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CPCe Software

The CPCe (Coral Point Count with Excel extensions) program is a Windows-based software (PC use only) that provides a tool for the determination of coral cover using transect photographs. A specified number of spatially random points are distributed on a transect image and the features underlying the points are user-identified. Coverage statistics are then calculated and the results sent to Excel spreadsheets automatically.

Additionally, CPCe can be used for image calibration and area analysis of benthic features. Excel sheets are automatically generated to summarize the area calculations for each image.

Watch a brief video diplaying the use of CPCe

CPCe Citation

Please use the following citation in published literature using CPCe:

Kohler, K.E. and S.M. Gill, 2006. Coral Point Count with Excel extensions (CPCe): A Visual Basic program for the determination of coral and substrate coverage using random point count methodology. Computers and Geosciences, Vol. 32, No. 9, pp. 1259-1269, DOI:10.1016/j.cageo.2005.11.009.

Using CPCe

Using CPCe is simple and straightforward. The main form is where the transect photograph is displayed, along with the coral codes. The main form has the following menu items:

  • Open:
    • Raw image file: The name of the .JPG file containing the quadrat image.
    • Point count image file: The name of a file containing previously analyzed CPCe data.
  • Save:
    • Save data to .cpc file
    • Save .cpc file(s) to Excel spreadsheet.
  • Multiple image/file processing:
    • Process multiple images
    • View/edit multiple .cpc data files
  • Exit: Exits the CPCe program.

Allows the specification of the rectangular area of interest on the frame image. This area can be marked manually, the entire frame image can be used, x and y offsets from the image edge can be specified, or an area of specific dimensions can be marked.

  • Specify number of random points: Allows the specification of the number of random points drawn on the image for analysis. The points can be distributed as full random, stratified random, uniform grid, or uniform spacing.
  • Calculate points: Calculates the positions of the random points drawn on the image.
  • Image scaling/calibration: Allows the user to get the scaling for an image, e.g. pixels/cm.
  • Area analysis: Calculates the area of a traced region on the analysis image.
  • Feature counter: Counts features in a rectangular area of specified dimensions
  • Allows the selection of a specified area of the analysis image, and the modification of brightness, sharpness, and contrast of the selected area image.
  • Change code file / image file directory location: Allows user to move code and/or image files to new directory locations and to easily change the output file to reflect this movement.
  • Code file checker: Finds obvious errors such as syntax and missing required categories in the code file.
  • Data check and species search: Checks output files for unassigned data points and occurence of specified species.
  • Fix area calibration: Batch alters calibration specification of .ara files and recalculates new areas using the new calibration value.
  • Format conversion: Converts .ara file format from pre V3.4 to V3.4 format
  • Batch change .ara header data: Changes .ara file header data on a set of specified .ara files
  • Data point graphical parameters: Allows the specification of the shape, size, and colors of the object used to indicate the locations of the random points.
  • Color code category codename boxes: Allows the color coding of the coral code category boxes according to species, etc...
  • Specify coral code file: Allows the specification of the file containing the coral codes and species names.
  • Letter/number symbols: Allows the use of either letters of numbers to label data points.
  • Auto-advance point: When checked, advances to the next data point in sequence when a data point is assigned a value. This can speed up analysis time.
  • Auto-follow: When checked, maintains zoom level and centers the current data point in focus in the image.
  • Maintain zoom: When checked, maintains zoom level between data points.
  • Help: Information about using the CPCe program
  • About CPCe: Information about the CPCe program
Support CPCe

CPCe is released as copyrighted freeware. It is the National Coral Reef Institute's (NCRI) aim to provide a useful tool for researchers, coral reef managers, and individuals involved in coral reef monitoring, assessment, and restoration.

Due to its popularity, updating CPCe and providing support via email and telephone requires a significant amount of time and effort. If you have found CPCe to be useful for your institution's research, we encourage you to make a donation that will be used for the further development and support of CPCe.

You can make a donation by directly sending a check or by credit card. Please email "CPCe Donations" <cpce_donation_1 barney mail fred ocean fred nova fred edu> for details.

Donation suggestions:

  • Single user: $200
  • Multiple user (<10): $500
  • Multiple user (>10): $1000
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