LogStar Gliding Club
LogStar GC is a suite of four programs which sets the standard for Gliding Club computer systems. The software has been debugged and developed by using it 'live' at Portsmouth Naval Gliding Club (PNGC) which provides over 8,000 launches per year. A 'paper' logging system has not been used by this club since LogStar's commissioning in late August 1997.
Electronic logkeeping is now a standard, and can be done by anyone with basic keyboard skills. The logkeepers find it easier than the old paper system. The advantages to the Club are obvious in terms of accurate records and charging, the simplification of the treasurer and membership jobs, and the provision of automatic club statistics.
Here is a review from the Treasurer of the Bannerdown GC:
"LOGSTAR GC, as advertised in S&G the software cost £1000, the hardware just under £500. It has replaced about 10hrs of "back office" work (by me) per week. Members have adapted to it more readily than I expected. The support from the supplier has been fantastic. On this alone I would recommend it. Overall, I am very pleased."
and a later review from the Bowland Forest Gliding Club:
"Before I even saw the system, I was impressed by the respect that the Bannerdown members had for it. In my experience this is unusual, in that human beings often make mistakes on computers, and then use the computer as a scapegoat. .... this made me more than happy to endorse LogStar as the system we should have...the other committee members were also suitably impressed..
(Day one) I started training people at the launch point, and was pleasantly surprised how readily the system was accepted by the people who were there... we were so impressed with how the day went ...that we decided to cease running the paper logs. If we were to abandon LogStar for whatever reason, the sheets printed at the end of the day could be entered into the old system.
The rest is history....The system is working well.....I have to say that I have been impressed by the fact that the developer of the system has been very amenable to modifying the system to suit our needs."
There are four compatible modules, each of which can be run on separate computers:
This is the heart of the whole system and is concerned with logging flights, and charging the correct amounts for membership and flying fees. It also handles account and membership data. Much effort has gone into making this system as 'user friendly' as possible so that it can be used by anybody with basic keyboard skills. A more detailed description of using GC-Log is given later. GC-Log has data links (via removable drives eg diskettes) to the Treasurer, Statistics and Membership Systems.
This system is designed to operate on the Treasurer's computer and links via a removable drive (eg diskette) with GC-Log. The link automatically provides 2 way data and provides the Treasurer with daily receipt information, account information, debts to collect, invoicing, reimbursements, charges etc. The Treasurer also has control of the total pricing structure of the club, and can make changes 'at home' which will update the GC-Log system via the link diskette.
This system updates from GC-Log to provide the Club with statistical data. Reports include Glider Logbook information (hours & launches on a monthly basis), pilot hours, pupil's statistics, BGA returns for instructors, Club launches etc. etc. A convenient site for this computer is in the 'Clubhouse' where members can browse the Club Statistics.
This system communicates on a two way basis with GC-Log and provides the Membership Secretary with a comprehensive database of membership information. This system would normally be installed on the Membership Secretary's computer. New members who have joined via the GC-Log system are highlighted, and members who have joining directly via the membership secretary are updated back to the GC-Log system. This system also provides mail merge files to handle bulk mail shots for membership renewals, medical renewals, and any other events. The database may be 'user configured' to provide additional information about members. Eg: List all the tug pilots, or those with special keys issued etc. etc. Statistical information on membership is also available.
Main Features of LogStar GC: