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Omnicycles software, now free
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DavidBolton



Joined: 11 Mar 2017
Posts: 11
Location: Japan

Posted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 1:12 am    Post subject: Omnicycles software, now free Reply with quote

Hello, my name is David Bolton, and I am new to this forum (though I have visited it on occasion). I've been an astrologer for many years, and am also the co-creator of Omnicycles software. We are now offering our program for free, so I thought it would be a nice little present for all of you who may wish to use it. Omnicycles does not give interpretations. Instead, we've been adding features such as alternative ways of viewing charts. Thus, it contains the Prime Vertical chart, the Horizon chart, the Meridian chart (which I believe is a first for astrology software), and a Zenith chart (one totally centered on your place of birth) that we feel is second to none. Of course, it also has a manual that gives basic explanations of each type of chart, and much more. Perhaps the most fascinating part of Omnicycles is that it will generate files which can then be converted into "Google Earth" format, so that you can see your chart projected onto the face of the Earth. And all of this free! You can download it at http://www.omnicycles.com/omnicycles.com.zip (no sign-up necessary: when you click the link, the .zip file will download into your standard download folder on your PC). If you wish, you can of course also visit our site first (http://www.omnicycles.com), though I haven't gotten around to adding descriptions of the new features on the site yet. Do not hesitate to write and send us your impressions, suggestions, bugs you may have found, etc. We are constantly developing Omnicycles, so any insights will be welcome!

The "Zenith Chart": One of many alternative views of the chart in Omnicycles...

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Arvind



Joined: 07 Nov 2016
Posts: 57

Posted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 11:33 am    Post subject: Caution malware Reply with quote

This software will not simply uninstall and therefore​ launches by itself. This is malware in my book. Enough said.
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DavidBolton



Joined: 11 Mar 2017
Posts: 11
Location: Japan

Posted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 12:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No, Sir, Omnicycles is not "malware".. Yes, it can be uninstalled, like any other normal program (Control Panel/Programs and Features/Uninstall. Yes, it is set to open when Windows opens, HOWEVER; this can easily be disabled by entering "Task manager" in Windows, then "Startup", and then disabling Omnicycles. Give it a try! And rest assured that the program is in no way harmful. I'll be glad to answer any questions you may have, and I wish you a fine day... David Bolton
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Arvind



Joined: 07 Nov 2016
Posts: 57

Posted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 4:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for your suggestions, but I did all of those things. I tried to uninstall it three times, yet it still was the first program to run. To get rid of this irritating software l had to restore my system and other trustworthy applications.
Any software that can't be easily uninstalled by going through the control panel uninstall makes me question the motives of the originators.
If your software isn't malware, why did I have to remove it like malware?
You, or should I say your omnicycles has cost me about three hours of my time excising this cancer from my computer.
Just my negative experience. Others may may not have had the same result, but all should use caution IMO.
I cannot comment further or dialogue on the matter.
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DavidBolton



Joined: 11 Mar 2017
Posts: 11
Location: Japan

Posted: Wed Mar 15, 2017 1:14 am    Post subject: Omnicycles software Reply with quote

I thank you for your reply; it's a pity that you seem unwilling to comment any further, since it is by an exchange of ideas that practically any problem can be solved. Nonetheless, for the benefit of others here who have read these posts, I shall comment on your remarks.

1) We are not producers of "malware" of any kind. Indeed: both I, as well as my good friend and programmer, Juan Manuel Puertas, are reputable astrologers; we have been active in astrology for decades, and have authored a number of books on the subject. We would never even think of creating malware, since we find it highly unethical.

2) You say that even after uninstalling, Omnicycles ran anyway? Are you sure you completely uninstalled it? And did you try my suggestion of entering the Windows task manager, and removing it there from the "start" list?

3) If indeed you did remove it both from the control panel, as well as from the "Start" list, it would be beneficial to let me know, for we shall then remove it from one of our own PCs, taking every step you yourself did, to replicate the process, and discover any bugs in the program. Once again, I assure you that our code is clean, and contains no malware whatsoever.

4) After uninstalling: did you enter your programs folder, and check to see whether it was in fact uninstalled? if so: did you then erase the Omnicycles folder from the programs folder? if you did that, i would find it very difficult to believe that Omnicycles still started, since it would be GONE. Unless, of course, you installed it more than once, in different places on your PC: in that case, you may have deleted one installation, but not removed a second one that you may have inadvertently created.

