JL Logger – Logger for Java Run Time Environment

I guess it was only a matter of time before Java made its way into the world of ham radio. Really, Java has been at the forefront of computing for some time. Whenever a programmer friend asks me if they should port their popular program to Java I say “why bother, Java is just too slow.” That was then and this is now.

Java is still slower than directly compiled programs, but computers are so fantastically fast these days, this issue is becoming not an issue.

One of the participants on the Sunday Night Tech Net mentioned he is reviewing and modifying a new, too him anyway, JAVA based contest logger.

Enter JL Logger…

JL Logger is primarily a contest logger with growing support for many of the popular contents and a surprising number of State QSO Parties.

A more complete review of this package is in the plans, but for now the quick look suggests the following highlights…

  • Since it runs in Java it runs on Windows, Linux, Solaris, anything that is running the JRE
  • No tabbing is needed to record QSOs… just type
  • Interestingly, it stores its raw data as Cabrillo QSO: lines in a text file
  • Has a useful “stack” feature which allows you to “push” incomplete QSOs to a “do later” area – useful for coming back to that power house station when he runs out of pileup
  • Has rig interfacing for Icom

A few concerns include…

  • Some of the Cabrillo Category selections are not Cabrillo compliant
  • CW interface is supported, but I saw nothing for WinKey which is, quite clearly, the way things are headed
  • It, by design, does not do partial lookups – a handy thing for dupe checking in speedy contesting
  • No DX Cluster Support… again by design
  • Claims to be open-source and the source is there, but the license is not one of the usual open-source licenses making additions from others more difficult

JL Logger works with the very small test I performed. The real review will stuff it full of QSOs and give it a good shake down.

I look forward to seeing if a logger this streamlined can be a useful substitute to N1MM, N3FJP, etc.

2 thoughts on “JL Logger – Logger for Java Run Time Environment”

  1. A nice objective review, but I have a few clarifications.

    1. I am not familiar with the term "JTK". Java application are developed using the Java Development Kit (JDK), which provides the necessary compiler and libraries, but the only thing needed to run the resulting application is the Java Runtime Environment (JRE).

    2. Since the source is available, the issues with the Cabrillo logging, partial lookups, DX clusters and WinKey support are just a matter of coding. Easier said than done, but doable nonetheless.

    3. The license provided by the original developer is obviously a joke. I intend to contact him about putting this project under open-source with an appropriate GPLv2 or GPLv3 license. Stay tuned for further updates.


    Dave WK4D

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