It is currently September 21st, 2021, 6:14 pm

iohelix moon data updates

Release announcements and important news from the developers.
User avatar
benjam
Posts: 26
Joined: October 16th, 2009, 6:49 am
Location: Utah, USA

iohelix moon data updates

Post by benjam »

I know there are a few skins out there that are using the iohelix moon data in their skins, so I thought I'd post here to reach everyone.

The URL for the moon data has changed from:
http://www.iohelix.net/moon/moonlite.php?z=#TimeZone#
-- to --
http://iohelix.net/moon/moonlite.php?z=#TimeZone#
(the "www" has been removed)

I have a redirect on the server that will redirect all traffic from http://www.iohelix.net to http://iohelix.net, but what that means for the users (and my server), is that they hit the site twice for every update.

So if you are a skin developer and you are using my moon data in your skin, if you could update the URL in your next release that would be great. Thanks. =)

Also... please make sure that you are only hitting the site every 30 min or more. It's not a huge chunk of data, but it does get hit quite a bit with all the various skins using the data and it adds up. Besides, the moon doesn't move all that fast, and there isn't much change in a half hour.

Please don't take this as a complaint, as I'm extremely pleased that my data and feed have gotten such huge results. Especially for something that I only originally built for me.

Here are some stats from the feed:
For June, 2011:
Total Hits for moon data feed- 12,625,076
Total KBytes for data feed- 10,113,041

For November, 2011:
Total Hits for moon data feed- 46,265,790
Total KBytes for data feed- 37,052,278

So in 5 months traffic through the feed has nearly quadrupled (although half of that may be due to the 'www' redirect I added in late June). Amazing.

Anywho... if you or anyone you know is using this feed in their skins, please inform them of this change. I appreciate it.
Look at me still talking when there's Science to do.
Image
User avatar
Mordasius
Posts: 1069
Joined: January 22nd, 2011, 4:23 pm
Location: GMT +8

Re: iohelix moon data updates

Post by Mordasius »

Tnx for the update. Was there always a "z=#TimeZone#" on the end of the URL? I didn't have it on my old skin so does that mean I've been getting the wrong angle for elongation to sun and the wrong time of the next moon phase?
User avatar
benjam
Posts: 26
Joined: October 16th, 2009, 6:49 am
Location: Utah, USA

Re: iohelix moon data updates

Post by benjam »

Actually, I was looking at the .htaccess logs and there are some odd values coming through for the z argument.

What the z argument should be is a numerical representation of your time zone in hours from UTC. So if you are in the states, you time zone might be something between "?z=-4" (for EST) and "?z=-7" (for PST), and if you're in Europe or elsewhere, it might be positive, in which case the sign should be left off "?z=3". Although I'm pretty sure the system can handle it if the sign is on there "?z=+1". If you're in one of those strange time zones that have half hour increments, you should be entering the time zone offset as a decimal value "?z=4.5".

But basically, the moon data is still correct, the only thing the time zone offset gets you is the time for next phase in local time. The phases and elongations and the rest of the data are based on UTC time and are correct no matter what the z value is.

But here is a short list of some of the strange values that get passed in that should not be:
  • ?z=#PST# - A time zone abbr with wrapping hashes
  • ?z=#TimeZone# - A variable from VClouds that didn't get replaced with a value
  • ?z=-%205 - a space between the sign and the digit
  • ?z=(UTC+9) - a time zone abbr and numerical representation together
  • ?z=+07 - not sure if this would work
  • ?z=-+10 - what's with the -+?
  • ?z=+21 - time zones are usually between -12 and +12
  • ?z=+5:30 - should be 5.5
  • ?z==+8 - two equals signs?
  • ?z=-0 - although this is technically valid, I'm pretty sure the sign isn't necessary
  • ?z=-05%20PET - a zero-padded numerical representation with the abbr space separated
  • ?z=179 - not sure what this is supposed to be
  • ?z=--5 - double negatives?
  • ?z=97355 - a zip code
  • ?z=CDT - time zone abbr
  • ?z=GMT%200 - GMT 0, should just be 0
  • ?z=JAXX0018 - a weather.com location code
Look at me still talking when there's Science to do.
Image
User avatar
Mordasius
Posts: 1069
Joined: January 22nd, 2011, 4:23 pm
Location: GMT +8

Re: iohelix moon data updates

Post by Mordasius »

benjam wrote:if you're in Europe or elsewhere, it might be positive, in which case the sign should be left off "?z=3". Although I'm pretty sure the system can handle it if the sign is on there "?z=+1".
You are right about that, funny thing is though I get elongation to sun- 112.16° with ?z=8, elongation to sun- 112.15° with ?z=+8, elongation to sun- 112.21° with z=08 and elongation to sun- 112.33° with z=+08. Not that any of that really counts for diddly squat because they all give the same value for [MeasureShade] and hence the Moon Shade image used.
:)
User avatar
benjam
Posts: 26
Joined: October 16th, 2009, 6:49 am
Location: Utah, USA

Re: iohelix moon data updates

Post by benjam »

Did you run all those at the same time? Because the elongation to sun will change with respect to time.

I just ran them all, and got 121.11° for all of them.
Look at me still talking when there's Science to do.
Image
User avatar
Mordasius
Posts: 1069
Joined: January 22nd, 2011, 4:23 pm
Location: GMT +8

Re: iohelix moon data updates

Post by Mordasius »

benjam wrote:Did you run all those at the same time? Because the elongation to sun will change with respect to time.
No I probably ran them over a five minute period which I guess would account for the differences. Anyway it's good to know that all four versions work.
User avatar
benjam
Posts: 26
Joined: October 16th, 2009, 6:49 am
Location: Utah, USA

Re: iohelix moon data updates

Post by benjam »

Just as a notice, I've begun to block access to the worst offenders (people who hit the site every few seconds), so if your skin stops working, check the URL (http://iohelix.net/moon/moonlite.php) from your browser on the same machine your skin is running on, and if you got a temporarily disabled message, please contact me so we can figure out which skins are the offending skins, and fix your config file and then I'll remove you from the blocked list.

I wouldn't need to do this, except there are a few people who are taking a large portion of my limited bandwidth.
Look at me still talking when there's Science to do.
Image
sgtevmckay

Re: iohelix moon data updates

Post by sgtevmckay »

Hello Benjam (our old friend to Rainmeter)
It is good to hear from you :welcome:

I know in the last couple of years you were working on teh advanced measures.....I know I was unable to find what you were looking for, but did you get an opportunity to mak any advancement?
Just asking ;)

Otherwise.....how you doing?

also I just made the requested changes, and this will go out with my next weather skin update(s) :great:
User avatar
benjam
Posts: 26
Joined: October 16th, 2009, 6:49 am
Location: Utah, USA

Re: iohelix moon data updates

Post by benjam »

I'm doing well... I I never did find any updates, but I'm not too worried about it. There are other means of getting the sun data from the internet. The sun data is actually fairly accurate, except for the position. But the sunrise and sunset time data is within a minute or so of other published values.

And thank you for making that update. I appreciate it. =)
Look at me still talking when there's Science to do.
Image