Updates for 28 AUG 2012

I have spent a lot of time this week finding datasets for range date. The data I have so far is from GBIF.org  and Lifemapper.org (consolidator of GBIF data). I have not been able to determine how Lifemapper maps the GBIF data into the Lifemapper datasets, so I have ended up with automatically pulled Lifemapper datasets and manually pulled GBIF datasets, which include manually edited geotags.

I have figured out how to clip regions from the world map. I will be writing about that in a separate article. The real trick so far has been to figure out the right size/proportions for the clipped area. I haven’t been able to get R to plot a map with all the aesthetics that I want, so for now I’m plotting a huge map and then resizing with Irfanview to get the look that I want. Once I have tweaked the appearances the way I want I will post my R code that gets the datasets and plots the maps.

The first map I have produced and posted is for the Green-backed Kingfisher. I still have a bunch of data for the Green-backed Kingfisher that needs to be geo-coded. That will be my next task, then I will try to document the workflow for making the range maps.


August 28, 2012 at 8:05 pm | No comments


Updates for 22 AUG 2012

Well, it has been a while since I’ve done anything substantial, so it is good to be back making some progress. I have finally figured out how to make range maps, and found a reasonable source of data. I will be writing several posts about the technical details of the map making. So for today I have obtained data and created maps for Giant Kingfisher, Pied Kingfisher, and Malachite Kingfisher. My plan is to display the maps later on this week.

I also need to figure out what happened to the sound player, because the player seems to have disappeared on my new computer.


August 22, 2012 at 7:29 pm | No comments


Updates for 07 MAR 2012

Changed Brown-hooded Kingfisher image for new image from Chris Pienaar.

Added link and post for Chris Pienaar’s kingfisher gallery on Google+.

Modified admin screens to make status messages more friendly.

Added stripslashes() to admin database updates to correct minor data bug


March 7, 2012 at 4:37 pm | No comments


Updates for 06 MAR 2012

Added privacy flag to keep data hidden until it is completely ready to be displayed. Admin user can see everything all the time. I did this instead of using the WordPress private page option because I want pictures, maps, sounds, links, and references displayed, but not the draft text.

No new data entered today.


March 6, 2012 at 9:19 pm | No comments


Updates for 05 MAR 2012

Refactored the demographics table.

Changed the demographics display to account for missing values.

Added units to refactored demographics instead of hardcoded in page.

Created new admin screen for demographics.


March 5, 2012 at 9:43 pm | No comments


Updates for 04 MAR 2012

Received permission from Gary Morris to use his image of the White-bellied Kingfisher. Thanks Gary! 😀

Added preliminary data for the White-bellied Kingfisher.


March 4, 2012 at 7:17 pm | No comments


Updates for 03 MAR 2012

Added a new table for species demographics. Initial data will be length in cm, wingspread in mm, bill length in mm, and weight in g. First data entered for Pied Kingfisher.

Need to modify the demographics display to account for missing data.

Need to add administration screen for the demographic data. Project for tomorrow.

Received permission from Pete Morris to use his photos. Thanks Pete!


March 3, 2012 at 7:40 pm | No comments


Updates for 02 MAR 2012

Today’s species for initial data: Pied Kingfisher. This one will require lots of work, because there are a lot of references and a large range.

Added a reference data screen to the admin panel.

Need to investigate possible gallery solutions for the future.

Need to fix the CC logo for transparency.


March 2, 2012 at 3:43 pm | No comments


Updates for 01 MAR 2012

Completed moving the database update screens to the administration pages.

Did some minor investigation of Mendeley. Transaction limitations really keeps this from being a viable solution. However, using a database schema similar to what Mendeley delivers may be viable. Something to consider.

Found the solution to the following plugin problem: “The plugin generated 3 characters of unexpected output during activation. If you notice “headers already sent” messages, problems with syndication feeds or other issues, try deactivating or removing this plugin.” The error message is generated when activating the WordPress plugin. By using JEdit and reloading the include file with encoding of Cp1252 instead of UTF the 3 characters appeared before the >?php directive. Removing the three characters, saving the file, then reloading/recoding as UTF-8, and resaving, and voila! No more error message! It is possible I can also fix this by changing the PHP encoding to UTF-8 (currently it is undefined) in PHP.INI. I’ll try this the next time the problem reoccurs.

I’m having fun building the scaffolding, but I need to add at least one species a day in order to get the site up and running. Today’s species: Giant Kingfisher (Megaceryle maximus).

Problem for tomorrow is to decide upon a “field guide format” that I like. Once I define my preferred format there probably will be database changes and updates to be made.


March 1, 2012 at 6:43 pm | No comments


Updates for 29 FEB 2012

Worked on admin code today. Moved the data update pages into a WordPress plugin so that only a logged in administrator can modify the database.

Also added several references, plus corrected the format for a number of others.

I may try to move the references into a reference database if I can find one with a good API. That way I can stop worry about formatting and worry instead about data accuracy. I’ll investigate Mendeley first.


February 29, 2012 at 9:22 pm | No comments


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