Friday, April 24, 2009

New Version of Maxent Available

Steven Phillips just posted a new version of Maxent (v. 3.3.0). I've already used this new version successfully with ENMTools, so hopefully there won't be any unforeseen compatability issues. One of the coolest features of the new version is the capability to do replicated runs, allowing "cross-validation, bootstrapping and repeated subsampling."

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

New executables of ENMTools for Windows and OSX! Hooray!

Thanks to Activestate's PerlApp (which is awesome), we now have executable versions of the testing build of ENMTools. You can download the new Mac OS X executable here, or the Windows executable here. For some reason the OS X executable is way bigger than the Windows version, and it only launches from the console on my Mac (double-clicking doesn't work). If anyone has insight into either of those issues, please let me know. I should also mention that neither of these builds have been tested extensively yet, as they're hot off the compiler. Please check your results and let me know if anything comes out weird.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

OSX users of the Tkx version - possible bug

Rich gave the Tkx version a spin yesterday, and had a bit of an odd bug come up that I've never seen before. It seems that the program wouldn't let him set the path to maxent.jar, no matter what he did. It works fine on my Mac, though. If anyone else runs into this problem, please let me know. If you do see this happen, you can fix it by opening the Perl script in a text editor and changing line 3329 from this:

$maxent_path = Tkx::tk___getOpenFile(-initialfile=>"maxent.jar");

to this:

$maxent_path = Tkx::tk___getOpenFile();

Friday, April 17, 2009

Tkx version ready for testing!

I'm excited to announce that there's already a test version of the new Tkx ENMTools. And here's the big news - IT WORKS ON OSX! Porting from Tk to Tkx was a bit of a hassle, but once that was done it turned out to be trivial to make it work on a Mac. It also has the side effect of making ENMTools look considerably more modern on a PC than it did before. Contrary to my earlier statements, though, I think we're going to keep the retro look of the web page. If you're as deeply in love with Sparklee logos as I am, you can actually save the above logo into the same folder as the new Tkx ENMTools and it will show up when you start up the software.

Anyway, HERE is the perl script for the new version. In order to keep your browser from trying to interpret that link as a web script, Windows users will need to right click and "save as" to download it. Mac users will have to do the Mac equivalent, whatever that is. I'll have a Windows executable version ready as soon as my new license for Perl Dev Kit gets here. For now, you'll need the very, very newest version of ActivePerl from Mac users will need to go to a console and type the path to the Activestate installation of ActivePerl, because ENMTools won't run using the default OSX perl installation. That'll look something like this:

/usr/local/ActivePerl-5.10/bin/perl ./ENMTools TkxTest

...assuming you're in the directory where you've dropped the perl script.

Now in addition to looking considerably sexier and running on OSX, there are a couple of new features that will be of interest to many users. Here are a few:

-Change the amount of memory that is allotted to Maxent (make sure you put in -mx####m, where #### is the number of Mb to assign)
-Ability to turn on/off response curves, pictures, and ROC plots for pseudoreplicates
-New flavors of occurrence point jackknife (I'll write up an explanation of what these are soon)
-Generate data sets for random spatial cross-validation (ditto)
-A new rangebreak test that we haven't told anyone about, which is even cooler than the other ones that we haven't explained
-Measuring niche breadth on ENMs using Levins' measures of niche breadth

Now this stuff is all very, very new. We've done some testing, and things seem to be working correctly. Please email Dan ( if you hit any snags. Oh, and there's a slight bit of weirdness on OSX in that it seems to want to draw the window slightly smaller than it needs to be, no matter how large I tell the program to make it. Just drag the bottom right corner out a bit and everything's fine. If anyone happens to know what to do about that little glitch, I'd appreciate the info.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

We're starting to work on the new Tkx version!

Hooray! In case you don't know why you should be excited about this, I'll give you a couple of reasons. First, it's going to make it so that it works with the default install of ActivePerl on Windows, which means no more downloading Tk to get it to run as a script. Second, it will take us much, much closer to having a Mac-friendly version, which I'm told a few people want. Finally, it looks a lot less like something you'd expect to see scratched on a wall at Lascaux. Just take a look:

Okay, so it's not Rembrandt, but it at least looks like something that was written in the last twenty years.

I'm hoping to have an alpha version of it up on the web site in a few days. The tabs are gone, replaced by a more normal-looking menu system. I'm also slowly but surely going to start adding more flexibility in how Maxent runs are conducted, with the ultimate goal being that the user can set any Maxent option from within ENMTools and apply that to all runs automatically. That's a bit of a ways away, though.

Friday, April 3, 2009

ENMTools is about to get a "testing" version

As it stands, ENMTools basically is a testing version. We're about to crank out a version that only has the bits in that we've worked with extensively, and that already have some associated published paper that we can point to and say "here, this is what this tool does". At the moment that's just the overlap, identity, and background tabs.