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Old 02-08-2023, 13:19   #1
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FollowingSea Yacht Tracking & Blog closing down. Alternatives?

Just learned that Followingsea.net [https://followingsea.net/] is "closing down" at the end of 2023.

We use this as a record of our anchorages and passages (and short commentary for each) and put a link to it on our blog.

Any suggestions for good alternatives? Click image for larger version

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Old 03-08-2023, 06:27   #2
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Re: FollowingSea Yacht Tracking & Blog closing down. Alternatives?

We have the same question -- I guess we are going back to using the Garmin InReach.
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Old 03-08-2023, 07:15   #3
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Re: FollowingSea Yacht Tracking & Blog closing down. Alternatives?

Try www.noforeignland.com or their app
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Old 03-08-2023, 07:58   #4
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Re: FollowingSea Yacht Tracking & Blog closing down. Alternatives?

There is also FARKWAR: https://farkwar.com/

Any others?

Any experience/feedback with either Farkwar or Noforeigland appreciated.
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Old 03-08-2023, 11:51   #5
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Re: FollowingSea Yacht Tracking & Blog closing down. Alternatives?

We use both Farkwar and NoForeignLand (NFL), but in different ways; both after-the-fact. (We typically publish after we depart so published info is always lagging by at least one transit/location.)

We publish our precise anchor drop location with annotation on Farkwar. (This is the same info we enter in our electronic logs and OpenCPN.)

Last year we started experimenting with NFL for bread crumbs. We used 10 min updates from an IridiumGO and that worked well, and is semi-live.

Next we experimented with just uploading our GPX tracks via email on NFL. (Which NFL parses into ~1hr breadcrumbs- occasionally making an intricate passage look like lots of portaging over land was involved...)

We couch the two different tracking options on our blog as follows:
We don't use all the features of either of these free tracking services. Both work well for our purposes. Both send confirmation when a position update is received via email. (With Farkwar, you need to 'follow' your own boat to receive a confirmation email IIRC...)

In case this is useful.

Cheers, Bill

PS: Both of these services allow you to import data exported from other tracking services.
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Old 09-08-2023, 04:21   #6
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Re: FollowingSea Yacht Tracking & Blog closing down. Alternatives?

Give https://www.noforeignland.com a try. Their new app is great. You can use it to record your journey while out sailing, basically turning your phone into a live GPS tracker.
You can also add "stories" anywhere along your jrouney line with images, blog links, and youtube videos. We've tried a few and it's the best by far.
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Old 02-10-2023, 15:08   #7
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Re: FollowingSea Yacht Tracking & Blog closing down. Alternatives?

Both 'No Foreign Land' and Farkwar appear to be very good for tracking the boat with short posts and one photo or video. I'm looking for something where I can do a post with several pages of text and many photos. They don't seem as good for that as 'Following Seas' has been (which I have been using since 2020). Do I have this right, or am I missing something about these two services?
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Old 02-10-2023, 15:20   #8
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Re: FollowingSea Yacht Tracking & Blog closing down. Alternatives?

For me, the problem with No Foreign Land is the ability to export a track is missing. I like to keeps the tracks in OpenCPN.
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Old 02-10-2023, 15:56   #9
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Re: FollowingSea Yacht Tracking & Blog closing down. Alternatives?

Capt. Don - If you have SignalK on your system (which plays nicely with OpenCPN), you may be able to use it to export to 'No Foreign Lands'.

https://www.noforeignland.com/help/boat/move-signal-k
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Old 02-10-2023, 16:00   #10
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Re: FollowingSea Yacht Tracking & Blog closing down. Alternatives?

I may end up using something like WordPress. Does anyone have experience with a maps plugin on WP to show your track? I see that there are many map plugins for WP, but they cost and some have many features I don't need (ie designed for businesses).
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Old 02-10-2023, 16:25   #11
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Re: FollowingSea Yacht Tracking & Blog closing down. Alternatives?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Looking4Neptune View Post
I may end up using something like WordPress. Does anyone have experience with a maps plugin on WP to show your track? I see that there are many map plugins for WP, but they cost and some have many features I don't need (ie designed for businesses).
Interesting idea. Unfortunately, I'm using the Iridium Go! to submit tracking points.

I exchanged emails with NFL and the export function is a feature they are considering. Hopefully by next summer, they'll have time to develop.
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Old 03-10-2023, 15:21   #12
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Re: FollowingSea Yacht Tracking & Blog closing down. Alternatives?

Anyone used SailBlogs.com?

They have free, $35/yr and $95/yr versions but the free version does not include the mapping feature, so it won't work for me. But even the most expensive $95/yr is not too bad and quite a bit less than most of the WordPress hosting options.

I am concerned about how photos are included because I often have 10 to 30 photos. If you are posting by sending an email (a nice feature!) the first photo is added by including one line of html with a link to the image (which could be on a SailBlogs photo gallery, google photos, apple photos, ...). It looks a bit more complicated for adding more photos after the first one. It appears that you first post the images to the SailBlogs gallery, it sends you back the name it assigned and you include that in the html link. If you are linking to photos on some other server (google, apple, ...) and already have that link, maybe you can just use that. Not sure. It would be great to hear from anyone who knows.
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Old 03-10-2023, 16:45   #13
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Re: FollowingSea Yacht Tracking & Blog closing down. Alternatives?

Sailties
https://sailties.net/
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Old 03-10-2023, 17:14   #14
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Re: FollowingSea Yacht Tracking & Blog closing down. Alternatives?

So I signed up for the free version and found that I can link to multiple images on my google photos site. I needed to run the google 'share' link through a tool
https://www.labnol.org/embed/google/photos to get a link that will work in the blog site. I did this testing using their Post Editor. I have not tested using email updates because that feature is not available with the free version.

This may not be an issue for people who don't post tons of photos. SailBlogs claims their gallery can hold 'many hundreds of images' which must mean that they down-size the images uploaded to the gallery because on my google site my images are all over 1 MB and many are in the 3 to 5 MB range. If I average 2MB per image, I'd fill my gallery quota with 100 images which would definitely not last me 3 months. But it looks like I can keep them on google, if I want to go through the hassle of generating and pasting the links.
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Old 08-11-2023, 11:33   #15
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Re: FollowingSea Yacht Tracking & Blog closing down. Alternatives?

You can also use Saillogger if you have Internet, e.g https://saillogger.com/mvelysian/monitor for live monitoring. It also captures your logs and places you moore/anchor automatically (e.g.https://saillogger.com/mvelysian/logs)

Disclaimer: I am the developer of Saillogger.
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