I received my 9500ix today, anxious about both the detector itself and the software updating process. I am a computer programmer (by profession and hobby), so I was very curious about the program and files that Escort would be employing.
I noticed that the installer (DetectorTools.zip) contained a DotNetFX folder, meaning that the program itself is definitely written using the .NET runtime, probably in C#.
I am a C# programmer of 5+ years, and the .NET runtime is easily decompiled into its code using a variety of tools, the one I prefer being .NET Reflector. What does this mean? I can see, line for line, the code that Escort is using for Detector Tools.
So why is that helpful? I can see exactly how their software uses the files and interacts with the 9500ix via USB and can write my own program to interact with it, possibly extending the functionality of Escort's and providing advanced features to our 9500ci/ix users (and myself of course!).
Once I figure out how the location files (.LCD) and software update files (.SWU) work, I will post a file specification for each to aid any other developers that want to use these files. I will also document the process for USB communication for all those that may be interested (other developers or curious folk alike).
The bad news? Escort's own program is ridden with bugs, typos, and just plain ugly design. Fortunately, I'll get a ton of time to work with this and fix it so we have a usable, hopefully bug-free, program for our 9500ci/ix users.
This whole thing leaves me curious of how their firmware itself is written. If I can hack up some of the software update files, I might be able to figure out what they are using in their and maybe... just MAYBE able to get 'custom firmwares,' but that is a long way off in both development and possible legal issues. However, adding custom features/tweaks in "Prefs," like Ramp-Up modification/settings and whatever would be pretty awesome.
I'll keep you guys updated as I rumage through this code and see what extra features and data I can salvage from the 9500ix!