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Old 13-08-2014, 09:08   #16
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Re: Active Captain - ramblings of a user

Just recieved news of this, pretty cool, just what I was looking for!

We're pleased to introduce you to a new app for iPhones and iPads with ActiveCaptain support - Aqua Map.

Aqua Map is a colorful chartplotter app. They take nautical chart data from around the world to create their own nautical charts. The app displays the charts and has a number of other features.

The app supports higher end functions like tracks and routes. You can geotag photos taken on the device and create your own set of points-of- interest. And of course, they fully support all ActiveCaptain data and allow you to write reviews and hazard comments on the phone or tablet.

Aqua Map keeps all of ActiveCaptain offline with full synchronization so the complete website of data is available even when you have no internet connectivity. All nautical charts are downloaded and kept offline as well.

Aqua Map supports map and satellite online modes which is quite nice when you'd like to see satellite imagery with ActiveCaptain data on top.

Full searching, sharing of data, and more are all part of these apps.

There are different apps for the iPhone and iPad and you can purchase many different configurations. As an example:

iPhone, all US charts: $6.99
iPad HD version, all US charts: $14.99
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Old 24-08-2014, 08:27   #17
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Re: Active Captain - ramblings of a user

I am a fan and supporter of AC. I like it because it is the most up to date info I have ever been able to get in one place in 40+ years of boating. As previously noted it is a tool and to use it you must understand what it is and its limitations. As with all things; it will never be everything to everybody.
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Old 24-08-2014, 09:25   #18
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Re: Active Captain - ramblings of a user

I've only looked it over - knowlege is worthless unless you share it. From what I've read on AC, most folks seem to post experiences that THEY encountered. If you have reservations regarding the info, don't use it or better yet, double check the info. I've checked their charts against other resources, as an example, I won't use it. Be an investigator, and gather info.
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Old 25-08-2014, 05:25   #19
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Re: Active Captain - ramblings of a user

Quote:
Originally Posted by Capt.Don View Post
Their base chart resolution sucks. They'd be better off with Google Earth than the low-res NOAA charts.
Don

Can't see as that would matter much; it's a guide "book" -- not a navigation system.

Anyway, I'd expect high-res images wouldn't be useful when only slow internet connections are available. Or they'd chew up frugal data plans fairly quickly...

-Chris
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Old 25-08-2014, 07:20   #20
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Re: Active Captain - ramblings of a user

i've seen booger and skeeter on the internet at the public library .. or at least i smelled them
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Old 25-08-2014, 08:28   #21
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Re: Active Captain - ramblings of a user

It's like any reviews. I use Trip Advisor, Google, Yelp, Amazon, etc. I look up reviews on products and services all the time. Are a lot brief and somewhat useless to me? Yes. But I'm smart enough to sort through all the information and pick out that which is useful to me. I have found Active Captain extremely helpful. Yes, I've found some reviews not to make sense. But sometimes it's something like the marina owner was a rude and mean lady, while others praise her. Perhaps the poster did something to make her angry or maybe she just had a bad day. Reality is that all of us have those we can't please. So most good, one bad, I take with a grain of salt. But consistent bad, I take more seriously.

I see many marina reviews focusing on laundry and showers. We don't use marina laundry and showers so I look at it as to overall quality but saying they charge too much for use of their washers and dryers isn't relevant to me.
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Old 25-08-2014, 09:07   #22
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Re: Active Captain - ramblings of a user

My original point was, just having "marina" markers on the chart for every marine-related business makes it very hard to pick out which ones have slips, or moorings, or fuel. So many are really not marinas at all. Having to click or tap on dozens of markers to find the one or two that offer the service you need is difficult at best.

Once I've found them though, I the data is very useful. I recognize that not everyone has the same wants and needs. As stated above, you take that into consideration.

Another point I made was that it's helpful to include information even on those things you don't use. I didn't do laundry at the last marina I was at, but did note that the price on the washer was a bit above the going rate. It didn't affect me, but the next cruiser may want to know they'll have to start hoarding their quarters.
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Old 25-08-2014, 09:25   #23
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Re: Active Captain - ramblings of a user

At least for the east half of the USA, it has every marina (at least we have yet to find one not on the site). That is a huge jump up from any cruising guide we have found. If you know it's there, you can search the internet or give them a call to find out particulars.

While we fill in the info we know, I'm not going to spend an hour or two at each marina finding out all the details. Not my job (you can usually fill in quite a bit without going on a fact finding mission)

As with any online review site, you have to use a little common sense. Read between the lines and compare to other reviews by them and by others. If you are not capable of that...well there is no help for you.

I don't really care about chart resolution as this is a planning tool and as a cruiser who rarely travels more than 50 miles in a day, there typically aren't that many marinas to look thru to find the best option. Also the website has an aerial image option if you prefer.

