Usage Instructions

Installation Instructions

Windows Installation:

  • After downloading, run the installer by double-clicking it or by selecting it under run in the START menu.
Notes:
  • If you do not have a Java virtual machine v1.5 (or later) installed, be sure to download the package that includes one.
  • We have had some trouble installing the java-bundled version when certain anti-virus is software running (see NEWS for June 29, 2005). It does not seem to affect the WebTide only installation.
  • Some versions of Windows (such as NT) do not always seem to have Internet Explorer in the usual place. Please see the TroubleshootforWindows.txt included with this installation to fix the problem.

Linux Installation:

  • After downloading open a shell and cd to the directory where you downloaded the installer. At the prompt type sh WebTide_jvm_unix_0_7.sh, or sh WebTide_unix_0_7.sh depending on which version you downloaded.
Notes:
  • If you do not have a Java virtual machine v1.5 (or later) installed, be sure to download the package above which includes one.
  • Some versions of Linux do not always have Firefox installed where it is expected to be (if it is installed at all). Please see the TroubleshootforLinux included with this installation to fix the problem.

Overview

The WebTide window consists of five distinct components: the main viewing area, a button bar along the right, a toolbar along the top, a status panel at the bottom and a menu bar above the toolbar at the top.

The main viewing area is the primary means of visual interaction between the user and the software. TideMarkers are placed, selected, and manipulated in this area. The viewing area also displays a map and bathymetry of the region.

The button bar on the right contains all the commands to run the tidal predictions.

The toolbar above the viewing window contains panning and zooming features and easier access to mouse modes.

The radio buttons on the right side of the toolbar set the type of prediction, either tidal elevations or tidal currents.

The status bar along the bottom gives messages about how the program is working.

The menu bar above the toolbar gives you a few more choices for commands.

WebTide Commands

Currently there are 12 commands specific to WebTide that are found in a button bar along the right of the viewing window when the program starts. These commands are repeated under the WebTide Menu. Under the Control menu there is an option for hiding the button bar allowing for a larger viewing area. Only commands that can be used at a certain time are enabled. For example, just after starting the program only Add Tide Marker, Import Tide Markers and Edit Parameters are available while all the rest are shaded. The following is be a brief description of each of the commands.

  • Add Tide Marker will add a new tide marker to the center of the viewing area.
  • Import Tide Markers reads in positions for a set of tide markers from an ASCII file. The format of the input file is one line per marker, each line a set of co-ordinates - (longitude) (latitude).
  • Delete Tide Marker will delete the currently-selected tide marker from the viewing area. (See Using Mouse Modes for how to select a tide marker.)
  • Delete All Tide Markers will delete all the tide markers.
  • Tide Marker Parameters will let you change the colour, size, or location of the currently selected tide marker.
  • Edit Parameters lets you set the start and end times (in GMT), and which tidal constituents will be used for the tidal prediction.
  • Get Constituents produces a web page that lists each constituent's amplitude and phase (of elevation or of each direction in the case of currents) for each marker. These amplitudes and phases are interpolated to the marker positions from the constituent data of the current WebTide data set.
  • Run Tide Prediction will run the tidal prediction for each tide marker on the map and return a graph of either tidal elevation or tidal currents versus time for each marker.
  • Display Tide Graphs this will redisplay the last set of prediction graphs created.
  • Get Tide Prediction this will return a web page with the latest prediction data. (See Getting and Saving Results for more about this).
  • Clear Tide Prediction this will clear the latest set of prediction results. This is called automatically when Run Tide Prediction is pressed.
  • Cancel will stop any tidal prediction that is currently running.

WebTrack Commands

  • Run Track Prediction produces tidal predictions for different positions at different times. An example would be a ship's track. The user is asked for an input file which specifies the positions and times. The positions are displayed on the map and the predictions are made. The results are automatically displayed in a web page. Each line of the input file should have the form:
    • longitude latitutde year Julian(ordinal)-day hour minute seconds
  • Get Track Prediction re-creates the web page from the results of the last track prediction and displays it.
  • Clear Track Prediction clears the latest set of track predictions.
  • Cancel stops any track prediction that is underway.

Toolbar Commands

Currently there are four commands that are found in a toolbar along the top of the viewing window when the program starts. Some of these commands are repeated under various menus in the menu bar. Under the Control menu there is an option for hiding the toolbar allowing for a larger viewing area. Only commands that can be used at a certain time are enabled. For example just after starting the program the arrows on the far left are obscured indicating the inability to use them.

