Newsletter #100

Newsletter #100 - February 15, 2012


>>> Garmin >>>

On Tuesday, February 14th, Garmin International issued a press release announcing a new product and a new partnership with ActiveCaptain. The product is called BlueChart Mobile and is an iPhone/iPad planning tool with full international chart support and integration into the Garmin network of chartplotters. The product is announced to be free. You pay for chart regions as needed. It provides integration for route planning and totally integrates with the real-time, synchronized data from the ActiveCaptain servers. It does not require Garmin chartplotters but has extra capabilities if you also have other Garmin hardware.

Adding Garmin as a software partner represents a new level of offline support for ActiveCaptain data. It's a major advancement to move into the normal chartplotter world and we're so incredibly honored that Garmin selected ActiveCaptain for it.

What this means to boaters...

We expect the Garmin connection to ActiveCaptain to cause a doubling of users in 2012. New users will come from all over the world given the tremendous international chart support that Garmin brings. Our efforts at extending our international data in Europe and throughout the world will get a shot in the arm as many more users are available to add to the data and create reviews. The same marina, anchorage, hazard, and local knowledge information will be available no matter where your cruising takes you.

The large number of new users will also greatly expand the crowd of our crowdsourced data. There will be more people keeping the data current and adding their own experiences for your exploration. This will mean better data and more information.

What this means to marinas...

You need to check your marker to make sure your information is complete and up-to-date. Your data will be spread far and wide with a full synchronization capability to update items like pricing even when boaters are out cruising. Keep your slip and fuel pricing current. When you change your fuel pricing, have a policy that updates your ActiveCaptain price data immediately. This is easy and free and will generate business and eliminate phone calls asking about price.

Marinas should also subscribe to "The Marina Minute". This is our new weekly newsletter and blog to help marinas navigate this electronic world with basic marketing information and social media explanations. It's time for some marinas to take reputation management seriously, study their reviews, and work on fixing issues when boaters are giving a consistent message.

Marinas should call or contact us - we want to help you.

What else is behind the scenes...

The technical implementation of integrating Garmin into the update and synchronization server scheme caused some major development to happen. As the user base doubles, we don't want performance on the website or with any other partner product to suffer. A big partner like Garmin could have caused that. So we designed and created a new distributed architecture for the synchronization of our data. Garmin users do not take resources from the ActiveCaptain server. Instead, our servers synchronize with Garmin servers and the Garmin servers communicate with their users. This removes the communications burden from our system and allows the potential for tremendous growth.

This new synchronization technique has been alive and working continuously for over 2 months. We seriously doubt anyone has been able to notice a degradation of speed or responsiveness.

As with everything ActiveCaptain, none of this would have happened without all of you - the users who make ActiveCaptain real. We get a lot of credit but we're just a tool creator. It is all of you who make the system come alive and become useful. We're the paint brush maker. You are the Michelangelo's.


Garmin's press release:

ActiveCaptain's press release:

To sign up for The Marina Minute:

The Marina Minute archive:

>>> Defender 1st >>>

This week Defender is still watching your back with another item to help keep you safe and legal while on the water. The Attwood Portable LED Navigation Light Kit is the perfect solution for your dinghy to make sure you're seen at night.

The Attwood Portable LED Navigation Light Kit is the smallest and lightest on the market allowing you to mount and store it in more locations for effective use in low light conditions. LED technology allows these smaller lights to use 90% less energy and shine brighter than much larger alternatives. Check out all the features at the link below.

Product: Attwood Portable LED Navigation Light Kit $27.99
(Regularly: $34.99)

Special ends: February 21, 2012

Get the special price and learn more at:

Whether you are looking to add navigation lights to your dinghy or would like a backup for your current lights, these lights are the perfect solution.

Remember - Defender 1st: one product, one week, one incredible price.

When you're thinking about purchasing boating supplies, think of Defender first.

The crew moved back onboard last Friday, right on schedule. Thank you Sadler Point Marina! But we continue to live in clutter, dust, and workmen.

Jeff gets a break as he heads off to the Miami Boat Show. If you'll be there you can stop by the Garmin booth Friday afternoon or Saturday morning to say hello. Dyna and Dylan will be helping their mom hold down the fort in Jacksonville. You can always peek in on them on their website:

Karen and Jeffrey Siegel
Castine, Maine
The Interactive Cruising Guidebook
Real reviews from Active Captains

Newsletter Archive
2014-04-16 #211 - Living Small
2014-04-09 #210 - Show Friends
2014-04-02 #209 - Engine Room Checks
2014-03-26 #208 - MX Mariner for Android
2014-03-19 #207 - Locations, Locations, Locations
2014-03-12 #206 - Amp'ing Your Cellular Capabilities
2014-03-05 #205 - Summer Storage
2014-02-26 #204 - Single Points of Failure
2014-02-19 #203 - Worldwide Use
2014-02-12 #202 - Updating your eBoatCard
2014-02-05 #201 - The WiFi Perfect Storm
2014-01-29 #200 - A Rendezvous/Regatta?
2014-01-22 #199 - Saving the Magenta Line
2014-01-15 #198 - Navimatics, Round 2
2014-01-08 #197 - More About What's Coming
2014-01-01 #196 - ActiveCaptain - 2014
2013-12-18 #195 - Great Loop Lessons Learned
2013-12-11 #194 - Current Mathematics
2013-12-04 #193 - Crowdsourcing Works
2013-11-27 #192 - A&A's
2013-11-20 #191 - The Companion After 1 Week
2013-11-13 #190 - The ActiveCaptain Companion
2013-11-06 #189 - The Cost of Gadgetry
2013-10-30 #188 - Looking Deeper into Skipper
2013-10-23 #187 - The 2nd most dangerous thing
2013-10-16 #186 - Phone and Tablet GPS
2013-10-09 #185 - Surface Currents
2013-10-02 #184 - Having It All With iOS 7
2013-09-25 #183 - Online vs Offline
2013-09-18 #182 - Companion Feedback
2013-09-11 #181 - Dinghy Anchoring
2013-09-04 #180 - Countdown to the Companion
2013-08-28 #179 - Augmenting Reality
2013-08-21 #178 - Navigation Products
2013-08-14 #177 - Anonymous Postings
2013-08-07 #176 - Skipper, A New iOS App
2013-07-31 #175 - Android / C-MAP / Plan2Nav
2013-07-24 #174 - If a Picture Paints a Thousand Words
2013-07-17 #173 - Anatomy of a Shoaling Hazard
2013-07-10 #172 - Part of You is Your Boat
2013-07-03 #171 - The Newest Photojournalists
2013-06-26 #170 - Hazard Noise
2013-06-19 #169 - Having the Whole Pie
2013-06-12 #168 - PolarView MX
2013-06-05 #167 - Winning Friends
2013-05-29 #166 - Navimatics Charts & Tides - for Mac
2013-05-22 #165 - eBoatCards Relationships
2013-05-15 #164 - eBoatCards: It's Open
2013-05-08 #163 - eBoatCards Capabilities - Part 3
2013-05-01 #162 - eBoatCards Capabilities - Part 2
2013-04-24 #161 - eBoatCards Capabilities - Part 1

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