Likewise, I'll take skeeter and boogers info under advisement. Far better to be told about the sunken ice shanty that is no longer there than to not be told about the sunken ice shanty that is actually is still there.
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Old 25-08-2014, 13:02   #24
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Re: Active Captain - ramblings of a user

Quote:
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Another point I made was that it's helpful to include information even on those things you don't use. I didn't do laundry at the last marina I was at, but did note that the price on the washer was a bit above the going rate. It didn't affect me, but the next cruiser may want to know they'll have to start hoarding their quarters.
I've never looked at the price on a washer and dryer at a marina. I've had no reason to and, even if I looked at that, I couldn't say whether they work well or not. I think it best to get opinions of such services from those who actually do use them. I don't think most owners of 45' boats are going to find out what the maximum sizes they can dock there are. I am sure I don't notice things important to sailors, especially cat owners.

I do find it annoying when certain information is not available on AC. For instance when the size restrictions on docking or the depths are missing. But much of it is also marina's not providing full information. Same with fuel prices. Some marinas give updates and some do not.

We also never go to a marina without talking to them by phone. That's our final check and that's how we verify information and obtain missing. But we do use AC to get us to the point of choosing.

Obviously if some of us did do a complete survey of the marina much as AC would do if they were there, we could gather more information.
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Old 25-08-2014, 17:20   #25
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Re: Active Captain - ramblings of a user

Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptTom View Post
My original point was, just having "marina" markers on the chart for every marine-related business makes it very hard to pick out which ones have slips, or moorings, or fuel. So many are really not marinas at all. Having to click or tap on dozens of markers to find the one or two that offer the service you need is difficult at best...........
That's a good point. If you're looking for a marina you don't need to see the repair yards or off the water marine businesses.

Of course some folks have different definitions of the term "marina". From a bar with a dock to a country club with slips.

BTW: AC shows symbols for closed marinas. I'm not sure what the point is. I mean you can't very well stay at a closed marina so it's just useless clutter.
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Old 25-08-2014, 20:32   #26
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Re: Active Captain - ramblings of a user

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BTW: AC shows symbols for closed marinas. I'm not sure what the point is. I mean you can't very well stay at a closed marina so it's just useless clutter.
Because some might be heading there and by looking it up can see it's closed instead of just overlooked. Also, many closed marinas do reopen under the ownership so "Closed" can be a temporary status.
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Old 25-08-2014, 21:19   #27
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Re: Active Captain - ramblings of a user

I'd say a more accurate answer is because Skeeter stayed there once ten years ago, so he added it.
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Old 26-08-2014, 07:59   #28
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Re: Active Captain - ramblings of a user

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Because some might be heading there and by looking it up can see it's closed instead of just overlooked. Also, many closed marinas do reopen under the ownership so "Closed" can be a temporary status.
There can be a reason for anything but it seems to me that if it's no longer a marina it shouldn't be marked as one. If it later reopens, it can be added back.

If I'm cruising along and looking for marinas on AC, I would rather just see marinas that are open (and open to the public). Perhaps a different symbol and the ability to filter them out would be a good solution.
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Old 26-08-2014, 08:20   #29
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Re: Active Captain - ramblings of a user

Quote:
Originally Posted by rwidman View Post
If I'm cruising along and looking for marinas on AC, I would rather just see marinas that are open (and open to the public). Perhaps a different symbol and the ability to filter them out would be a good solution.
Now I think we're getting back to my original point.

It's not so much that I don't want AC to list Skeeter's prop shop, or the restaurant with a dinghy dock, or the closed marina.

I just don't want to have to tap on 25 icons and scroll through all the screens for each to identify the four active marinas offering overnight dockage in the area.

What I'd like is some way to filter. For example, show only marinas with moorings, or only marinas with dock space, or only marinas with diesel fuel, or whatever.
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Old 26-08-2014, 09:11   #30
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Re: Active Captain - ramblings of a user

Most likely the closed marina issue is just something that wasn't considered when they set up the system. I don't come across many listed as closed so it's probably just a question of priorities. There are other features that need to be addressed first.

Also I've yet to come across a location, where there are 25 icons and only 4 offer dockage. While there may be a place where this is true, again, it's likely such a rare situation, it's not a priority to address it.

The only real issue I've come across is thier choice to list free docks as anchorages but paid morrings are marinas. But from what I gathered from thier response to the question is it was a buisness decsion. Free locations are unlikely to be supporters of the site but paid locations are a potential revenue source. As long as they don't manipulate the reviews (ie: delete bad reviews for places that pay), I'm OK with it because they are otherwise providing a great free service.
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