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Old 11-08-2013, 07:25   #106
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Originally Posted by boatman61 View Post

Would have been if he'd been an active 'Updater'... logical if you think about it... else no ships would go there....
True.

Sounds like he wasn't a very prudent navigator then.
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Old 11-08-2013, 07:33   #107
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Re: GPS as the Sole Means of Navigation.

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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
I think the confusion over automation dependance, is not the issue in boating. In other industries we are talking about highly trained people that abdecate decision making to automated controls or often find that they are "task overloaded".

In boating , we still have significant levels of manual input and physical effort.

Dave
Excellent points, Dave, but any time you can hook up your GPS to the autopilot and tell it to go somewhere while you go below to make a sandwich, you are automation dependent. Any time you fiddle with the A/P controls instead of taking the wheel in a situation of imminent danger, you are automation dependent. Any time you are concentrating on the magenta line instead of looking at the markers, you are automation dependent.

It can happen here.
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Old 11-08-2013, 07:39   #108
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Re: GPS as the Sole Means of Navigation.

All my years of motor boats, Fishing, skiing, Just lazing about, All around the coast of OZ,

Even out of sight of land, No one carried any thing for navigation, Whats this navigation garbage people are talking about, Big ships have it, OHH,
In Victoria, you went north to get home,
In NSW and QLD you went West to get home,,

Australia is very big, you cant miss it, You dont even need a compass, Not that any one had one,
You get close to land, go home by the landmarks, So Simple,

I stepped onto my boat in Fiji, It had an auto pilot, a GPS, A radar, and lots of other goodies on board,
A boat that can steer itself, Go where ever I want to set it too, And it has an outstanding compass,
This is Xmas to me, I dont even know how to turn it on, But six weeks later its a different story,
24/7 sailing, docking, familiarising myself with all this equiptment, and sailing an unfamiliar boat,

Even if all this electronic crap shits itself, That compass will get me home,

Sailing my boat into and out off the Denarue Harbour at night, By the auto pilot and GPS, Just to prove how acccurate this piece of garbage is,

I was quite impressed actually, Every thing was exactly where the GPS said it was, Rocks, reefs, posts, Etc,

Lautoka harbour at night, Does not show the submerged manmade reef half a mile off the beach, I almost run over it, Depth sounder saved me, 34 feet to 3 feet in seconds,
The tide was in the week before when I stood on the beach and said I would park the boat right on the beach here, Didnt see the reef, It was covered,

But any where near the coast, its usually just eyeballs, I dont trust electronics ever,
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Old 11-08-2013, 08:55   #109
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Re: GPS as the sole means of navigation.

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Originally Posted by Rakuflames View Post
Fascinating. I'm thinking Plan B would be someone hoisted up the mast with good Polaroids.
Well, lots of cruising boats, including our previous one have installed mast steps at least as far as the first spreaders. I spent lots of hours perched up there, yes with polaroids, conning our way through reef systems in poorly charted areas. We used "inter galactic communicators" (short range two way headsets purchased from that famous marine supplier "Toys R Us" for twenty bucks) to avoid too much shouting, and our marriage survived as did the yacht. I miss having them on I-two.

The first spreaders are only around 25-30 feet high on most boats, but that is sufficient to greatly improve visibility... it is kinda like magic to see all the detail appearing as you climb the steps.

The Google Earth view does indeed offer additional info in those poorly charted areas. Some areas have better coverage than others, but it is worth having a look. But in our experience, many of the areas of interest don't have internet coverage (really... there are lots of cruising areas like that!) and we usually lack the foresight to download the images weeks ahead of time.

So, in the long run, eyeballs are your best weapon... pity that they get dimmer as we age!

Cheers,

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Old 11-08-2013, 09:12   #110
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Re: GPS as the Sole Means of Navigation.

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LMAO... remember someone confidently sailing into a harbour with a Google Earth overlay.... only to find a Commercial shipping port had been constructed in the 2yrs since the 'Snapshot'...

