cat /dev/total_station > file

This post is one of the “dear lazyweb” ones.

Here at the department we have a Zeiss Elta R55 total station. This device has its own software for downloading recorded data, but, as usual, it’s a Windows-only, non-free application.

Is it possible to download data from such a device using a GNU/Linux machine? Nobody knows. I have asked a number of people and no one has ever tried to do this. 🙁 With some good advice from Frankie, today I made my first test.

With substantial help from Elisa, I recorded 1 point. This point has coordinates:

X    -0.472
Y     1.576
Z     0.004

I downloaded from the device using this simple command (it’s ttyUSB0 because my laptop has no serial port)

cat /dev/ttyUSB0 > data

The total number of points is 7. Points 1-6 contain information about the origin point and other parameters. For now, I’m ignoring them. The resulting data file is binary. You can see it here. I am no expert of binary files, so I used GHex to see its contents. Its dumped form looks like this:

...000.....................
...........................
...........................
...000....................0
S.................0.000.Y..
.......0.000.Z.....0.000...
...0003....................
...........................
....39..03.0...............
...000..P..A...............
...........................
...........................
...0005..NPU...............
.........t..........500.i..
.......0.000...............
...0006..NPU...............
.........t........0.000.i..
.......0.000.Z.....0.000...
...000.....................
.................-0.....Y..
.........5.6.Z.....0.00....
.ND........................
...........................
...........................
...............

Some comments about this first test:

  • anything after the ND means there are no more data.
  • the recorded point seems to be in the part immediately before ND

If anyone has any other suggestions about this test, please tell me.

Pubblicato da

Stefano Costa

Archaeologist, I study the Late Antique and Early Medieval/Byzantine period on the northern side of the Mediterranean, focusing on pottery usage patterns. I'm also involved in open source and open knowledge communities, like OSGeo, the IOSA project and the Open Knowledge Foundation.

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