Uses

Software

Feature List

 Cybertracker-Logo-Text

 

Introduction

CyberTracker enables users with no programming skills to customise a Data Capture Application for Smartphones and Mobile Devices. It further enables users with no GIS skills to view and analyse their data on a Windows PC.

Data can be exported in a number file formats for advanced data analyses in other software tools, such as Excel, Esri ArcGIS, Distance Software or R Statistical software.

CyberTracker also enables advanced users to connect to server databases and allows remote synchronization from Smartphones and Mobile Devices.

Data can be synchronized remotely to Online databases such as Esri ArcGIS Online.

The Application developer allows you to create your own Custom Screen Templates using a wide selection of screen components.

CyberTracker Icon User Interface Design

CyberTracker is the most efficient way to gather large quantities of geo-referenced data for field observations at a speed and level of detail not possible before.

The CyberTracker Icon User Interface was originally designed for trackers who cannot read or write. However, scientists and conservationists benefit from the Icon User Interface enabling significantly faster data collection than text interfaces or written methods. The icon interface design also reduces data input errors.

CyberTracker software consists of three main components:

  • Application developer to create data capture screens for Smartphone or Mobile Device
  • Reports to view and analyse data in Tables, Maps, Photo views and Graphs on a Windows PC
  • Elements to manage the database Elements

Esri ArcGIS Online

CyberTracker Applications can synchronise data remotely from Smartphones and Mobile Devices to Esri ArcGIS Online.

CyberTracker Server Setup

The CyberTracker Object database use the Microsoft Access database on a Windows PC. CyberTracker also supports connections to Server databases such as MySQL, Microsoft SQL Server and PostgreSQL.

CyberTracker Command Line

Several CyberTracker features can be triggered via the command-line. This functionality is usually intended for server side scripts that operate on the database as a whole.

CyberTracker Remote Synchronization

If your project involves multiple handheld users sending data to a single database, then this feature may be of interest to you. Remote Synchronization involves CyberTracker desktops and PDAs sending data over the internet to a central server. The database administrator can then download this sighting data into a consolidated database.

Export of data include:

  • Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet
  • Comma Separated Values
  • CyberTracker export file (CTX)
  • Export Rule File
  • eXtended Markup Language (XML)
  • ESRI Shape File
  • ESRI Shape File (integrated track)
  • Google Earth (Keyhole Markup Language)
  • External database
  • Darwin Core (XML)
  • Tab Separated Values
  • Web page (HTML)
  • JPEG File Interchange
  • Bitmap
  • Windows Metafile

Import of data include:

  • Import CTX file containing CyberTracker data or CyberTracker database
  • Import columns of data fields from Excel Spreadsheet

In Applications, the New Screen feature allows you to select a Screen Template for:

  • Radio List
  • Check List
  • Number List
  • Number Keypad
  • Note
  • Short Question Note
  • GPS Timer Setup
  • Title screen with text
  • Blank screen with title and navigator
  • Blank screen with navigator

The Application developer allows you to create your own Custom Screen Templates, using the Layout feature

The Application developer allows you to define the screen properties and to link screens into a sequence of interlinked screens.

The Application Properties allow you to:

  • Select General Appearance properties
  • Select General System properties
  • Set the GPS properties, including sighting accuracy, track accuracy, manual GPS entry
  • Create multiple Moving Field Maps for real-time navigation on the mobile device or smartphone
  • Create GPS GoTo waypoint settings

The Application developer allows you to create multiple Applications for the same database and to manage them

The Layout feature allows you to create your own screen design using a Toolbox of screen components and controls. See Toolbox options below.

The Application developer has a simulator to do a Test Run to bug check your Application, before Installing the Application onto a Windows Mobile or Android mobile device or smartphone.

