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May 18th 2024 - 00:19

Thread #5

Portrait for sbaker

by: sbaker
August 28th, 2003
Cool news!
I received a call from Ron at the SALTS office today asking if I knew anything about plotting positions based on Lat/Long on the web... my unfortunate answer was that I had looked into this extensively when I was developing WorldTime and had not found any easy (or cheap) solutions...

But it got me thinking...

Combined with what I learned about morphing globe projections for the 360° images that I create I realized that converting Lat/Long to coordinates that can be plotted on a map is a piece of cake...

and so, between 1315h today when Ron called and 1530h sitting on a ferry (how fitting this was done on a boat) I coded 19 lines of PHP (the programming language I use to write web pages) that will plot LAT LONG points on a digital map at any resolution - that map can have a photographic background (like a sat image) or be created completely by the software...

SO - the upshot is that using this and regular emails from the Pacific Grace offishore crew - we will be able to graphically track the progress of the 2003 offshore!!

Iīll post more information soon as I start to finalize the prototype I have created (example screen shots to come too)
Uploaded Image
--
Fair Winds
 - and watch for squals from leeward

Scott W. Baker


Discussion:
Portrait for sbaker

by: sbaker
August 29th, 2003
Re: Cool news!
You can now view the current prototype here:
http://www.pawprint.net/sail/tracker/testplot.php

The points are all hard coded - but it gives the idea of how a plot would look both with a background image and without.
--
Fair Winds
 - and watch for squals from leeward

Scott W. Baker
Portrait for sbaker

by: sbaker
September 4th, 2003
Tracker Project Update
Iīve started coding the database for the tracker...

essentially what is going to happen is that the web site will receive an email via Inmarsat ( http://www.stratosglobal.com/solutions/environment/sea/inmarsat/inmarsatC.html ), parse out information like:

0400Z (time position was taken)
10.16 N (lat)
95.00 W (long)
120 M (course/bearing)
5 kts (vessel speed)
E 20  (wind direction and speed)
B 1010 (barometer reading)

and enter that in the database automatically - then someone visiting the page will see the plot and detail from the most recent position.

Iīve never done email receipt via a web page before - so that is another learning experience - however I got a prototype of that working this morning - so, all in all, everything is on track!
--
Fair Winds
 - and watch for squals from leeward

Scott W. Baker
Portrait for sbaker

by: sbaker
September 6th, 2003
Better Quality Map
I found an amazing quality basemap to use for the Grace Tracker today.

Iīm still working on the database but I plan to devote a few hours tomorrow to it and see what I can get done.

Iīve attached a sample plot at the new resolution (this is shrunk down by about 75%)

view the current test plots here:
http://www.pawprint.net/sail/tracker/testplot.php

--
Fair Winds
 - and watch for squals from leeward

Scott W. Baker
Portrait for sbaker

by: sbaker
September 7th, 2003
Beta Tracker now ONLINE!
Well, itīs been a busy weekend - but Iīve managed to post the initial beta version of the tracker.

You can view it here: http://www.pawprint.net/sail/tracker/ or use the "Track-nav" link on the site.

Please Note:
It is still under development - more features to add and the odd bug to sort out - but I have been receiving a fair bit of email about how it is going to look, so I thought I would post what I have and let everyone have a look.
--
Fair Winds
 - and watch for squals from leeward

Scott W. Baker
Portrait for sbaker

by: sbaker
September 11th, 2003
Tracker maturing
After a discussion with SALTS today I added a few new features to the TRACK-NAV - including the ability to submit log entries and observations via the email processing system, enhanced current position plot display, and display of the last position in the summary displays.

We have also implemented another test route specifically for SALTS to try sending some emails. - So, when you see something there it means the system is truly operational - and thatīs when Iīll remove the "UNDER DEVELOPMENT" banner from the TRACK-NAV section.

I certainly welcome comments regarding track-nav and display/feature enhancement suggestions that you may have.

We are all very excited about this new function and with only days to go before the Grace leaves for Offshore 2003-2004 the excitement for me personally is really starting.
--
Fair Winds
 - and watch for squals from leeward

Scott W. Baker
rcl62 has no photo

by: rcl62
September 15th, 2003
Re: Question (and Kudos)

Scott -

Great job on the tracking system...Itīs going to be a good resource!

Can you elaborate a bit more on how you get the information? Not that I was expecting reams of log entries, but the first four word entry was a bit surprising - thought it would be a bit more "journal-like"...

Is this coming over text messaging on a phone?

Cheers,

Rob
(whoīs sonīs on legs 1+2)


Portrait for sbaker

by: sbaker
September 15th, 2003
Re: Cool news!
Glad you like it... I was on the edge of my seat all morning waiting for that first one to come in.

The messages come in via email transferred in through a satellite. The clincher is that there is a per character charge for that so the emails need to be as short as possible to save money.

The log entries we get initially will mostly be of this brief form (if any at all)

Then, after each leg is complete I will hopefully get access to the full logs from the trip (which are to be sent via land-line email - if possible - when in port) and I will go back through and add the full text in.

You can talk to SALTS to find out a bit more about how that is going to work - we havenīt really worked out the details there yet.
--
Fair Winds
 - and watch for squals from leeward

Scott W. Baker
rcl62 has no photo

by: rcl62
September 15th, 2003
Thanks -
... thought it was something like that...

If (when) Phil calls back next week, Iīll ask him if he can type a bunch of stuff in, and send it to you... Iīm also hoping heīll send back film as he takes it.

Hope heīs not one of the protein spill crowd...:)

Cheers,

Rob

Portrait for sbaker

by: sbaker
September 15th, 2003
Re: Cool news!
From one who knows the feeling very intimately - I too hope he is in the "most good" catigory ;)

I hate to admit it - but Iīm in Hornblowerīs league when it comes to seasickness - despite my love of sailing I easily can get seasick givin the right conditions and I wouldnīt wish it on anyone.

As for typing stuff in, Iīm probably going to keep the tracker logs for the official shipīs log entries but anything he can find the time to contribute Iīm sure will be welcomed; I can create a new thread for in the forums/stories/something like that and, as you well know, photos are always welcome ;)
--
Fair Winds
 - and watch for squals from leeward

Scott W. Baker

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