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Author Topic: ?? TwoDog or else... what?  (Read 3621 times)

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Offline ncsuclell

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?? TwoDog or else... what?
« on: December 10, 2009, 03:00:43 PM »
OK, so I have few questions about the TwoDog Inventory Software.  I played with it a little in college, but when I graduated my first job was with a timber buyer with no money for new technologies.  So now that I am a state forester I was thinking of purchasing TwoDog for us for two reasons.  First:  I believe if there is a better way, then why not atleast try it.  Some people say that its just another thing that can go wrong, when a pencil and some write-in-rain paper will do.  Second: We sometime hire interns to do large data collections and the software is easy and there less time I (or an intern) has to do in data entry.

So my questions are:
What is the latest version of TwoDog?  We already have v2.1 but the copyright is 2000.
Does anyone here use it extensively? Or do you know someone who does?
Are there any other programs out there similar? If so, What? Website? Phone #?

If you don't know what I am talking about, here is the website that currently sales it.
http://www.fountainsamerica.com/twodog/

In addition to asking the experts (thats you guys), I am sending an email to them asking a few questions as well.  Thanks for any input ya'll have on this subject.

Added  4:30pm:  I talked to Fountains America Inc. and I can download for free the latest version of Officedog since I am a previous customer.  I was surprised at the customer service since I got a phone call from them about 15 mins after sending the email. I'm going to try out the latest version and see what its like.  But still let me know what you guys think of this program.
"More Prescibed fire means Less Wildfire"
"Good Fires prevent Bad Ones"

Offline Tom

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Re: ?? TwoDog or else... what?
« Reply #1 on: December 11, 2009, 01:48:02 PM »
I hate to see something like this go unanswered, so, I have no idea.  :-\
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Online Jeff

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Re: ?? TwoDog or else... what?
« Reply #2 on: December 11, 2009, 05:23:33 PM »
While were waiting for a real answer, I can't help be reminded of a joke with the words "two dogs" in the punchline.  Its not a joke I can tell completely on the Forestry Forum. :)
Just call me the midget doctor.
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Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: ?? TwoDog or else... what?
« Reply #3 on: December 11, 2009, 06:23:40 PM »
Many folks write their own as what they do is custom and most often someone else needs some other functions that the others don't. It also is good to know the inner workings of the cruise program being used. The math will pretty much be the same in all of them, but hard to suit everyone.

I'm one of those that have written their own and I don't have to rely on someone else when troubles arise. I can't recommend or steer anyone in any direction. If your not inclined to write this type of stuff I guess it's worth a try. It's basically a database with forms that is synchronized to a base computer in the office once connected to store and manage the data and print reports. They have no screen shots on that site that I can see. Not critical, but kind of a bonus to see what it looks like.

I wrote mine in Visual CE and MS Access and synchronized the tables. I never bothered writing the report screens on Visual CE, since I'm going to print from my office machine anyhow. I even wrote a data entry database for taking quality plots in pre-commercial thinning. Synchronize, and boom a report is ready for the timber company.
Move'n on.

Offline Tom

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Re: ?? TwoDog or else... what?
« Reply #4 on: December 11, 2009, 07:21:46 PM »
There were these two guys in a lunatic asylum..... nah! I probably can't tell that either.
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Offline John Mc

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Re: ?? TwoDog or else... what?
« Reply #5 on: December 11, 2009, 08:49:20 PM »
While were waiting for a real answer, I can't help be reminded of a joke with the words "two dogs" in the punchline.  Its not a joke I can tell completely on the Forestry Forum. :)

That wasn't the one about the little Indian boy asking where his name came from?
If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.   - Abraham Maslow

Online Jeff

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Re: ?? TwoDog or else... what?
« Reply #6 on: December 11, 2009, 09:31:32 PM »
Yes it was. :)
Just call me the midget doctor.
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Offline Woodwalker

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Re: ?? TwoDog or else... what?
« Reply #7 on: December 11, 2009, 11:10:42 PM »
We nicked named a I guy I use to work with "TwoDogs", It stuck.
Just cause your head's pointed, don't mean you are sharp.

Offline Ron Scott

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Re: ?? TwoDog or else... what?
« Reply #8 on: December 12, 2009, 11:40:34 AM »
There is also Office Dog and Field Dog programs as part of Two Dog. I've had a little exposure and training with them, but they are too complex and pricy for me to use at my "old age". I couldn't justify the cost and benefits. Something for the new "high tech" forester to consider though if they can justify it.

I'm the pencil and tally sheet vintage which still gets things done for me. ;)

http://www.in.gov/dnr/forestry/files/manual/fo-I-D-1.pdf
~Ron

Offline jtmccallum

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Re: ?? TwoDog or else... what?
« Reply #9 on: December 13, 2009, 06:31:19 PM »
Quote
That wasn't the one about the little Indian boy asking where his name came from?

Why do you ask? ;)
John M.        '97 WM LT40Super Manual 40HP Lombardini,  XP372,  MS361, Logrite Cant Hook  CASE 1210 W/ Loader

Offline ncsuclell

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Re: ?? TwoDog or else... what?
« Reply #10 on: December 15, 2009, 02:28:53 PM »
I wrote mine in Visual CE and MS Access and synchronized the tables. I never bothered writing the report screens on Visual CE, since I'm going to print from my office machine anyhow. I even wrote a data entry database for taking quality plots in pre-commercial thinning. Synchronize, and boom a report is ready for the timber company.

