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Old 29-05-2009, 18:06   #301
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I've been planning my trip south from Toronto and making routes on SeaClear using the NOAA charts. I wrote a program to convert the SeaClear routes and tracks into Google Earth .kml files so I can check the them on GE. I know there are other programs to do this like GPSBabel but this program does it for me. If anyone is interested in a copy let me know.

It was interesting to see how the GE path compared to the SeaClear route. Most of the time it was right on but there were cases where they were about 300 feet different. It will be interesting to see which is right.
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Old 31-05-2009, 02:05   #302
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phiggins View Post
If anyone is interested in a copy let me know.

It was interesting to see how the GE path compared to the SeaClear route. Most of the time it was right on but there were cases where they were about 300 feet different. It will be interesting to see which is right.
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Old 31-05-2009, 03:47   #303
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Thanks Maren but this genius needs some Linux help which I will post in a few minutes.

Attached is the program Convert_To_KML.doc download and store it as Convert_To_KML.REX in some directory on windows.

Now this program is written in REXX (its a language us old IBMers use) so you will need the OOREXX interpreter which easily downloaded from:
Open Object Rexx
Select the Windows (32 bit) ooRexx320-1-exe download and install.

If you want to run this on Linux, still use the Windows 32 bit version but install it under wine. There is a Linux version of ooRexx but it doesn't support the GUI interface that I use. PM me if you need further help installing it under Linux.

Now to convert a SeaClear Route to a Google Earth .kml file:
1. Use SeaClear to create the route and save it. For example Route1.SRW
2. Make a text file from the saved route by: File..Route..Print..then click on the disk icon and and save as a text (TXT) file for example: Route1.txt
3. Start this program by entering Convert_To_KML in a CMD window and select the source as "SeaClear_Route" and press "OK".
4. From the "Select_SeaClear_Route_Files" select the text file created in step 2 and then Click "Open".
5. A Confirmation message should say it created the kml file which will be the same name as the text file but with a .kml filetype. For example: Route1.kml
6. Start Google Earth, then File..Open and select the .kml file created.

This may sound like a lot of steps but is actually quite easy once you do it once.

To convert a SeaClear track see the description in the start of the program.
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Old 31-05-2009, 04:03   #304
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OK here is my Linux problem:

If I run my XO computer in tablet mode with no keyboard or mouse, when I reboot it asks for my userid and password which I can't enter because I don't yet have the on screen keyboard yet. I found a way to get around this by following the How To Enable Automatic Logon In Ubuntu:

How To Enable Automatic Logon In Ubuntu And Kubuntu

which works fine but when I reboot it now asks me to "Enter password for default keyring to unlock". But again I have no keyboard to enter it yet. This is problem is documented in:

Idea #2393: "don't ask for default keyring password if system is set to autologin" - Ubuntu brainstorm

and at the end someone says you can get around this by going into:

Go to Applications / Accessories / Passwords and Encryption.

but "Passwords and Encryption" doesn't exist in the Applications /Accessories on our XO version of Ubuntu Intrepid.

So my question to any Linux experts is: How do I get to "Passwords and Encryption"

Thanks
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Old 31-05-2009, 05:00   #305
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I just checked on my Eee PC with a newly installed Ubuntu 9.04 NetBook Remix.
"Passwords and Encryption" is another name for the program /usr/bin/seahorse which in turn is a graphical front end for GnuPG ("GNU privacy guard - a free PGP replacement").

A few questions to XO users:

Has anyone tried XO with "Ubuntu 9.04 NetBook Remix" ??

Has anyone tried XO with the navigation program OpenCPN instead of wine/SeaClearII ? OpenCPN has the big advantage of being able to display vector charts, S57 ENCs as well as the old CM93 ?

Is the XO screen, in real life, readable in sunlight? Is the screen actually superior to a normal laptop screen?

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Old 31-05-2009, 05:30   #306
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We converted our navigation to PC-based and I thought I would chip in with what we ended up as it may provide some options for others.

CPU: Shuttle XPC, X2700, X-mini, or whatever other name gets used. Very small footprint. Comes with 1 or 2 GB RAM, we got 80 GB hard drive w/ DVD drive. We cut off the power brick and run it directly on 12 VDC. But we need a regulated power supply. Cost $439 + shipping. Make sure to specify Windows as it comes with Linux or Windows and they will load Linux if you don't say anything.

Carnetix 12VDC Regulator: Model P2140 from mp3car.com. Two outputs incl. 12V and 5V as well as 2 other choices (18V & 20V, I think).

Monitors: This is really cool...Mimo has just started importing into the US a 7" monitor that is powered off of USB! It takes 2 USB ports -- one for power, one for signal. But USB is restricted to about 15', I think, before voltage loss becomes an issue. Cost ~$125. So we use the Mimo at the nav station and for the cockpit we went with a Xenarc 702TSV. This monitor is made for the auto industry, so I am not too keen on its ability to withstand marine environments. Plus at $500, itis pricey. But we could run 12V wires all the way to the moon if we needed to to power it. Both monitors are 7". Thank God my son has good eyes!! The Mimo has outstanding picture quality. Both screens have touch-screen capability, but we do not use that.

