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Nugget
03-04-2004, 12:23 PM
Just had a call from Harro in Wiepa.
He is hopping mad about the commercial fishing operations he has just witnessed first hand in the Gulf.
He'll be live from Wiepa on Talking Fishing at about 5.45am.

Rob Paxivarnis (spelling?) has a new fishing show that will air right around Australia in the near future.
Rob is currently filming on the Sunshine Coast - we'll talk to him about his new Show.

Winchester - the company that the yanks say "won the west" has just brought out a range of knifes.
I'll be talking to Rob Pelletier, the national manager on their range of products.
Over the next 10 weeks I'll also be giving away wood handles pocket knives and multi tools that have a miniature torch in them.

SUNDAY
Tony Cornell is hopping mad about the error in GPS mapping software.
The GPS system will show your position within metres but the maps that are built into chart plotters are so inaccurate they have been responsible for many 'incidences at sea".
The maps used in chart plotters are supplied by MSQ which supposedly have more accurate up-to-date maps but will not release them for manufacturers to use in chart plotters.
We'll talk to Tony about his partition and the extent of the mapping errors.

Dave ><>

Zeeke
03-04-2004, 02:13 PM
sounds like a good show Dave, might have to break out the radio and tune in.. but i think Rob's name is spelt Paxervanis

Tim

Kerry
03-04-2004, 03:56 PM
SUNDAY
Tony Cornell is hopping mad about the error in GPS mapping software.
The GPS system will show your position within metres but the maps that are built into chart plotters are so inaccurate they have been responsible for many 'incidences at sea".
The maps used in chart plotters are supplied by MSQ which supposedly have more accurate up-to-date maps but will not release them for manufacturers to use in chart plotters.
We'll talk to Tony about his partition and the extent of the mapping errors.

Errors? what sort of errors. "Built-in map inaccuracy" an error or a user issue? Don't rightly know that "built-in" mapping should be held responsible for any "incidences at sea" though #???. So many factors involved and in the majority of cases it can come down to a general user misunderstanding of the technology. #

Moving into a Mapping/charting type GPS is not a one option suits all with many variables to consider and the accuracy (in real terms) of the "mapping data" isn't something that can or will simply change over night. Wouldn't really call GPS accurate to a few metres either, really don't need users to have higher than necessary expectations. # #

Now how to work out how to listen to all this ??

Cheers, Kerry.

Fitzy
04-04-2004, 08:19 AM
Kerry,
For future reference you can listen to the show live from 4BC website http://www.4bc.com.au

fitzy..

Lucky_Phill
04-04-2004, 08:25 AM
They even have a little camera in the studio for you to look at Nugget !

Cheers Phill

Kerry
04-04-2004, 09:01 AM
Kerry,
For future reference you can listen to the show live from 4BC website http://www.4bc.com.au

fitzy..

Have already found that but won't talk to me (won't connect to server) without some version of Codec, anybody know which Codec version?

The other thing might be I'm limited to 28.8, being on the wrong side of limiting Telstra line technology. And mind you 28.8 is better than what they actually guarantee, which is 14.4 :-X

Cheers, Kerry.

Nugget
04-04-2004, 10:16 AM
Kerry I'm a long way short of being an expert in this area but I have a pile of documentation, newspaper articles and press releases that support Tony Connolly's argument.

GPS positioning IS accurate to within metres - sometimes 10, sometimes a little more, sometimes a lot more, but it is within metres.
The problem is - I'm told - that the maps that are loaded into your GPS - via C-Map cartridges - are not as accurate as the GPS positioning.

While your GPS will show you your position in relation to earth, the maps are so far out they can show you on dry land when you are actually in a main channel.

I have a copy of a letter from Garmin stating they are aware of the problem and offering to give free updates as soon as the MSQ release the new map data.

It is apparently been blamed for grounding by commercial skippers running on autopilot.

Like I said - I'm not knowledgeable in this area and wasn't aware of the problem until last week.

I intend to find out as much as I can off Tony Connelly tomorrow.

If it is true - then we need to get behind his partition to see the charts are updated.

Dave ><>

Kerry
04-04-2004, 12:23 PM
Dave, Still trying to find a bloo.... codec that works.

Ok, lets differentiate what GPS accuracy can be, could be, might be and what it must be accepted as and not assumed as.

The over riding authority is the owner/operators of the system and detailed in the Global Positioning System Standard Positioning Service Performance Standard signed off by the US Assistant Secretary of Defense, October 4, 2000.