SD,
I would love to see your program in action sometime. ;D  I have toyed a little with making a program from MS Access.  From my knowledge of TwoDog it uses MS Access as well for tally organization and calculations.

When I worked for a Timber buyer after graduation we had a MS Excel workbook that we used for our cruises.  I'm not sure who developed it but we did "tweek" it a little while I was there. Added all 3 log tables. The thing about those programs was you had to cruise the tract with certain measurments and ideas in your head.  For example we used form class 80 (I think) for all calculations, but if youu had a tree that didn't fit 80 then you had to dock the tree 1/2 log to compensate.  That's just not consistant. The good thing was I didn't have to tally each point separtely.  I used one tally sheet and combined all tallies together.  I just had to keep tract of the number of tallies.

I used TwoDog (both Office and Pocket) in school about 3 1/2 years ago.  But we just got a quick demo and a field excersice.    From what I have learned of TwoDog so far,I could send our office assisstant out and get the same results as if a 20 yr veteran did the same cruise.  Atleast that is what I have gathered so far.  I was hoping someone on here had some experience to confirm that observation.  That way if we get any interns here then I have less train-up time.
"More Prescibed fire means Less Wildfire"
"Good Fires prevent Bad Ones"

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: ?? TwoDog or else... what?
« Reply #11 on: December 15, 2009, 03:41:56 PM »
I use New Brunswick Standardized volume tables, basically we use 4 form/height classes for softwood and 4 for hardwood. One of the 4 for each is a province wide average. We are in 1 single forest region here, Acadian Forest. Places like Ontario have more Forest types than we do. I took my website down with all the screen shots of my cruise program.

I also run ArcPad on my handheld with the cruise grid marked out.



No more string boxes and paper to get wet. ;D I still use compass to guide me once I get to by starting point. I don't compass like I would with a string box traverse, it's more to keep me in the general direction. The GPS will fine tune my location on the ground. When I do strip lines for thinning I keep a straight line with compass because I have to ribbon work strips and find accurate area for pays. I take a GPS position every 50 meters, that's where i tie a double so the men know how far in off the road they are based on 50 m intervals.
Move'n on.

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: ?? TwoDog or else... what?
« Reply #12 on: December 15, 2009, 04:05:07 PM »
Here are some screens from my cruise program, Klondike Kruse CE



Land Ownership Screen.



Stand info and plot tally jump form.



Stand Conditions



Inventory Screen

Move'n on.

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: ?? TwoDog or else... what?
« Reply #13 on: December 15, 2009, 04:20:08 PM »
Here are screens on the office machine. Some of the reports are too wide to view in here, even the one provided is too tiny to read.



Main Screen to jump to various reports and edit screens.



Tally Sheet.



Volume summary.

I link property data with my GIS. I can get up to date boundaries and PID's(property ID's) for free, ownership info I can obtain with an account for $10 month or just call the local marketing board with my PID number.
Move'n on.

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: ?? TwoDog or else... what?
« Reply #14 on: December 15, 2009, 04:22:49 PM »
I also have a silviculture database which I set up and customized at three marketing boards. That can also be linked to GIS by database tables, just one of the functions a GIS can do out of the box.
Move'n on.

Offline ncsuclell

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Re: ?? TwoDog or else... what?
« Reply #15 on: December 15, 2009, 04:33:59 PM »
Interesting...  So the program only asks for average height?  I would think that it would be more accuate to atleast get recorded hts for every 10th or 20th tree (w/in a species).  When I was cruising in NC I estimated hts tot he nearest 1/2 log (8ft) for every tree.  Merchandising in the woods and culling for defect.  Though we did do a lot of 100% tallies!!  Sucky!!!

The previous forester already had the TwoDog software, so I'm going to get it on my computer and try it out.  I'll take some snap shots and post them when I do.  Then you can see what the input/interface is like.

Also if you look at that site from FountainsAmer. Inc they have a ArcExporter for Two dog so that you can have your stand data in ArcPad.  Kinda like you have.

I'll let you know when I use it and what I think of it.  It might be a while... I work for the Army NG and they will have to review the software and what-not before they will load it on my comp.
"More Prescibed fire means Less Wildfire"
"Good Fires prevent Bad Ones"

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: ?? TwoDog or else... what?
« Reply #16 on: December 15, 2009, 05:31:30 PM »
So the program only asks for average height? 

You can use a species a number of times to group them by height class if you wish. Heights are only estimates whether eye-balled or Sunto'ed, so we use classes. They fit close enough to the curves, with a 2 meter margin, that there's is nothing to fight over. :D  A 30 cm fir, for instance, is pretty much the same height on the same site type, baring being suppressed or over topped. I have height curves to determine which volume tables to use. Another dimension is separating pulp from sawlog by quality. I always throw suppressed trees into pulpwood. Sometimes by size, since a 5" stick is hardly a sawlog now. No guarantee a 5" stick will be a log in the future. And a cruise is only a snapshot in time.

DNR don't even cruise anything bigger than 46 cm DBH, a 60 cm is still 46 cm to them.  ::) I had a conversation about it with their head cruiser technician guy. I couldn't talk any sense into him. Be kind of nice for the wildlife folks to know bigger trees are there. But, then again most everything  gets flattened with clear cuts. So there ya go. They are beginning to wake up and manage hardwood a bit now. Wildlife management here is spelled DEER. We only have DEER management areas. A species not even native to NB.
Move'n on.


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