ActiveCaptain.com, the crowd-sourced database of local navigation and cruising knowledge, has been expanding its offerings over the last couple of months with some significant new capabilities. The two most important, in my view, involve route-sharing and an allied site devoted to captain reviews of boating-related services. Here’s a quick rundown on some of the new developments.
Route sharing is now active in the Interactive Cruising Guidebook section of the ActiveCaptain website. Several thousand pre-plotted routes, posted by ActiveCaptain community members, are available. They’re saved in a file format (GPX) that is compatible with most updated navigation products. There are several different ways of searching and exploring routes which make it easy to both find something specific and just browse interesting places. Route sharing is a logical extension of the original premise of ActiveCaptain, which is to take advantage of that huge database of “local knowledge” that exists in the boat cruising community. Highly recommended! Upload your own routes to contribute to the community and explore more at the website.
One other thing to note is the number of external software/hardware packages that now support ActiveCaptain. The total is up to 14 and includes some of the most well-known nav packages, as well as tablets and smartphones using all the major operating systems. I use Nuticharts Lite on my Android-powered Droid X. Catch up with the latest on this page.
This is the related website that takes advantage of that same knowledge universe, but this time captures data on services not necessarily tied to a specific chart location. As an example, the first categorites open for contribution — others will open over the next year — include boat brokers, surveyors and transporters. Future categories include products, resources and retail organizations. There’s a good load of initial information in the database and room for an infinite number of captain contributions, all conforming to the same factual, honest format of the original ActiveCaptain chart-related knowledge base. Check out CaptainRated and let other boaters take advantage of your experiences with the services we all rely on for our boats and cruising.
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