The accuracy specifications are effectively summarized as follows

Average global GPS accuracy -- 13 meters horizontally and 22 meters vertically 95% of the time (2DRMS)
worst case -- 36 meters horizontally and 77 meters vertically 95% of the time (2DRMS)

Also remember these accuracy figures are for Signal-In-Space (SIS) and so does not take into account the many variables (including the user) that could increase possible errors. Simply the factors the operators can control, atmospherics and other influences (including users) can't be controlled.

These are the base (95% SIS) accuracies that should be accepted and assuming anything less regardless of origin is simply not acceptable and portraying accuracy less than this should not be condoned and does tend to push this myth about GPS accuracy. Sure accuracy can be “generally” a little bit better than this but should never to be “assumed” to be so and certainly not within “metres” in a any real sense so I’m for trying to put things more in perspective and educate the general users.

Relative to THIS DOCUMENT (http://www.amsa.gov.au/shipping%5Fsafety/marine%5Fnotices/2002/marine%5Fnotices%5F07%5F02.asp)

“GPS has provided a quantum leap in navigational accuracy and reliability, however it is not infallible and it is entirely possible for large errors caused by an "unhealthy" satellite to go undetected for many hours.” is a very real possibility, and effectively regardless of the size of possible errors the onus on safe navigation is still the sole responsibility of the skipper, commercial or otherwise.

This is one RECENT GPS EVENT (http://www.cqnet.com.au/~user/aitken/gps/gps%20the%20other%205%20percent.htm), which went undetected for quite some time (spanning 2 days) and regardless of who might have hit what and where the “grounded by GPS” flag is still a reflection of the skipper and not the system. Even with these types of errors the system is still effectively performing within its specification, the other unknown 5% of the specification.

Mariners are thus advised not to put total and absolute reliance for the safe navigation of their vessel solely on GPS. Where possible the vessel's position must be independently verified by other means such as radar, gyro bearings, echo-sounder, and log.


“Map accuracy” is widely accepted as another possible source of error by prudent navigators simply as many digital maps have been derived from hard copy data. It wasn’t all that long ago I was stilll using a chart last surveyed by a Capt. F. Blackwood R.N.H.M.S, Fly 1843 :o, mind you with additions by Staff Comm. Bedwell R.N. 1873 ;D. Some of the islands in the Pacific are known to be out by 7 miles or so but they’ve been that far out of position since inception and it’s only now that with new technlogy they’re being put in the “correct place”. As maps/charts are upgraded modern data collection technologies will/have allowed chart accuracies to be improved to match the positioning technology available but this certainly won’t occur overnight.

It is apparently been blamed for grounding by commercial skippers running on autopilot. I’m not aware of any ECS charts that can be used as alternatives to paper charts and even paper charts don’t/can’t allow for all possibilities regarding a grounding.

So then is it both the paper versions AND the digital version that are at fault?

As for the MSQ charts (not that there are any in my area anyway) most of these I understand are based primarily on orthophoto’s but one would imagine what is on paper (orthophoto wise) would be rather difficult to provide in a recreational type GPS as is, not enough memory. Without more info then I’ll wait and find out the critera and reasoning behind the requirement requesting chart upgrades as to it being a MSQ issue or third party issue.

Something to ponder over. In the not too distant future one will have the handheld capability of accuracy around about 1.5 metres. This accuracy will in affect be less than the amount Australia has physically moved since GDA was defined in 1994. Charts still won’t be anywhere near a 1:1 scale.

Cheers, Kerry.

Nugget
04-04-2004, 01:16 PM
Let me say AGAIN - I'm not an expert in this area.
I am merely repeating information related to me and stating my (limited) understanding of the problem.
I don't think the accuracy of the GPS system is the issue here.

My understanding is that MSQ already have updated map data but are simply not releasing it to the manufacturers of chart plotters.
I believe they have also received Federal funding to update the map data.

In an interview on a Sunshine Coast radio station during the week, it was demonstrated to the interviewer with a chart plotter mounted in a car.
The plotter map had the car driving in the water - several hundred metres east of the road they were on.
I'll repeat again - I'm only the messenger - I'm not making the statements - I'm just repeating what I've been told.

If you know better - please give me a call in the morning at air your views.


If you are interested in following the issue up - PM me and I'll give you Tony Connell's phone number and you can disscuss it with him.

Dave ><>

Kerry
04-04-2004, 02:40 PM
Dave, well finally found the right Codec so have voice. Will listen to what's really going on with MSQ first, especially when things like 200 metres and east are used in the same sentence.