I would hope one had done enough research to know that. The thing I like about Google Earth is that coral reefs can only grow just so fast. For man-made obstructions, maybe not as good.
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Old 11-08-2013, 09:18   #111
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Re: GPS as the sole means of navigation.

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Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
Well, lots of cruising boats, including our previous one have installed mast steps at least as far as the first spreaders. I spent lots of hours perched up there, yes with polaroids, conning our way through reef systems in poorly charted areas. We used "inter galactic communicators" (short range two way headsets purchased from that famous marine supplier "Toys R Us" for twenty bucks) to avoid too much shouting, and our marriage survived as did the yacht. I miss having them on I-two.

The first spreaders are only around 25-30 feet high on most boats, but that is sufficient to greatly improve visibility... it is kinda like magic to see all the detail appearing as you climb the steps.

The Google Earth view does indeed offer additional info in those poorly charted areas. Some areas have better coverage than others, but it is worth having a look. But in our experience, many of the areas of interest don't have internet coverage (really... there are lots of cruising areas like that!) and we usually lack the foresight to download the images weeks ahead of time.

So, in the long run, eyeballs are your best weapon... pity that they get dimmer as we age!

Cheers,

Jim

Yeah, I was noticing that. Then the DMV renewed my lost driver's license as a courtesy -- so I went to my optomologist.

Turns out I've developed cataracts in both eyes. He assures me that once they've been removed that "dimmer as we age thing" will be a thing of the past for me.
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Old 11-08-2013, 18:14   #112
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Excellent points, Dave, but any time you can hook up your GPS to the autopilot and tell it to go somewhere while you go below to make a sandwich, you are automation dependent. Any time you fiddle with the A/P controls instead of taking the wheel in a situation of imminent danger, you are automation dependent. Any time you are concentrating on the magenta line instead of looking at the markers, you are automation dependent.

It can happen here.
Actually what you are describing is task overloading, rather then dependency.

Dave
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Old 11-08-2013, 18:37   #113
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Re: GPS as the Sole Means of Navigation.

I hear people railing about GPS interfaced to autopilots often and I wonder if they have actually used it. I have limited experience with different brands but my autopilot will only steer to the next waypoint. When it gets there it beeps but holds the last heading and does not turn automatically. It will not steer through a number of waypoints on its own because I have to push buttons to tell it to turn at every waypoint. Are there really autopilots that will make all the turns without user input? If so, I have never seen it.

I don't know why people bash this type of course computer. It is quite useful when there are strong currents present. An autopilot that only knows how to steer to a compass heading does not compensate for drift and set.
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Old 11-08-2013, 18:45   #114
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Re: GPS as the Sole Means of Navigation.

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Originally Posted by transmitterdan View Post
I hear people railing about GPS interfaced to autopilots often and I wonder if they have actually used it. I have limited experience with different brands but my autopilot will only steer to the next waypoint. When it gets there it beeps but holds the last heading and does not turn automatically. It will not steer through a number of waypoints on its own because I have to push buttons to tell it to turn at every waypoint. Are there really autopilots that will make all the turns without user input? If so, I have never seen it.

I don't know why people bash this type of course computer. It is quite useful when there are strong currents present. An autopilot that only knows how to steer to a compass heading does not compensate for drift and set.
Well sorta...if you set it to steer between 2 waypoints on a "track" it is compensating for set and drift... because it IS following the track despite set/drift.

I think I understand your point...and I agree that most who bash it either don't understand it or never learned to use it...but the whole point of interfacing an autopilot is so set and drift are no longer a worry.
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Old 11-08-2013, 18:52   #115
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Excellent points, Dave, but any time you can hook up your GPS to the autopilot and tell it to go somewhere while you go below to make a sandwich, you are automation dependent. Any time you fiddle with the A/P controls instead of taking the wheel in a situation of imminent danger, you are automation dependent. Any time you are concentrating on the magenta line instead of looking at the markers, you are automation dependent.

It can happen here.
Just to elaborate. You have to separate the advantages of automation from the " dependency " on such automation.

