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    Re: sextant without paper charts
    From: Scott Owen
    Date: 2008 Dec 07, 20:54 -0600

    Anabasis75@aol.com wrote:
    > Hi Scott,
    Hi Jeremy,
    
    > The AOL software certainly has a "reply" function but I do not use this  mail
    
    I was reasonably sure you didn't use "reply to".  Why do you think
    that is?  Because every email you send/post to NavList starts a NEW
    thread.  This can be more than a little annoying for those of us who
    like to keep track of conversations and topics using the "threading"
    function in their email software.  So PLEASE, use the REPLY TO function
    in whatever email software you use to send to the list, this should stop
    ALL of your posts being started as a NEW thread.  Of course, if you want
    to start a new topic or conversation then it goes that you should
    "compose a new message or email".  I suppose there could be some bug in
    the AOL email software which starts a new thread regardless, and I
    wouldn't be a bit surprised, as AOL software is well known for it's bugs
    and sometimes non-compliance with internet protocol standards including
    SMTP.
    
    > program for radio transmissions.  I either have a cellular  "aircard"  or
    > have to go to an Internet cafe and use WiFi to use this mail  program, which is
    > why my replies are few and far between when i am on the ship  in these ports.
    
    So you use AOL when in range for "cellular aircard" or WiFi hot spots
    which by definition means you have to be on or NEAR land as both of
    those technologies don't work very well for long haul at sea data
    transmission.  And if I understand you correctly you don't use REPLY TO
    when using AOL email software.
    
    > For HF email I use the Winlink 2000 system via Ham radio and use a program
    > called AirMail.  For sat comms we use a service called Seawave which uses  the
    
    It seems rather obvious that for long haul at sea communications one
    only really has two choices: HF and Satellite.  I suppose I could drag a
    long cable behind the ship but that could get kind of messy with the
    rudder and prop and the necessary repeaters would get kind of heavy.
    Does the AirMail software have a "reply to" function?  I'm willing to
    bet that it DOES have a REPLY TO capability.  What email or messaging
    software package do you use with the Iridium Seawave service?
    
    > iridium constellation.  The ship also has an INMARSAT-B system on board  that
    > the captain uses.  I use these systems sparingly and only for personal
    > communications and never to lists.
    
    Connecting to the net via iridium or INMARSAT can be pretty darn
    expensive so I fully understand why you would want to use it sparingly
    or for short duration voice only.  Even batch processing of email
    through a satellite link can get expensive especially if large
    attachments are used either incoming or outgoing.  BTW, this attachment
    problem is why "GRIB" files are sent and used by most newer weather
    depiction software for at sea weather graphics.  GRIB files are small in
    size yet depict a lot of information, hence they are very suitable for
    use in low bandwidth applications like HF communications.
    
    > When I reply to the list, i usually hit reply, then delete all the  extra
    > text, which is what i do as a matter of course here or ashore.  When  using sat
    
    Just above you stated that you did NOT use the REPLY TO capability in
    your AOL email software and that is all you use to post to NavList.  So
    which is it either you do or you don't...
    
    > comms, I never use reply, but rather just compose a new message.   No need to
    > waste air time resending text.
    
    And now you are back to composing new messages which is what I suspect
    you do ALL the time when posting to NavList, hence the reason your posts
    to NavList always start a new thread.  I have two technical challenges
    for you.  First, post a message to NavList that does not use the AOL
    email software, you can use AOL to get online if need be, but not for
    email or a post to NavList.  Second, post a message to NavList that is a
    reply to an existing topic that will actually thread under the topic
    instead of starting a new thread.  Somehow I am not very hopeful,
    especially for the first challenge.
    
    > I do not think that at sea comms is too far afield for the list, as even  in
    > my short time on here, we have gone on tangents far less germane to
    > navigation than at-sea comms.  If I am wrong on this, I will certainly end  the
    > conversation with this email.
    
    I guess we just disagree on the issue of whether at-sea communications
    falls within the definition of navigation.  I would agree that it is
    essential for accurate weather prediction and analysis.  And that good
    weather information is essential for making good time between between
    ports and for severe weather avoidance.  The simplest solution is just a
    good basic HF radio receiver.  So IMHO it is only tangentially related
    to navigation.
    
    Fair winds,
    
    -Scott
    
    
    
    
    
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