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Old 11-25-2004, 11:45 PM   #1
Hitokiri
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Default MSExcel Hydra Map Editor! Soon!

Ok so has anyone else been extremely frusterated with the fact that the Hydra (although powerful) is by far the most tedious to tune EMS out there as far as making global changes to the maps??

Well I had it with the editing interface as well as the onscreen information available to you as you are tuning. I will be working on both a supplementary HUD and a program which Rips the main maps out of the .s20 files for easy manipulation in excel. I'll most likely include some simple linear smoothing too.

anybody have any more issues with Hydra EMS tuning that they would like to see included in my excel map ripper?

I have the main fuel and spark maps done. out and back in of the .s20 files.

Stay tuned for the file!

Todd
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Old 11-26-2004, 05:11 PM   #2
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I very interested, I think we all would be. I don't have my Hydra yet. How are you gaining access to the raw table files? It would seem that the Nemesis software only permits access through it. Can you view the contents of the Hydra ROM as a disk?

I'm interested in the launch control and or anti-lag maps as well. I think I'll be using those for water injection mapping.
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Old 11-26-2004, 05:51 PM   #3
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Do have USB to RS-232 converter as your link to the Hydra?

Or ethernet to RS-232?
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Old 11-26-2004, 06:45 PM   #4
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no it's straight RS-232 to the hydra. I am mostly done with my excell program. Basically it circumvents the lame editing tools the hydra offers by editing the map storage files directly. You will load a map out of saved file, and then write the new map back to the file using my program.

I have the Main Fuel and timing maps working in this way. Hydra .s20 files are extremely simple actually, It was pretty easy to find out where the maps are stored and modify them. This program will allow you to rip a fuel map out of a storage file and write it into another file.

With the HUD I am going to try and parse out the RS-232 data coming in from the hydra so we can have a fast data viewable in another window while the "floating grid" is open.

Todd
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Old 11-26-2004, 09:06 PM   #5
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So are you reading the maps stored on your PC in S20 format, opening that file with Excel? In otherwords you are not reading files off of the Hydra, but a downloaded Hydra map. I agree the S20 format is pretty simple, all you need to do is figure out the delimiter.

There are programs to capture the RS-232 data stream, but you probably know that.

It's going to get tricky to know which version of the table is saved on the Hydra, but I agree some tool that allows multiple cell selection would be great. Especially great when trying to develop a very different map. Be careful with Excel it is notorius for inserting junk into even plain text files.
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Old 11-27-2004, 02:12 PM   #6
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I believe in Dec. Hydra was talking about big improvements in the software, incorporating most of this stuff... although I've had my unit for 4 months now and have gotten used to most of these "problems"

I would love to see this act very much like an ECUTek map. I would love to see my map, and a dyno run/pull superimposed over the map.

Yes, the hydra already does this, but I want to see A/F in a comment window perhaps per cell as the car goes through the cell. Or on the advance map, the knock voltage (heck, why not max allowed knock correction and actual knock correction at the same time!)

Show the map, and show tracking through the cells, and show A/F and knock voltage values (along with max allowable knock correction). That would be a thing of beauty
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Old 11-27-2004, 06:13 PM   #7
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My program will not allow connection to the hydra. It will simply allow an easy way to modify a .s20 file to a different changed map.

It is Basically a VBA module for excell that reads the hex numbers out of the file and generates maps in excell which can be easilly changed / smoothed / whatever. I would like to eventually write some extra modules that would help in spline smoothing and axis switching.

It will not modify any other part of the .s20 file. But it will put in the number you tell it without fail!!

I hope hydra comes out with a better vesion of the software as well! This one is hardly worth our money!! lol

Todd
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Old 11-29-2004, 05:33 PM   #8
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Quote:
I would love to see this act very much like an ECUTek map. I would love to see my map, and a dyno run/pull superimposed over the map.
I'd love that feature, but Excel has to be one of the worst graphing programs ever sold.

