The SEAiq apps are the most powerful marine charting apps for the Apple iPads and iPhones.

The SEAiq apps are free to download. The free versions allow full vector and raster chart display and support for the Active Captain Interactive Cruising Guidebook.

Included with the download is a free 1-week evaluation for all premium features, including: Waypoints, Routes, Tracks, Internal GPS, External NMEA over WiFi AIS Night colors, automatic download of weather data, Anchor Alarm, Variable Range Markers and Electronic Bearing Lines (VRM/EBL). You can re-install the app for additional week of evaluation.

Our apps are purchased once and can then used on all your iPads, iPhones, and iPods.

SEAiq Free is the only app that automatically downloads and displays all vector and raster charts published by NOAA and US Army Corps of Engineers. SEAiq USA is the same as SEAiq Free but can be purchased as normal app (no in-app purchase).

SEAiq Open (for international use) is the only app that allows you to load your own S-57, S-63, iENC, CM93, and BSB/KAP charts on your iPad/iPhone.

SEAiq Pilot is the only iPad app designed for use by river and harbor pilots. It supports the same chart formats as SEAiq Open, and has support for additional features include: docking aids, bathymetric ENCs (bENC's), manual tidal adjustment, AIS meeting point, and GPS diagnostics.

Saturday, 24 January 2015

Problems from NWS Weather Data

Users may have noticed the SEAiq weather download is reporting errors.  The NOAA National Weather Service (which SEAiq uses to download data) recently changed how data is downloaded.  The next version of SEAiq will support their new system.  In the mean time, users can download weather data by requesting it from SailMail (see Settings / Weather / Help for more information).

Friday, 28 November 2014

Problems from NOAA

SEAiq users that depend on NOAA charts have had a frustrating couple of weeks.

Last week, NOAA published of their charts in a zip file with a fatal formatting mistake.  Normally, charts are published with a folder called ENC_ROOT, which helps identify the zip file as a chart set.  NOAA published 71 charts in zip files with out ENC_ROOT.  This is a major formatting error and violates the IHO S-57 standard.  To add insult to injury, NOAA made yet another formatting error that caused SEAiq to "lock up" when validating these files.

We reported the issue to NOAA on Thursday and on the following Tuesday fixed charts started to show up.  In case NOAA let the problem drag out, we rushed out new versions of our SEAiq that had work-arounds for NOAA charts.  These were ready just about the time that NOAA fixed their charts. 

Only a couple days later, NOAA stopped publishing their ENC chart catalog file which SEAiq depends on to figure out what charts are available and determine when new updates are ready.  NOAA publishes a bunch of chart catalog files, but only the one that SEAiq uses was affected.  Weird.  We've reported this new issue to NOAA and hopefully they will fix the problem soon.

We're now looking into creating our own chart catalog file and creating a new version of SEAiq that doesn't depend on NOAA catalogs.  We're doing this both because of the current issues, but also because NOAA chart catalogs historically have errors in them.  We expect this change-over may be ready in the next few weeks.

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

SEAiq Pilot in Research

We were very pleased to learn that SEAiq Pilot had been used as a tool to help in researching the paper, "Finding Out Where the Pivot Point Locates Through Practical Ship Maneuvering,"
by Japanese pilot (and long-time SEAiq user) Masahiro Sato.

Here is a link to the paper (in Japanese):

Thursday, 12 June 2014

Cruising New Caledonia: Routes for New Caledonia and Vanuatu

We were pleased to learn that the website Cruising Guide to New Caledonia has posted detailed instructions on how to use the Cruising Guide to New Caledonia's and the Cruising Guide to Vanuatu's GPX routes with SEAiq Open:
First, let me say that if you want to use an iPad for navigation get SEAiq, You can totally forget Navionics because you can't import waypoints or routes, plus there are a host of other nagging little problems with the Navionics App typical of software designers that have never been cruising in their lives.
As a side note, much of SEAiq was originally written while we were in fact cruising in Vanuatu almost 3 years ago.  While we have since sailed back to the USA (completing a circumnavigation), we're very happy cruisers in areas we once sailed are finding SEAiq to be a helpful tool.

Saturday, 7 June 2014

SEAiq Pilot at Port Miami

On June 4, we were excited to have the opportunity to accompany members of the Biscayne Bay Pilots in Miami, Florida.  The purpose was to watch how SEAiq Pilot was used by the pilots and discuss opportunities for improvement.

Port Miami is the Cruise Capital of the World because of the huge number of cruise ships that operate from it.  It is also a major cargo port.  The port is undergoing massive changes to prepare for the larger vessels after the Panama Canal expansion is complete.

Captain Chris Marlow hosted the trip.  Captain Bill Reyelt and Captain Peter Curtiss were the pilots on duty while Captain Marlow was able to focus on how SEAiq Pilot is currently used by the Biscayne Bay pilots.
Captains Marlow and Reyelt

Northern General on her way out of Port Miami
We joined the Container Ship Northern General as she is preparing to leave one of the turning basins and exit Port Miami.
We also joined the Carnival Victory Cruise Ship as she headed from Miami for the Caribbean.  You can see several iPads on the bridge using different PPU hardware combinations.
Two iPads with SEAiq Pilot on the Bridge of the Carnival Victory
Navicom Dynamics ChannelPilot (left) and Marimatech CAT ROT (right)
Here you can see the latest Navicom Dynamics Channel Pilot  (left) and the Marimatech CAT ROT (right).  Both are magnetically mounted on the bridge wing of the Northern General. The Biscayne Bay Pilots demonstrated use of both devices with SEAiq Pilot.

The ChannelPilot operates as a stand-alone device with its own AIS antenna, high resolution GPS, and gyro compass.  The ChannelPilot does not rely on the ship's AIS plug at all so when using it the pilot is totally self contained.

The Marimatech CAT ROT device is the external GPS sensor which communicates with a second device that is plugged into the AIS Pilot Plug port inside the bridge. Both devices transmitted their sensor data and worked great with SEAiq Pilot.

We were impressed with the ease of setup for both ChannelPilot and CAT ROT, and the high quality of the sensor data they presented using SEAiq Pilot.

The new Post-Panamax vessels that are expected to soon be prevalent are a tight fit in Port Miami.  Capt Marlow showed how even on smaller vessels you could not see from the bridge how the vessels were exactly positioned in the turning basins, for instance.  Using SEAiq Pilot gives them an extra reference point to compare with what they could see from the bridge.  The Biscayne Bay pilots make heavy use of the Docking Aids in SEAiq Pilot to display distances from their vessel to the edge of navigable areas.  Occasionally, rain in Port Miami can be so heavy as to obscure visibility and it is very valuable to have tools such as SEAiq Pilot to refer to.

Thanks again to the Biscayne Bay Pilots for hosting us and sharing their expertise with us!

Capts Reyelt and Curtiss referring to SEAiq Pilot
Aboard the Pilot Boat leaving the Cargo Ship Northern General