VisionGauge® OnLine version 15.24 is available for download

VisionGauge® OnLine version 15.24, dated April 22nd, 2022, is available for download.

 

The following new features and enhancements have been added over the past few versions:


This update adds a Manual Axis Lock which allows users to declare certain axes as ‘Locked’ against manual control in the Motion Control Toolbox. Attempts to manually move an axis/stage that is locked will be prevented (i.e. joystick operations, Motion Control Toolbox +/- buttons, “Go”/”Go All”). The Status Box will receive a message notifying when a locked axis is trying to move.

The “Lock” checkbox can be enabled/disabled in the Motion Control Toolbox’s Display – Lock Settings menu. This feature can be password protected by the VisionGauge® OnLine Security Manager. By default the Manual Axis Lock is reset for all axes when the software is started, but a new option in the Motion Control Toolbox – Startup Settings allows Administrators to determine if these manually locked axes should persist when the software is shutdown/restarted.

This feature could be useful on the fly during difficult inspections when you may want to prevent accidentally changing the focus or the position of specific axes, or Administrators can restrict operator’s manual control over specific axes and rely on automated programs to handle control of these axes.


 

VisionGauge® OnLine’s Operator Mode has been updated to allow Administrators to define additional access control settings for the Motion Control Toolbox, including the following possibilities:

  • disable the Go All button,
  • disable the Home All button,
  • disallow setting positions for specific axes (e.g. Zeroing an axis or setting specific positions in the Motion Control Toolbox)

These new options are not applied by default and must be configured when setting up Operator Mode.

 


 

This update also adds the ability to save and recall DirectX compliant camera properties when shutting down and restarting the software. Examples of these standard properties are exposure, gain, brightness, white balance, etc…

We’ve also added support to allow users to save the currently loaded properties to the Settings Toolbox (for DirectX-supported devices only). This is useful to quickly switch/recall device properties without having to manually change these settings.

 


 

We’ve enhanced support for Computer Controlled Illumination to allow up to 8 illumination controls for applications with more demanding lighting requirements. Support for a new illumination controller has also been added.

 


 

An option has been added to the Program Toolbox – Counting & Sizing Settings to allow the user to save to file information about all objects found from the Counting & Sizing operation.


Various additional performance improvements and enhancements have also been made.

 

VisionGauge® OnLine version 15.00 / VisionGauge® version 11.00 are available for download

VisionGauge® OnLine version 15.00, dated October 14th, 2021, is available for download.

 

New features and enhancements have been added over the past few versions:


This update moves “Auto-Align” settings previously found in the “CAD Auto Pass/Fail Settings” into a new “CAD Auto-Align Settings” window, accessible from the Overlay Toolbox alongside the “Auto Pass/Fail Settings”.

The CAD Auto-Align Settings include a new parameter to save a default Auto-Align Mode (e.g. X-only, Y-only, XY + Rotation, etc.) when Live Video is activated. XY + Rotation alignment is set by default. The option is saved with each CAD file’s .apf file when configured. This allows users to load different CAD files, each with its own default Auto-Align Mode pre-selected.

 

The CAD Auto-Pass/Fail Settings also include a new set of default values when setting up Control Sections. These default values are applied when a new control section is added, which can make short work of setting up multiple control sections with the same tolerances, display deviations, and more. You can also use the “Apply to All” button to change the settings for all currently configured control sections.


We have also greatly improved the motion convergence time when running programs VisionGauge® OnLine’s Program Toolbox when the Watchdog option enabled and an E-Stop is connected to the motor drives. This ultimately contributes to motion programs running even faster without sacrificing positioning accuracy. In some of our test cases, we experienced programs with many Motion Control steps running up to 40% faster!


VisionGauge® OnLine’s live overlay image refresh rate has been improved when displaying complex DXF file with a large number of entities. These improvements are particularly noticeable when viewing a relatively small field-of-view compared to the full scope of the overlay being drawn, e.g at high magnifications or very large overlays.


VisionGauge® OnLine now includes a new “Operator Mode” feature. Operator Mode is designed to let Administrators setup a repeatable environment for their operators that limits the operator control over 1) moving windows and/or 2) opening and closing windows when this mode is enabled. Administrators can customize control by choosing to Allow or Deny these Move and Open/Close window operations for individual tools in the Security menu:

Operator Mode is disabled by default so this update will not make user interface changes until Operator Mode is explicitly enabled. After Operator Mode has been enabled, control is automatically restricted based on the Administrator’s configurations when VisionGauge® OnLine starts up. Control over setting up Operator Mode is password protected and factory locked-out. A new option has been added to the Single-Session Factory Lock-Out procedure to permit modifying Operator Mode during a single session of VisionGauge® OnLine.

