The Hormonal Forecaster has had several different releases. The differences between the releases are spelled out here. Only the latest release is available for download from this site. Since upgrades are free to all registered users, this page may be useful to determine whether you should upgrade to the newest version of the Hormonal Forecaster.
Checking What Version You Have
To find out what version of the Hormonal Forecaster that you already have, run the Hormonal Forecaster on your computer by selecting it from the Start Menu (i.e. Start > Programs > Hormonal Forecaster > Hormonal Forecaster). Once the program is running, go to the Help menu of the program's main calendar screen. Select About the Program. The program's logo will be displayed with the version near the upper right corner. Letters that follow a version number denote very minor changes such as bug fixes and the like. Therefore while version "2.0" and "2.5" will differ significantly, version "2.0 a" and "2.0 b" will not (the "b" version is newer than the "a" version). It is always better to have the latest version since it includes the most features and corrections for any known problems.
Upgrading the Hormonal Forecaster
- When you upgrade, your data file will automatically be upgraded to the latest data format. Before upgrading, it is generally a good idea to backup your data file just in case problems are encountered. You can do this by using the "Save As" selection under the File menu of the Hormonal Forecaster to create a separate backup copy of your data file.
- Make sure the Hormonal Forecaster is not currently running. If it is, exit the program before continuing. Uninstall the version you currently have:
- Select the Windows Start button. Select Settings and then click on Control Panel. The control panel will appear.
- Double click on the Add/Remove Programs icon. A new window will pop-up.
- A list of installed programs on your computer will appear. Find Hormonal Forecaster on that list and click on it.
- With Hormonal Forecaster selected, click the Add/Remove button. Note: Depending on your version of Windows, details about the program may be displayed. You may need to click on Change/Remove.
- The Hormonal Forecaster Uninstaller will be launched. It will ask if you really want to uninstall the Hormonal Forecaster. Click Yes. The program will be removed.
Desktop Version Chronology
Released: June 2000
This version was the first version of the Hormonal Forecaster. It included many of the statistical and fertility features that current versions still have. The biggestest difference was the fact that this version did not support symptothermal charting. Fertility calculations could only be based upon the calendar method at that time.
Released: November 2000
Version 2.0 included all of the great features of the prior version plus expanded fertility features. The symptothermal technique was also incorporated into the program. Users could now take advantage of either or both the calendar or symptothermal method of natural family planning. Symptothermal charts, the Fertility Meter, and the Symptothermal Input Screen where all new to the program. A new statistical feature was also added which was the Event Countdown. Other small optimizations and improvements were also made behind the scenes.
Released: March 2001
This version was released to correct some international issues that arose due to differences in date representations. One of the MS Visual Basic functions used was not capable of operating on numbers where the U.S. decimal point was replaced by a comma common in many European representations. This conflict caused the program to output errors. With the help of international users who pointed out the problem, an alternative function was written to replace the one used and correct this problem. Upgrading to this version is not necessary unless you have your computer's regional settings configured outside of the United States. International users should upgrade to this (or a later) version to fix this conflict.
Released: January 2002
Version 2.5 changed quite a bit about the program although much of the changes were behind the scenes. Improved algorithm efficiency sped up some of the program's common operations. The ability to add variable length menstrual periods was also worked into this new version. A consequence of this feature is that *.HFC files created with version 2.5 are only compatible with the Hormonal Forecaster version 2.5 or greater. This should only become an issue if you want to share your *.HFC file with someone else who has an older version of the program. Having them upgrade to the newest version would readily fix this. This version also includes the ability to export program charts, graphs, and calendars. By permitting images from the program to be saved as JPEG image files, this version gives users the ability to share information output by the Hormonal Forecaster through email and posting of images to websites.
Released: June 2002
This version added some new features that users had suggested. Version 3.0 now incorporates cervical position observations in with the symptothermal data that users can enter. This information is used in calculating fertility and is also displayed on the symptothermal charts with the other data. It is now also possible to record a given custom event that you are tracking more than once a day. When you record an event, this version also asks for the number of occurrences on that day (anything in between just once and 999 times per the given day). This count is then taken into consideration in the program's calculations and reports. A new feature known as an Occurrence Report is also included in the version. This enumerates the dates that specific events have been recorded. Additionally, the lunar cycle features have been improved and now offer the ability to show the main lunar phases as icons on the main screen instead of the custom event ones. Users can toggle between showing lunar icons and custom event icons with the latter being the default.
Released: June 2004
Again, this version was released to meet newly identified user needs. The enhancements to this version were significant. They included the addition of personal notes to permit users to be able to record daily textual information. These records can even be recalled or even searched. Gender prediction graphs were also added in accordance with the Shettles Method recommendations. The graphical interface was improved to look cleaner and more up to date. Both reference markers and manual ovulation specification capabilities were also introduced to meet specific user application needs. Most commonly, this will permit users to display calculated ovulations based upon their symptothermal data on the main calendar screen. Other minor improvements included the ability to record temperature data by directly clicking on ovulation charts, the introduction of tips of the day, and a recently used file list. In addition to these many desktop version enhancements, a Hormonal Forecaster companion version was released for Palm handhelds. The HFC Palm Edition required an extensive design effort and completely integrates with the desktop version to offer both convenience and accuracy the Hormonal Forecaster desktop version is known for. In order to permit these separate versions to share data, synchronization support had to be added to the Hormonal Forecaster 4.0 so that it could perform some calculations for the Palm version and the two could update records between each other.
Released: September 2006
This new release included significant changes to the symptothermal features. The symptothermal chart was redone to allow for more flexible viewing options and to better support users with long cycles. A brand new feature known as chart shading was added to help users better understand their fertility by shading symptothermal charts based upon calculated fertility levels. This is helpful to correlate recorded symptoms with fertility levels. Additionally, calculated ovulation dates can now automatically propagate to the main calendar screen. New fertility records for saliva ferning observations and ovulation test results were also added. The existing cervix and cervical mucus fields were also expanded to offer users more flexibility when recording these symptoms. Temperatures can now be entered with 0.01 degree precision in the new version. Some new cycle statistics were added to allow users to view cycle lengths and luteal phase lengths with their menstrual cycle statistics. The new version is also capable of extracting cycle start dates from recorded symptothermal data passed over from another platform (e.g. Palm/Pocket PC device). Support for synchronization with the Pocket PC v 1.0 was added and Palm Edition synchronization was enhanced to work with the Palm Edition v 2.0.
Released: May 2007
This release includes several minor improvements. The most significant change is support for web edition synchronization. A new synchronization utility is included in version 5.1 that is designed to work with the web edition to transfer records.
Palm Edition Version Chronology
Released: June 2004
This was the first release of the Palm Edition and was designed to work with the desktop version 4.0. It is not supported by version 5.0 and users using it who wish to upgrade to the desktop version 5.0 should also upgrade their Palm Edition to the latest release.
Released: September 2006
This update is designed to work with the desktop version 5.0 of the Hormonal Forecaster. It cannot be used with version 4.0 of the desktop. New symptothermal fields and options were added to support new features introduced in version 5.0 of the desktop. Chart shading was also implemented to improve the usefulness of created ovulation charts.
Pocket PC Version Chronology
Released: September 2006
This initial release of the Pocket PC Edition was designed to work with version 5.0 of the desktop. It parallels the feature set of the Palm Edition version 2.0 but allows users with PDAs or phones running Windows CE to synchronize with the desktop version of the Hormonal Forecaster.
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