The MyFlightBook thread

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by AggieMike88, Mar 17, 2016.

  1. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Now offering reverse discounts.
    In many other threads, various things about the popular eLogbook solution, MyFlightBook, have been and are being discussed, including features we liked, didn't like, and improvements we hope one day to see.

    This thread is intended to act as a container for such discussions as needed.​

    The developer, EricBe, is a member of PoA and periodically visits the forums. He recently indicated he wants to hear even more feedback from his users so he can make MFB even better than than it is now.

    So if you have questions on how to use MFB, ask.

    If you have critiques about MFB versus other products, share (please be polite).

    If you have ideas to improve the usage, interface, report functions, etc, describe them.
     
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  2. whereisrandall

    whereisrandall Pre-takeoff checklist

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  3. Pilawt

    Pilawt Final Approach

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    I love it. It suits my needs perfectly. I'm just a weekend VFR pilot now; but a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far, away, I flew professionally. So there are a lot of hours, airplanes and airports to keep track of, and MyFlightBook does it. Eric has graciously and patiently taken the time to respond to my sometimes addled questions and comments. His efforts are much appreciated.
     
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  4. TangoWhiskey

    TangoWhiskey Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I've got a couple of simple feature requests, @EricBe.

    My guess is you have two primary types of users: those that use the mobile app alongside the website, and those that enter everything manually on the web. I'm in the first group. When I visit the website, it always drops me in on the Home tab, seeing "Add a Flight", which I NEVER do via the website... so I then click on the Logbook tab... which has my list of flights so I can make any final tweaks, edits, comments, cross-fills, etc. Even then, the list of flights is at the bottom of the page and an EMPTY edit form populates the entire top.

    I'd suggest:
    • If you know I'm a mobile user, which I think you can detect from data you're collecting in the database, then when I visit the website, take me straight to my logbook. If I'm NOT a mobile user, keep the current web experience.
    • On the Logbook page, hide the blank "flight edit" form and let my logbook be front, top and center... when I click a flight to edit, then open/show/popup the edit form.
    Also, my airplane doesn't have a Hobbs meter, just tach. A comment regarding that:

    • I know you have both Hobbs and Tach fields... can the mobile interface be set to hide / use one or the other? My "In the Cockpit" section has "Hobbs Start" and "Hobbs End" fields, so I enter my tach time there because I've not found a way to replace those fields with "Tach Start" and "Tach End". I do have "Tachometer Start" as one of the "Properties" that shows up in the section below "In the Cockpit", but that's not an intuitive flow.
    Thanks!
     
  5. TangoWhiskey

    TangoWhiskey Touchdown! Greaser!

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    On the flight's Edit screen (web), I'd like to see an UpdateFlight button at the top AND bottom of the page, so I don't have to scroll all the way down if I'm just editing some data in the header.
     
  6. TangoWhiskey

    TangoWhiskey Touchdown! Greaser!

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    MFB Feature request for owner-pilots:

    Maintenance alerts tied to Date / Hobbs / Tach ( Show all fields and let me enter any that apply). When my FLIGHT entries in cockpit or on the web are -5 hours or +0 hours/days, alert me.

    For example, I would tell MFB that my next oil change is due on 6/14/2016 or 2975 tach, whichever comes first. When I log a flight on 5/20 saying my tach is now 2970.3, I get a pop up: "OIL CHANGE DUE IN 4.7 HOURS". Any flights over 2975 hours or past 6/14 where I haven't reset the values would give me a "OIL CHANGE PAST DUE" message.

    I'm sure you can think of other examples to add: Annual, 100-hour, recurring ADs, etc: all user configurable.

    Another example might be an opt-in for 21-day nav database cycles. You can determine those automatically and notify me 5 days before they become active, using app notifications and/or email alerts (user selectable notification options.
     
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  7. TangoWhiskey

    TangoWhiskey Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Tagging @EricBe so he knows the features suggestion thread for MFB has moved.

    I have one more... if I set "passengers" to 0, can you automatically copy the PIC time to "Solo Time" as well? "Solo Time" isn't in the cross-fill fields.
     
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  8. EricBe

    EricBe Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Love the suggestions...thanks! I'll make a point of posting here as I address them!
     
  9. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Google Calendar will work for this.... I've made it a constant recurring event every 28 days with minus 7 day and minus 3 day alerts.

    But having the app, on start up, check what items are "expired" and then beep/buzz/vibrate and show a message would be a nice thing.
     
  10. TommyG

    TommyG Cleared for Takeoff

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    I love myflightbook. I haven't found it, but to have endorsements that can be signed ad hoc by the CFI if they are not a user of flight book. Such as IPC, BFR that all the have to do is input the info and sign on the screen. Like I said I haven't found it, maybe it is already there.
     