5) Since you are so quick to label the program "malware": did you do a check of your PC with a program such as "malwarebytes"? That is always the logical step to take when malware is suspected. And if you did: what did malwarebytes report? I decided to do that with my PC right now. I have over 100 programs installed on my computer, and at least 5 are installations of Omnicycles. After a complete scan with malwarebytes, the results were: "Threats identified: 0", that is, NO malware whatsoever. Thus, I can only conclude that any malware you may have on your computer does NOT come from Omnicycles.

6) To anyone else who may have installed Omnicycles: may i ask a favor? Would, you, too, mind uninstalling it as I have suggested here, and then, after a restart, see if indeed the program still does start? And if so, let me know? The ONLY way I know that a program can still start after being (apparently) completely uninstalled is if it secretly creates some other files, in some place on the drive that the user would never suspect (malware!). Since Omnicycles was certainly NOT programmed to do such a thing, i simply find what this gentleman tells me hard to believe. Nevertheless, I will tell Juanma (the programmer) to completely uninstall it from his drive, and see if it truly has disappeared: I will then post again tomorrow, and let everyone know the result.

7) If you, Sir, decide to overcome your reticence to further posting, and to adopt a more cooperative stance, it will be welcome! Though, of course, if you feel that your experience has soured you to the point of not wanting to use Omnicycles ever again, fine. But that would be quite the exception, for there are many others who have been using Omnicycles for years, and who are quite happy with the program!

I wish you a fine day...

David Bolton
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jventura



Joined: 04 Jan 2011
Posts: 292
Location: Portugal

Posted: Wed Mar 15, 2017 10:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi David,

as a fellow programmer myself I would only suggest to disable the auto-start by default as that seems to be what caused the most dissatisfaction to Arvind.

One should never assume that his program is so relevant to the user to the point of auto-starting on each reboot. As a data point, I use my web browser every single day but would not tolerate that it started automatically on reboot.

Regards,
Joćo Ventura
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DavidBolton



Joined: 11 Mar 2017
Posts: 11
Location: Japan

Posted: Wed Mar 15, 2017 11:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's a good idea Joao: thanks for the tip! Since we are constantly installing, whenever we make some improvements in the program, we have it set that way, and we know others who like it that way, since they look at their constellations every day. But since some may not like it, I think I will deactivate the automatic startup. Though I still can't understand why the gentleman said Omnicycles would startup and run even after uninstalling it. I have never seen such a thing, and can't think of how that could ever be. Oh well... if he writes again, I'll be glad to help try to clear things up.

Once again, thanks for your suggestion, and have a nice day!

David
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DavidBolton



Joined: 11 Mar 2017
Posts: 11
Location: Japan

Posted: Thu Mar 16, 2017 11:38 am    Post subject: Omnicycles uninstall bug fixed Reply with quote

Hello all,

Well, I must thank Mr. Arvind. It seems he did indeed find a bug with Omnicycles! No, of course the program is not malware, as I said in a previous post. BUT...my partner and I were testing it, and it seems that in truth, it does not uninstall as it should. It seems that the program we were using to create the installation file was flawed, and did not uninstall as it should have. Thus, we acquired a new installation program, and are now using that. Testing has shown that now, Omnicycles will uninstall without any problem. In addition, we removed the "automatic startup" setting, so that Omnicycles will not open when you start up your PC. (But of course, you can click the shortcut on the desktop to start the program, and may also place a shortcut in the Windows "Start" folder, should you indeed want Omnicycles to open when you start your PC.)

My apologies to Mr. Arvind for the inconvenience he experienced, and once again, my thanks for discovering this error. As always, we investigate such "bugs" as quickly as possible, in order to correct them at once.

The new, corrected version has been uploaded, and may be downloaded using the same link: http://www.omnicycles.com/omnicycles.com.zip

I wish everyone a pleasant day!
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Arvind



Joined: 07 Nov 2016
Posts: 57

Posted: Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:21 pm    Post subject: An update... Reply with quote

After restoring my Windows 10, I was still having problems after the install of omnicycles. So I had to go to a computer tech. I dropped off my laptop in the morning, his voice mail to me after lunch started off like this... "WTF did they code to f**k your 'puter up so much..."

So it now having to be wiped with a clean and virgin install of everything.

Thanks Omnicycles... you suck!

A.
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DavidBolton



Joined: 11 Mar 2017
Posts: 11
Location: Japan

Posted: Sat Mar 25, 2017 11:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can only say that your story is truly strange. I have had Omnicycles on my computer for years, as has the programmer, and many other people, and I have NEVER heard from ANYONE that it had a malicious effect on their system.