The Reports allows you to:

  • View and Query data in a Table
  • View data on a Map
  • View photos attached to data
  • Create Graphs
  • Export data

Map options include:

  • Microsoft Virtual Earth (default view)
  • Google Earth
  • ESRI Shapefile map layers
  • Image map

Map Rendering includes:

  • Point data
  • Path data
  • Grid Analysis for Cell Count
  • Grid Analysis for Effort
  • Grid Analysis for Index of Abundance

The Map Legend includes:

  • Select to show or hide particular Query
  • Show or hide Timer points
  • Color, Style and Size of points
  • Transparency

Map Tools include:

  • Zoom in or out
  • Select area to Zoom into
  • Pan map view
  • Select data point
  • Measure distance
  • Move point
  • Create Field Map

Map settings include:

  • Map appearance
  • Track Timer settings
  • Datum and Projection settings
  • Image map geo-reference settings
  • Map export settings

Graphs include:

  • Frequency Graphs
  • Efficiency Graphs
  • Trend Graphs
  • Trend Data

The Query Editor includes:

  • Date range selection
  • Inspector showing individual observations
  • Edit or Delete sightings
  • Adding and removing Table Columns
  • Specify Output for each Column
  • Datum and Projection
  • Advanced Filter Builder

Reports also allow you to create multiple Reports and to manage reports

The drop-down Tools include:

  • Edit screen profiles for different handheld devices
  • Default Field Map
  • GPS Simulator
  • Data Recovery Console
  • Pack Database
  • Create Database Connection

The drop-down Database Properties include:

  • Database Author details
  • Remote Data Transfer settings to send data from the field to a central ftp site
  • Password Protected features
  • Merge Databases
  • Change Tracking

The Elements allow you to create new categories of database Elements and to define the database Elements properties.

The Application Layout mode include a Toolbox with screen components and controls to create your own Data Capture Screen Designs:

Toolbox Static Controls include:

  • Panel
  • Image
  • Zoom Image
  • Sound
  • Scroll box
  • Marquee
  • GPS
  • Range Finder
  • Memo
  • Title bar
  • Notebook
  • System state

Toolbox Data Controls include:

  • History
  • Navigator
  • Navigator Back
  • Navigator Next
  • Navigator Home
  • Navigator Skip
  • Navigator Save
  • Navigator Options
  • Navigator GPS
  • Navigator Jump
  • Element Image
  • Element Zoom Image
  • Element Sound
  • Element Recorder
  • Element Panel
  • Element Memo
  • Element Container
  • Element List
  • Element Formula
  • Element Keypad
  • Element Text Edit
  • Element Camera
  • Element Range Finder
  • Element Raindance
  • Element Serial data
  • Element Number
  • Element Image Grid 1
  • Element Image Grid 2
  • Field Map
  • GoTo List
  • GPS Timer List
  • Owner Information
  • Send Data

Toolbox Actions include:

  • Add Attribute
  • Add User Name
  • Configure GPS
  • Snap GPS position
  • Snap Last GPS Position
  • Snap Time
  • Configure Range Finder
  • Configure Save Targets
  • Reset state key
  • Set pending GoTo

Remote Synchronization

Background

If your project involves multiple handheld users sending data to a single database, then this feature may be of interest to you. Remote Synchronization involves CyberTracker desktops and PDAs sending data over the internet to a central server. The database administrator can then download this sighting data into a consolidated database.

Getting set up

1. Get an FTP site. These are widely available and come with most web hosting solutions. Use a search engine for "Web hosting" and pick the one you are most comfortable with. They will provide you an FTP site, username and password. If you organization has an IT department, contract them first. They may already have something set up.
2. Using Windows Explorer (not Internet Explorer), navigate to the FTP site and log in
3. Create a directory "CTData"
4. Open CyberTracker Studio, load your database and click "File->Database Properties"
5. In the "Upload Settings", setup the Url to: "ftp://ftp.yoursite.com/CTData" and also set user name and password
6. Leave "Download Settings" as "[Same as Upload]"
7. Ensure "Send on Client" is checked
8. Click the "Download" button. This will report connection errors if any.
9. Close the dialog, save your database and re-sync your PDAs

Note: if the PDAs do not have an internet connection and your users sync their data to their own PCs, then check "Send on Sync". This will cause any data downloaded off the PDA to be sent to the same central server.

