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OCC News and Announcements Archive

    October 6, 2017: The Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences at CU just released a short video about the atmospheric chambers that I have been working on there for the last few years.
OCC's MICAS-X software runs both chambers simultaneously, but asynchronously, allowing two different experiments to be run at once.
    August 31, 2017: The most recent version of MICAS-X, 2.2.0, now includes an extended PID Driver with gain scheduling and auto-tuning as well as new commands that allow individual files to be turned on and off and for the file writing rate to be changed programmatically.
    August 27, 2017: VSI Parylene of Broomfield, Colorado is a relatively new client for OCC. This video presents the project OCC is working with VSI on, which involves the use of MICAS-X to upgrade the control of an industrial production line.

    July 24, 2017:  OCC has released its first hardware product, the myRIO 232 Serial Converter. This product is the first in a planned line of myRIO accessories. It acts as a level shifter to allow the serial ports on the myRIO to work with standard serial devices. (Although the myRIO serial ports are fully functional from a software viewpoint, they only have 3.3V output levels, whereas most RS232 devices require 5 to 12 V signals.)

    May 21, 2017 - The release of the Student Editions of MICAS-X (MICAS-X SE) today brings the flagship product of Original Code Consulting to a new market segment. This release is available for free (executable version) or a small price (source code) to graduate or undergraduate students in any discipline. It is targeted to engineering and the physical sciences, but can be applied in a wide range of laboratory settings. This limited edition includes all the components in the base package of MICAS-X as well as drivers for National Instruments Analog Input and Output and Digital Input and Output. If students determine that they need additional functionality, they can program their own Drivers, Displays, and Instruments, or can purchase more modules from OCC at a substantial discount.
OCC has a long tradition of working with students and researchers in academia, government labs, and commercial labs. The Student Edition of MICAS-X is our latest effort to support this community. We have three goals in releasing this version of our product: To help students in their research and studies, to introduce students to LabVIEW using MICAS-X as the vehicle, and to broaden the user base of MICAS-X.

    May 17, 2017 - David Thomson made a brief presentation at the May 17 ALARM meeting in Louisville, CO entitled "Addressing Multiple Channels with DAQmx", which concluded by showing the little known concept of "Channel Expansion". The ppt of this presentation is available on our website.

    January 2, 2017: OCC welcomes in the new year with the release of MICAS-X 2.1.4, which now support the new feature of Scripts. Scripts are a powerful version of Sequences, which allow for more compact, cleaner sets of commands. Find out more on the MICAS-X page.

    November 25, 2016: With the release of MICAS-X 2.1.3, OCC has created the limited (Ltd) license for MICAS-X. MICAS-X Ltd allows MICAS-X to be sold for simpler projects, where the full price of the standard MICAS-X license may not be competitive with a custom-written LabVIEW program. MICAS-X Ltd is restricted to the specific modules it is licensed for, but allows smaller data logger systems to take advantage of the robust code base and broad existing functionality of MICAS-X.
    October 21, 2016:  Original Code Consulting is pleased to announce that David Thomson has just qualified as a National Instruments Certified LabVIEW Embedded Systems Developer (CLED), demonstrating proficiency in the use of NI's hardware and software for embedded systems.

    October 5, 2016: OCC has posted example code for using the MLSD command with NI's FTP functions. This command is needed when interacting with some FTP servers, since some servers will not return a directory listing with the LIST command that NI's functions use if the directory name has spaces in it.

    September 6, 2016: MICAS-X 2.1.0 has been released, with new fixes and features, including support for cRIO and other NI Real-Time platforms. MICAS-X-RT can deploy data acquisition, logging, and complex control logic directly to embedded RT systems via the standard MICAS-X configuration interface, with no additional programming needed for many applications. Full integration of MICAS-X-RT with MICAS-X on Windows provides an instant highly-functional user interface. As always, custom code can easily be integrated to capture the complete project specifications. For more information, see the MICAS-X web page.

    July 27, 2016: Dave and Ted both made presentations for the internal NIST LabVIEW user group in Boulder, CO.

    May 11, 2016: Several new Drivers have been released for MICAS-X 2.0, including support for Measurement Computing devices (analog input, analog output, digital input, digital output, and temperature), Vaisala HI70 humidity sensor, Watlow EZZone temperature controllers, National Instruments Bridge devices, and Modbus instruments.

    March 16. 2016: Both David and Ted made presentations at the March, 2016 ALARM meeting in Golden, Colorado. These presentations have been uploaded to the ALARM website and to Presentations page of this website.

    January 12, 2016: OCC announces the release of MICAS-X 2.0. This version is based on LabVIEW 2015 and includes numerous new features and fixes. The most significant improvement is in the MICAS Driver model, which now allows for any driver(s) to be disabled and re-enabled, and allows MICAS to start and stop all Drivers. These features can be useful for dealing with missing or troublesome hardware without stopping and restarting MICAS-X. Other improvements in 2.0 are the addition of numerous new commands, improved Sequence functionality, and new Drivers and modules.
    August 1, 2015:  Original Code is pleased to announce that Ted Anderson has joined our team as a Systems Integration Engineer.  Ted brings decades of valuable experience to OCC, both as a LabVIEW programmer as well as in numerous other engineering endeavors.  Ted will be bolstering OCC's established presence for LabVIEW development in commercial and research environments, and also brings extensive familiarity with computation fluid dynamics, hydrology, GPS & GIS, data presentation, and statistical analysis of sparse data sets.
    June 12, 2015:  Version 1.5.1 of MICAS-X has been released.  This version brings almost all MICAS-X Drivers in line with the new standard, including timing information, optional time channel, and OSDS recording when applicable.  Version 1.5.1 of the Web Power Switch 7 Driver is also available, which adds optional read-back of the current outlet states and the ability to use the WPS7 as a watchdog, shutting down power to a device if the computer or software hangs.

