I first started flying with Ardupilot before the configuration utility (CU) was created. At the field, I’d pull up the Arduino IDE on my lap top, make the changes I wanted in the code (waypoints, altitude, tuning parameters, etc.), upload to my Ardupilot, then fly. After seeing how the flight was affected, I’d go back to the IDE make another change and fly again.
Then the CU was created and it looked cool but, at the field, it just created another step to go through before flying. I now had to also pull up the CU program to enter my waypoints, altitude and other parameters and upload to the board, then open the IDE, make my changes and upload a second time.
Now, for a lot of us, the CU is the single break in the chain that is keeping us from flying. We have the Sparkfun FTDI cable that works fine with the old and new versions of Ardupilot for uploading code and it works with the old version for reading and writing from the CU. The problem is that the CU doesn’t allow you to use this cable with the current Ardupilot and there is no other way to upload waypoints.
As you can tell, I’m not a big fan of the Configuration Utility! Since an .h file was created as an interface between user and code, couldn’t this same file be used for entering waypoints? This sounds more user friendly since you wouldn’t have another program (CU) to open, make changes to, and upload. Also, the current problem with Sparkfun FTDI’s wouldn’t exist!