SKCC Sked Page
1 Introduction
2 FAQs
3 Sign Up
4 Login
5 Known Issues
6 Handy Tricks
6.1 Zooming
6.2 Maidenhead Calculator
6.3 Spell Checking with Firefox
6.4 Emojis
7 Wish List
8 Revision History

1 Introduction

Sked Page is a web based interactive program that helps you find operators with which to schedule straight key CW QSOs, usually in real time.
A transition is currently underway to ease into using this Sked Page because the K3UK page will not be available after April 2017 as Andy, K3UK, enters his retirement.
More documentation will be provided here as time permits.

2 FAQs

  • Q: My PM tabs keep showing up, how to I get rid of them?
  • A: PM tabs stick around until all the received messages within them are read. To get rid of a tab that has unread messages in it, go to the tab and click on the top-most 'read' link. (Pronounced 'red'.) Then you can click on the X in the tab and the tab will not come back until you get another PM from the same person.
  • Q: How do I permanently delete my PMs?
  • A: You can't. PMs are intended to be conversational. You can, if you want, delete your own messages, but the messages from the other party stick around until the other party deletes them.
    We may, occasionally, purge old messages just to keep the size of database and its backups of manageable size.
  • Q: What is that number to the left of the callsign in the Active Users box?
  • A: That number indicates the number of minutes the operator with that callsign has not moved their mouse cursor over the Sked Page -- a good indication of whether that person is away from their computer or not.

    After 61 minutes of idle time, the Sked Page does an "auto-away" on the user, so they don't remain inactive all day long.

3 Sign Up

4 Login

Once signed up, you can login with your callsign (case insensitive) and password (case sensitive).

5 Known Issues

  • Documentation is not complete. (This page.)
  • Sometimes the edit link in a PM field does nothing. Current workaround - refresh the browser window and retry.
  • It has been seen where the callsign of an incoming PM message replaces the Everyone tab name in the leftmost tab. Current workaround - refresh the browser window.
  • The sign up process retains only the last validation code emailed to a user. If the user makes multiple attempts to email a validation code, then the user may have multiple codes in multiple emails. Currently, entering only the last one received will work. The signup process should retain all the codes emailed to a user such that any of them will successfully complete the email validation process.

6 Handy Tricks

6.1 Zooming

The Sked page uses fonts small enough to keep the page compact, but it can make it harder to read for some operators. All three major browsers (Chrome, Firefox and IE) have the capability to zoom the text on a page while keeping the rest of the layout of the page intact.
To Zoom in (make text larger), press CNTL +. Press it again and again for even bigger text. Press CNTL - to unzoom. Press CNTL-0 to snap back to normal mode.
You may even find it useful to unzoom (less than 100% zoom) in some cases. If you have very nice monitor, try unzooming to 90% and see how you like it.
Note that on a Mac, use the "Command" key (⌘) instead of CNTL.

6.2 Maidenhead Calculator

To accurately obtain your Grid Square while operating in the field, you can use an app on your smartphone to provide your maidenhead (grid square) value. Here is a free one for the iPhone: Maidenhead Calculator on iTunes. If the link doesn't work, it's called "Maidenhead Converter" by Donald Hays.

6.3 Spell Checking with Firefox

Firefox has a built in spell checker that works, by default, on text boxes that are more than 1 line. The message box at the bottom of the Sked Page is a single line. Luckily, Firefox can be configured to spellcheck single lines. Here's how:
In Firefox, enter about:config in the address line. You'll get a warning that you could break something. Say yes. Then search for spellcheckDefault. Change the value from 1 to 2. Restart Firefox.

6.4 Emojis

You can copy emojis from this site and paste them into your messages. http://getemoji.com. 😁

7 Wish List

  • Provide a way to temporarily override SPC, QTH and grid square for mobile operations.
  • Need a larger pop-up window when hovering over a callsign. Similar to K3UK.
  • Make current user's callsign standout in some way in the list of Active Users. Probably by using italics.
  • The message entry box should not be all the way at the bottom of the window if there are a small number of messages. This also makes mobile use of the page harder.
  • Color scheme needs to be changed to accommodate visually impaired operators.
  • Open a PM when user's callsign in the message area is clicked. Similar to behavior when a callsign is clicked in the Active Users area.
  • It would be nice to display the total number of users currently connected. I.e., lurking.
  • Allow the deletion of PM messages.
  • It has been suggested that the page should highlight all visible messages that have been sent from a user when hovering the mouse cursor over that user's callsign.
  • Currently, there is no way to control the order in which announcements are displayed.
  • The 'Select from Previous PMs' window could grow large with a lot of accumulated PMs. Need a vertical scroll bar. Also, perhaps the list should be sorted by most recent instead of callsign alphabetical.
  • Add the ability to control the notification tone.
  • Mobile.

