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Old 05-11-2012, 06:46   #991
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Re: Paper Charts Now Unnecessary

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Originally Posted by Wotname View Post
. . . Me; well like most I fall somewhere in the middle, I like to use paper to navigate with, I like to use GPS for position fixing and I always prefer pilotage in close quarters. If I feel I need GPS accuracy in close quarters then I feel the quarters are too close. . . .
I also like the look and presentation of information on paper charts - which is why I use "RNC" charts (Raster Nautical Charts). Raster charts are by definition simply scanned images of what would have been a paper chart - and were in the early days of electronic navigation systems. Now-a-days RNC are produced from the original "acetates" (plastic film) that cartographers actually take pen and ink to or draw on with CAD systems.

But anyway, IMHO, the richness and abundance of more subtle "clues" and information that my eyes can feed to my brain by looking at a "Paper Chart" far exceeds that which is available with "Vector Charts." Vector charts are, of course, what Chart Plotters and handheld GPS plotters use since the amount of memory space a chart takes up is critical.

RNC systems were the original electronic charts and I believe, now are only viewable on classical style computers systems (PC's) that are running programs like Open CPN, Sea Clear, Fugawi and such old systems like Nobeltec, The Cap'n, and hundreds of others.

Using a simple desktop computer with a remote 22" LCD monitor in the cockpit I can view my digitally stored "Paper Charts" and with GPS data input view my theoretical position on that "Chart." But my biggest joy is being able to see - all - the information instantly without having to zoom or move up and down "layers" as you have to do with Vector Chart (Plotter) systems.

And the whole setup is a miniscule fraction of the cost of Chart Plotter and Vector Charts. The charts are basically free if you don't mind technically "old" versions. And sometimes those "old" charts are the only charts available for some of the little coves and gunkholes we cruisers like to explore.
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Old 05-11-2012, 11:19   #992
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Re: Paper Charts Now Unnecessary

Well, there is another option we haven't covered in this thread, yet....

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Old 05-11-2012, 21:01   #993
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Re: Paper Charts Now Unnecessary

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Originally Posted by osirissail View Post
I also like the look and presentation of information on paper charts - which is why I use "RNC" charts (Raster Nautical Charts). Raster charts are by definition simply scanned images of what would have been a paper chart - and were in the early days of electronic navigation systems. Now-a-days RNC are produced from the original "acetates" (plastic film) that cartographers actually take pen and ink to or draw on with CAD systems.

But anyway, IMHO, the richness and abundance of more subtle "clues" and information that my eyes can feed to my brain by looking at a "Paper Chart" far exceeds that which is available with "Vector Charts." Vector charts are, of course, what Chart Plotters and handheld GPS plotters use since the amount of memory space a chart takes up is critical.

RNC systems were the original electronic charts and I believe, now are only viewable on classical style computers systems (PC's) that are running programs like Open CPN, Sea Clear, Fugawi and such old systems like Nobeltec, The Cap'n, and hundreds of others.

Using a simple desktop computer with a remote 22" LCD monitor in the cockpit I can view my digitally stored "Paper Charts" and with GPS data input view my theoretical position on that "Chart." But my biggest joy is being able to see - all - the information instantly without having to zoom or move up and down "layers" as you have to do with Vector Chart (Plotter) systems.

And the whole setup is a miniscule fraction of the cost of Chart Plotter and Vector Charts. The charts are basically free if you don't mind technically "old" versions. And sometimes those "old" charts are the only charts available for some of the little coves and gunkholes we cruisers like to explore.
I use a PC w/Nobeltec 6.5 as my chart plotter w Raster Charts (.BSB format) and ENC charts. I have charts for every place I have been, am and plan to go as well as most places I don't plan to go....my objecy now is to start gathering chart for where I will go.....full size, 2/3 and "pocket charts" which measure about 17"x11" and cost around $5 (find through NOAA's page) these are good for a harbor entrances and something you can easily take into the cockpit.
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Old 05-11-2012, 21:13   #994
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Re: Paper Charts Now Unnecessary

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Originally Posted by osirissail View Post
I also like the look and presentation of information on paper charts - which is why I use "RNC" charts (Raster Nautical Charts). Raster charts are by definition simply scanned images of what would have been a paper chart - and were in the early days of electronic navigation systems. Now-a-days RNC are produced from the original "acetates" (plastic film) that cartographers actually take pen and ink to or draw on with CAD systems.

