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Logbook Pro + APDL Newsletter June 2005 Edition

Special thanks to Paul & Karen Auman

If you didn't receive our announcement last month, NC Software acquired Auman Software's Airline Pilot's Daily Aviation Logbook (aka APDL) for Palm OS and Pocket PC/Windows Mobile from Auman Software, LLC.

Click here to read the press release. 

Having worked with Paul & Karen Auman for the last two years, we saw the perfect fit to bring these two award winning products together under the same roof.  With our priority of serving the aviation community, we will continue to focus on delivering the aviation community the leading electronic logbook products and teaming forces with the top developers behind each product.  Our first month with APDL under the NC Software umbrella is indicative the aviation community is thrilled with the acquisition and joining forces of these two great products.  We set new records in sales this month alone since the release of Logbook Pro over seven years ago.  One of the main reasons is quality.  Our number one focus, prior to any of our software products ever reaching a customer is ensuring the highest possible quality standards in our software.  The developers from Auman Software and NC Software worked together day after day leading up to the 1 June release of the new version 6 of the APDL suite.  With the teamwork and attention to detail, we were able to deliver a quality product - on time!

A special thanks goes out to both Paul and Karen Auman, and of course their recent addition to the Auman family, Jacob, for their indescribable friendliness and family values which make working with them such a pleasure.  The synergy of our teamwork focusing on producing the best possible software is passing directly to our rapidly growing customer base.  We could not be happier with the aviation product line we have grown since 1998 and hope you enjoy every minute of your experience with our aviation software and third party products such as MGO Enterprises Leather Binders and FlightCentral's Route Browser Add-In.

Frequently Asked Questions Regarding the Acquisition of APDL

QIs APDL Replacing Logbook Pro
A:  No, APDL is a completely separate product strictly for FAR 121 "scheduled operations" - Airline Pilot's

QIs version 6 of APDL a free upgrade?
A:  Per our press release, APDL's Version 6 suite is a free update for anyone that purchased APDL or a support contract on or after June 1, 2003.  For anyone that purchased APDL prior to June 1, 2003, please send proof of purchase to NC Software Sales and we'll provide you a $25 discount on the purchase of APDL version 6.

QI installed the latest SingleSync version 6 but I can no longer sync APDL to Logbook Pro
A:  Typically the reason that APDL stopped synchronizing data to Logbook Pro is you are still using an older version of APDL on the PDA.  All APDL components must be brought up to the version 6 level to synchronize data to Logbook Pro

QThe new registration code I received no longer works with my e-mail address I entered
A:  Version 6 of APDL brings the registration process inline with Logbook Pro's where your NAME and KEY CODE are paired for the registration.  Within the PDA navigate the menus to the Options...Enter Key Code and replace any information in the boxes with your assigned NAME and UNLOCK CODE then click Activate.

QMy login doesn't work any more
A:  The login you received previously was to access a password protected APDL Portal web site.  NC Software no longer maintains a password protected web site and the login credentials are no longer valid.  The NC Software policies for our software upgrades allow for free updates within the major version number, i.e. version 6.1 will be a free update, regardless of your purchase date of version 6.0.

QWhere are the online resources such as the web based schedule importer and web reporting tools?
A:  The new APDL portal can be found here

QCan I use APDL with MAC OS?
A:  Yes, MAC users can use the APDL-Palm OS edition and our web based utilities on our APDL Portal Web Site

QWhere can I download the new version 6 software for APDL
A:  Please visit our APDL Portal which contains downloads for APDL-Palm OS Edition, APDL-Pocket PC Edition, APDL SingleSync, and APDL Schedule Importer for Windows.  We also have PDF documentation for each product on the APDL portal as well as our web based schedule importer and web reporting utilities

QMy airline is not listed on your supported schedule import list.  How can I add my airline to the schedule importer?
A E-mail us your bid package, PDF, or any sample information that we can use to build a schedule importer to support your airline.  We'll add it to our feature request list.

QDo you still offer a discount for purchasing Logbook Pro and APDL together?
A:  Yes, we sure do.  Click here to purchase Logbook Pro Professional Bundled with APDL

QWhere is the best place to find answers to questions or get prompt support on my questions?
A:  Please visit our APDL forums and search for related topics and also our APDL Frequently Asked Question forum for tips on getting the most out of APDL

QWhen installing APDL to my Pocket PC, I get a warning about missing components
A:  This issue is caused by an older version of the Pocket PC OS that does not have the Microsoft .NET Compact Framework available.  Please see Note 1 below the downloads on the APDL Portal Web Site.  The .NET Compact Framework is a free download from Microsoft which will resolve the issue.

New Web Sites & Online Store Coming Soon

As you may have noticed, our newsletter has a new look.  We've also updated a few graphical items within Logbook Pro such as the startup screen and our new logo.  We are wrapping up the finishing touches on our brand new web sites and online store.  We've listened to your important feedback and continue to strive to make our web presence more informative, easier to navigate, and pleasing to use.  We've been working on our corporate overhaul for the last four months and we are excited to show you what we've created for our outstanding community.  We have a few more weeks of work left, but stay tuned for a completely new look and much friendlier web store to make your shopping experience easier from start to finish.