This set-up has allowed us to go strictly with 12 VDC and avoid inverters, etc. I should point out that we just installed all this equipment, so have no runtime with it nor can speak to its durability.
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Old 31-05-2009, 06:28   #307
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Thanks Cagney, you always come through for me.

The seahorse was not installed so I did an:

apt-get install seahorse

Once installed I entered seahorse from a terminal and it worked. I then changed the password for the keyring to blank and when I reboot I no longer get the enter keyring password and the network connects.

To answer some of your other questions:

I haven't tried OpenCPN but just downloaded it and will try it out to see how it works.

Yes the XO screen is definitely better than a normal PC. Yesterday I was sitting in the cockpit without the bimini up in bright sunshine and I could read it very well. I would almost say its nearly as good as the screen on my Furuno chartplotter. I would probably say I wouldn't have it in the cockpit in rough weather but OK otherwise. I would be interested in other people's opinion on this question too.
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Old 31-05-2009, 10:54   #308
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I completed the wiring for my 2nd XO to be at the helm. See the attached picture of it sitting on my cockpit table in bright sunlight. If you look close you can even see an AIS target.

To get the AIS data to the helm I installed a Y splitter cable on the output of my SR-161 AIS and ran one leg 25 feet to the navpod that houses my Furuno chartplotter. In the navpod I put a USB hub so and inputted the AIS data and also the output of a BU-353 GPS. Thus I only had to run one USB cable to the XO. The only other cable is the green power cable (thanks Larry).

I'm still awaiting my 2nd RAM mount so I can mount the XO right under the navpod. Not sure how to protect the two cables (power and USB).
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Old 31-05-2009, 13:46   #309
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Cagney, opeCPN works on the XO and seems quite responsive.

To install it:
Download from: SourceForge.net: OpenCPN: Files

get the opencpn_1.3.0_i386.deb and install to usb Download directory.
put the USB stick in the XO. Start a terminal session:
get some dependecies:
sudo apt-get install libwxbase2.8-0 libwkgtk2.8-0
install opencpn:
sudo dpkg -i /media/KINGSTON/Downloads/opencpn_1.3.0_i386.deb

start opencpn by entering opencpn from terminal

Then I loaded some charts (about 600) all .kap

Connected my GPS and setup in the tools Options set the NMEA input as /dev/ttyUSB0 .. OK and it found the GPS location. Went to chart at GPS location.

I'll try AIS when next at boat also try some vector charts.
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Old 02-06-2009, 13:52   #310
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Here is how I mounted my other XO at the helm. Its on a RAM Mount which can be very quickly removed and stored below.

BTW in the first picture the Furuno radar/chartplotter is on displaying the vector chart for my marina and the XO is using SeaClear to display a Google Earth chart of the marina too. This is in bright sunshine. I think I was wrong when I said the XO display is nearly as good as the Furuno...its better.
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Old 05-06-2009, 06:07   #311
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hi paul, how is that computer interfering with your compass as it sits on it?
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Old 05-06-2009, 06:26   #312
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Good question and something I've been meaning check. But I'm not too concerned if it does affect it as normally I will be using the computer and its GPS for direction. If for some (god forbid) reason I lose all the GPSs then I would be removing the computer anyway.

I'll try to check it out out today to see if it does affect it.
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Old 06-06-2009, 04:04   #313
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The XO screen looks great. Seems like the promises of viewing in broad daylight wasn't just hype.

Another Linux program worth looking into is GpsDrive (GpsDrive - a free car (bike, ship, plane) navigation system), a car navigation program, that is well suited for onshore exploration for cruisers. As long as you have Internet connection you can download free maps as you go.

With Gpsd (GPSd — Put your GPS on the net!)installed you can run GpsDrive and OpenCPN att the same time. Instead of setting the NMEA input as /dev/ttyUSB0 in OpenCPN, you set it to "Network GPSD". GpsDrive finds gpsd by default.

I have found that I need to start gpsd from the command line (or make a shellscript file!):$ sudo gpsd -n -D 2 /dev/ttyUSB0
The gpsd package also contains the xgps utility that gives you all the basic gps info. This is my prefered way to start it:
$ xgps -speedunits knots -l m

OpenCPN is developing very rappidly, and is a good example of how quick an open source program can develop. Just look at exchange of ideas between you and Dave .

Thomas
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Old 06-06-2009, 15:17   #314
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Thanks Thomas I'll take a look at them.

Yes I think Dave does have a winner with openCPN once he adds some more features and works out some of the bugs other people mentioned. I'll be sticking with SeaClear on my next trip south but will have openCPN installed just for the Tides and Current feature.

I checked the effect on my compass and yes it does move it 2-3 degrees when I put the XO into the Ram Mount.
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Old 07-06-2009, 10:52   #315
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okay, so not so bad and just add those it 2-3 degrees on your course to steer
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