Additional feature and menu restrictions may be added with future updates of the software.


We have also added new ‘Cancel All’ buttons to the Program Toolbox’s Setup windows. This button is useful for quickly cancelling out of all changes to a program step and returning control directly to the Program Toolbox itself, instead of the Program Toolbox settings setup window.


We’ve enhanced support for certain DirectX/DirectShow compliant cameras that do not list their full resolution compatibilities. This update applies to both VisionGauge® and VisionGauge® OnLine. Previously when using these devices, when users tried to save a certain resolution as default, the maximum resolution would be displayed instead. Now these resolutions are all able to be properly saved and restored, as well as the camera framerate and bitdepth.

 

 

VisionGauge® OnLine version 14.74 is available for download

VisionGauge® OnLine version 14.74, dated June 30th, 2021, is available for download.

New features and enhancements have been added:


We have added the ability to define a maximum velocity for each axis in a motorized system. This feature will most often be used by our technicians on systems that risk noise or damage to an axis at higher speeds.


We’ve included a “Control-R” hotkey, to trigger the “Overlay Translation / Rotation” window’s “Output” button. You will also find in the “Overlay Translation / Rotation” window’s Settings an option to trigger an audible confirmation when results are output.


We have included the ability to save additional data with each result that is added to a Data Group, including the current Settings Toolbox button, the current illumination settings, the current Coordinate System, and the currently loaded overlay with offsets at the time the result enters the Data Group.

Each of these options is able to be configured for an individual Data Group in its “Options” menu:

These options will be actively restored when double-clicking an entry in the Data Group and traveling to the stage position where the result was collected. This may be particularly useful for Operator Review, when manually inspecting the conditions of a “Fail” result after running an automated program.


This update also corrects the DXF Overlay Toolbox’s behavior when removing an item from a full toolbox. The last object in the toolbox will appear empty, instead of duplicating the last value.


We’ve enhanced the Program Toolbox’s Align tool so that it can carry out image rotation & translation alignment without re-scaling the image. In this case, make sure the following box is unchecked:


We’ve added a new “Image Buffer” tool in the Program Toolbox. This is a fast way to recall & reuse previously-captured images.

 

VisionGauge® OnLine version 14.46 is available for download

 

VisionGauge® OnLine version 14.46, dated January 28th, 2021, is available for download.

New features and enhancements have been added:


Some of these new enhancements have to do with 5-axis applications. Now, there are 2 principal approaches that can be used to supply 5-axis coordinate data to VisionGauge® systems.

 

1) Data from the drill file

 

The most common approach consists in supplying the system data from a so-called “drill file”. This is the coordinate data for all of the holes that need to be inspected, as typically supplied to a LASER or EDM drill, for example. This data is generally output by a CAM software package. This data represents the (X,Y,Z,A,B) movements that the drill needs to carry out to bring each hole in position (under the wire, for example). This data is thus generally rotated about the drill’s trunnion and is expressed relative to the part’s (0,0,0,0,0).

Using the “Chuck offset” and “Fixture height” information from the “5-axis Transform Settings” window (accessed through the “Motion control” window, as shown below), VisionGauge® OnLine can use this “drill file” information directly (using VisionGauge®’s built-in 5-axis transform) to effectively rotate the data about its own trunnion and still expressing all coordinates relative to the part’s (0,0,0,0,0)), i.e.:

VisionGauge® OnLine‘s “Motion control” window
VisionGauge® OnLine‘s “5-axis Transform Settings” window

 

2) “Raw” un-rotated data:

 

Starting with the latest software update, a second approach is possible for supplying 5-axis hole data to the system. With this approach, when we check the “Apply to the part” checkbox in the above “5-axis Transform Settings” window, then we can simply supply the (X,Y,Z,A,B) coordinates of the (un-rotated) holes, as always expressing all coordinates relative to the part’s (0,0,0,0,0). In this case, VisionGauge® OnLine carries out all of the required rotation calculations. This approach is very convenient if you don’t have a drill file, or if you don’t even have any CAM software.

Note that both approaches are absolutely equivalent. Generally, users will choose one or the other based on data availability and convenience…

Also, please note that we’ve also refreshed our 700 Series brochure with some new and updated information.