But anyway, IMHO, the richness and abundance of more subtle "clues" and information that my eyes can feed to my brain by looking at a "Paper Chart" far exceeds that which is available with "Vector Charts." Vector charts are, of course, what Chart Plotters and handheld GPS plotters use since the amount of memory space a chart takes up is critical.

RNC systems were the original electronic charts and I believe, now are only viewable on classical style computers systems (PC's) that are running programs like Open CPN, Sea Clear, Fugawi and such old systems like Nobeltec, The Cap'n, and hundreds of others.

Using a simple desktop computer with a remote 22" LCD monitor in the cockpit I can view my digitally stored "Paper Charts" and with GPS data input view my theoretical position on that "Chart." But my biggest joy is being able to see - all - the information instantly without having to zoom or move up and down "layers" as you have to do with Vector Chart (Plotter) systems.

And the whole setup is a miniscule fraction of the cost of Chart Plotter and Vector Charts. The charts are basically free if you don't mind technically "old" versions. And sometimes those "old" charts are the only charts available for some of the little coves and gunkholes we cruisers like to explore.
I use a PC w/Nobeltec 6.5 as my chart plotter w/ Raster Charts (.BSB format) and ENC charts. I have charts for every place I have been, am and plan to go as well as most places I don't plan to go....my object now is to start gathering chart for where I will go.....full size, 2/3 and "pocket charts" which measure about 17"x11" and cost around $5 (find through NOAA's page) these are good for a harbor entrances and something you can easily take into the cockpit.
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Old 06-11-2012, 04:25   #995
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Re: Paper Charts Now Unnecessary

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Originally Posted by osirissail View Post
I also like the look and presentation of information on paper charts - which is why I use "RNC" charts (Raster Nautical Charts). Raster charts are by definition simply scanned images of what would have been a paper chart - and were in the early days of electronic navigation systems. Now-a-days RNC are produced from the original "acetates" (plastic film) that cartographers actually take pen and ink to or draw on with CAD systems.

But anyway, IMHO, the richness and abundance of more subtle "clues" and information that my eyes can feed to my brain by looking at a "Paper Chart" far exceeds that which is available with "Vector Charts." Vector charts are, of course, what Chart Plotters and handheld GPS plotters use since the amount of memory space a chart takes up is critical.

RNC systems were the original electronic charts and I believe, now are only viewable on classical style computers systems (PC's) that are running programs like Open CPN, Sea Clear, Fugawi and such old systems like Nobeltec, The Cap'n, and hundreds of others.

Using a simple desktop computer with a remote 22" LCD monitor in the cockpit I can view my digitally stored "Paper Charts" and with GPS data input view my theoretical position on that "Chart." But my biggest joy is being able to see - all - the information instantly without having to zoom or move up and down "layers" as you have to do with Vector Chart (Plotter) systems.

.
Vector charts are becoming the dominant force in charting ( see IMO ECDIS requirements etc), simply because they represent the underlying data better,

Vector data is "understood" by the chart plotter, Raster is merely a picture.

All Vector charts can and sometimes do contain all the information that a Raster chart does. In fact looked at first glance, they "can" be made to look identical .

Raster have no benefits over vector, its merely that the chart folio of Vector charts has to be put together and the process takes time, so HOs digitised paper as a half way house. Ultimately all paper charts and their digital equivalents will actually be generated from underlying digital databases not pictures.

Remember, certain suppliers of leisure Vector charts , like Navionics, actively decide to remove information not of use, in their opinion, to small leisure craft, the resulting vector chart hence is therefore a product of a conscious decision rather then any deficiency in vector systems. IN a similar vein IMRAY do the same thing with their range of paper leisure charts.