Note: the auto-send frequency will cause CyberTracker to send data in the background at timed intervals. This is useful if you would like a consistent incoming data stream and are less concerned with battery life.

Testing the system

1. On the PDA, create a few sightings
2. Open the "Options" dialog
3. One of the tabs should be "Send Data". If not, make sure the "Send on Client" checkbox is enabled (see above)
4. Tap the button where it says "Tap to send". This will kick start the sending process.
5. If the send fails for any reason, check your connection settings. If any changes are made in the "Database Properties" section on the desktop, PDAs will need to be re-synced.
6. Go to the "File->Database Properties" dialog and click the "Download" button
7. Once downloading is complete, close the dialog
8. The new sightings should appear the report

Advanced settings and other configurations

If the FTP server is also the database server, then it is possible to bypass a step. In this case, the Download Settings protocol should be "File share", with the url being of the form "\\server\directory", or possibly even "c:\ftpfiles".

If all the devices are on the same wireless network, it is possible to bypass FTP altogether. In this case, set the "Upload settings" protocol can be "File share".

HTTP and HTTPS are also provided for upload. However these don't work for download, because these protocols don't provide file-system like functionality.

Data can also be uploaded and downloaded directly via the CyberTracker Command-Line. This allows a database administrator to create a scheduled task on the server which routinely picks up data files and adds them to the database.

Technical Support

Darwin Core

The Darwin Core is designed to facilitate the exchange of information about the geographic occurrence of organisms and the physical existence of biotic specimens in collections. Extensions to the Darwin Core provide a mechanism to share additional information, which may be discipline-specific, or beyond the commonly agreed upon scope of the Darwin Core itself. The Darwin Core and its extensions are minimally restrictive of information content by design, since doing so would render the standard useless for the implementation of data quality tools.

CyberTracker enables you to export your data to the Darwin Core format.

TDWG Darwin Core Group

Server Setup

This page provides the information required for Server Setup and the CyberTracker Command-Line.

Technical Support

Background

A CyberTracker database is normally a Microsoft Access database or .MDB file. This is convenient because a single file can hold the entire database. However, only one user can connect at a time and the database size is limited to 2 GB.

CyberTracker supports connections to Server databases such as MySQL, Microsoft SQL Server and PostgreSQL. This is done using a connection file, which tells CyberTracker how to communicate with the server.

Installing and configuring MySQL

Download and install MySQL

from http://dev.mysql.com/downloads/mysql/5.0.html
Version 5.1 is recommended.

Add the following line to \MySQL\MySQL Server 5.1\my.ini:

max_allowed_packet = 64M

Download and install MySQL Connector

from http://dev.mysql.com/downloads/connector/odbc/5.1.html

Installing and configuring PostgreSQL

Download and install PostgreSQL from http://www.postgresql.org/download.

When installing, also install the ODBC driver (or download and install it separately from here https://odbc.postgresql.org/).

In the PostgreSQL console, create a new database.

In CyberTracker, use the Tools->Create database connection option to set up a connection in the usual way. Don't forget to set the type rules to "PostgreSQL".

Examine the resulting EDB file and make sure that ByteaAsLongVarBinary=1.

Creating a connection

CyberTracker supports connecting to a database via an EDB (External Database) file. An EDB file is an XML file that tells CyberTracker how to connect to the database. Here is an example EDB file:

Server-Setup-Code-Image

TypeRules specifies how to treat data types. Acceptable values are "MySQL" and "SQL Server". This is to handle differences in SQL database types.

User ID and Password should be set according to your credentials.