  11. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    One way to maintain signature items in MFB is to use the photo feature that allows pictures to be attached to the individual flight record.

    Continue to maintain the signature in your paper logbook, just snap a photo once the CFI is done, and attach to the activity you just completed.

    At the moment, I'm not too trusting of digital signatures.... so I'm sticking with ink and paper.
     
  12. EricBe

    EricBe Pre-takeoff checklist

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    These are there, but admittedly a bit buried and it requires a mobile app. Go to your recent flights list and find the flight to be signed (to which you've attached the Flight Review or IPC property) and there is a "Sign" option. You can hand your iPhone/Android to the instructor and they can scribble a signature.
     
  13. EricBe

    EricBe Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I should probably add a way to do that. Of course, you can always just *call* hobbs "tach" (i.e., simply repurpose the fields), but that's a hack.

    I have some ideas about reworking the flow of the Logbook pages on the website. I might start playing with some ideas in the coming weeks and see where it takes me. But I think instead of having one page/tab for new flights, one for currency, one for totals, etc., I should have a single page for just your logbook and then have a way to add a new flight, filter it, view totals, etc., from that page.
     
  14. ircphoenix

    ircphoenix Pattern Altitude

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    Do whatever you feel like doing, whenever you feel like doing it. What you've already done to this point is fantastic. I don't want to run the risk of us burning you out.

    Keep up the amazing work!
     
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  15. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Is assigning the property to the flight a requirement for the Sign button to appear?

    Never mind.... Answered my own question by looking at recent flight.

    When editing a recent flight, look just above the icon bar at the bottom for New Recent, Profile. Settings and Sign appear at that spot and a tap on Sign will get you to the signature capture spot.
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2016
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  16. EricBe

    EricBe Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Fascinating. Every paper logbook I've ever had put the Total Time as the last field, so it never occurred to me to do that first. It's certainly trivial effort to do, I'm just worried about whether it will make sense to a majority of people. Thoughts?
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2016
  17. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I may have mis communicated. TT for the flight, then cross fill to PIC, XC and others.

    If you come up with a new wrimpnkle, just ask some of us to try it out in a trial space (doesn't affect out actual logs) and we will provide feedback.
     
  18. EricBe

    EricBe Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Precisely how I would do it... :)
     
  19. TangoWhiskey

    TangoWhiskey Touchdown! Greaser!

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    That's exactly what I've been doing... which will probably cause me to send you a ticket to copy "hobbs to tach" via a SQL query once this gets in the code! ;-)
     
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  20. TangoWhiskey

    TangoWhiskey Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Brilliant. Would totally simplify the experience.
     
  21. DFH65

    DFH65 Cleared for Takeoff

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    I absolutely hate it, ;) because it shows how many math errors I make in my paper log book. :)

    I use paper and back it up online. MyFlightBook makes totaling things sooooo much easier. It is great to be able to query the data. I appreciate your work on this.
     
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  22. mjburian

    mjburian Cleared for Takeoff

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    The number of scratch outs and fixes in my paper logbook thanks to MyFlightbook* is incredible.

    * It's easier to blame the tool that's helping me find/fix errors than the tool (me) that's making them in the first place. ;-)
     
  23. mjburian

    mjburian Cleared for Takeoff

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    Actually, I had an issue(?) today. Took a flight, logged it (showing up on both my iPhone and iPad), but couldn't get the Apple Watch app to update. Recents, totals, currency, etc all acted as though the flight wasn't there. I tried the refresh on each screen and tried getting out of the app and going back in (not really a way to kill an app on the watch). None of it worked. Out of curiosity, I turned the watch off and back on and then the app showed the new flight info. Is there an easier way to force a refresh other than rebooting the watch?
     
  24. EricBe

    EricBe Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I've run into that a few times myself, I'm not sure what's happening. You should be able to force-press to get a refresh option, but what seems to be happening is that the watch app is getting disconnected from the host app on the iPhone. I will need to dig a bit deeper on that.
     
  25. mjburian

    mjburian Cleared for Takeoff

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    It's obviously a minor issue. It just seemed odd that I couldn't get it to refresh. If I run into it again, I'll try troubleshooting from the phone (turn BT off/on, rebooting the phone, etc) and see if that fixes it. I'm not sure I'll be able to come up with the cause, but I can definitely run some troubleshooting now that I know I'm not the only one who's experienced it.
     
  26. whereisrandall

    whereisrandall Pre-takeoff checklist

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    @EricBe - thanks for being so goshdarn approachable. And for the free software solution.