Going below to make a sandwich while the AP steers , is an advantage ( up to a point )

Dependency is where you abdicate your own skills in favour of what the machine tells you. We see much less of that in boats because in the main , they are not computer controlled. ( yet).

The key user failure in automated position fixing and plotting is to ascribe accuracy , that actually isn't there. Not automated dependency , more automation misunderstanding. This is an area that's needs training and competence building. Ie to ensure that the user can ( a) operate the automation appropriately and (b) understand its limitations and how that affects safety.

Dave
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Old 11-08-2013, 18:55   #116
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Well sorta...if you set it to steer between 2 waypoints on a "track" it is compensating for set and drift... because it IS following the track despite set/drift.

I think I understand your point...and I agree that most who bash it either don't understand it or never learned to use it...but the whole point of interfacing an autopilot is so set and drift are no longer a worry.
Well leave out the whole issue of Course to Steer shall we !!!

Dave
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Old 11-08-2013, 18:56   #117
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I hear people railing about GPS interfaced to autopilots often and I wonder if they have actually used it. I have limited experience with different brands but my autopilot will only steer to the next waypoint. When it gets there it beeps but holds the last heading and does not turn automatically. It will not steer through a number of waypoints on its own because I have to push buttons to tell it to turn at every waypoint. Are there really autopilots that will make all the turns without user input? If so, I have never seen it.

I don't know why people bash this type of course computer. It is quite useful when there are strong currents present. An autopilot that only knows how to steer to a compass heading does not compensate for drift and set.
What you mean is a " full authority autopilot " and yes they are available , my old CTREk was one such and I remember the Furuno one does it too. Mainly confined to power boats.

Dave
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Old 11-08-2013, 18:57   #118
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Re: GPS as the Sole Means of Navigation.

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Well leave out the whole issue of Course to Steer shall we !!!

Dave
I get it...how many others will?????
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Old 11-08-2013, 19:06   #119
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GPS as solo means of navigation... not possible...
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Old 11-08-2013, 20:00   #120
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Re: GPS as the Sole Means of Navigation.

Quote:
Originally Posted by transmitterdan View Post
I hear people railing about GPS interfaced to autopilots often and I wonder if they have actually used it. I have limited experience with different brands but my autopilot will only steer to the next waypoint. When it gets there it beeps but holds the last heading and does not turn automatically. It will not steer through a number of waypoints on its own because I have to push buttons to tell it to turn at every waypoint. Are there really autopilots that will make all the turns without user input? If so, I have never seen it.

I don't know why people bash this type of course computer. It is quite useful when there are strong currents present. An autopilot that only knows how to steer to a compass heading does not compensate for drift and set.
a

It's like the old saying about computers -- GIGO -- Garbage In, Garbage Out. You have to put real thought into plotting your course onto a GPS, but it is quite possible to do it sensibly and wisely, and if you have done that, there's absolutely nothing wrong with relying on it while you go below to make a sandwich -- unless you're in the Dismal Swamp Canal or something.

Technology is not evil and does not automatically make you stupid. Using autopilot in such a way would actually help you out in an emergency, because you wouldn't have needless helm fatigue holding your course "the oldfashioned" way 24/7.

Yes you have to be alert and sensible, and you have to know when to stop using the autopilot. But I'm someone who got autopilot fairly recently and am quite aware that it made me a better, more alert sailor. My mind was free to pay attention to other things, especially but not only when single-handing.

We all talk about the "good old days" as if they were superior in some way. They were different, but not necessarily superior. I would like to see sometime the percentage of people who died at see 150 or 200 years ago compared to day. it's my guess that the number of deaths has plummeted.

If you had to, on autopilot, esp. if you had mast steps, you could go up the mast and have a good look around. It wouldn't be ideal, but it's possible.

I think it's TERRIFIC to be proud of one's skills. I took part of a celestial navigation class and I realize the level of knowledge needed. Hats off to you, but that doesn't make your skills the minimum standard. Useful, yes. But to expect it of people who have just learned to sail? Completely unrealistic.

Sometimes we brag out our skills to boost ourselves up by putting others down. Something to think about.
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