We have added an option to allow Live Video to run in VisionGauge® OnLine while working outside of the software. By enabling this option in the “Settings – Image Capture Settings”, VisionGauge® OnLine will no longer stop live video when clicking in another window or typing outside of VisionGauge® OnLine. This may mostly benefit users of the “Standard” edition of VisionGauge® OnLine if they require live video to stay on when working on programs outside of the software.

Settings – Image Capture Settings

 

VisionGauge® OnLine version 14.38 is available for download

 

VisionGauge® OnLine version 14.38, dated November 30th, 2020, is available for download.

 

The following enhancements have been added:


The Numerical and String Variable windows in the main VisionGauge OnLine menu now include an option to “Load” a previously saved set of Numerical or String variables. The same menu allows users to “Save” the current set of variables.

 

The Program Toolbox “Numerical & String Variables” step options have been greatly expanded to allow the following operations:

  • Set a String/Numerical Variable to 1) a user-defined value, 2) the most recent value from a Data Group, or 3) the current date, time, or both
  • Combine two String Variables into a single result (a user-defined delimiter between the variables is optional)
  • Append the following data onto the end of an existing String Variables: 1) a user-defined value, 2) another String Variable, or 3) the current date, time, or both (a user-defined delimiter between the variables is optional)
  • Clear the current set of Numerical or String Variables
  • Save the current set of Numerical or String Variables
  • Load a previously saved set of Numerical or String Variables
numerical string variables

 

These features can be very useful for recording and indexing a variety of parameters for automated inspection, as well as giving greater capabilities to tracking and tagging inspected parts/batches, logging operator information, and more.

 

The DXF Overlay Toolbox Correspondence file has been updated to recognize mixed-case lettering for the index value.

 

VisionGauge® OnLine version 14.28 is available for download

 

VisionGauge® OnLine version 14.28, dated September 14th, 2020, is available for download.

 

The following enhancements have been added over the last few versions:


VisionGauge® OnLine now allows is capable of writing a “Usage Tracking” log. This option is found in the “Settings – General Preferences” menu. When enabled, a log file is created in the “vgOnLine/Log” directory with information about when a session of VisionGauge® OnLine is started and shut down. The date, time, and Windows user that started the session are recorded on each line.

Usage Tracking in VisionGauge OnLine

 

This update also includes a redesign of the CAD Auto-Pass/Fail “Entities” window. We’ve also added the ability to display the maximum (absolute) deviation from nominal on user-specified entities during CAD Auto-Pass/Fail® operations.

Maximum Deviation From Nominal on Entities

 

The Program Toolbox now includes a “Measurement Toolbox” option, allowing a program to automatically select an .mtb file to load and which button to select by default. This tool could be useful when a program needs to be paused to instruct operators to perform manual measurements before resuming the program again.

Program Toolbox - Measurement Toolbox

 

Also, the DXF Correspondence File now includes an additional optional parameter for which Measurement Toolbox file to load. This allows operators to automatically load VisionGauge® OnLine programs, auxiliary files, overlays, and/or a specific Measurement Toolbox by using the barcode reader. The DXF Correspondence File information has been updated with this data.

 

The Motion Control Startup Settings now contain an option to customize the startup warning message when the 2D XY Stage Mapping is about to begin its homing procedure. This notification window is much larger so it is more visible, and it allows multiple lines of customized text with Unicode support to give operators specific instructions for when the system starts.

Motion Control settings - customize startup message

 

This set of updates also adds a Digital IO output condition for when a system’s Emergency Stop is triggered during program operation.

 

The Settings Toolbox now includes an option to save the current measurement units. This allows a Settings Toolbox button to reset the measurement units when it is recalled, which could be useful if different sets of measurements require different units.

 

Finally, this update also includes a few performance enhancements, measurement improvements (Manual and Automated Perpendicularity measurements), small fixes that correct the display of camera names when multiple cameras are selected, and add additional support for Unicode in various input locations of the software.

 

VisionGauge® OnLine version 14.09 is available for download

 

VisionGauge® OnLine version 14.09, dated April 14th, 2020, is available for download.

 

The following enhancements are available in the latest version:


A new 2-Point Angle Measurement tool has been added to VisionGauge® OnLine, allowing the user to define a line by 2 points and measure the angle of the line from horizontal or vertical.

