The ShipWatcher Blog

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Google Maps problem fixed

I've changed the way maps are displayed in ShipWatcher, to get around the recent problems that have been occurring with the Google Maps web site.

Rather than going to the Google Maps website, it now pops up a smaller window which shows the map.

If you've got any suggestions about how to make it better, please let me know.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Google Maps problem

You may experience difficulties when trying to display the position of a ship in Google Maps.

This is a known problem that the folks at Google Maps are aware of. I'm hoping they will fix it asap.

Here's the link if you're interested:

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Pacific Dawn Location

Pacific Dawn does not broadcast its position like most of the other ships, so it's difficult to figure out where it is.

But P&O does publish its last and next ports.

I've built in some intelligence into the system so that it will look at other ships who have travelled the same route, and work out an estimated location for Pacific Dawn.

It's only a rough guess, but I think it should be accurate to within about 100km.

Which means ShipWatcher should be able to take automatic photos of the Pacific Dawn webcam.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

New Cruiseline: Hurtigruten

I've added some ships from Hurtigruten (ASA) in Norway.

These ships are smaller than average, with lengths around 100m.

But they have some excellent cruisecams fore and aft, and give us a view of some beautiful landscapes around the Norwegian Coast.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Bug Fixed: Photos of Pacific Dawn

There was a bug in the system that prevented people from taking photos of Pacific Dawn. I've fixed that bug, so you should be able to take photos now.

Unfortunately, I'm finding it difficult to get any reliable location info feeds for Pacific Dawn, so until I do that, the only photos that can get uploaded are those you take manually.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

New Powerful Search Option

Shipwatcher now lets you search for ships that are close to either Sunrise, Sunset, Noon or Midnight.

It also lets you show the most popular, and least popular ships.

The info is based on the latest position report of the ship. Some ships don't give position reports very frequently, so they won't be included in the search.

This should make it easier for you to quickly pick bridgecams that contain interesting content.

It's also more fun!



Technical info:
The search will exclude any position reports more than 4 days old.

If a ship is moving easterly or westerly, and its last report is 4 days old, the sunrise / sunset queries could have a margin of error of between 1 and 2 hours.

Usually this is only a problem for "Sunrise" queries where the ship is sailing west, or "Sunset" where the ship is sailing east, as in these situations, the ship will still be in darkness.

Allow a margin of error of almost 25 minutes per day based on the age of the location report. So if a report is two days old, the sunrise / sunset times will be out by almost an hour.

Ships travelling North / South won't experience such a large margin of error.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Faster! Faster!

I installed a Turbo Charger into ShipWatcher today.

It now runs much faster.

(Well actually, I just rewrote part of it to run faster. But "Turbo Charger" sounds better :) )

Sunday, November 4, 2007

New Cruiseline: Norwegian Cruise Line

I've added twelve ships from Norwegian Cruise Line to ShipWatcher.


Saturday, November 3, 2007

New "Preferences" button

There's a new "Preferences" button on the ShipWatcher page.

I had to do this, because I am continually adding more ships, and wanted an easy way for you to be able to control each ship that you see.

The "Preferences" page shows you all available ships, and lets you tick the ones you want to see. ShipWatcher will remember your preferences for next time.

New cruiseline: Carnvial

I've added Carnival Cruise Lines to Shipwatcher.

Although they have a lot of ships, I've only found 3 of them with webcams. The good news is that they have cameras fore and aft, so you can get a couple of views for each vessel.

Click on the "Preferences" button to select which ships you want to see.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

NEW SHIP: Pacific Dawn

Former Princess ship "Regal Princess" is being renamed "Pacific Dawn" and will now be part of the P&O Australia fleet.

Her webcam is online again, so I have updated the website to reflect these changes.

I am not getting any position reports for her at the moment. If anyone out there knows if her callsign has changed, please let me know.