Actually occurances like this are even worse in the States, where mapping data is acquired from many different sources, some are good and some are bad but it generally all goes in together and one gets what one pays for and in the states there's not much cost involved but lots of errors for lots of reasons. Obviously not the place here to get into all the details behind some of this.

Car navigation systems can be interesting. Here about the BMW driver in germany, who was following his auto-routing navigation to the letter. "In 400 metres please take next turn left", result one drowned BMW and an almost drowned driver. Reason, the intricacies of technology, what the system thought was a bridge was actually a ferry ramp and guess what the ferry wasn't home :o. GIGO, can only be as good the info that's shuffed in, garbage in, garbage out.

Cheers, Kerry.

Gordon_Scamp
05-04-2004, 05:20 AM
Dave,

I heard you talking about re-cyclable bait bags on Sunday morning. My bait supplier tells me that they are still not marketable. There are a few problems with shelf life and with the integrity of the seals due to the additives in the plastic. In tests carried out in a retail outlet thjey did not stand up long enough to make them viable commercially.
There is also the question of cost they are about six times the price of the standard bag which would obviously impact on the wholesale and retail price The example that was quoted to me was that a 200gm bag of prawns would have to be reduced to 125gm in order to maintain the current price per bag.
All of this material is imported and they are still working on the technical aspects and at the same time trying to drive the price down.
If you want more information give me a call.

Regards,

Gordon

Nugget
05-04-2004, 06:47 AM
Thanks for the information Gordon - if you or your bait supplier would like to go on air and talk about them - give a PM and we'll tee it up.

The issue came up a few weeks ago on the Show as well.
I put the question to Sunfish Executive Officer Dave Bateman as Sunfish was involved and supported the push initially.
Dave said there had been problems with the bags and the cost was a factor.
Although I thought he said they had worked out most of the problems and the 'new' version were a lot better.
I'll see if we can get more info for next week.

Dave ><>

Kerry
05-04-2004, 07:23 AM
Ok, so as I see this particular issue it's really not so much to do with accuracy as such, as I don’t believe the original versions of this (MSQ) data or even AHO data was inaccurate as such. It appears that in the process of updating/upgrading these MSQ charts to a more compatible GPS datum etc there is a move away from the old orthophoto type versions so as to make the charts more user friendly to modern chart plotter systems. Mind you I think the orthophoto overlay/underlay in confined channel areas etc is better than conventional charts, but difficult to introduce into recreational type chart plotters and of course the photography is only as up to date as the time it was taken. #

Have manufacturers had access to MSQ data in the past? So really still not entirely sure what type of “problem” Garmin is referring to?

With all the changes/updates etc being undertaken by the Australian Hydrographic Office as far a Hydrographic charts are concerned there’s obviously been a priority since about 1990 to commence with the critical navigation areas and work down the list. Some areas are obviously still down the list but in due course “most” of the 700 odd Australian charts will be updated/upgraded/re-surveyed/re-datum’d etc. Currently probably something like 60% of official Australian charts have been updated and one might assume that for some specific “non critical” areas there’s no immediate plan to do so.

These might be “non critical” for several reasons as the primary attention was obviously to shipping, ports etc. They could also be non critical (from an AHO point of view) in that other organizations are in the process of doing updates/upgrades on a more local (detailed) basis aka MSQ charts etc. One could probably also assume that come the time for AUS chart upgrades where MSQ charts exist, there would be some form of data exchange agreement between the State and federal bodies.

Actually data exchange from a local government level right through to the top is rather messy but getting better especially with regard “costs”. #

One would hope that the best possible outcome will come from these new charts/upgrades/updates and not simply become a pressure point by the GPS/mapping manufacturers to make available the data based on any (perceived) safety issue.

Ideally for the end user the day that manufacturers get their act together and provide/support a standard chart format so there’s no more interoperability issues resulting from propriety formats etc then this will be a real advancement in safe boating practices and simply not used as a marketing lever to buy (or continue to buy) brand X.

Why should one have to purchase the same charts again simply because brand X doesn’t work in brand Y or even in some cases model X doesn’t work in model Y of the manufacturer. This is one of the anomalies that need to be addressed sooner than latter.

A standard chart format probably won’t happen any time soon if it was left up to the manufacturers and if there is a possibility of achieving this goal then one probably shouldn’t rush the process as the long term benefits will far out weigh any short term gains, short term gains are probably more beneficial for the manufacturer.