    June 12, 2015:  Version 1.2.0 of OSDS is now available.  This version is in LV 2013 and includes support for TCP connections in addition to UDP, serial, NTP, and others.  The TCP functionality has been used to acquire data from numerous Thermo Scientific gas analyzers in MICAS-X without the need to create custom drivers for these devices.

    May 31, 2015:  OCC has updated MICAS-X 1.5.0 with new versions of many Drivers, additional OSDS support, and the new System Driver, which allows monitoring of CPU, RAM, disk space, and other computer resources.
    May 6, 2015:  MICAS-X 1.5.0 is now available.  This version includes significant improvements to the Sequences, including starting a sequence at any step, pausing and unpausing a sequence, and the ability to add new sequences to the program while it is running.  It also includes new alert sounds, new functionality for Globals which allows any error to be reliably identified and acted on, and a CRC check applied to the configuration file, for automatic detection of corrupted or tampered-with configuration files.
   April 30, 2015:  MICAS-X 1.4.13 has been released with numerous improvements.  5 new commands have been added which execute arithmetic on channel values.  A new version of the email component (1.4.1) provides support for a wider range of email servers.  It also allows the definition of four different groups of email recipients, allowing messages to be targeted to a group relevant to the context.  Emails can also include information on the values of any channels in the program.  In addition, support has been added for Omega temperature controllers, Parker motion control, PrimeScales industrial scales, the Vaisala HMT310 RH sensor, and the Web Power Switch 7, a cost effective, simple way to control power to instrumentation.  All the features, improvements, and bug fixes can be found in the Change Log.
    March 4, 2015:  The utility VI "Compare Version Strings.vi" has been posted by OCC on the NI LabVIEW Community and on the OCC website.   
    January 22, 2014:  MICAS-X version 1.4.8 has been released, with numerous improvements and fixes, including network-based feedback and bug reports.  The Multi Display module has also been upgraded with new features, allowing even more customization of this flexible user interface module.

    November 24, 2014:  MICAS-X has been certified as "Compatible with LabVIEW" and is now on the LabVIEW Tools Network.  A free demo version of the program can be downloaded directly from NI's site.
    November 8, 2014:  MICAS-X version 1.4.2 is released, with significant improvement to the display of tabular channel data, improved support for Channel Lists, and several bug fixes.

    October 18, 2014:  Version 1.4.0 of MICAS-X has been released, with significant new features.  Among other enhancements, Sequence and Command performance has been improved, ten new Commands have been added, and a new highly-flexible Display has been developed.  In addition, a free Limited Demo Version of MICAS-X has been released and is available from Original Code Consulting on request.

   August, 2014:  myRIO is a fairly new, low-cost embedded platform from NI that is aimed at the educational market.  This device allows students to create applications with an embedded processor and an FPGA using NI's LabVIEW development environment.  OCC has developed a demonstration application for myRIO, the Audio Analyzer for myRIO.  This application can be downloaded from NI's LabVIEW Tool Network (OCC Audio Analyzer) or directly from OCC.

    July, 2014:  Improvements and additions to MICAS-X continue to be released.  Recent modules include an Alicat Driver for Flow and Pressure Controllers, a Ramp Instrument, for creating high-precision linear and exponential ramps over time, and and SMPS Instrument for making measurements from a scanned Differential Mobility Analyzer.  In addition, a new command was added to the MICAS-X command language which allows MICAS-X to launch a LabVIEW VI or an executable program, a new program variable was added that measures disk space available, a Calculation was added that tracks the previous value of a channel, and the main acquisition logic was improved to better handle data coming from devices for which the device determines when the data is available.

    May, 2014:  New additions to the MICAS-X system include the Email module, which can send e-mails or text messages in response to commands or alarms, the Command module, which allows MICAS-X to be controlled by another software program, and the Airmar Driver, which interfaces to the Airmar weather station.

   February, 2014:   OCC Program Prep, a utility for initializing autonomous data acquisition programs, is now available.  When a LabVIEW (or other) data acquisition program must run automatically at boot-up on an autonomous system, it is often necessary to execute a number of steps to ensure that the system is ready.  For example, it is a common problem that simply having the data acquisition program start at boot-up can cause the program to take control of the DAQ hardware before the operating system has fully initialized it.  OCC Program Prep solves this problem by querying NI Daq Devices to make sure they are ready before launching the data acquisition program.  OCC Program Prep can also synchronize the computer clock to an NTP server or a GPS, as well as start any number of other programs or batch file.

    November, 2013:  Original Code Consulting announces the release of MICAS-X, the Multi-Instrument Control and Acquisition System - eXtended.  MICAS-X is a framework of software infrastructure on which complex custom instrumentation programs can be built.  It includes many features and utilities that are used in a wide variety of scientific instruments, and hence can dramatically reduce development time for new instrument programs.  Most importantly, it is designed to be extensible, allowing scientists and engineers to leverage all the utility already in MICAS-X while also adding custom code to address the specifics of their instrumentation.  For more information, visit the MICAS-X webpage or contact Original Code Consulting.
   In September, 2006, Original Code Consulting fulfilled its commitment to becoming a Zero Net Carbon Emissions Company by getting all of our electricity from wind-power.  In 2011, we installed a solar photo-voltaic system, and now get 75% of our electricity from the sun!

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