But to give you the benefit of the doubt: What exactly were the problems you encountered after restoring Windows 10? what EXACTLY did your technician say was the cause? In other words: what concrete evidence is there that it was Omnicycles, and not something else on your PC that caused the problem? And how EXACTLY was your system "F..... up", as your expert so eloquently put it?

If I were suspicious minded, I might begin to suspect that perhaps you yourself sell software, and are peeved that we are giving away a quality program for free, and that you therefore have an interest in "trashing" it.

Not wanting to think ill of anyone, however, I shall only ask for precise details of what the technician found, and how those details relate to Omnicycles. For as I said, we have, since the program's creation in 2004, NEVER had any complaints of this nature, for which reason I can only assume that your PC problems lie not with Omnicycles, but with something else.

I wish you a calm, collected, and PC-problem-free weekend!
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zoidsoft



Joined: 10 Feb 2006
Posts: 945
Location: Pulaski, NY

Posted: Tue Mar 28, 2017 5:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My sympathy to you David Bolton. Many people just don't seem to realize just what an undertaking software development is. Not everyone can do it. Customer expectations can become unreasonable and some assume malice on the programmers part (largely because of the bad rep of hackers having tainted the field with their 100 line joke code and thinking they're technically sophisticated for writing malware). It's a fundamental truth that it's many times easier to destroy than to create. Good luck to you.
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Curtis Manwaring
Zoidiasoft Technologies, LLC
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zoidsoft



Joined: 10 Feb 2006
Posts: 945
Location: Pulaski, NY

Posted: Tue Mar 28, 2017 8:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's been my observation that newcomers to astrology software development often get high praise. As their programs get more sophisticated, they start getting more criticism but at this stage the programmer wonders if this can be done full time. This is usually when one starts raising prices to compensate for all the time consumed. If you quit your job and do this full time, you then start to deal with complaints on a daily basis. At the end of the software development life cycle usage ceases and nobody remembers you. I've seen this happen to a number of astrology software developers over the years. A few were smart enough to stop financially investing in it before they really got started. The rest of us do it because it's what we do and would do it anyway.

Judging from the level of criticism you've received in this thread, you must be a master developer.
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Paul
Administrator


Joined: 23 Nov 2009
Posts: 1465

Posted: Wed Mar 29, 2017 12:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Arvind

My sympathies to you. It has to be one of the most frustrating things when your computer is out of action through no fault of your own. Thank you for updating us and pointing out that the software has critical bugs and what your experiences were.

Curtis

Sometimes I think I have heard it all from developers only for someone to sympathise with not a victim of software problems causing major problems but instead the programmers involved, and then juxtapose the idea of uninstalling software correctly with "customer expectations being unreasonable". Customers should absolutely expect that applications do not mess up their system and should constantly expect safe software - this is not unreasonable.

A much bigger problem to software developers than hackers are software developers themselves, when they act and think like they're better than others or condescend others. Software development is a skill, no more or less insightful than skills in music, parenting, design or marketing.

Before people complain, I'm a software developer myself so have had plenty of opportunity to work with many and see that these attitudes are unhelpful and serve only to alienate developers - thankfully most modern interview processes for major corporations and agencies are as much if not more interested in weeding these mindsets out as they are hiring someone proficient.

David Bolton

Bugs happen no matter what you do or how much you test. I'm glad you took the feedback here and you removed the open at start up feature and that you recognised that there was indeed a bug here with the uninstall as Arvind explained. Keeping in mind you were disbelieving of the issue in the first place, then concede there was an issue, it seems like poor form to now imply rhetorically that actually this is all a ruse by some competitor. Let's give Arvind the benefit of the doubt without implication that they have an ulterior motive especially as you concede there was an issue after all.

Software development is tricky, bugs happen, but let's assume everyone means well.
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DavidBolton



Joined: 11 Mar 2017
Posts: 11
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Posted: Wed Mar 29, 2017 3:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Many thanks to both you, Curtis, and to Paul.

Of course, from the start I did indeed think that Arvind was "on the level"; however, his accusation that Omnicycles was "malware" was insulting, so I thus had to set things straight. I myself am not the programmer; my good friend of 30 years, Juan Manuel Puertas, has always done the programming, and I can truly say that he is the most honest person i have ever met in my life. Juanma would NEVER even consider putting any sort of malware into a program. Naturally, Arvind could not know this.