Todd, so it's a "VBA module," educate me, are you doing development in Excel or VB. I confess more than ignorance of many things Windoze.

I understand, you are working on the PC saved files, then Nemesis "uploads" these to Hydra. Map numbers are in hexadecimal, and must be converted to base ten roman. To see changes in Nemesis you will have to shut down, and re-open the Execel altered map. I just don't see "on the fly" changes unless Nemesis is a more sophisticated a program than imagine (or dangerously simple).

I'd love to see this script developed and would even support a nominal shareware fee. I won't hold my breath for Hydra/Nemesis/Quantum developing "new" software, or making a production date. Their reputation precedes them by leagues.
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Old 11-29-2004, 06:47 PM   #9
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Great Job, thanks!

My Hydra will be here Wednesday.

I'd love to have a copy of your edit tool.

Steve
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Old 11-30-2004, 06:36 PM   #10
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If you need any help my buddy and I will assist. Really all you need to do is add a global copy + paste button that will allow you to select all CELL values in the nemesis software and paste those into an excell sheet, adjust and then copy+paste back into the map.
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Old 12-01-2004, 08:36 PM   #11
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if it were easy to copy the maps out of the hydra software I wouldn't be writing this software. lol

"VBA" is short for Visual Basic for applications. If you have ever recorded a "Macro" in Excel what you have actually done, is excel has automatically wrote a little VB subroutine in the backround that will execute whenever you run your Macro. In Excel go to Tools-Macro-Visual Basic Editor and you will understand. Everything you do in excel actually works around visual basic. With the editor you have access to all the same objects and perameters of the software that are used automatically for you as you click on cells, or macke charts, etc.

I am working on a simple smoothing function that will allow you to select a block of cells within the map and have excel smooth out that area based on the corners of the range you selected. Linear for now, but it would be cool to implement a legrange polynomial interpolation for higher order smoothing. Basically all it will do is take the block of cells you selected, and change the interior of the selected box to smoothly transfer across the box. I have it working such that there will be two options. One will replace the interior values with smoothed values, and the other will average the smoothed value with the current interior value of the selected range for a kind of less severe smoothing effect. You will be able to select 1-100% smoothing which basically 100% would be throw out the old value alltogether and 25% would be something like this. NewValue = (.75*oldvalue + .25*SmoothedValue) Once that is done I will give you all a link. I will leave it unloacked so you all can look at the code in case you want to make some changes.

You will have to make changes with my program, then open the file you exported with the nemisis software, and then download it to the ecu. My program simply rips the maps out of the .s20 file, and then copies the enitre .s20 input file into the output file inserting the changed map in the previous map's place.

I would like to implement some kind of log overlay on the maps. Or at least map AFR onto the LoadxRPM map to get an idea of where AFRs stand during a pull and what corresponding cells are in need of adjustment. I think I can do it. I could definitly do it with a log that was completed and just pasted onto another sheet, having it update as the log is being taken will be harder as I will have to setup RS-232 capture within excel and decode the Hydra's RS-232 data stream. I havent looked at the stream yet so I am not sure how hard it will be. If someone wants to record the hydra's raw RS-232 data for me via hyperterminal or something that would be a great help.

Todd

Last edited by Hitokiri; 12-01-2004 at 08:52 PM. Reason: more info
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Old 12-01-2004, 09:04 PM   #12
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bboy - I understand your issue with excel, but it offers spreadsheet functionality that I would have to write myself if I was to make this a file to run by itself. I think you would be surprised as to the functionality of Excel once you get into the programing VBA side of things. Its graphing can become quite powerful. Through the VBA side of things it gives the ability to make the process of inporting and compiling Hex for input into .s20 files as easy as a click of a button so anyone will be able to use it.

