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Old 11-17-2013, 11:19 AM   #1
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Question Active Captain Companion

Anyone here up to speed on it yet. I just filled out my eboatcard on my iphone but my laptop is at the shop and I think I need it to pull it all together??
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Old 11-17-2013, 12:49 PM   #2
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I installed it a couple of days ago, I downloaded some map "tiles" of the areas that interest me and downloaed the Active Captain data base per the instructions I can view an area, say Pensacola, and zoom in to get the usual active captain markers and information on marinas anchorages etc. I haven't spent lots of time on it but what I have so far is good except the marine charts don't seem to be available, they may be but I haven't seen how to include that detail depth etc. I'll work on it some more in the coming days. apparently once you download the base you don't need to be connected to wifi or cell to access it that is a good feature.
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Old 11-17-2013, 02:33 PM   #3
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I can certainly answer questions on it since I wrote it.

It's not a chartplotter. You'll first "get it" when you've got it running while underway and approach within a couple of miles of a hazard. Once you do that, you'll see how it's something different.
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Old 11-17-2013, 02:57 PM   #4
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I downloaded it the other day and have been using it as an offline planning tool for our upcoming Florida trip. I was lamenting to my wife that I may not be able to use it because I enjoy the detail of my PolarView maps over my chartplotter when in skinny water. Polarview and it's companion PolarCom take exclusive access to my PC's GPS puck. I was impressed when I noticed that it appears Companion will link to PolarCom so I will be able to have both active at the same time.

I don't need yet another chartplotter - especially one with indicator flags blocking things - so I find the planned lack of nautical charts makes things clearer.

I look forward to testing it on a long trip next month.

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Old 11-20-2013, 05:16 PM   #5
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I too have downloaded it to my Samsung tablet and have not had a chance to play with it yet. What I have seen I like. I also have Nuti-Charts with Active Captain on the tablet as well. Does not replace paper or my Garmin but definitely useful. Active what are a few features we may not know about on Companian?
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Old 11-20-2013, 05:49 PM   #6
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The goal of this first version is to get it working solidly on all platforms. It keeps all ActiveCaptain data offline, handles all synchronization, and allows you to view all ActiveCaptain data without an internet connection. The first "Companion" function is that it continuously watches where you moving and speaks to you as you're approaching an ActiveCaptain hazard (with an optional alarm). The hazard gets put on the Up Ahead list where you can view all the details and comments. It makes it so that you can't miss or forget about a hazard in your path. Here's a sample video showing what it looks like for real underway:


The next function being finished now works with eBoatCards to show the locations and movement of your friends and group members (locator function). So as it's watching out for where you're going and warning about hazards, it can optionally report your position to the server for your friends to see. It all works under the eBoatCards privacy so only people you allow to view your location can see you.

Those are the first functions. There are 3 pages of additional things like these coming.
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Old 11-20-2013, 06:19 PM   #7
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Very cool! I downloaded it yesterday. Now all I need is a boat! :-)

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Old 11-20-2013, 09:28 PM   #8
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I'll have to give it another try later. I downloaded it to run on a delivery two days ago and ended up just deleting it.

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Old 11-21-2013, 07:03 AM   #9
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Got it!

I'm happening now! Final step completed which is downloading my ActiveCaptain to the Companion app. FINALLY I can go exploring on my iphone. Very smooth download. Jeffery did a great job making this easy to use. This is gonna be great.
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Old 11-21-2013, 07:40 AM   #10
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I downloaded it last night. It doesn't work on my Droid Razer. I love AC and had high hopes for it.

It won't let me zoom into an area...when i try the map doesn't refresh to show the new view. Also, something else weird is that when it opens the location icon remains on all the time. no other nav app does that. it will toggle on and off but not remain.

I do hope this will be able to be sorted out.
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Old 11-21-2013, 10:20 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eseyoung View Post
I do hope this will be able to be sorted out.
First, which Razor and what version of Android are you using?

I'm not sure I understand yet what the problem is. Can you upload/send a screen shot?

Zooming the map is done with the +/- buttons. I also don't understand the sentence about the location icon.
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Old 11-21-2013, 11:32 AM   #12
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I used the +/- to zoom. But when I zoom it gets blury. The national view looks OK but as I zoom to an area the map doesn't refresh. To a detailed map.

It is an early model...about 2 years old. Not sure specifically. it is running jelly bean.

