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Student Workshop



IMPRS / MPIA IDL workshop

The next IMPRS / MPIA IDL workshop will be in the first week of December, Mon 1st to Thu 4th, in the evenings from 5 to 7 pm (Monday: starting 4 pm). The location will be the Multifunktionsraum at the MPIA. You find this room in the ground floor next to the cafeteria. On Tuesday we will have to move to the Seminarraum (room # 306) on the second floor (turn left after the staircase and you'll see an open door). There will be enough time to get to the workshop from the bus stop Sternwarte and vice versa. The workshop is organised by IMPRS students and (other) MPIA members.

Please bring your own laptop so that you can try out the commands we show you instantly and have a better learning experience.


Monday, 1 Dec 2008

  • 4.00 pm - 5.00 pm: JC & LB: Setting up IDL: Getting it (not a license, though), installation on your machine, some UNIX shell tricks, including other IDL programs and calling external programs, tunneling to an IDL license server at your institute from your laptop at home
  • 5.15 pm - 5.25 pm: CF, NN, LB: Welcome & Organisational announcements
  • 5.25 pm - 7.00 pm: NdR: IDL basic syntax

Tuesday, 2 Dec 2008

  • 5.15 pm - 7.00 pm: JC: Photometry and image processing

Wednesday, 3 Dec 2008

  • 5.15 pm - 6.30 pm: RvB: Spectroscopy
  • 6.40 pm - 7.00 pm: LB: Organising large amounts of data in structs

Thursday, 4 Dec 2008

  • 5.15 pm - 5.45 pm: KD: Advanced Plotting
  • 6.00 pm - 7.00 pm: KD: Widgets and graphical programming

Speakers & Organizers (alphabetically)

  • Christian Fendt (CF)
  • Joe Carson (JC)
  • Kees Dullemond (KD)
  • Leonard Burtscher (LB)
  • Nicola Da Rio (NdR)
  • Nikolay Nikolov (NN)
  • Roy van Boekel (RvB)

Administrative things

  • The first session (Monday, 4 - 5 pm) is thought for IDL and UNIX beginners that need help in installing IDL on their machine or want to learn how to use IDL at home by using the license from the institute.
  • Please bring your laptop so that you can participate in the exercises.
  • All demonstration files and programs will be available at this webpage during or after the workshop.
  • There is an IDL mailinglist (hosted at MPIA). If you want to subscribe to it, send an e-mail to Leonard Burtscher

Online material

Day 1: Setup and basics

  • Tunneling an IDL license (Leonard Burtscher): Please see this demo .bashrc (named .bash_profile on Mac OS X)
  • Calling shell commands from within IDL: Please download and unpack this zip file and see the comments in the .pro file for instructions how to use this simple example (or just see the IDL help for spawn).
  • Installation and terminal setup (Joe Carson): idl_intro_notes2.pdf
  • Basic syntax (Nicola Da Rio): This file contains the example of IDL code of the first lecture and 2 additional files which it use.

Day 2: Photometry data reduction (Joe Carson)

Day 3: Spectroscopy (Roy van Boekel)

Day 4: Widgets (Kees Dullemond)

  • (also contains the more complex code -- to use it just replace every instance of 'viewdata' by 'viewarr' in

Ideas for improvements for next time

  • bring downloaded versions of the IDL installer on CD; calculate more time to get IDL working on every laptop; remind people more often to bring their laptop.
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Page last modified on January 23, 2011, at 08:20 PM