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Offline jbovet  
#1 Posted : 26 December 2022 21:00:06(UTC)
jbovet

United States   
Joined: 16/10/2021(UTC)
Posts: 6
Location: California, Los Angeles
Good afternoon!

I wanted to share this link to an open-source software (named BTrain) for macOS that I am developing in my free time. BTrain manages layouts by connecting directly to any Central Station 3. BTrain is still in development but manages a few things like the automatic routing of multiple trains, reservation of blocks using the length of the train, block and feedback distances, full layout editing, speed measurement, and more.

If you are interested, here is the repository on Github, and here is a video of BTrain in action with my still-in-progress layout (about 18 trains in two levels).

Have a great day,

Jean

Switchboard
thanks 16 users liked this useful post by jbovet
Offline psonnenh  
#2 Posted : 26 January 2023 01:10:20(UTC)
psonnenh

Ecuador   
Joined: 26/01/2023(UTC)
Posts: 1
Location: Guayaquil
Great ,. Software. Works in Yosemite OS ?
Offline jbovet  
#3 Posted : 26 January 2023 02:24:49(UTC)
jbovet

United States   
Joined: 16/10/2021(UTC)
Posts: 6
Location: California, Los Angeles
Originally Posted by: psonnenh Go to Quoted Post
Great ,. Software. Works in Yosemite OS ?


Unfortunately, no, because support for SwiftUI is needed, which is only provided by more recent macOS versions.
Offline Danlake  
#4 Posted : 26 January 2023 10:11:55(UTC)
Danlake

New Zealand   
Joined: 03/08/2011(UTC)
Posts: 1,571
Hi Jean,

Well done on creating this piece of software and sharing with the community.

It looks well designed and you build a nice layout as well ThumpUp

Iam not using Mac but Iam sure there will be an audience. My only comments, after watching the video, would be to include some setting to adjust or manipulate breaking and acceleration momentum to make it more prototypical. It may already be there in the software though?

Are you also planning to include some scheduling functionality?

Best Regards
Lasse
Digital 11m2 layout / C (M&K) tracks / Era IV / CS3 60226 / Train Controller Gold 9 with 4D sound. Mainly Danish and German Locomotives.
Offline jbovet  
#5 Posted : 28 January 2023 02:54:46(UTC)
jbovet

United States   
Joined: 16/10/2021(UTC)
Posts: 6
Location: California, Los Angeles
Originally Posted by: Danlake Go to Quoted Post
Hi Jean,

Well done on creating this piece of software and sharing with the community.

It looks well designed and you build a nice layout as well ThumpUp

Iam not using Mac but Iam sure there will be an audience. My only comments, after watching the video, would be to include some setting to adjust or manipulate breaking and acceleration momentum to make it more prototypical. It may already be there in the software though?


Thank you! Yes, there are options to change the acceleration/deceleration curve and other parameters - I need to tweak them more!

Originally Posted by: Danlake Go to Quoted Post

Are you also planning to include some scheduling functionality?


Regarding the scheduling functionality, can you point me to a good site that explains it? BTrain has the ability to define "macros," which are a series of steps that can execute a specific route at a specific moment (e.g. execute a specific route for train A when train B has finished its route). Not sure if that's what you have in mind?

Thanks for your feedback!
Offline Mark5  
#6 Posted : 29 January 2023 05:47:48(UTC)
Mark5

Canada   
Joined: 29/01/2012(UTC)
Posts: 1,420
Location: Montreal, Canada
Hi Jean,

It looks like an exciting and ambitious project. I will certainly look at future videos of your development.
It must be a challenge to build a program like that from scratch.

I am curious if you spent time looking at Rocrail? I am wondering what you might be able to do that Rocrail does not do already. Curious what motivated you to undertake the project and I am guessing you felt there was more you wanted your system to do than is already out there.

I look forward to hearing about your developments.
Thank you for sharing
Cheers
Mark
DB DR FS NS SNCF c. 1950-65, fan of station architecture esp. from 1920-70.
In single point perspective, where do track lines meet?
Offline jbovet  
#7 Posted : 30 January 2023 00:11:23(UTC)
jbovet

United States   
Joined: 16/10/2021(UTC)
Posts: 6
Location: California, Los Angeles
Originally Posted by: Mark5 Go to Quoted Post
Hi Jean,

It looks like an exciting and ambitious project. I will certainly look at future videos of your development.
It must be a challenge to build a program like that from scratch.


It is challenging, indeed! But rewarding as well to figure out how things work internally.

Originally Posted by: Mark5 Go to Quoted Post

I am curious if you spent time looking at Rocrail? I am wondering what you might be able to do that Rocrail does not do already. Curious what motivated you to undertake the project and I am guessing you felt there was more you wanted your system to do than is already out there.


Yes, I spent some time looking at Rocrail, which is very impressive! My goal is not to compete with nor replace Rocrail. This would be foolish. However, I had a few goals in mind when starting this project, mainly:

  • Explore by myself the algorithms that allow for automatic routing to happen - when you ask the train to go from one place to another (or ask the train to run by itself) while other trains are running.
  • Ability to quickly draw a switchboard (in SwiftUI) and have the layout ready to be controlled by the software
  • Offline Central Station 3 simulator
  • Fun to reverse engineer the CS3 commands BigGrin


Thanks for your feedback!
thanks 1 user liked this useful post by jbovet
Offline Mark5  
#8 Posted : 30 January 2023 03:18:17(UTC)
Mark5

Canada   
Joined: 29/01/2012(UTC)
Posts: 1,420
Location: Montreal, Canada
Hi Jean,
Since I am not a programmer really, just a dabbler ... javascript, a bit of python and I know what I like where and when etc as I have worked with programmers, so please forgive me if my questions sound naive. Could or would it be helpful to make something with your capabilities that could be a sort of plug-in for Rocrail, or work with it, as in Brave Browser operates off of Chrome. Perhaps "Jeanjohn" our other Jean and huge Rocrail advocate might have some feedback on such an idea.

Cheers and onward!
Mark
DB DR FS NS SNCF c. 1950-65, fan of station architecture esp. from 1920-70.
In single point perspective, where do track lines meet?
thanks 1 user liked this useful post by Mark5
Offline einotuominen  
#9 Posted : 07 February 2023 14:25:50(UTC)
einotuominen

Finland   
Joined: 19/09/2022(UTC)
Posts: 371
Location: Kaarina
Hi,

What new projects like this can bring to the table, is better UI and better user experience. Eventually most likely a great set of features too, but that of course takes time.

Rocrail is a great software and I love it's capabilities, but the user interface is hidious. And I don't mean the looks of if it but more the experience of having to switch between different table dialogs and being able to have only one of them open at a time, and things like such. For example, try binding actions with schedules etc and you can spend hours of time just moving between the different views and using notepad to copy paste schedule names and so on. And after a while you no longer have any idea where you trigger actions that start different schedules and you end up with a mess.

So there definitely is a lot to do on the user experience side. A limited feature set also may be enough for some users, so a new software like this can be a great choice for them! However when you get used to the magic of automatic operations, you quickly start yearning for more.

But this seems like a great project! Keep up the good work and I love your goals of acquiring insights on the workings of CS3.

Also, what could be really competitive feature, is to be able to have as many timers as one would like. For example in Rocrail Block Routes, you only have two global timers available.

-Eino
thanks 1 user liked this useful post by einotuominen
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