Qimera Reference Manual
Introduction to Qimera
With currently available software, hydrographic data processing can be challenging for even experienced users. Though software generally keeps up with advances in hardware and processing methods, many of the frustrations are due to the fact that the human operator must connect all the pieces together to come up with the final processing solution. The problem in many cases is the human operator. Humans make errors when typing or transcribing vessel configurations from one software application to another or from one coordinate frame convention to another. Humans make errors when importing ancillary data and then failing to associate it with the correct data files. Humans make errors when changing processing configurations and not then triggering the appropriate reprocessing or perhaps not triggering it for the correct files. Any error along the way leads to poor results in the final product and many wasted hours troubleshooting the source of the problem.
A paradigm shift is a fundamental change in approach or underlying assumptions. With the release of QPS Qimera, we are striving for a paradigm shift in that we are automating the mundane and error prone tasks for which computers are well suited but humans are not, for example data transcription, processing state management and job scheduling. Qimera isolates the stages for which a human brings value to the process, for example processing configuration management and data validation and review.
Qimera is an easy to use, yet most powerful sonar data processing application, designed to process, analyze and visualize multibeam echosounder data. Built using core QPS technologies, Qimera naturally supports the QINSy data logging format in addition to sonar file formats from other hardware and software manufacturers. Qimera intelligently and interactively guides the operator through the typical data processing stages, simplifying what traditionally has been a convoluted process. Qimera's Dynamic Workflow™ greatly improves the operator experience when processing hydrographic data by allowing users to configure the application to respond immediately to their actions in such a manner that all data products and intermediate files are automatically updated after each action. If the user edits data or modifies a processing configuration, Qimera can queue the appropriate reprocessing steps and update all derivative products. Qimera uniquely remembers what actions and settings have been applied to the project data, and so is able to highlight files that need further processing actions in order to complete the workflow.
Qimera extracts as much information as possible from incoming data files, including all ancillary data and survey vessel information, such that users who configure this information correctly during acquisition can get immediately to work without the hassle of configuring a project. Users who come to Qimera with data that is fully populated with ancillary data and vessel information can create map products and can begin reviewing their data in a matter of minutes.
Qimera offers the typical complement of multibeam data review and editing tools such as a Time-Series Editor, Sound Velocity Profile Editor, a Patch Test Calibration Tool as well as advanced tools such as the Wobble Diagnosis Toolkit for troubleshooting common sensor installation/integration issues. Using the latest computing technologies, the unique I/O Balanced Multi-Core engine in Qimera is specifically designed to process sonar data as rapidly as possible. All processing is done as a background task such that the user can continue to interact with the project.