There are definitely cooler data analysis programs out there. Matlab after all would be an amazing environment for this kind of matrix manipulation and there is a ton of code out there do do some really amazing things, but it is not user friendly in the least bit. You basically have to be quite familiar with C programming to be able to pick it up in a reasonable amout of time. So Excel works well for what we need to use it for. Spreadsheet manipulation with the ability to write out oun little programs to do what we want to the maps.
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Old 12-01-2004, 09:40 PM   #13
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I like your method of just altering the data file on the PC. It's very safe.

Messing around with the data stream can be disastarous, not so much data coming from the Hydra, but going. Please don't take that route.

I understand everything you are doing now. VBA is like Applescript. It's an extremely high level scripting language. I think that sounds great.

I'd love to see a 3D "textured surface" map of the fuel and spark curves with AFR line accompanying the RPMs, but I'll be damned if I know how to do that in Excel. I use Excel all the time, but anything but simple graphs are beyond my abilities (and I believe the program's).
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Old 12-02-2004, 02:03 AM   #14
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There will be surface maps much like the ones Hydra produces in the software. Excel will color code them in ranges of data values. I am not sure exactly what you mean by the AFR line acompanying the RPMs?

Todd
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Old 12-03-2004, 12:44 AM   #15
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I was just thinking of a copy paste utility where you paste into existing hydra software and apply formulas to the paste function so you can select a value and paste the value over a range of cells, or even apply a formula to the cells so that it can modify the data as you paste it. But the Excel VBA is cool, I was comissioned to write a Project Managment Tool in it for BofA. What a PIA.
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Old 12-03-2004, 06:14 AM   #16
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Todd, somehow I missed one of your messages.....must have been interupted while you responded. In short, using Excel and all it's wonderful tools is brilliant. Please have no regrets. I'd do some cheerleading for you, but I ain't that pretty and I don't smile much. I'm sorry I have brought my personal frustration with excel into this.

Miguel, that is a wonderful idea, but it's not going to work unless Hitokiri has access to the actual Nemesis software code. He'll never get it. As it stands the Nemesis software is limited to single cell changes only, and that's why Todd is doing this wonderful project.

Todd, what I meant by the AFR running along side of RPM is this: You have your 3D fuel map, RPM on one of the surface axes, load on the other surface axis, and fuel amount added on the vertical axis. In front of you is a convuted surface map not unlike a contour map that slopes upward with fuel. The surface map sits between the three axes. Let's put RPM on the right side with zero at the origin closest to you (the viewer of the map, rotated counter-clockwise for perspective), and load of the left side, zero at the same corner.

So on one side of the RPM axis is the surface map (to the left of the axis) on the right side of the RPM axis, you place a ribbon of AFR. If you are looking at the map on the screen you see the surface map (it looks like a patchwork blanket that has poles proping it up), over on the right, closest to you (other side of the RPM axis) there is this little tape or ribbon (a very thin, single patch width blanket) that is suspend in mid air. This "tape" displays the AFR values.

An alternative approach, and probably easier, would be to define the AFR values in the same scale as the fuel units, and then include those values as part of fuel surface map. Let's say fuel units go from 0-1000, and AFR from 10-15, now if you keep those scales, the AFR ribbon will look puny next to the fuel values, you would not be able to see the undulation of the AFR. Instead if you multiply all the AFR values by 10 or 20, now the AFR units scale better with the fuel values. The scaled AFR units run from 100-150 or from 200-250. Looking at the fuel map then, the AFR portion will stand out enough to see how it fluctuates. If you also made the AFR a different color then it would also be easier to distinguish.

So, now I'll describe the way this approach would look. You have the same 3D surface map (blanket and poles), but along the edge of the surface map (one edge of the blanket) is the AFR curve in a different color that rises and falls with AFR on the same scale as the fuel values and it sits in the same "box" as the fuel values.

The problem with wanting the AFR curve running along side the surface fuel map (both of the two approaches have this problem) is that the surface map depends on joining the cells (patches) together to make the surface (blanket). The AFR curve would have to be uncoupled from the rest of the fuel cells. I don't know that that can be done in Excel.

