Thanks! Yes, I think that a few changes to the API would indeed let others do what most of us two-camera supporters are hoping for.
I also wonder if the developers may think that we are asking for more than we (or at least I) really are. Here is what I envision:
Master and slave systems/instances, there could be more than one slave system, although more than one would probably be rare.
Master system would work exactly as SGP/PhD presently do with regard to all functions - the only extra thing the master would need to do is to be able to tell the slave systems when it starts a main (as opposed to focus or plate solve exposures) exposure and how long that exposure will be.
Slave system would only do three things:
a) Change filters as required
b) Take and download and save it’s images as set
c) Take focus exposures and perform focus as set
Of the above, only slave exposures (main and focus) would need to avoid mount movement (dithers, plate solves/micro slews, target changes, and flips). Downloads and filter changes are unaffected by mount movements, of course. The simple way to do that is for the slave systems to use only somewhat shorter exposures than the master system and only start those if the master system is currently taking it’s own (longer) main exposure (as opposed to a focus or plate solve exposure). It would be up to the user to insure that the slave exposures were always a bit shorter (maybe 10-20 percent) than the masters so that they would “fit” within the master exposure. I do not see this as a big deal since most of the time, the master and slave systems will need different exposures anyway due to filters, camera sensitivity, and f ratio differences.
It is certainly not possible to double one’s output of images with two cameras since too many things have to happen. It is probably possible to get maybe a 150% or more increase in images as opposed to one camera (assuming two slaves, more if there are three or more). That is still a lot!
I, for one, would be quite happy with nothing more than the above - at least to begin with and quite possibly permanently - it is more than any other SW offers!
NOTE: One thing I would also suggest is that the available dither magnitudes be expanded to a larger range since differing focal lengths between master and slave systems would mean that the availabile dither scales for the master system might be not enough for the slave or vice-versa. I have suggested this already in another thread and this would benefit more than just multi-camera systems