2-point angle from horizontal and vertical
2-point angle measurement mode

Angle measurements in VisionGauge® OnLine are also now able to specify the direction of the angle over which to measure (Clockwise or Counter-Clockwise). This intuitive, new angle measurement option can be used as an alternative way to determine exactly which angle is measured in both 2-point and 4-point angle measurements – in manual measurement mode and automated programs. The tool returns the included angle in the direction indicated between the user-specified line 1 and line 2. The result can be between 0 – 180 degrees or 180 – 360 degrees, depending on the needs of the application.

Angular Direction measurement - Clockwise or Counter-Clockwise
Angular Direction measurement option

 


The Motion Control Settings now have an option to specify a particular Settings Toolbox button to load before starting homing operations when starting VisionGauge® OnLine. With this option, the homing procedure will use the motion control parameters saved in this button every time, instead of the last used settings on shutdown of the software.

Motion Control Settings - Settings Toolbox option

We have added a new DDE topic item, “PassFailReason,” to retrieve the Pass/Fail Reason string from a Data Group (if Pass/Fail reversal is enabled). We have also added the ability to request the most recently added value to a VisionGauge® OnLine Data Group for the following DDE items:

CharacterString
PassFail
MeasuredValue
UpperLimit
LowerLimit
Label
Nominal
PassFailReason
 

Previously, DDE requests could only specify the number of the item in the Data Group they wanted to retrieve. Now, by specifying ‘0’ as the target item number, the most recently added value in the Data Group will be returned.

For example, the DDE string VisionGaugeOnline|DataGroup!’2 MeasuredValue 0′ will now return the most recently added “Measured Value” from Data Group #2.

 

VisionGauge® OnLine version 13.99 and VisionGauge® version 10.91 are available for download.

 

VisionGauge® OnLine version 13.99, dated February 24th, 2020, is available for download.

 

The following enhancements have been made over the last few update versions:


VisionGauge® OnLine users may now specify the type of image that can be collected in a Data Group. Either the ‘raw’ image (without annotations or measurements) or the ‘displayed’ image (with measurements and ROIs) can be stored in a Data Group. It could be particularly useful to view the displayed image from a measurement if the Data Group shows a ‘Fail’ for a certain result to see inspect what went wrong.

Data Group options - Collecting results images

 


VisionGauge® OnLine’s IO Monitoring/Conditions feature allows users to a) configure specific output channels on which to output a signal when a certain condition is met during a operation of the software and to b) select an input channel to monitor for a signal to perform a specific action in the software.

When both Input Monitoring and Output Conditions are combined, VisionGauge® OnLine can be remotely automated by a robot or a controller that issues commands to the software. The Remote Program Communications feature was originally developed for communication by commands sent through TCP/IP or over a COM port, but this IO Monitoring/Conditions update allows either simplified automation using exclusively Digital IO’s or expands upon the existing Remote Program Communication feature-set with additional command/verification methods.

Input Monitoring allows digital input channels to be periodically scanned for a signal. When the target channel is activated, the software will perform specific actions. VisionGauge® OnLine presently supports the following Input signal monitoring actions:

  • Loading a program
  • Starting a program
  • Stopping a program
  • Pausing a program
  • Clearing Program Errors (when operating in ‘Silent Mode’)
  • Stop/Prevent Stage Motion
  • Check VisionGauge® OnLine Software Active Status (make sure the software is still alive and responding)
Input Monitoring - VisionGauge OnLine

Output Conditions allow the user to configure digital output channels to be activated when certain conditions are met during software operation. VisionGauge® OnLine presently supports outputting a signal when the following conditions are met or actions are performed:

  • Program is Loaded and Ready to Run
  • Program is Running
  • Program is Paused
  • Program Error
  • Silent Mode is Enabled
  • Program is Completed
  • Program Result (Pass/Fail)
  • In-Position (Stage is at a certain position)
Output Conditions - VisionGauge OnLine

It is possible to reserve output channels so programs and operators cannot accidentally output on those channels.

A new quick access button, accessible from the “Customize – User Interface” menu, also allows Input Monitoring and Output Conditions to be started or stopped by an operator.

Full documentation to describe how to use these input and output signals to work remotely (e.g. via a cell controller), is available.

 


VisionGauge® OnLine programs can take advantage of our True Position measurement tool. Our approach to True Position allows a user to define a Nominal feature whose position is compared to the Actual occurrence of that feature. Features are defined using datums that have been set in previous program steps. Nominal features can be defined using either Cartesian or Polar coordinates, which is convenient for different types of applications. Nominal features can also be offset using Basic Dimensions in the current measurement units.