Yes, Arvind did discover a flaw in the program: namely, that the program we were using to create the setup file didn't properly allow for it to then be uninstalled easily.

In addition, he noted that Omnicycles was set to automatically start up when starting the PC. The truth is, since I use it everyday anyway, I never saw that as a flaw, but of course, I could see that others would, which is why I quickly found a solution.

The fact that within just a few days, I had found another setup program, and corrected both of these flaws should have shown him that my intentions were honest. After all, how often do you see that a software developer makes such corrections only a couple of days after their being reported? (especially when the program is free!).

Paul: You seem to assume that Arvind was correct in saying that Omnicycles "messed up his system". To that, I can only say:

1) About the "automatic startup" weakness: Arvind could have easily corrected that himself by removing Omnicycles from Windows Startup, but he apparently doesn't have the computer skills to do so; nor did he have the little bit of patience a Google search on the issue would have taken; nor did he have the simple idea of writing to me and ASKING how to change this; I would have been most glad to help him. Instead, he simply said "This is malware in my book.", thus accusing me of having bad intentions.

2) True, the fact that that version could not be installed automatically was a flaw, HOWEVER; it could well be installed manually, merely by removing the relevant Omnicycles folder. Arvind's malware accusation implied that the program had installed some hidden .exe on his system, which defied any attempts to locate and erase it, and this is NOT true. Erasing the folder would have erased the program, for it has no hidden "malware" files!

I can well sympathize with anyone who ends up spending hours to rectify a problem on their PC. However, Arvind could have easily spared himself those hours by simply asking me about the problem. Though the program is now free, I have NEVER refused to help someone with a problem.

In my last post, I ask Arvind to ask his programmer EXACTLY what Omnicycles did to "F... up his system"; I am still waiting for an answer. If indeed the program does do something horrible, I sure would like to know about it, all the more so since it would certainly not be intentional.

Now Paul: I can understand you sympathizing with Arvind, yet as I read over his posts, and mine as well, I cannot escape the impression that mine have been more complete, more respectful, more honest, and perhaps most importantly, I have shown a much greater willingness to collaborate to solve any problem that might exist. Statements such as the final one Arvind made, that sarcastic: "Thanks Omnicycles... you suck!" would seem to say something not unessential about the type of person Arvind is. Yes, I, too, have experienced great frustrations with programs over the years, yet I have NEVER EVER spewed forth such insults, either verbally or in writing, and would certainly never do so when dealing with someone who has shown a great desire to help, as have I. Yes, Paul, I, like you, do tend to believe that people mean well. It's just that being accused of creating malware, and then having obscenities hurled at me does not incline me to believe in the good intentions of my accuser!

Curtis, you said things quite well. In our case, we decided to give away Omnicycles for free, since we weren't selling it too often anyway, and we feel that the new features we are including in the program (some of which cannot be found in any other) are of great importance to astrology, and should therefore be made available to astrologers everywhere. In other words: Juan Manuel and I are idealists!

All of that being said: I sure hope that from now on in this thread, we'll see some posts from people who are actually using Omnicycles! I would love to hear their opinions, suggestions for further additions, etc.

Once again, my thanks to Curtis and Paul, and I wish you all a fine day! (Yes, you too, Arvind, wherever you may be!)
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zoidsoft



Joined: 10 Feb 2006
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Posted: Wed Mar 29, 2017 4:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Paul wrote:
Sometimes I think I have heard it all from developers only for someone to sympathise with not a victim of software problems causing major problems but instead the programmers involved, and then juxtapose the idea of uninstalling software correctly with "customer expectations being unreasonable". Customers should absolutely expect that applications do not mess up their system and should constantly expect safe software - this is not unreasonable.


Paul,

You have turned what I have said is a general tendency to the specific situation that Arvind was talking about which I did not intend at all. Do not misrepresent me by interpreting what I said to mean that I don't agree with Arvind on this particular issue because I just don't know about all the details of this particular case. It would indeed be reasonable for uninstall to be complete, but my comment really has nothing to do with that and focused upon the developer side with (GENERALLY - hint not this particular case) unreasonable expectations. The phenomenon is real that I described above. Break out a new app and everyone gets excited. Develop it to perfection and it gets criticized and downplayed. This has happened countless times to others (not just me). But it did seem rather over the top what Arvind did, hence my sympathy for David Bolton.
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Curtis Manwaring
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