8 Revision History

  • 2017-04-09 - Version 0.96.91 Beta
    • Fixes a problem where the Sked page would, on very rare occasions, deliver corrupted data to the SKCC Skimmer, causing the skimmer to crash.
  • 2017-04-02 - Version 0.96.89 Beta
    • Fixes a problem where marking a PM message as 'read' would cause messages that contain the word 'read' to disappear.
    • Cosmetic change to the active users area so that all grid lines appear.
    • Fixed a bug where users that had not yet validated their email addresses could still send 'everyone' messages.
  • 2017-03-18 - Version 0.96.87 Beta
    • Raises the number of connections allowed from a given IP address.
  • 2017-03-17 - Version 0.96.86 Beta
    • Highlights the current user in the list of active users in the same way as callsigns are highlighted in the message area -- white on blue background.
  • 2017-03-17 - Version 0.96.85 Beta
    • Cosmetics.
  • 2017-03-16 - Version 0.96.82 Beta
    • Changed color of active user callsigns to blue.
    • More efficient Idle handling.
    • Fixed an issue where an http:// URL containing a single quote would not be considered a complete link.
    • Added automated database backups.
    • Limit the number of connections from an IP address.
    • Changed timeout when accessing data from www.skccgroup.com.
    • Optimize each database access.
    • Faster initial connection.
    • Real time updates for the Skimmer instead of periodic.
  • 2017-03-11 - Version 0.96.81 Beta
    • Fixes a problem where the UTC was affected by DST changeover.
    • Fixed a problem where the background of a status message in the active user box could be light gray instead of white.
  • 2017-03-10 - Version 0.96.80 Beta
    • A better approach to getting data from the Sked Page to the Skimmer should eliminate the occasional Skimmer crash.
    • Lightened up some of the backgrounds for better contrast.
  • 2017-03-10 - Version 0.96.79 Beta
    • Attempted fix for SKCC Skimmer Crash issue.
    • Fixed table layout for main page. Less unnecessary movement.
  • 2017-03-06 - Version 0.96.78 Beta
    • Experimental release.
  • 2017-03-05 - Version 0.96.77 Beta
    • Fixed password reset.
    • Limit total number of connections allowed.
    • Less aggressive browser reconnect logic.
    • Add robots.txt.
    • Add get-status.php for SKCC Skimmer.
  • 2017-02-21 - Version 0.96.6 Beta
    • Cumulative - Rewrite of the PM server logic.
  • 2017-02-20 - Version 0.96.2 Beta
    • GMT to UTC in time display.
    • Fixed a problem where clicking a tab that is flashing would not show as solid blue like it should.
    • Fixed a problem where a PM comes in and a tab it not yet open for that PM session. It was not flashing yellow as it should.
  • 2017-02-20 - Version 0.96.1 Beta
    • Accept any of the validation codes emailed to a user for either resetting password or initial validation. It used to only accept the last one sent.
  • 2017-02-19 - Version 0.96 Beta
    • Cosmetic tweaks.
  • 2017-02-18 - Version 0.95 Beta ** Major improvements **
    • Various stability improvements.
    • SKCC Logo now links to www.skccgroup.com.
    • Completely reworked the way the page is displayed to maximize the number of active users that can be seen on the screen at once.
    • Improved resizing of message and active user area as the size of the window is changed.
    • New Settings tab.
    • SKCC Frequencies moved into the Settings tab to prevent main screen clutter.
    • Moved active SPCs and DX entities to the bottom of the screen to allow more active users in the vertical space.
    • Add experimental 'click' action to allow iPhone users to reset idle time.
    • No longer clutter main page with 'connected' message. Only when disconnected will a 'Not connected' status be displayed.
    • Experimental - stronger highlight for current active user's callsign. Used to be color red. Complaints from visually impaired OPs that red is a poor choice.
    • Include password reset capability both before and after login.
    • Moved SKCC logo to the left; welcome message to the right.
    • Moved logout link to bottom right of page.
    • Fixed double red blink when deleting a message.
    • Provide a 'no match' message when searching for a previous PMs where none are found.
    • Change '+' to 'PM' on the "new/find PM" tab.
    • Looks much better on an iPhone.
  • 2017-02-14 - Version 0.94 Beta
    • Fixed SKCC Skimmer synchronization issue.
  • 2017-02-13 - Version 0.93 Beta
    • Faster initial load.
    • Fixed Call Sign substitution issue.
Copyright © 2015  Mark J Glenn, K7MJG