Sunday, 26 October 2008

GPS 'Tracback' Sensor for Sailors from Marine Electronic Services

Here is a really neat new device for all computer using sailors and folks who want to keep a record of their lifetime voyage experience.

Being able to record your track, lay it over Google maps and include all your favourite images of your voyage along the way is a nice option many will take up.

The following is an excerpt from the French 'Voiles Newsletter':

TracBack is a new ultra-mini GPS sensor from Digital Yacht, which measures just 70 x 45 x 20 mm. It incorporates a long-life lithium ion battery pack so that the system can be self-powered.

GPS data is sent through either a standard USB connection directly to a laptop or via Bluetooth for a wireless-type link.

TracBack’s unique feature is the ability to log your trip and record position and track information in its internal memory. When hooked up to a PC, your track is automatically downloaded onto a Google Earth Map with a snail’s trail of the track history. It also comes complete with a useful software application which allows any digital photos you have taken along your route to be referenced and overlaid onto the map by comparing date and time stamp information. This does, of course, rely on you having the same date and time set in your digital camera, but the application is a really nice way of recording where you have been, and building up an electronic log book.

The internal battery lasts for approximately 15 hours and can be recharged using either the supplied mains charger or USB connection. The mind boggles at potential applications, such as tracking vehicles, yacht racing or even sharing your track history with other sailors and friends.

What is even more surprising is the price, at just USD 176, £85, €140 including tax and AUD284.

Reproduced courtesy Marine Electronic Services, Digital Yacht and Voiles Newsletter

You can read more about navigating with GPS and chart tracking in my ebook 'Voyage of the little Ship 'Tere Moana' downloadable from my website

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