Data Source is the name of a User Data Source as configured by the windows "ODBC Data Source Administrator". This tool binds a database driver to a data source so that applications can access it easily. The tool can be run by using Start->Run and typing "odbcad32.exe". Make sure that an ODBC driver is available for your database before setting this up. For MySQL, this is the MySQL Connector.

Initial Catalog is the name of the database. This database can be created using the "CREATE DATABASE MyDatabaseName" SQL command.

Converting an existing database

Once you can successfully connect to the server database by opening the .EDB file (using File->Open from the CyberTracker main menu), the next step is to import an existing database. The most common way to do this is:

• Load the old MDB database, using File->Open
• Export it to a CTX file, using File->Export
• Open the new EDB database, using File->Open
• Import the CTX file, using File->Import
• Save the new database

Multiple simultaneous connections

By distributing the EDB file within your organization, multiple users can connect to the database simultanously. This has 2 implications to be aware of:

1. As new sightings come in from remote sources, users will need to press "F5" (or use Edit->Refresh) to see new sightings
2. Conflicts may arise if multiple users are making changes to the same database. To restrict this, end-users should not use the "Studio" version when viewing data. In all cases, the most recently saved data wins.

Using Export Data Tables

An Export Data Table is a table in a database that holds captured sighting data in an exported tabular form.

In order to view sighting data within CyberTracker, it is 'projected' onto a table. This simply means that each sighting attribute is mapped to a column. This table is a very natural way to view and query the data.

CyberTracker has the ability to export the Query View table to a database table. However, doing this requires some setup: the table must already be created in the target database and must have certain pre-defined fields.

To get started, create a table in your database named "Export" with the following SQL command:

CREATE TABLE Export (ID CHAR(38) NOT NULL UNIQUE, Date DATE, Time TIME, Latitude DOUBLE, LONGITUDE DOUBLE, Note LONGTEXT)

1. Load CyberTracker and open a report with sightings
2. With the Query Editor selected, click on the "Export View" button
3. In the "Save As Type" drop down, select "External database" and select the database you want to export to
4. Click Okay. Note you will get a message about overwriting this file, but it can be ignored (the .EDB file will not be overwritten, but duplicate data in the "Export" table will be)

Finally, use the following SQL command to see the data in the "Export" table in the database:

SELECT * FROM Export

Here is the list of field names (and their associated types) which CyberTracker recognizes specially:

Id: CHAR(38) NOT NULL UNIQUE - The primary Id of the sighting. This must be indexed for merging reasons.
DeviceId: CHAR(38) - The Id of the device used to capture the observation. This can be used to group sightings created by a single observer.
Deleted: SMALLINT - Whether or not the sighting has been deleted. Using this field allows deleted sightings to be correctly merged.

The UI component of this feature is designed mainly for experimentation. It can be more fully controlled via the CyberTracker Command-Line (below).

CyberTracker matches fields by name, so the column name in CyberTracker must be the same as the field name in the table to work correctly. Column names can be changed using the "View Properties" dialog.

Technical Support

CyberTracker Command-Line

Background

Several CyberTracker features can be triggered via the command-line. This functionality is usually intended for server side scripts that operate on the database as a whole. To use the command line, use:

Start->Run "cmd.exe"
cd "\Program Files\CyberTracker Software\CyberTracker 3.0"
ct3 /?

Note, do not use "ct3.exe /?", because this will trigger the windows application. Instead, just type "ct3".

"System" folders are mentioned below. These are sub-folders of "Documents\My CyberTracker Databases\System". This folder can be opened in Explorer to see the way data moves through the system.

System Folders

Staging

Data that is waiting to be inserted into a database is placed into this folder. This folder is processed by CyberTracker routinely, e.g. on startup, on sync, etc. If the data cannot be uploaded into the target database for any reason, it will remain in this folder - potentially indefinitely.

Backup

Once data has been successfully added to a database, it is moved to this folder. If the database later becomes corrupt, it acts as a second line of defense.