So, here is a third option. If RPM has it's origin (0 RPM) at the corner closest to the viewer and the same is true of load (zero load at the same corner) then the fuel curve values will be at their minimum along the RPM axis. At zero load, fuel will be very low even as RPM increases (it's like reving the engine in neutral). If you placed the AFR values in the first set of cells of zero load they would form an edge that flucutate with AFR. The key is not not let AFR obscure the fuel values that are ahead of it as load increases. Again, if you pick the right scaling factor, you should be able to see AFR go up and down and still be able see over the AFR values to the fuel surface map as load increases. Instead of multiplying by 10 you might have to divide by 2 or so. You would keep all the cells in the map joined together (one surface). There would be an AFR mountain range, a valley of low load fuel values, and then a gradually sloping mountain range at high load (and high fuel values). Now you have one surface map, except the zero load values will not be zero load, they will be scaled AFR (diff color would be best).

I wish I could draw this instead of write it. In fact I will draw it if you want me to, and I can scan it and send it to you. Send me a PM with your email and I will.

I can't believe I even tried to write this, now that I re-read it. Oh well...
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Old 12-03-2004, 08:44 AM   #17
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Actually, I understand that this is a limitation to the hydra software. But if a user can enter the data one cell at time, so can an interface program (that simulates the user) and do it alot faster. Maybe in the copy and paste utility you can specify the range if you can't select(select not edit) multiple cells in hydra. You will not need any Hydra code because you're coding to the user interface. Test automation software does this all the time.
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Old 12-04-2004, 01:11 AM   #18
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mnavarro - that is precisely the problem - there is no way to enter data manually - even one cell at a time. You must use the arrow keys on the keyboard to walk around the maps and step the fuel up and down by .01 or .001 ms increments. Try making significant changes to a block of 32x32 cells with the arrow keys in .01 ms increments...... not an enjoyable experience.

bboy - Ok I totally understand now. That is going to be a tough one. I'll look deeper into the surface plotting ability of Excel though and see what I can do. There are alot of options hidden in objects that the user can't modify with the chart wizard.

update: Well I got the smoothing factor approach to linear interpolation based smoothing to work.. but I am unhappy with its performance in that it does not allow larger sections of the maps to be smoothed efficiently. It endes up cutting off high curvature areas of the mesh like crazy, and although this would be ok for rough basemapping, I want a moore elegant solution. In talking with some people I have decided to move to a method used currently by graphic artists to smooth and expand polygon meshes for rendering. Basically it approximates the selected range of the map using a peacewise Bicubic suface approximation. Then applies that to the map and essentially overlays the resulting surface over the map. Its pretty cool actually, and once I figure it out it should be very powerful. It is also used alot in the smoothing of Geological data for topo sufrace generation.

One thing I have found with the Hydra is that it is very picky about smoothness of the fuel curve in high vaccum, low tps areas, or maybe that is true of all EMS in general I don't know I am very new to tuning. It seems to me that the hydra leans on a larger MAP resolution rather than interpolating for values in between a smaller mesh size. If the hydra doesn't interpolate between neighboring cells, there is no wonder as to why I am seeing the need for a heavily smoothed map. Smoothing of these vac areas to eliminate moderate jumps in fueling has been my largest issue with the car. I am looking to this smoothing algorithm so that I can change a few values in the vac area and then smooth the area I was working on such that my changes don't introduce hicups into my tune.

keep the ideas comin!

Todd
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Old 12-04-2004, 05:59 PM   #19
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Sorry about the diatribe last time. I was partuculary obessive that day.

