this year, so whomever the trouble makers were, they weren't me.  :-P

    I have to say that I was disappointed with this year's PATS as compared to last year.  Far fewer vendors showed up this year.  The atmosphere was far more subdued this year as well.  The vendor booth cost is a bargain, so it must be the economy being even more in the tank this year than last.  Bummer.

    On the bright side, parking was easier and lunch across the street at the mall was good as ever.

    So what was your impression of PATS this year?


    Richard S. Wright Jr.
    Senior Moderator

    I thought it was a bit subdued too. The crowd Saturday wasn't too bad. We had a lot of interest in the new MX, but Sunday it was pretty dead. I usually save up to do some shopping at these things too, and I found really only OPT and Woodland hills had much “shopping” potential, and they had far less than they had at NEAF it seemed.

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