Page 2 of 2

PostPosted: Sat 02 Sep 2006 - 22:43
by Barry
Bill I have not received any emails but on dial up etc and file may be too large so please don't send.

Try a free download of zipgenius6 wich will open tar files I think.

It includes tar in details but no idea if it wil decompress the ones you mentioned.

the 7.5 only applies to USA I think.
Europe and UK, but also USA, is 30 type I think.
type srtm2, has been worked on and major voids due to cloud cover removed, etc



New Approach Barry read carefully

PostPosted: Sun 03 Sep 2006 - 19:59
by BillC21
Barry understand about resolving the format. This problem is resolved by the Data Viewer which accepts many formats.Well I have the answer and will send you all the details of what I have done so far . For this email I will briefly jot down what I have done. The reason for this effort in downloading topographical areas and then using Scenery design to resolve into the stentec mode is because we are not good at free hand drawing contour lines even using a coastal map as a crutch. The only way to go is use the US govt sites for dowloading their free spatial topographical areas and then using a USGS Digital Data Viewer The one I downloaded and its a freebie is called dlgv32 pro its their latest. It takes the topographical file which is compressed and it converts the file into a color terrain of the area you initially selected. For instance it took me 5 minutes to download and convert to a map with all colors and terrain including sea for Gloucester Harbor and Marblehead.the extension of these files were TAR.GZ and it will accommodate many more kinds of format. I compared these downloads to a USCG chart and they were right on target. If the area you selected does not cover enough of the area you want you can merge the files.I have not done that yet. So that's the maps . This program is sold commercially and called Global Mapper. The govt has obtained a licence from Global mapper to allow anyone to use it free however some features are missing . Using it today I noticed no problem for the area or detail I need . I noticed though you are not allowed to use 4 or more files for merging . It is 30 metre which gives an excellent resolution of the terrain and the map has a ruler in miles or metres to check the location objects.Now the files which contain the topographical map is in 24 bit and color so one has convert the file to 8 bit and Grayscale to import it into Stentec Scenery Design and the format must be BMP, I have not done that yet . Couple of ways I think Globe Mapper will do this dont know for sure Barry if push comes to shove will put the file into Paint Shop 8 which I recently bought and reformat the file to grayscale and 8 bits. Having a lot of fun and gaining experience I will send over the maps so you can see for yourself . I am sure there are european maps for download whatever and it can be resolved very quickly by DLG32 PRO data viewer or commercial name Global Mapper. If you need the URL site names for the Topographical downloading files for different areas and the download for the USGS Digital Data Viewer DLG32 PRO commercially know as Global Mapper will certainly send them if you want. It would be a good exercise Barry even if you download say Marblehead or Gloucester Harbors to give you a feel for the accuracy and speed at which you generate spatial topographical maps. Bill Cridland

PostPosted: Sun 03 Sep 2006 - 21:05
by Barry
Hello Bill you seem to be making good progress.
However my main interest is Europe and UK and would depend if these files are available..

I do not wish to buy software, especially paint shop pro etc, which may be necessary for height bitmaps, and only use what I can download as open source or freeware etc.

I do not have any problems making the greyscale dem map via hgt files, etc, as detailed as it is all automatic.

The only major problem I have is if I could overlay the a map showing the rivers it would be a very easy matter for me to the open them.

You can use a background map to work over, but the greyscale hides a lot of it and trying to get background terrain map and greyscale lined up is impossibe. I know there are ways to put rivers onto the dem to show up but I don't know how. If using a bitmap it needs the height charted, in relation to the colours, which needs a particular paint program.

Hoever if the files you mention are not too large, and the software to use them is free and readily available, I would be interested, if you can get it to work OK in the Stentec Dem Editor, but that that might be the sticking point. You need the final file converted to a "scene" file to load into Scenery Designer.

Also you would still need to lay depths, unless you can get the matching depth bitmaps and get them to line up with cropped sections, etc. Its not making the terrain that is the problem for me as only takes me a very short time use hgt files and Stentec dem editor, but it is the depths and rivers.
Some rivers are easy to open if hilly, and laying depths is very tedious.

Also with the current dem editor we have we can't adjust terrain without going back to the dem map and making the alteration. This is turn means you lose any content placed, which detracts from the user friendliness of the Scenery Designer.
Stentec mentioned November for SS5 and I think they are working on a new scenery designer. The current one I think, is nearly 4 years old without an update.