    Fresh-ink CFI here (hours ago, woo hoo!) Seems like MFB is way better for tracking students' logbooks and endorsements than Logten. Any CFIs care to weigh in?
     
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  27. mjburian

    mjburian Cleared for Takeoff

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    Logged another flight today and ran into the same issue with it not showing up on the watch. Tried the force touch refresh with no success. Since I already knew rebooting the watch fixed the issue (from last time), this time I rebooted the phone. That also worked.

    Now to find a way to refresh it without rebooting either device...
     
  28. airheadpenguin

    airheadpenguin Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Eric I have a PA-24 which has a bunch of ADs at different time in service and calendar intervals. I love that I can track oil changes based off of tach time, I want to do that for ADs too and specifically each AD separately :) If I could I wouldn't need my whiteboard/Google Docs for tracking that stuff

    I'm fine with manually entering the AD parameters and name I just need custom airplane fields to go along with annual and oil change

    P.S Eric you've been great helping me with enhancements in the past, its really an amazing product you give away!
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2016
  29. buzzard86

    buzzard86 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Kudos to Eric for offering an awesome (and free!) logbook solution. I have no complaints at all about the product and am now using it regularly. However, since the question was asked, here are a few ideas that I think could make it even better:

    1. I converted from my existing paper logbook. When I did so, the Engine Time, Flight Time and Hobbs totals that appear on the Logbook Currency page all started from zero and are essentially meaningless to me. Would be great if I can hide these fields to reduce the clutter.

    2. I own my plane and would love to be able to see important airplane maintenance tasks in the Your Flying Status snapshot. Would be great to see dates for things like annual, transponder, etc. Even better, I think a countdown for things like oil change would be awesome (e.g., 50 hour oil change due in 23 hours, or something to that effect).

    3. This is really nit picking, but I have historically logged all my airports with the leading K (KPHL, etc). The application automatically records them without the K, and I find that I need to go into every flight to update. Would be nice if we could choose the format to use the leading K in the airport designator.

    Like I said initially, FANTASTIC product. Thanks for all of your efforts, Eric. I use it almost daily and would be glad to be a beta tester for new offerings. Feel free to PM me if necessary.

    Jim
     
  30. EricBe

    EricBe Pre-takeoff checklist

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    1. The Engine time/Flight time/Hobbs times should only show up on totals if you have "Hobbs time, flight times, and engine times for flights" checked in preferences. Turn this off and it should go away from totals.
    2. Annual/Transponder/etc. should start showing up in your currency when you are getting within 30 days (I think, off the top of my head), but I only show this for aircraft for which you have indicated that you perform maintenance (i.e., where you have entered a maintenance update for that aircraft). That way you're not seeing reminders for VOR checks on an aircraft that you rented 15 years ago, for example.
    3. I support IATA, ICAO, and FAA designators for airports and am deliberately loosey-goosey with the leading "K", especially since there is often ambiguity about it. E.g., near me is Port Townsend airport (0S9 FAA code and TWD as the IATA code, but it has no ICAO code, so technically it is not "K0S9", but I allow that because it's so hard to remember things like that). So it's totally fine to use the leading "K". That said, I do have a built in bias for many airports, which disambiguates in favor of the leading "K" when there are multiple hits at the same location. E.g., I have San Francisco in the database twice: once as "SFO" and once as "KSFO", and KSFO is designated as the preferred, so the mobile apps should pick up KSFO rather than SFO. (KPHL and PHL are also like this, by the way) But there are two caveats to this: (a) not every airport for which I have xxx AND Kxxx has a preferred airport identified (if you want to send me some codes, I can easily fix this), and (b) sometimes Kxxx and xxx are in the database with ever-so-slightly different coordinates (based on coming from different data sources), so you might get "xxx" if you are on one side of the airport and "Kxxx" at the other side of the airport.
     
  31. mkosmo

    mkosmo Pattern Altitude

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    I know I've mentioned this to you in email before, but an Android Wear app would be awesome ;-)

    I think every other suggestion I've passed along has been mentioned in this thread in some form or another. MX tracking above covered my request for calendar/time based alerts for things like ADs.

    I still love the product and appreciate everything you offer us!
     
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  32. EricBe

    EricBe Pre-takeoff checklist

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    You can enter this data into the Private Notes field for the aircraft, and create a custom deadline under Preferences to track when it's due. Deadlines can also auto-renew when you mark them complete.
     
  33. airheadpenguin

    airheadpenguin Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Nice! I hadn't poked around in the preferences. That takes care of the 5 year part of the tail horn inspection, it would be cool if there were a way to cover the 500 hour part as well since the AD is written as every 5 years or 500 hours in service whichever comes first
     
  34. buzzard86

    buzzard86 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Eric, you rock!!! Thanks a million for the personal response to my suggestions.

