Tools -> LX200

This tool provides basic GOTO control of a Meade LX200-compatible telescope from your Zaurus.

Initial Preparation

The following steps are required before PSC can operate the telescope:

  1. Free the serial port for PSC. Zaurus normally boots up in runlevel 5, which automatically starts a process called pppd that uses the serial port for PPP networking. This must be shut off before PSC can use the serial port for telescope control. One way to do this is to perform a soft reset. A soft reset is nothing more than the procedure used for changing the Zaurus battery but this time we add one extra step. Note that a soft reset should not lose your addresses or other stored information but please we take no responsibility if this happens anyway. Also, please read through all the following steps before performing them because one of them only gives you a few seconds to act.
    1. quit all applications
    2. just as you would if you were about to replace the battery, slide the switch on the rear of the Zaurus to the position labeled Replace Battery, wait a few seconds for the screen to go black, then return the switch to the position labeled Normal Operation.
    3. slide open the Zaurus keyboard, locate the /? key.
    4. turn the Zaurus on
    5. Zaurus will now do a soft boot. Messages in white text on a black background will scroll by. After a few seconds the last message will be a line that says Wait ... and counts down from 5. Before it reaches 0 press the /? key. The countdown will stop and you will see a little menu. Now you can relax, the menu will just wait for you to type a key. Look through the entries and choose the one that makes /dev/tty0 free. On my Z this is done by pressing the e key, I hear from others it can be the t key, so your mileage will vary. Whatever it is, press that key now.
    6. Zaurus will continue to boot as usual.
  2. Connect your Zaurus to the LX200. This will require a suitable RS232 cable. We suggest the ZThinCableTM from SerialIO. This cable allows the Zaurus keyboard tray to be open while connected, whereas the Sharp cable requires the keyboard to stay closed.
  3. Set up the LX200. Power on the telescope and perform all necessary setup functions so it operates correctly and points well from the hand paddle control.

Note 1: This procedure need only be done whenever the device is soft reset. Just powering down or suspending the Zaurus during normal operation will not affect the availability of the serial port.

Note 2: to restore the PPP client, perform a soft reset again but just let the Wait message count down to 0 and let it proceed on its own.

Telescope Window Commands

After performing Initial Preparation above, tap Tools->LX200 to bring up the telescope control window.

Sky Map Control

When the telescope is connected then the Sky popup menu will include an entry to point the telescope to the tapped object or location. See Sky popup menu.