Global Mapper

PostPosted: Sun 03 Sep 2006 - 21:27
by BillC21
Note your concerns about whether the vehick\hes at out dius[osal here in US can I get European / UK sites downloaded I will have a look Barry . So far so good with repect to contour overlays on top of a chart well that is forgotten using Global Mapper it actual dous the color or shaing automatically . and the format is BMP . Now what I have to find out is whether this prgram also converts coloring to grayscale and whether we can resolve it to 8 Bits. Keep you informed as for Paint Shop pro Barry I will send you a copy if you would like one no problem this end Bill C

PostPosted: Sun 03 Sep 2006 - 21:58
by Barry
Hello Bill will see how it goes when you get a test scenery into the Scenery Designer and will have a better idea.

I think only the larger resolution is available for UK, etc and 7.5 only applies to USA. Also the strm2 version has been fixed for voids, etc caused by cloud cover when the satellite passed over.

Most coastal maps are full of rivers, inlets, bays, etc.
So if making any sceneries, would be interested how the river parts turn out, which are my main interests, and coastal, but about 1800 for me.

Thanks for all the details though.


PostPosted: Mon 04 Sep 2006 - 01:57
by Barry
Bill I downloaded Global Mapper and had a look but can't see much difference to using 3dem in conjunction with Virtual Builder.

dlgv32 pro, imported the hgt file (srtm2) OK as a coloured terrain map, but then says you can' export unless you register, on 30 day trial to buy in the into, even though this is the free version?

But seems similar to 3dem and Virtual Builder.
Virtual Builder then imports the coloured height map and exports as .bt ( complet with the coordinates), and then imports in Stentec dem editor as greyscale height map, and then you can work on the all depths, and rivers.

I think the difference may be in opening the tar files you mentioned for which is probably is needed (However I think these can be opened by other software, as tried it a few years ago).
I don't think the 30 metre files are available for europe and UK which you mentioned, so may as well use the hgt for now for myself. Also the srtm2 data has been improved from srtm1 data as the no data areas caused by cloud cover, etc have been repaired etc.

It's certainly a complex topic and there seems to be a variety of ways you can go about it.


Global Mapper read Carefully

PostPosted: Mon 04 Sep 2006 - 17:56
by BillC21
Pleased u tried Global Mapper well the reason I chose Global Mapper Govt calls it dlgc32 Digital Data viewer is that this site has a lot of freebie area downloads . They are not big about 10 to 20 miles but foir instance if you go to our State Massachusetts u can select for nought many sailing areas harbours looks like great resolution at 30 metres. Now I must say that I did not discard 3Dem infact after I got the site with Global Mapper I put this file over to 3Dem and it came out very well then I imported that into PaintShop Pro 8 and saved as BMP also it allows you to change colors to grayscale . I then put it into Stentec DEM Builder but they where asking for data points I presume they are talking about height levels still working on it but I hope you get the drift Barry . I have these programs all on my desktop so its a matter of clicking them . I am going to look and see whether the grayscale map is in 8 bits and if not change it to 8 bits then look at Paintshop pro 8 see whether they have assigned levels 0 to 255 to correspond with blacl equals 0 and white equals 255 and in between. I presume they do that asutomastically since the gray scale on the terrain looks graduated sea to high mountains etc. Correct me if I have made a mistake both of us can surely come up with and easy way to produce terrrain for sailing with high resolution without resorting to human being manual nonsense.Incidentally I have not registered with Global Mapper because they want moula $ 290.00 So I just have my login name and password for global mapper. However since they will not let you import their files until you pay I use 3DEM which is a freebie to take over that duty. Barry if you want a CD copy of latest Paint Shop Pro 8 will send it to you . Its very powerfull and shoild be on your computer let me no know will just be a freebieGive me your address I will mail it already have a spare CD ready. Getting interesting Barry I did not realise so many people world wide were so interested in the subject and not just for sailing most seem to interested in Cities urban area development. Just a quickie so we can talk the same language the resolution of the download Harbor files is 30 metres as againgst the 7.5 metre . The latter is photographs taken at higher altitudes whereas the 30 metre is taken near terra firma. Although I think Global Mapper has put a lot of effort and money into this project . Notice Barry the number of formats it can accommodate however since they are allied with the US govt and the Goivt has obtained a licence to allow everyone to download a partial copy of the program. I think it is disengenuos of Global Mapper to force us to buy it at such a big price tag. :oops: Bill Cridland[/img]

PostPosted: Mon 04 Sep 2006 - 18:30
by Barry
I read Winzip will open tar files and also the zip program link I sent

Once you decompress the tar file import your 7.5 file or whatever into 3DEM. Once in 3dem you can make the terrain easily, as detailed by importing into vtbuilder and exporting as .bt.