Memory space or processing power really isnt a driving force nor a factor in any recent( <10 year old) chart plotters. Vector is adopted as (a) its the future way , (b) its compatible with computer technology and (c) Its ultimately a far superior way of representing mapping data.


Dave
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Old 06-11-2012, 05:08   #996
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Re: Paper Charts Now Unnecessary

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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
Vector charts are becoming the dominant force in charting ( see IMO ECDIS requirements etc), simply because they represent the underlying data better,

Vector data is "understood" by the chart plotter, Raster is merely a picture.

All Vector charts can and sometimes do contain all the information that a Raster chart does. In fact looked at first glance, they "can" be made to look identical .

Raster have no benefits over vector, its merely that the chart folio of Vector charts has to be put together and the process takes time, so HOs digitised paper as a half way house. Ultimately all paper charts and their digital equivalents will actually be generated from underlying digital databases not pictures.

Remember, certain suppliers of leisure Vector charts , like Navionics, actively decide to remove information not of use, in their opinion, to small leisure craft, the resulting vector chart hence is therefore a product of a conscious decision rather then any deficiency in vector systems. IN a similar vein IMRAY do the same thing with their range of paper leisure charts.


Memory space or processing power really isnt a driving force nor a factor in any recent( <10 year old) chart plotters. Vector is adopted as (a) its the future way , (b) its compatible with computer technology and (c) Its ultimately a far superior way of representing mapping data.


Dave

WOW -- thank you very much for that very clear explanation! I just bought a tablet and have to decide "which type" of chart to get for it ..

but no I don't -- I can get both, and that's what I'm going to do.

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Old 06-11-2012, 08:58   #997
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Re: Paper Charts Now Unnecessary

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Vector charts are becoming the dominant force in charting ( see IMO ECDIS requirements etc), simply because they represent the underlying data better,
Vector data is "understood" by the chart plotter, Raster is merely a picture.. . . Dave
Since the discussion is really about "preferences" for either paper charts or electronic/digital charts, everybody is, sort of, "right."

However, the reality of electronic/digital charts if fairly clear - the Vector format charts consume a miniscule amount of storage compared with the raster chart format. Currently you can get maybe about 100 +/- raster charts on a CD whereas you can the whole world's vector format coverage on a CD.

This made the vector storage format the only viable system for early self-contained chart plotters as internal memory and processing space was at a premium. Raster charts were simply relegated to large memory capacity systems like PC computers. There was no way you were going to get the whole USA marine coverage into a little Garmin 76 using raster charts.

As time went on and memory space became less of an issue the high end chart plotters began offering the ability to use both formats. But by now the vector system was firmly entrenched and it was not economical for manufacturers to "switch." And folks had become used to the vector format presentation.

But a few "diehards" like me and others who cherish our "paper charts" and their richer visual presentation kept the raster market alive using the pc based charting systems I mentioned before.

Again, this discussion is really about personal preferences so if the use of a Chart Plotter and its vector format charts works for you - great. My only great beef with chart plotters and vector charts is the need to zoom down scale and up in order to get the information I can get with a single glance at a paper chart. I'm lazy, I guess . . .
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Old 06-11-2012, 09:06   #998
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Re: Paper Charts Now Unnecessary

Again, this discussion is really about personal preferences so if the use of a Chart Plotter and its vector format charts works for you - great. My only great beef with chart plotters and vector charts is the need to zoom down scale and up in order to get the information I can get with a single glance at a paper chart. I'm lazy, I guess . . .[/QUOTE]


For me, zooming in and out is easier than wrestling with a chart in a breezy cockpit, and certainly easier than going below to a nav table.
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Old 06-11-2012, 09:51   #999
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Re: Paper Charts Now Unnecessary

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Again, this discussion is really about personal preferences so if the use of a Chart Plotter and its vector format charts works for you - great. My only great beef with chart plotters and vector charts is the need to zoom down scale and up in order to get the information I can get with a single glance at a paper chart. I'm lazy, I guess . . .
Apologies if this is an obvious or repeated observation, but most of this discussion of preference is really about resolution of the device.

