Auditing Progress in SonarWiz

Chesapeake Times, Vol 15 | October 2023

Our primary goal for new development in SonarWiz continues to be to make the job of a processor more efficient. In the early 2000s the program relied on managers built into SonarWiz and simple .CSV exports to manage logging the processing steps taken in your project but as they continue to get larger, changes need to be made. 

In the meantime, we have added new tools in the last few updates that can assist with auditing your projects. In our upcoming 7.12.00 release we have made a small change to the project explorer’s behavior when files are bottom tracked. Another vestige of the past, prior to this release a file’s name in the Project Explorer would turn BOLD when one of the automatic tracking algorithms were run in the bottom tracking window. This would indicate that the data has been tracked and a new altitude value saved. 

This can be a great indicator of your progress processing a sidescan dataset but this relies on the assumption that the data has to have a whole new track applied to the dataset, again another vestige of years prior when the real time bottom trackers on sidescan fish were not as effective as they are today. 

Most datasets coming off the vessel from modern fish have a nearly complete bottom track upon import with the need for minor tweaks where the tracker had issues with fish balls or vegetation. In the upcoming release the user can import the data, make small changes to the altitude, and then hit SAVE to get the bolded file name in the Project Explorer. A small change but necessary for the times! 

In addition to this, there are 2 exports that can be utilized as a processor to indicate steps taken in a project. The first is a .CSV export located in the Project Reports drop down menu (Post Processing tab | Exports…) labeled Project Summary. This tool gives you a full list of the files loaded in your project with all of the available options for processing in SonarWiz. 

After opening the .CSV in Excel as a processor I can see what gain settings are applied, offsets to both heading and position, and projection information.

Finally a new addition that might have slipped under most folks radar is a change to the Output Message log. We teach most trainees to safely ignore a majority of the messages in the log barring the red errors. If you look closer in new versions of SonarWiz you should see an annotation labeled UITracking. This message will log anytime a window or operation is run and you can use a text editor like Notepad++ to see a log of each of these.

As we start to make concrete plans for SonarWiz 8 and building tools for the future of surveying, we would love to hear our customers feedback on what you would like to see. Here in support I rarely am asked to manage a project of 1000s of tracklines and organize deliverables, therefore your input is invaluable!