Imports with no trouble into DEM EDITOR, terrain is now greyscale ready to generate in scenery designer.
This part only takes minutes to do.
The only difference is I have to use 90 metres resolution files for Europe, as smaller are not available, but you can use any if suitable as Usa has a f ew resolutions that cna be used.

If you don't have VTbuilder I can send a copy, but it should be in the Scenery Designer. It is an old copy and they mention you can distribute it.

Regarding your offer of the paint program I will leave that one thanks.

Also if you export a bitmap of you 3DEM map you can use it as a background and it is exactly the same size and you can work on it but only as background for rivers and it is not active.
It shows through the no data parts pink areas.
Wish Stentec would update it though. as its 4 years old without an update september.

What we need is to be independant of the bought programs as they keep changiing, and more expensive each time.

I am concentrating on just use free programs like 3dem and virtual terrain. I use firefox browser open source, and also Blender the content creation program which I make my 3d items with is open source, with frequent updates but entirely free.
That exports up to 20 file types.


Interesting move Bob

PostPosted: Tue 05 Sep 2006 - 03:09
by BillC21
JUst a quickie sounds promising I also got into Demo Builder and Scenery design but from 3Dem and greyscaling in Paintshop pro.I had to use Paintshop pro because you can save the file as BMP whereas using 3DEM which is very good for grey scale etc does not allow u to save in BMP confirm is this correct Barry?. Now the files are greyscale 8bits and bmp file . I had troible in Scenery Designer . I guess correct me if I am wrong Barry that I should have put the greyscale BMP into Vt Builder confirm that and it should have instead have been imported into VT Builder . You see I put the impported BMP file into Dem Builder and then Scenery designer . Well I will try that I have to finish for day but looks promising. How can I send one of my files over via this chat page if at all ? Barry Bill C ps I should have known better that when we go to greyscale it just has 256 levels of shading and 256levels is 8 binary bits . [/code]

VT Builder

PostPosted: Tue 05 Sep 2006 - 03:12
by BillC21
I have VT Builder Barry no need to send me a copy it comes with the DEM builder and Scenery Design program but thanks anyway. Lets see who gets there first eworth a Newcastle Brown Bill C

Re: Interesting move Bob

PostPosted: Tue 05 Sep 2006 - 03:35
by Barry
BillC21 wrote:JUst a quickie sounds promising I also got into Demo Builder and Scenery design but from 3Dem and greyscaling in Paintshop pro.I had to use Paintshop pro because you can save the file as BMP whereas using 3DEM which is very good for grey scale etc does not allow u to save in BMP confirm is this correct Barry?. Now the files are greyscale 8bits and bmp file . I had troible in Scenery Designer . I guess correct me if I am wrong Barry that I should have put the greyscale BMP into Vt Builder confirm that and it should have instead have been imported into VT Builder . You see I put the impported BMP file into Dem Builder and then Scenery designer . Well I will try that I have to finish for day but looks promising. How can I send one of my files over via this chat page if at all ? Barry Bill C ps I should have known better that when we go to greyscale it just has 256 levels of shading and 256levels is 8 binary bits . [/code]

Getting a bit lost on this Bill.
3DEM saves the file as a bitmap if you wish but not heights so just an ordinary bitmap.
Not quite sure why you need a bitmap file.
Once you get any file into 3dem the rest is automatic. hgt, tar or whatever. Save as USGS ASCII DEM, but convert it to UTM projection from UTM Ellipsoid first.

Crop to size or whatever and this then imports directly into vtbuilder. Set it up as detailed and export as the .bt file.
You only need vtbuilder for changing to the .bt file but at the same time you set the size as detailed. 2048 in the longer side and the smaller side the fraction of it.
This then imports directly into Stentec dem as ready made. the greyscale is the terrain as all the heights in it.
You clear the terrain over sea with a few clicks. set no data to zero and you just lay depths, etc them interpolate. the terrain is already interpolated so it interpolates the depths and makes the lot as black "blob" which is ready for the Scenery Designer to get busy generating terrain.