The following is a brief description of each of the commands in the toolbar:

  • Directional Arrows let you pan the map in the direction indicated by the arrow that you have pressed. The center button will recenter the map at the starting position.
  • Zoom In/Zoom Out will allow the map to zoom in and out on the current center point.
  • Mouse Mode will let you choose the behaviour of the mouse within the viewing area. See Using Mouse Modes for more information.
  • Zoom Stack Arrows allow you to go back and forth between previous views of the viewing area.

Menus

Currently there are seven menus that are found in a menubar along the top of the application. The following is a brief description of each of the commands in the menus:

File
  • Save As lets you save the map as a jpeg or a gif. Only available when run as an application on a local machine. More useful for the sister program, WebDrogue.
  • Quit lets you exit the program.
Control
  • Mouse Mode lets you choose the behaviour of the mouse within the viewing area. See Using Mouse Modes for more information.
  • Mesh Menu lets you choose the grid shown within the viewing area.
  • Set Background Colour lets you set the colour on the background in the viewing area.
  • Hide/Display Tool Panel will either hide or display the toolbar that spans the top of the viewing window.
  • Hide/Display WebTide Panel will either hide or display the button bar that is found to the right of the viewing window.
Mesh
  • lets you choose the map shown within the viewing area.
Navigate
  • Goto ... lets you set coordinates for the center of the viewing window.
  • Zoom In will allow you to zoom in on the center point.
  • Zoom Out will allow you to zoom out on the center point.
  • Projection will allow you to change the map's projection to another in the list.
Layers
  • Depth Legend will let you turn on/off the layer that contains the legend for the contour lines. (on by default)
  • TideMarker will let you turn on/off the layer that contains the TideMarkers if any are present. (on by default)
  • Graticule will let you turn on/off the layer that contains the Graticule lines (grid). (on by default)
  • Bathymetry Contours will let you turn on/off the layer that contains the bathymetry and detailed coastline. (on by default)
  • Crude Map of the World will let you turn on/off the layer that contains a crude world map (best for zoomed out views). Not available for web-based version. (off by default)
WebTide
  • See WebTide Commands
Help
  • WebTide brings up this help file.
  • About brings up a dialogue window giving detailed version information.

Using Mouse Modes

There are four mouse modes available to the WebTide Program. Each mouse mode affects how the program responds to mouse input.

Select lets you select tide markers by clicking on them. Only one tide marker can be selected at a time. Being selected allows for certain commands to be performed only on the particular tide marker. If you click and hold the mouse button down you can move a tide marker to a new location by dragging the tide marker. As you drag it, a gray path will follow the mouse pointer around the viewing area. Upon releasing the mouse button the tide marker will move to the new location.

Corner Zoom will allow you to make zoom boxes used to magnify a certain area. The zoom box will start at the first place you press the button and grow as you drag the mouse (button still held). The opposite corner of the zoom box will be where you release the mouse button. The shape of the zoom box is limited by the shape of the viewing area. If you just press the mouse button without holding it down the map will be re-centred at that point. Also, if you move the mouse cursor in the viewing window, the coordinates of the pointer will appear in the Status bar at the bottom.

Centre Zoom will allow you to make zoom boxes for magnifying a certain area. The zoom box will have its center at the first place you press the button and grow in all directions as you move the mouse with the button still held. Where you release the mouse button will be half the distance of the total box from the start. The shape of the zoom box is limited by the shape of the viewing area. If you just press the mouse button without holding it down, the map will be re-centred at that point. Also, if you move the mouse cursor in the viewing window, the coordinates of the pointer will appear in the Status bar at the bottom.

Distance will allow you to measure distances in km on the map. If you press and release the mouse button once, then start to move the mouse, you will see a circle appear on the screen with a radius line. At the bottom of the screen, in the status bar, the distance from the starting point in km and the angle that the line makes is displayed. If you press the mouse button once more your first line will be anchored and a new line will start from the new point. The distance in the status bar is the cumulative sum of all the lines currently displayed. To stop measuring distances double click the mouse button. This also removes all lines drawn on the screen.

Getting and Saving Results

WebTide will only hold one set of elevation results and one set of current results at a time. Therefore it is important that you save your data before making new predictions. Once a prediction is complete, the Get Tide Prediction button will be enabled. If you press this button a web browser will open and the data for all the tide markers will be in the displayed web page. If you go to the browser's File menu you can choose to save the current web page with the Save As menu item.

If you would like to save the graphs that are displayed, right click on the graph and choose "Save As" from the menu. Please note that this procedure will need to be performed separately for both the eastward and northward currents. If you want to save the maps you can use the File-->Save As menu command to save either jpeg or gif images. Please note that you will not be able to save the graphs or the maps if you are using the web-based version (try using image capture programs); you will however, still be able to save the results in the manner noted above.