Recent News

Below are listed recent news items about Mirametrics and the Mira product line. Older news and news of lower importance is periodically removed from this list.

August 16, 2018

Version 8.029 released for the new 64-bit Mira AL x64. New features:

  • 64-bit native application utilizes the expanded memory space and speed of 64-bit architecture.
  • Improved and enhanced Express Calibration tool, a powerful yet simplified version of that provided in Mira Pro x64.
  • New chart package for creating presentation graphics (in addition to the standard Plotting package).
  • New commands to create, edit, and apply pixel masks to repair bad pixels.
  • New commands to create, edit, and and apply blemish masks to repair small regions as well as partial or full bad columns, rows, and isolated pixels.
  • New command to modify keywords (add, change value, and rename) in image headers.
  • Command for rotational gradient filter for enhancing images of extended sources such as comets.
  • Command for Custom Filter kernel of any dimension, in addition to existing command for simple 3x3 kernel.
  • New command to set independent linear axis scales, used for data such as radio astronomy maps, etc.
  • New command to assign unit names to the image axes, such as km, mm, or any other.
  • New command for plotting histograms.
  • New command for plotting a radial profile, including accurate calculation of the FHWM for point sources.
  • New command for specifying the type of region statistics to be measured (useful, for example, to compare alpha-clipped mean and standard deviation with those using the ordinary mean, median, or other estimators).
  • New single-keystroke commands work with the image cursor to make measurements and plots (shortcuts).
  • New commands for changing the displayed X and Y axis coordinate precision for live readout.

July 23, 2018

Version 8.029 released for Mira Pro x64. This includes 5 bug fixes:

  • Interactive Contour crash bug: Under certain circumstances, the command would lag, then crash Mira. When using this tool, remember that the contour computation limits its range to inside the Image Cursor rectangle.

  • Modify Keywords command: Profiles were not being saved to the correct folder.

  • Script Manager: The command was searching for scripts in an obsolete folder.

  • Table “Save As” command: When saving table data to a file, the initial file name is taken from the table title. When the table title contained an invalid file name character (e.g., “?:\*”), the “Save As” command exited without doing anything. Now, the initial file name replaces invalid characters with an underscore (“_”). Of course, the initial name can be changed in the “Save As” dialog.

  • MExtract Module: In the Photometry post-processing module, some of zero point options were not correctly applied to the magnitude calculations.

June 20, 2018

Version 8.028 released for Mira Pro x64.

  • Minor bug fixes in the 5 "Create" Calibration commands and Express Image Calibration, plus minor edits in User's Guide.

May 18, 2018

For technical readers who simply must know: Here are the results of our annual code analysis. Mira Pro x64 contains 1.8 million lines of source code authored in-house, plus much more from licensed code libraries. The average code line length is 28 bytes.

May 15, 2018

Version 8.026 released for Mira Pro x64.

  • Added Open in Excel command to measurement table menus. This copies the table contents directly to Microsoft Excel rather than saving the table to a CSV file and separately opening the file in Excel.

  • Added a Cosmic Ray Filter to Cosmetic Corrections in the Express Calibration procedure. This filter remains available separately in the Processing > Filters menu.

  • The local program help and on-line Web help were greatly expanded.

January 24, 2018

Version 8.023 released for Mira Pro x64.

  • The new Adaptive Estimator photometric background estimation method was implemented (see the January 16, 2018 announcement). This and other background estimators are selected on the Other Properties page of the Aperture Photometry Properties dialog.

  • Added Statistics measurements for data in Plot Windows. Use the command in the Measure menu or the 's' keystroke with the plot window being top-most. Statistics are chosen using the Statistics Properties dialog. More than a dozen estimators are available.

January 16, 2018

New, robust photometric background estimation method for Mira Pro x64.

  • A new Adaptive Estimator option for Mira Pro x64 solves a vexing problem in aperture photometry for estimating the background level when stars and artifacts (e.g., cosmic ray events) contaminate the background ring around the source. This new estimator can return an accurate background estimate even when the background sample contains artifacts significantly brighter than the target object. One development goal for this estimator was to return an empirical error, determined from the contaminated background sample in the image data, approaching the theoretical error calculated from internal sources (photon shot noise, readout noise, pixel response non-uniformity, and digitization noise). This target was achieved and the empirical error calculated from a contaminated background sample now approaches a Gaussian Normal noise distribution with skewness near 0. This new estimator adds to previous options including the mean, median, and mode.

January 8, 2018

Version 8.022 released for all 64-bit Mira platforms.

  • New Statistics Properties dialog for choosing advanced statistics to be interactively measured using the image cursor for one image or the image set.

  • New keystroke commands for Image Windows work with the image cursor as accelerators for menu and toolbar commands that measure a single image or image set:

    a (align image set on centroid position), c (centroid coordinates), f (FWHM), h (horizontal plot), i (pixel value histogram), p (pixel value table), r (radial profile plot), s (statistics; see "Statistics Properties" item above), v (vertical plot). These supplement longstanding set of image window keystrokes, the arrow keys for moving the image cursor and Tab/Alt+Tab for stepping forward or backward through an image set.

  • Additional, detailed processing messages logged by the image calibration pipeline functions.

  • New "Set Output Pixel Type" method added to the Express Image Calibration pipeline.

  • Fixes to a few minor bugs.

Changes from version 8.022 back through version 8.003 are listed in the README document included in the installation.

December 22, 2017

Major update version 8.020 released for the 64-bit platforms Mira Pro x64 and Mira Pro.

This significant update includes many improvements and new features, as shown in this Mira Pro x64 Screenshot. Here are a few:

  • Enhancements to the 6 pipelined image calibration commands, including Create Master Bias, Create Master Dark, Create Master Flat, Create Illumination Flat, Create Pixel Flat, and Express Image Calibration. The master correction creation tools and Express Calibration include options for 3 different bias methods and several sub methods, 3 dark methods, 3 flat field types, 3 cosmetic corrections, filtered flat libraries, and application of multiple illumination flats.

  • New Chart module for presentation graphics: The new chart window type takes data from measurements and other tabulated data in table and view windows and panes. Charts may also be printed and copied as a bitmap to the Windows clipboard for insertion into other documents. Initially supported features include a variety of plot marker types and properties, data grouping, legends, etc. The separate Plot Window functionality continues to be available.

  • New Create Image Keyword List command: This new tool generates a table of images and values of their specified keywords. From the data table, image sets may be created and column data may be plotted for analytical purposes.

  • Speed improvements of tabulating photometry measurements for large data sets.

  • Fixes to numerous small bugs present in minor versions prior to this major release.

Changes from version 8.020 back through version 8.003 are listed in the README document included in the installation.

September 4, 2017

Release of 64-bit editions for Mira Pro and Mira AL.

A native 64-bit version is now available for Mira Pro and Mira AL, in addition to continuation of the 32-bit versions for both. The 64-bit editions provide increased speed and virtually unlimited 64-bit memory space for working with huge images, huge image sets, and huge image sets of huge images. The 64-bit editions require 64-bit Windows. The 32-bit editions remain available for users who don't need 64-bit capability or must install on 32-bit Windows. Otherwise, the 64-bit and 32-bit editions have mostly similar features; see the detailed feature comparison.

January 16, 2017

New Mirametrics Store goes live.

The new online store provides an enhanced shopping experience with a more intuitive layout, easy product comparisons, keyword searches, and a better checkout. You can view the secure Mirametrics Store here.


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