Instead of applying a smoothing function what would be really neat is to click on the cells on the map (highlight them) and then be able to change that particular cell's value. It's not as elegant an approach as a smoothing function, but it would allow the tuner to smooth the map manually. Now given that the Hydra maps are 1024 cells it might be hard to select a particular cell, cells will be almost pixel size--tiny. So, either highlighting a set of cells that would simultaneously be highlighted in the data table would allow you to pick the region on the map and then smooth from the data table, OR if you could magnify the map so that individual cells could be highlighted, you could then pick a single cell for modification of the value.

The hydra does interpolate between values but because of the precision of the maps (at 1024 cells) you can fine tune the fuel curve to squeeze every last drop of power out of the curve. The number of cells is a curse and blessing. I accept the curse, and your excel programming will turn it all into a blessing.

I wish I could help you more, but my programming skills are just not in this area. As you probably know there are other tools out there that would be better for smoothing and graph production/manipulation, but almost no one has those tools. The terrific thing about using Excel is almost everyone has it on there computer no matter what the platform. Acheiving platform independence and mass adoption necessitates either using freeware or ubiqutous software. Excel is "hands down" your best bet for achieving all of this. Keep going!!!! I strongly encourage manual smoothing over an algorithmic approach. Yes, it is less elegant, but it is worlds more elegant than the Nemesis 2.1 software. In other words, manual smoothing would be a huge step forward, save the automatic smoothing for a later version.
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Old 12-06-2004, 12:17 PM   #20
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I think you are confused about the size of Hydra maps. 32x32 is really not that big. Its bigger than most but nowhere near as large as you discribed. there may be 1000 total cells, but there are only 32 rows and 32 columns. Not 1024 rows and columns which would lead to pixel sized cells.

Its excel.. you can manually smooth however you want...
You can already manually smooth with the nemisis software.... you just have to use the arrow keys.. Download the software; you will see that magnifying the map makes no sense. I like the idea of selecting a region on the surface map, but thats not possible in excel.

It seems from the FAQ from 3S MR2 guys that the hydra does interpolate between the cells, but even so there are enough cells in the low vac area that the map position can bounce around quite a bit such that I have still experieced the need for a heavily smoothed map.

I may give up on the crazy Bicubic smoother for now... I am just not up to that level of commitment with this project as it will take a significant amount of programming to create. I am going to go with little program that will use the itterative capabilities of excel for smoothing.

Todd
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Old 12-06-2004, 03:40 PM   #21
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No, I know what you mean. 32*32 = 1024 cells. In the Nemesis software the cells are pretty small, by viewabe. Not sure if you can rotate in Nemesis. OK, the map is "large enough" to see all the cells. Request withdrawn.

Yes, you can smooth manually in Nemesis, but I don't think you can pick a point on the map. For example, you've got a bump on the map, and you want to fix it. Click-->highlight-->change value in table or pop-up. If such a function is in Nemesis and I have not yet discovered it. Sounds like by "arrowing" through the table of values you can navigate around on the 3D map, but it sure would be nice to just use the mouse to select a cell if that is the case.
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Old 12-07-2004, 04:23 PM   #22
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Let me know if you want me to test stuff out. I'll send you my email address via PM.
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Old 12-08-2004, 01:28 PM   #23
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ok people who want to try out a alpha version e-mail me at todd.putnam@tufts.edu and I will send you one to mess around with.

Todd
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Old 12-12-2004, 07:53 PM   #24
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I have been playin with the Alpha and it doesn't seem to work, keep getting an error finding project or library. if anyone who is testing has been sucessful i would like to find out if you made any changes
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Old 12-16-2004, 05:40 PM   #25
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well the alpha work aesome in terms of the smoothing. Those of you who have got it from have mostly had a problem with me using a VB function called "mid()" - It is central in how I parse the hex data coming from the hydra file.

once I fingure out why you all don't have access to that function within Excel you should be golden.

try going to tools/macros/visual basic editor -
then go to help - and search for "mid" and tell me what you get.

in the mean time fiddle around with the smoothing functions on the template map that I included. They are fun!

Todd
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