The icon is the small dot with a circle around it that indicates location services. Other APS toggle it on and off but I have to manually turn it off after using AC....even after existing the app.
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Old 11-21-2013, 11:40 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by eseyoung View Post
I used the +/- to zoom. But when I zoom it gets blury. The national view looks OK but as I zoom to an area the map doesn't refresh. To a detailed map.

It is an early model...about 2 years old. Not sure specifically. it is running jelly bean.

The icon is the small dot with a circle around it that indicates location services. Other APS toggle it on and off but I have to manually turn it off after using AC....even after existing the app.
OK, I understand better now.

Have you downloaded additional map tiles? Its in Star / Map/Tile Download. Even then, remember that this is not a chartplotter. You won't "get it" until you're underway and approaching a hazard. Consider that this is something new and doesn't fit into other products of the category.

On Android, try Start / Quit (button on upper right). That should turn off the GPS hardware. If you leave the Companion in the background, it'll keep watching the GPS.
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Old 11-21-2013, 12:17 PM   #14
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Does this work in the Pacific Northwest?
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Old 11-21-2013, 01:11 PM   #15
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Does this work in the Pacific Northwest?
Every inch on Earth is supported - you can download map backgrounds from the Antarctic to see the anchorage ActiveCaptain has there (there are multiple). So yeah, the PNW is totally there.

You should see the anchorage data in southeast Alaska and Vancouver not to mention the Puget Sound. There are something like 600 anchorages in Alaska now with pretty good details and every one with one or more reviews.
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Old 11-21-2013, 03:40 PM   #16
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So this will now work on an Android tablet?
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Old 11-21-2013, 04:36 PM   #17
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Yes, it works on my Nexus 7 Android.

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Old 11-21-2013, 04:36 PM   #18
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How about my Kindle Fire?
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Old 11-21-2013, 05:04 PM   #19
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Ok so i was missing the fact that the map sections need to be down loaded. GOT IT. but i still can't zoom past the the 1NM level and see any kind of land form to help me index where i am looking at. if i am zoomed out to this level or beyond the markers are stacked so deep that i can't see what is there. Is there no way to get nautical maps like the website? Also, when you do updates...PLEASE give consideration to making the back button take you to the previous screen...not going out of hte app.


Please understand. i am not trying to be critical. I am just giving feedback form a real user. i have been on project development teams before and know what you are going through. Often at the Alpha and bata levels users get 'comfortable' with the format and quirks. quirks that are forgotten that rear their ugly head when something like this goes live...If I can help you in anyway, i'd love to. PM me
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Old 11-21-2013, 08:56 PM   #20
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The above video shows the Companion running on a Nexus 7 - that's my main test device. There are versions for Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS.

I'm not sure about the Kindle Fire. I'd love to know how it works - there's no reason it wouldn't work although I'm not sure how to use a GPS with the Fire. I could use help with that.

For the Back button, yes, I know. It'll be added to mimic the back button in the screens. It's a v1.0 issue - I wanted to release all versions on the exact same day so I purposely limited platform-specific code that would delay everything.

I don't mind critical complaints, suggestions, or bug finding. Heck, that's how we get to v1.1 and beyond. There's a lot on the horizon and each step will make this get a little better.

For the blurry maps - again, give it a chance - it isn't a chartplotter. This is something new. You have to experience it out on the water in proximity of a hazard to understand. Here's the best comparison I can make. When ActiveCaptain came out originally, for the first 3-4 years we got consistent complaints/requests/suggestions that the website needed a way to print out the data. I purposely didn't spend time on that because the design of it all was based on the live and semi-live/offline data being available to all. Printing killed that. We got hundreds of emails about it - many said that, "no one will ever use this if you don't allow us to print out of the data." There were many who speculated over dozens of reasons why we didn't implement it. Few believed our vision of it that the live data was what mattered. Printing would actually hurt that effort.

Fast forward to the Companion. Blurry maps are the number one complaint. And here again, we're purposely doing it so as to not confuse the app with a navigation app. This is something different - it's the Up Ahead list that's important. That map is meant to give a very basic view about where you are. We will allow higher resolution tiles eventually - it's already built in - all that's needed is the user-interface to download them. But the vision for this is something else. Give that a chance. I've been using it for 2 years while underway along with some other capabilities coming next year. The map doesn't really matter for the functions that this new type of assistant will provide.

And by the way, no one asks us about printing ActiveCaptain data today.
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