You can import 256 colours, etc but there is no need to as the terrain is already made for you from the .bt file from vtbuilder plus no idea how to set up the details.

Past my bedtime I think.
Continue in the next session:wink:


PostPosted: Tue 05 Sep 2006 - 12:36
by Barry
Bill regarding sending files if the zipped file is say UNDER half a meg.
Takes 4 minutes or more for a meg and there is probably a maximum by my internet service provider on email size.

Most IMPORTANT though I need to know who the email if from so you would need to mention Stentec in the email header for me to identify it when it downloads. I usually delete emails I can't identfy as spam etc. My email is on the postcard section of my site.

No idea if I can open tar.gz or tar files files but think the zip program I mentioned,opens them.
If you send me a SMALL tar file I will see if I can make a scenery out of it. The complete scenery in half an hour.
Would be guessed depths though just with a few depth contours run along the coastlines.

Best not to send 256 colour bitmap with heights I don't know any more than you as regards setting the size, co-ordinates, etc, so will give that a miss. These go into the dem editor OK.

Don't want to register on the sites just to download tar.gz files, or whatever, etc.


Globasl Mapper 3DEM

PostPosted: Tue 05 Sep 2006 - 17:54
by BillC21
Barry let us forget about Global Mapper because that is an interesting program the download files in TAR.GZ are free so when we have selected the area and got this file I happen to put them in the ' C' director. Now we got to massage this file using 3DEM ( As I said before Barry I will just use 3DEM in future instead of PaintSHOP PRo). put the file from Global Mapper into 3DEM then follow the procedure to set up for GREYSCALE.3DEM has procedure called Grayscale Heighfield Bitmaps I presume this is ok Barry. They suggest you go to "Color Scale-Modify Scale" from the Overhead View to set the "shade depth" to zero no problem. Then choose "Color Scale-Shaded relief" from the Overhead View Menu to bring up the "Terrain Colors" No problem. This 3D View Colors window Table of Terrain Colors is looking at you. Ideally we want the 256 levels to start at the bottom with BLACK and at the top with WHITE. The fact that we are dealing with 256 levels automatically ensures that there will only be 8 BITS.No Problem. However I notice the following Barry ' How does one generate the in between shades.At the moment I have black at the bottom and white at the top with colors in between . Looking at the help example their table is perfect shaded between black and white.DO I HAVE TO MANUALLY SET up the levels between top and bottom. Now if I can get over this hurdle when you go to save image it gives a choice one of them is BMP and I know that VT Builder accepts that format . Now perhaps you use another format let me know and I will try that one.After the file has been saved I import into VT Builder and then DEM BUIlder. Trust you can get me over the shading questions Barry and I think I am home ? Bill C

PostPosted: Tue 05 Sep 2006 - 18:28
by Barry
Hello Bill

What happens when you get the file into 3dem?
It is far simpler than what you are saying for what I do.

1. Load terrain model and click to the appropriate type get it into 3DEM

2. Click Operation/Change Projection/Convert to UTM

3. Save USGS ACII DEM. Don't save as anything else.

Basically that is all that is needed to be able to continue.
The only other thing was make sure the sea is showing blue at zero which is.
Colour Scale/Modify Scale/Then if "Island Ocean" is ticked it should show as 0 (zero) in box, or alter to zero.

This is so we can remove all the 0 land/sea in the Stentec dem editor. I do not alter the colour settings in 3dem.

I do not do any of the steps that you mention as evrything is automatically done.

The other things are incidentals such as cropping to size, and if you click show scale/metres and pull the corner of the box when you click on screen it reads the size in meters.

then continue with the process as detailed. vt builder. etc. as previously detailed.

I only know of the method I detailed and that is because Jeroen explained the process on the forum. Previously all my attempts over weeKs, ended up with the scenery generating Ok, but eveyrtHing was in as series of pillars or steps. The heights were probably correct . At that point I gave up, but as I say Jeroen came up with the details I gave you. The .bt file being essential with vtbuilder.

So can only suggest see if the process I detailed works with the files you are using and then at least you can make any scenery you want, but I don't know any other details to help with 256 colour bitmaps, etc.

Would be nice if it all works OK and you find new methods, but very much on our own.
Three of us using satellite data Myself, you and Altug.
There may be others but they don't post about sceneries made or process used with satellite data.