Software > PictureSnapApp

Image Locator Feature

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John Donovan:
I wanted to mention that it was Gareth Seward at UC Santa Barbara that originally came up with this Image Locator idea back in early March.  Here's what he wrote then:

--- Quote ---I had an idea......... having links to other more detailed images e.g.
I'm using the SEM to locate some areas of interest in a sample.
I'm using a calibrated image in PictureSnap to navigate to the areas of interest and annotate them.
I take an SEM image and store it in the same folder as the calibrated PictureSnapApp navigation image.
Now a 'link' to the stored SEM image is displayed on the PicturesnapApp image showing the location of the detailed image.**
If I click on the link the detailed image is opened for viewing.
** you could, for example, search the folder for images with same file name as annotations in the Annotations Table - Although perhaps 'basic' at least this method would be generic and  allow for image link positions to move if the underlying PictureSnap Navigation image is recalibrated.

 just a thought I had. There are two advantages I see 1)Picturesnap acts like a lab notebook - after your session you can brows your samples and see the context of the images at multiple scales.  2)when moving between instruments, the ability to pull-up the detailled images would help in relocating the same domain area of interest.

The more I think about this App, the more I think about how it could be a platform for collating images/measurements from different techniques and different length-scales. Perhaps my mind starts to run away beyond the scope, but I've been imagineering such a piece of software for a long time. GIS meets microanalysis!
--- End quote ---

Pretty much what we implemented I think.  Indeed "GIS meets microanalysis!", but maybe more like "planetary GIS" since each instrument "world" has its own stage coordinate system. 

Thank-you Gareth.

John Donovan:
A small tweak to help the user. We simply changed the Add Image and Select Remote Image and Save buttons to a yellow background since we suspect these will be the buttons most users will be accessing.

Also I didn't show it below, but if one hovers their mouse cursor over these buttons, the "tool tip" help text will pop up and provide a more detailed explanation for each button.

Please try this feature out, even just in demo and text input modes.  It works great! 

For those of you with hardware enabled versions of PictureSnapApp, please feel free to post some examples also.  Thanks.

One of our grad students Marisa Acosta was using PictureSnapApp yesterday to find areas of interest using our CL system in a thin section on our FEI Quanta SEM.  Next week she will move these images (all saved in a single folder) to the EPMA computer and open them in PictureSnap to relocate them for trace element analysis.

Anyway after she left for the day, I captured a few CL images myself on her calibrated image (the sample was still in the instrument) using the new Select Remote Image and Save button in latest version of PictureSnapApp. In the screen shot below you can see I kept the FEI data bar in the bottom of the CL images.

In this mode one simply acquires an image using the FEI software (the default is TIF, but one can also save it as a JPG image), and then (without changing the current stage position or FOV), one simply browses to the saved image and the software automatically copies the image to the local folder, generates an .ACQ calibration file and then loads it into the Image Locator window.

To facilitate browsing to the image files on the FEI "Support" computer, I added a link from the Thermo PC that PictureSnapApp runs on, to the SharaData folder on the FEI "Support" computer that we store our images in, using the Add Network Location icon from Windows Explorer. Note, you may need to have file sharing turned on to do this.

The last few days when I was working with students on our FEI Quanta SEM using the Image Locator Feature and we noticed that the images displayed on the main base image would sometimes repaint once a second, or sometimes after several seconds, and sometimes not at all.

Now the PictureSnapApp software is designed so that if it detects that the stage position has changed, it redraws the current position, FOV and also the scale bar if the FOV (magnification) has changed.

But we do not see the same thing on the Cameca SX100.  So I thought to myself it has to be a little bit of stage "jitter" because the Cameca returns the stage position to the nearest micron (as an integer), while the FEI returns a floating point value (in meters which is converted to millimeters).

So that evening Donovan added code to limit the returned stage position from FEI SEM instrument to the nearest micron, thinking OK, that will help that.  But the next day the blinking continued, so looking further into it I then noticed that the X position was always returning the same position (when the stage was stopped), but the Y stage position was sometimes, but not always, oscillating between two values about a micron different.

Turns out our stage mechanicals need tightening.   I'll get our service engineer on it, but think of it as the software checking your stage hardware stability!    :D

John Donovan:
Because one can now "acquire" images in PictureSnapApp without a current ACQ calibration file (by utilizing the current stage position and FOV as read from the instrument), we've added some new buttons to allow the user to export ACQ calibration files for any or all sub images displayed in the Image Locator as seen here:

Not exactly sure why this would be useful, but you never know...


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