Information Technology & Software

Program for Displaying Large, Coregistered Images

DataSlate is an easy-to-use Java-language computer program for displaying coregistered raster images representing large sets of data. The program includes a main viewing module that can display image data that have been converted into a special DataSlate format called "SimpleStruct" by use of an Interactive Data Language program called "SimpleGen." The conversion into SimpleStruct optimizes the organization of the data in the sense that it simplifies any computations that must be done subsequently during perusal of the data. DataSlate enables the user to navigate very large sets of scientific data visually: DataSlate presents a slatelike user interface with simple buttons to select sets of data or to zoom in or out. The user can scroll through a set of data by simply dragging a cursor on a screen. DataSlate can also dynamically load plug-in software tools (e.g., for measuring lengths, angles, areas, or geographic coordinates) at run time. DataSlate can also traverse coregistered collections of data and can present a second data channel in a window on the screen to facilitate correlation or comparison of two sets of data (e.g., from two sensors and/or taken at different times).

Posted in: Briefs, Information Sciences, Computer software / hardware, Computer software and hardware, Imaging, Imaging and visualization, Computer software / hardware, Computer software and hardware, Imaging, Imaging and visualization, Human machine interface (HMI), Data management
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RS Forward Error Correction for Variable-Length Frames

Method accommodates dynamically varying frame length.

A method of forward error correction by Reed-Solomon (RS) coding has been devised to increase the link margins of data-communication systems that must handle variable-length frames or packets of data. Heretofore, RS coding has involved fixed-length blocks: In order to encode variable-length frames, it has been necessary to (a) choose a fixed block length equal to a multiple of some given block length and greater than or equal to the length of the longest variable-length frame and (b) in the case of a frame shorter than the fixed block length, pad or fill the remainder of the block with extra bytes. This is very inefficient because the fill conveys no useful information, and any errors in the fill diminish the overall coding gain by using up some or all of the available error-correction capacity.

Posted in: Briefs, Information Sciences, Communication protocols, Data exchange, Communication protocols, Data exchange
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Fast NRZLM Encoding and Decoding Algorithm

Byte-oriented algorithms save time.

A recently developed algorithm saves encoding and decoding time in the operation of data-communication systems that utilize the NRZM code, which is derived from the better-known non-return-to-zero-level (NRZL) code. This algorithm utilizes lookup tables that contain the results of routine encoding and decoding computations that would otherwise have to be performed repeatedly.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Information Sciences, Mathematical models, Communication protocols, Cryptography, Communication protocols, Cryptography
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Linking Employee Appraisals to Organizational Goals

Evaluation of employee performance would be systematized, centralized, and automated.

The Goal Performance Evaluation System (GPES) is an Internet-based automated management information system (see figure) now undergoing development at Kennedy Space Center (KSC). The GPES is designed to perform two major functions:

Posted in: Briefs, Information Sciences, Internet, Internet, Data management, Documentation, Personnel
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Neural-Network Approach to Analysis of Sensor Data

Anomalies in dynamic systems are detected by processing seemingly random time series.

A method of processing of time-series data from sensors that monitor a dynamic physical system has been devised to enable detection of anomalies in the dynamics. The method involves computing what are initially supposed to be dynamical invariants that represent the structural and operational parameters of the system; the invariants are specified in such a way that anomalies or abnormalities in the system manifest themselves as changes in the supposed invariants. The method could be applied, for example, to telemetric data from a spacecraft or to such time-series scientific data as sea-surface temperatures measured at daily or other regular intervals.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Information Sciences, Neural networks, Sensors and actuators, Neural networks, Sensors and actuators, Data management
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Program for Visualization and Exploration of Scientific Data

WebWinds is an interactive computer program that aids the visualization and exploration of scientific data. WebWinds is the successor to LinkWinds, which was reported in "LinkWinds — Flexible Software for Highly Interactive Visual Data Analysis" (NPO-19786), NASA Tech Briefs, Vol. 20, No. 12 (December 1996), page 46. WebWinds is a platform-independent, reusable code written in the Java computer language. WebWinds has been tested on Linux, Sun, SGI, and Win95 systems.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Information Sciences, Computer software / hardware, Computer software and hardware, Imaging, Imaging and visualization, Computer software / hardware, Computer software and hardware, Imaging, Imaging and visualization, Data management
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MDICE: Software System for Multidisciplinary Computing

Programs for different disciplines can readily be incorporated as needed.

The Multi-Disciplinary Computing Environment (MDICE) is a software system for multidisciplinary analysis of complex engineering equipment, processes, and systems. Currently MDICE supports a variety of disciplines, including parametric computer aided design (CAD), grid generation, computational fluid dynamics (CFD), computational structural dynamics (CSD), active controls, and visualization/animation.

Posted in: Briefs, Information Sciences, CAD / CAM / CAE, CAD, CAM, and CAE, Computational fluid dynamics, Computer software / hardware, Computer software and hardware, Computer software / hardware, Computer software and hardware
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Electronic Storage and Retrieval of Engineering Documents

Drawings can be retrieved from a remote central site, manipulated, and printed locally.

The KSC Electronic Documentation System (KEDS) is a computer-intranet system at Kennedy Space Center (KSC) for the storage and retrieval of engineering drawings and other engineering documents that have been officially released. Prior to the development of the KEDS, microfilm copies of engineering documents were stored in an archive at the Engineering Document Center (EDC) in the KSC headquarters building; engineers and drafters had to travel from remote sites to the EDC to view microfilm images of drawings, and the cost of fulfilling requests for documents (including printing paper copies) was considerable.

Posted in: Briefs, Information Sciences, Data management, Documentation, Technical reference, Technical review
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Software Assists in the Development of Optimization Models

This program automates much of the model-development process.

Optimization Modeling Assistant (OMA) is an expert-system computer program that assists its users in the development of mathematical and algorithmic models for optimization. As used here, "optimization" refers to a suite of powerful decision-support techniques that enable the modeling of any decision-making environment in terms of the objectives, the decisions that potentially influence the objectives, and a set of constraints that bind the decisions. Optimization analysis helps decision makers in identifying decisions that optimize their objectives. Domains in which optimization modeling are applied include real-time scheduling, logistics, planning, and financial management.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Information Sciences, Optimization, Simulation and modeling, Computer software / hardware, Computer software and hardware, Computer software / hardware, Computer software and hardware
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Interface Program for Generation of Computational Grids

Computer Aided Grid Interface (CAGI) is a computer program that serves as an interface between computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing (CAD/CAM) programs and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) programs. CAGI reads Initial Graphics Exchange Specification (IGES) files from CAD/CAM programs and converts from CAD/CAM geometries to nonuniform rational B-splice (NURBS) surfaces to be manipulated or written out in forms appropriate for generation of grids for CFD.

Posted in: Briefs, Information Sciences, CAD / CAM / CAE, CAD, CAM, and CAE, Computational fluid dynamics, Communication protocols, Computer software / hardware, Computer software and hardware, Communication protocols, Computer software / hardware, Computer software and hardware
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