Logbook Pro 1.9.9 enters Development

We are always striving to make things better and Logbook Pro's development never ends.  We have yet another FREE update coming to you soon, Logbook Pro Version 1.9.9.  We will fix the very few reported issues, improve the installation system and we are considering breaking out the PDA Companion installs from the PC product.  By doing so, we'll be able to deliver smaller downloads as the PDA line has expanded significantly with the addition of the HiRes and CrossFire Client runtime engine support.  Additionally, by breaking apart the installations to PC, Palm OS, and Pocket PC, we'll be able to provide you update notifications for the specific product.  For example, there may be an update to the Pocket PC version which we can now deliver without requiring an update to the PC side.  We'd like to hear from you if you're opposed to our plan on breaking up the installations.  Submit your feedback and tell us your preference.  We're concerned with our downloads crossing over 20 MB's and causing frustration for our dialup users.

Do you need the CrossFire Client Runtime?

Don't be overwhelmed with all the choices in the Logbook Pro PDA Companion installation process.  As we've concluded our testing, the only product that requires the CrossFire client appears to be Palm OS phone devices such as the PalmOne Treo.  Pocket PC / Windows Mobile Devices do NOT require the CrossFire client.  There is a error message when installing to the Pocket PC about outdated version, etc. this is a bug in the Pocket PC and not Logbook Pro or APDL.  Please disregard this message.  For those that do want the latest and greatest, feel free to use the CrossFire client engine, however, it will require a one time $25 license for your PDA from AppForge, but again, is NOT required for use of Logbook Pro on Pocket PC's.

Microsoft Announces Windows Mobile 5

Microsoft recently announced a new operating system as a follow on to the Pocket PC platform "Windows Mobile 2003."  From the information we've received thus far, we do not anticipate any issues in supporting the new OS.  We believe the software, as it stands now, will work fine on the new Windows Mobile 5 operating system.  Of course we won't be able to test until the OS nears release and we are provided developer access to the new version.  Regardless, NC Software is committed to supporting our product line on the widest available line of devices and fully expect to support Windows Mobile 5 upon release.

Close Encounters of the Federal Kind, by Paul Kinzelman, Feb 27, 2005, AOPA 595381

We've all heard the stories of the horror of ramp checks.  The horrible stench. The evil eyes. The fangs. The inspector who grounds a Q-tip prop because he thought the curved tips were the result of a prop strike. 

But how many of these are real? OK, some are. Then how many included major contributions by the pilot in the form of a bad or arrogant attitude? And do the horror stories really characterize the majority of interactions with the FAA inspectors? Or do the stories grow hair as they are retold countless times? Or are they the exception? 

I have no real data to base my conclusions on, nor, I imagine does anybody else. But I can relate my personal experiences in my rather few brushes with the feds in 28 years of flying, occasionally the result of dumb luck, but usually a result of something stupid I did. You could say that sometimes I've been the passenger and the PIC at the same time. 

With all due respect (or perhaps lack thereof) to the official position of various attorneys and other authorities well-versed in aviation law, I disagree with their standard opinion of "Tell them nothing" and "Don't call the tower if they ask you to." Yes, you are within your rights to do that, and you will probably win that battle, but aren't you really after winning the war (as an old DE used to say)? Isn't the most important thing to keep your certificate in your pocket? And just as important, keeping the lawyers' hands out of your wallet?  Remember, the feds hold most if not all of the cards.  Do you really want to yank the tail of the dragon? 

Do not take this as anything more than one person's opinion, but for myself, I favor the "full grovel approach". It's managed to keep my certificate in my pocket for 28 years through all the embarrassing and stupid things I've done. When the woman says "Call the tower", I call the tower. When she says "What were you thinking?", I don't make up some stupid excuse that is insulting to their intelligence.  I've made an honest mistake, I admit it, submit to a verbal spanking, and that's been the end of it. 

Oh, and make liberal use of the NASA ASRS forms. Don't leave home without some blank ones. But I've fortunately never had to resort to that "Get out of jail free" card, although I have filed quite a few. I've heard there are some pilots who file one on every flight. 

On to ramp checks... I've now started actually flying for income (meager tho it is) after about 27 years of flying as a hobby. I passed my Part-135 ride a little while ago and have graduated to the bottom run of the "freight-dog" ladder. 

And last week, when I arrived back at home base, our POI (Principal Operations Inspector) was waiting for me. I know what you're thinking... no, she hadn't heard about me, she was just doing a surprise inspection of the facility. 

She was polite but business-like, and wanted to see me open the cargo door.  All she checked was that my cargo net was properly securing the cargo.  And she asked to see my pilot certificate and medical. I have a feeling that if any one of these three things had been amiss, she would have gone over a lot more stuff with a magnifying glass. 

And I think it was probably the MOI (Maintenance Operations Inspector) who was snooping around the plane in the dark looking for anything that was not right. And that was it. They could have done a lot worse. 

My attitude was very friendly. And I asked her (POI) something about which I was going to call the local FSDO. I wanted to clarify a question about the regs, which also I think demonstrated my interest in really understanding the nuances of the regs.  Plus the question had to do with a "gray area", and her interpretation is the one that counts. 

But it was funny to watch most of the other pilots and maintenance people scurry around like cockroaches on the kitchen floor when you turn on the light at night. 

And some say that you should never "hand over" your pilot certificate when they ask to see it. You should continue to hold it in your hand while showing it to them, because an evil inspector can interpret the "handing over" as you "surrendering" your certificate and then they would be within the letter of the law in keeping it. But I've never actually heard of that happening. And maybe I'm just a sucker, but I think doing that would demonstrated a confrontational attitude that would get them "searching". Remember, you want to win the war, not just the battle. Because if they look hard enough, they can always find something to bust you on. But the "surrendering" your certificate thing sounds like one of those "urban legends" of aviation to me. 

Fortunately, this inspector seemed to me to be interested in making sure we were compliant, and was not trying to get in the way of getting the transportation job done.  They have a job to do as do we. And that's the way it should be