    1. I do use your app to record Hobbs times and calculate durations for PIC and Total Time. The totals that appear in my currency tab look like the Hobbs total only since I started using MyFlightbook. I tried turning off the preferences, but then I lose the ability to track the Hobbs for each flight. Is there way to keep the ability to record the Hobbs on an individual flight basis without the aggregate total in the currency view?

    2. I populated Annual, Transponder, etc details for my plane but I am well outside of the 30 day window so I haven't gotten the mx reminders yet. Having a constant countdown on a currency-like view for oil changes in particular would be awesome. I tried playing around with private notes and custom deadlines, but it looks like those are all based on dates. I didn't see a way to create a rule based on tach time.

    3. I'll email you separately with my local fields that I regularly visit that don't have the K prefix. My home field is one so it would be fantastic if that could automatically add the leading K.

    Can't thank you enough for the work and time that you've invested in MyFlightbook.

    Jim
     
  35. EricBe

    EricBe Pre-takeoff checklist

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    The trouble with doing things based on hours vs. a date is that a date is deterministic. Hours is only as good as the last accurate update to a flight in the aircraft (and for shared aircraft, that becomes even less reliable). Open to suggestions...
     
  36. HighFlyingA380

    HighFlyingA380 Cleared for Takeoff

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    Because PIC time with no Pax is not necessarily always also solo time. That would mess up logging for those of us who fly as a crew. If/when I have no Pax but I do have an FO, then it would incorrectly log my PIC time as solo as well, since I'm not the "sole occupant of the aircraft" [FAR 61.51(d)] I feel it wouldn't be prudent for Eric to build something that isn't correct.

    Hmm, interesting. The only one I have that has it last is a Cessna book. All my others, mostly Jepp, have it first...
     
  37. EricBe

    EricBe Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Thanks for the kind words, Jim!

    Quick answers for 1 and 2:
    1) On the new flight form is a "Times and telemetry" form that is collapsed by default when the preference option is off (to reduce clutter). But you can click to expand it and hobbs is there. Note that if you use the mobile app, you get a few nice advantages here: you can have it set to auto-detected takeoff/landing, and you can have it compute ending hobbs based on either engine time or flight time. When you submit that flight, it will initialize the form with the ending hobbs from the just-submitted flight as the new starting hobbs; this is great if you fly your own plane (i.e., not a lot of other people taking flights between your flights) as it means that each flight can pick up where you left off.
    2) There is indeed no rule based on tach/hobbs time. It's too hard to do reliably, especially with planes that are shared or if a pilot fails to record tach/hobbs for a given flight. I can always compute a date, but I can't reliably know what the plane's current tach/hobbs is. :(
    3) Please do! myflightbook - at - gmail.com.
     
  38. EricBe

    EricBe Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Indeed, although I'd also pass for a more prosaic reason: I have no way to distinguish "property not present" from "property has its default value." So I can't distinguish "I had zero passengers on this flight" from "I didn't fill out the passenger count field."

    BUT...if you're using the mobile app (at least on iOS; I'll have to play with Android to remember if I did it there too...OK, just checked, it works there too), you can press-and-hold on any time field to cross-fill from the Total Time field. So if the total time for a flight is, say, 2.1 hours, just press-and-hold on the Solo property (or the Night field, or PIC, or Cross-Country, etc.) to set it to 2.1. (Note that on iOS, you need to be a little careful about where you press-and-hold a property; press-and-hold in the left margin, it makes the property stick/unstick to the main form; cross-fill requires press-and-hold in the text field).
     
  39. baboss

    baboss Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Any chance of putting that feature online or in the Windows app version too?
    Most of my flying is solo so a cross fill to that column would be great.

    Also, any chance of an updated Windows app, maybe a universal Win10/Mobile version for all 3 of us on the platform? ;)
     
  40. EricBe

    EricBe Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I think the Windows Phone app cross fills to the main-screen fields but doesn't do it to the extended properties (of which Solo Time is one). At the moment, I'm afraid, the whole "...all 3 of us on the platform" thing means that I'm not really putting any energy into windows phone app updates. :( (Hard for me to say, since I was a Microsoft employee for many years.) But market share #'s don't lie. 78.8% of MyFlightbook mobile users are using iOS of one flavor or another, 20% are using Android, and only 1.2% are using Windows phones. (I think I know many of them personally, and almost all of them still work at Microsoft, but even they are switching to iOS). Shame, since Windows Phone is actually a nice environment...