CrashDump

If CyberTracker crashes, the changes that have been made since the last save are exported to a CTX file and placed here.

Incoming

When files are downloaded from the internet, they are temporarily held in this location.

Logs

CyberTracker keeps a log of all sync operations. Check out the download.txt file in this location to understand errors. This only affects ActiveSync and Hotsync operations.

MapCache

Virtual Earth tiles that are downloaded from the server are placed here to improve performance.

Outgoing

Once files have been downloaded via a local sync (ActiveSync or Hotsync), they may need to ultimately be sent to an internet server. Check out the "Send on Sync" option on the "Database Properties" dialog. This is a holding location for them before they are processed.

Settings

Local system settings, e.g. the current Client Profile.

Commands

/DownloadPDA

Connect to the a Windows Mobile / PocketPC PDA and download any data that is on it. As soon as data is downloaded from the PDA, it is placed in the Staging (see above) folder.

/DownloadURL

Use the download settings of the associated /Database to connect to a URL. Incoming data is placed in the Staging (see above) folder. If an /ExportDatabase, /ExportRule and /ExportTable are also specified, then this downloaded data will be exported.

/UploadURL

Process the Outgoing (see above) folder.

/Datafile

Specify a data file (.CTX) for use with data operations, for example as an input for the /ExportTable mechansim. If the full path is not present, the system will attempt to locate the file in "Documents\My CyberTracker Databases".

/Database

Specify the database to use for data operations, for example as an input for the /ExportTable mechanism.

/ExportRule

The export rule file. The export rule file can be created by using the "Export View" toolbar button with the "Query Editor" active. Use the "Save as type" drop down on the File Save dialog to select "Export Rule File".

/ExportDatabase

The target database for export operations. Must be accompanied by a /ExportRule and /ExportTable. The input for this operation comes from a /Datafile, /Database or /DownloadURL command. If the full path is not present, the system will attempt to locate the file in "Documents\My CyberTracker Databases".

/ExportTable

The table name in the target database. This table must already exist and be properly configured. See "Using Export Data Tables" in CyberTracker Server Setup.

/Studio

Turn on all CyberTracker features and run the desktop application.

Examples

ct3 /Database mydb.mdb /DownloadURL

Open the database mydb.mdb, get the download settings and execute a download using the parameters in the "Database Properties" dialog. This is equivalent to clicking the "Download" button on the "Database Properties" dialog box.

ct3 /DownloadPda

Download all data from the currently connected Windows Mobile device.

ct3 /Database myin.edb /DownloadUrl /ExportDatabase myout.edb /ExportRule myrule.exr /ExportTable mytable

Open the database myin.edb and get the download settings. Download all the files available using the parameters in the "Database Properties" dialog. Export this data to the myTable table in the myout.edb database. Note, myin.edb and myout.edb can be the same database.

Using this method is the preferred way of configuring a schedule task that keeps an export table up to date, because only the newly downloaded data is considered for export.

Technical Support

Distance Software

Distance-Software-photo

The Distance project provides software for the design and analysis of distance sampling surveys of wildlife populations. This software takes two forms: a Windows-based program and a suite of packages for the statistical programming language R.

Distance Software is compatible with CyberTracker

Distance Software Website: http://distancesampling.org/

 

Using Laser Range Finder with CyberTracker for Aerial Line Transect Sampling

by Richard J. Guenzel, April 2007.

SMART Conservation Software

SMART-photo

Developed by global conservation organizations in close collaboration with protected area authorities and other key stakeholders, the Spatial Monitoring and Reporting Tool (SMART) represents a major step forward for improved site-based conservation. SMART's software and training materials both extend and simplify existing technologies for monitoring efforts to tackle poaching and other illegal activities, making those technologies more effective, efficient and user-friendly.

SMART is fully compatible with CyberTracker.

SMART Website: http://smartconservationtools.org/