How Stuff Works
What We Did











Graphical User Interface (GUI)

The ADR is controlled in real-time with a graphical user interface (GUI) that takes advantage of the Mac OS X UNIX core. Using the cross-platform X11 Windowing system and a specific GUI toolkit called XForms, the NASA researchers are able to control every aspect of the ADR, including the PID constants, the cycle state, the logging function, the AC resistance bridge, the heat switch, and much more. What’s more, they’re able to alter these values live as the ADR runs.

With the features we added to their system and code, it was also necessary for us to add corresponding features to their GUI in order to give them the ability to fine tune our modifications without having to recompile the code and restart the ADR. Consequently we added two objects to their Setup window: 1) a radio button where you can turn outlying detection on and off and 2) a text box where you can input the time constant tau of the low pass filter used for temperature smoothing. Doing this took an understanding of Xforms and the addition of code in several C source files and callback functions, but it was seamless and fully functional in the end.