VisionGauge® Online presently supports Cylindrical (point location) and Non-Circular (line) features of size, and the Nominal tolerance zone is displayed along with the Actual feature location. As with all VisionGauge® Online measurements, results, including a Pass/Fail result, can be output to Data Groups and other reporting options.

True Position measurement for Cylindrical Features of Size
True Position measurement for Non-Circluar Features of Size

Follow the link for more information about our True Position measurement software tool.


This update also adds support for Laser Angle Correction – to address the situation where a system’s lasers for measurements are not perfectly at 45 degrees with the stage.


Various fixes, performance enhancements, and improvements in memory management.

 

 


VisionGauge® version 10.91 is available for download.

This update includes support for a newer USB computer controlled illumination module, fully compatible with Windows 10.

 

Introducing VisionGauge®’s new Patent Pending “Tooth Checker™” tool

 

We’re happy to introduce VisionGauge®’s Patent Pending “Tooth Checker™” tool, specially adapted to check parts with teeth. This innovative new tool automatically locates, to very high accuracy, the crests and / or roots of the teeth and determines if they are within their tolerance band. It can also determine all other part characteristics, such as tooth pitch, thread depth, major & minor diameters, etc…

Bone screw teeth verification with the VisionGauge® “Tooth Checker™” tool
Bone screw teeth verification with the VisionGauge® “Tooth Checker™” tool

The Tooth Checker tool can verify that either crests, roots, or both, are in tolerance, using these crest & root points that the Tooth Checker tool has found, it can then automatically determine all other part characteristics:

VisionGauge Tooth Checker Nomenclature
Automatically check all part characteristics

This powerful new tool is perfect for quickly and accurately checking:

  • bone screws,
  • medical rasps,
  • gears,
  • fluted instruments,
  • threads & fittings,
  • and much more!

 

 

Click to view more information about the VisionGauge® Tooth Checker™, or download the application note.

 

VisionGauge® OnLine version 13.38 is available for download.

 

VisionGauge® OnLine version 13.38, dated April 25th, 2019, is available for download.

 


 

This update adds greater functionality to working with an overlay position during an automated program:

 

The Image Overlay Settings window has renamed the option to “Set Offset” of the overlay to “Move Overlay Position”.

We have also added the options to “Set Overlay Current Position” and “Output Overlay Current Position”. The Output option requires that you choose which dimension you want to output, the nominal and tolerances on the value, and the Output options (to which Data Group the data will be sent, any label information, etc.). This new Output option could be useful to determine by how much an overlay has shifted, for example, after a Auto-Align procedure.

Program Toolbox - Image Overlay Settings

 


 

This update also contains a significant performance improvement that will reduce latency and “waits” at many points during the system’s operation. Specifically, we have enhanced the software to optimize runtime performance, so that when the software is started up it pre-calculates a number of (long-to-compute) coefficients and then re-uses them (instead of re-computing them) when they are required.

The performance improvements that a user will obtain vary depending on the specific system configuration (typically multi-mag systems will benefit most) and also depending on how the system is used (typically, users that frequently switch back-and-forth between manual operation and automated programs should see the greatest benefit from these performance optimizations).

However, it’s worth noting that these are quite “core” performance enhancements and the system should feel “snappier” for almost all users.

 


 

Also in this update, we have restructured and greatly improved how ProLink software is used with VisionGauge® OnLine.

This update introduces the “Output on Command” mode, which is now an option to the default “Real-Time” mode. Real-Time mode sends all data sent to a Data Group to ProLink immediately. Output on Command mode allows a user to accumulate data to a file before sending a command to output all that data to ProLink at once. This helps ProLink group the data for a part and avoids ‘deleted points’ from being inserted in places where ProLink would expect data to exist that did not come in with a file.

Customize Data Transfer to ProLink

Also, “Source” and “Extra” data that are sent with a measurement have been relocated to the measurement specific options. Previously these were defined for the entire ‘machine’, but they are now able to be defined for each measurement. In addition, “Note” data can now be sent with each measurement to better relay information about a measurement in ProLink. As before with Source and Extra data, Notes can be defined as user-selected text, or String/Numeric variables.

In addition, we made outputting results to ProLink using manual measurements easier by adding the possibility to output results directly from Data Groups. Data for a part can be accumulated in Data Groups and output all at once to ProLink when it is ready. This allows the possibility to change labels and ensure all manual measurements are correct before output.

Data Groups - Direct Output to ProLink database

The complete documentation for setting up and using ProLink software with VisionGauge® OnLine may be found here.