Vector charts have the benefit that they may be scaled, and that elements may be added/removed according to the scale they are being viewed at. This is important on compact electronic chartplotters which have fair resolution and small display screens.Very small features simply cannot be displayed accurately on this displays and, even if the resolution allowed for it, cannot be easily viewed on a glass display outdoors.

A paper chart has much higher resolution, and can be easily viewed in either indoor or outdoor light - therefore, smaller features can be printed on the paper chart than on the chart plotter - which only has value if the sailor's eye can discern them!

I think it is more than "just" preference - there is much to do about the captain's ability and need to use the larger amount of more detailed data, the convenience of his navigation station (i.e. compare a monohull to multihull nav station design). Clearly preference is a factor, but it does seem that much of what we are calling "preference" really derives from utility.
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Old 06-11-2012, 09:54   #1000
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Re: Paper Charts Now Unnecessary

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Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
Vector charts are becoming the dominant force in charting ( see IMO ECDIS requirements etc), simply because they represent the underlying data better,

Vector data is "understood" by the chart plotter, Raster is merely a picture.

All Vector charts can and sometimes do contain all the information that a Raster chart does. In fact looked at first glance, they "can" be made to look identical ......

Raster have no benefits over vector,
Dave
Raster charts (for US) can be downloaded free from NOAA....for all of us poor sailors, I'd call than an advantage.
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Old 06-11-2012, 20:23   #1001
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Re: Paper Charts Now Unnecessary

All electronics are but tools which when combined with other navigational tools make for a well equipped "navigational tool box" (of which one of the most important ingredients if the ability to use them)
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Old 06-11-2012, 20:45   #1002
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Re: Paper Charts Now Unnecessary

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All electronics are but tools which when combined with other navigational tools make for a well equipped "navigational tool box" (of which one of the most important ingredients if the ability to use them)

Well, it's true. I had a sail school graduate on my boat one night a couple of weeks ago. I was showing him chart plotter basics, and we were bringing the boat back into the marina -- under power -- ZERO wind, not a hope of sailing. He spotted the green marker on the chart plotter and on the water and thought he was good.

I said, "Where's the red one?" "OHHH!" he said and turned the wheel sharply. I was ready to grab it if he didn't ...

I told him, the chart plotter is useful, but don't fall in love with it. Pay attention to all the information (that means all the channel markers ...)

He'll be a good sailor one day.
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Old 06-11-2012, 21:36   #1003
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Re: Paper Charts Now Unnecessary

I don't quite agree that GPS is just another navigational tool.

Other tools are, in varying degrees, tools a human uses to navigate with.

With a GPS, it's not the human doing the navigating, it's the technology.

I personally think this is an important distinction.
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Old 06-11-2012, 22:19   #1004
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Re: Paper Charts Now Unnecessary

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I don't quite agree that GPS is just another navigational tool.

Other tools are, in varying degrees, tools a human uses to navigate with.

With a GPS, it's not the human doing the navigating, it's the technology.

I personally think this is an important distinction.

Depends on how you use it, Troup. No one on my boat who used chart plotter alone for navigation would be allowed to navigate.
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Old 06-11-2012, 22:47   #1005
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Re: Paper Charts Now Unnecessary

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I don't quite agree that GPS is just another navigational tool.

Other tools are, in varying degrees, tools a human uses to navigate with.

With a GPS, it's not the human doing the navigating, it's the technology.

I personally think this is an important distinction.
This is a common, and in my opinion worrying view. The GPS does not "navigate" at all. It gives us a position fix. Humans have to make decisions and interpret this fix.
Even some sensible analysis of the accuracy of the plotted fix would do a great deal to reduce navigational accidents.
Turning on the GPS should not mean turning off your brain.
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