As for a standard chart format, well it might be too much to imagine for some but Seafarer for instance is such with the third party providers of charting software etc licensed to use this format and simply not licensed to the base data and resulting propriety formats. The advantages, the same charts work in many different makes of plotting systems, there is a single authority responsible for the data, upgrades are handled by a single authority and in any case there’s no mapping/GPS manufacturer that has the capability to maintain this type of data anyway. Manufacturers simply manipulate the available data for their own business purpose. One only has to look at the data/scales available for some areas to see the correlation between population and market possibilities.

Also as for chart/map accuracies especially with some of the areas covered by MSQ charts, these would generally be subject to natural changes, shifts in channels etc, which are difficult enough to keep up to date at a base chart level let alone as a user level. However dial up chart downloads are a possibility and are provided by some manufacturers today, but they still need the data/information in the first place and data acquisition and quality control is a costly part of any chart process.

No GPS/chart/plotter system will guarantee safe passage, regardless of the detail and users also need to take and accept responsibility in some way. # #

However somehow I can’t see there will be any difference to current practices but somebody has to start somewhere and MSQ could possibility follow one of their responsibilities Encouraging and supporting innovation in the maritime industry. and standardize their charts #:D

Cheers, Kerry.

Gordon_Scamp
05-04-2004, 07:24 AM
Dave,
For some reason I cannot send you a PM. Send me an email and I will give you contact details.
Regards,
Gordon

Nugget
05-04-2004, 09:50 AM
Have manufacturers had access to MSQ data in the past? So really still not entirely sure what type of “problem” Garmin is referring to?

I'm not sure in Qld but as Tony said - in other states they have and it took less than a couple of months after the request to produce it.



One would hope that the best possible outcome will come from these new charts/upgrades/updates and not simply become a pressure point by the GPS/mapping manufacturers to make available the data based on any (perceived) safety issue.

I'm not sure I understand that. Regardless of where the pressure comes from, if the charts are up dated then it is a good thing - even if it takes pressure from chart plotter manufacturers to get it done.




...the day that manufacturers get their act together and provide/support a standard chart format...

I wouldn't be holding my breath. Remember 8 track?, video CD.., Beta format... - I doubt they will ever work together.



Why should one have to purchase the same charts again simply because brand X doesn’t work in brand Y or even in some cases model X doesn’t work in model Y of the manufacturer. This is one of the anomalies that need to be addressed sooner than latter.

A standard chart format probably won’t happen any time soon if it was left up to the manufacturers and if there is a possibility of achieving this goal then one probably shouldn’t rush the process as the long term benefits will far out weigh any short term gains, short term gains are probably more beneficial for the manufacturer.

I think Microsoft has the monopoly on forced obsolesce!


I'll cross my fingers and wish for an international chart data standard, a cross manufacturer / cross platform delivery of chart data system and a 12kg tailor...!

I think I've got more chance with the tailor than the rest.

An interesting subject though.
You obviously have some in depth knowledge - are you in the industry?

Dave ><>

Kerry
05-04-2004, 03:15 PM
Dave, A standard format isn't an impossibility. If it can be done internationally at a higher more stringently required and controlled level as already standardized (and implemented in Australia) by the IMO then surely there’s no reason why recreational manufacturers can’t do the same thing that is if they really wanted to.

Why license a single data set (that could be made available in a single suitable standard format) to a mulitude of different manufacturers just to end up with a mulitude of "different" incompatible formats.

It can be done, it has been done, why can't users have the benefit of this possibility. Yes, I suppose while the status quo remains users will have access to the data if one looks at this in a something is better than nothing scenario.

Manufacturers could do this as it evident in the NMEA standard, those that don't support NMEA wouldn't survive. They might think their propriety protocol is better suited to their business but wouldn't omit NMEA so include both. The user then has the choice and this should be the argument for standard chart formats, which technically already exist, but are not recognized as such.

Charting systems are such these days that really one has to first source the mapping/charting format that best suits an individuals local requirements then find suitable hardware that supports that format. This user restriction shouldn't exist.

I know of someone that had some input into the Hervey Bay charts and might see what I can find out about the issue.

In the industry? No not entirely but a close affiliation with GeoSpatial data and Oh yes GPS as well [smiley=2thumbsup.gif].

Cheers, Kerry.

clutter
05-04-2004, 07:08 PM
Nugget,
Missed the show's as I was in Gladstone for the weekend. Can you give me a rundown on what Harro had witnessed in Weipa? Would be interested to know.

Cheers, Clutter

Nugget
06-04-2004, 01:21 AM
Hi Mick,
There is little regard by commercial anglers to the regulations up there according to Harro.
They are targeting spawning agregations of jack getting ten of tons, the by catch of undersize fish is being sold off to people on the shore and for crab bait.

Put the question up on Harro's web site - I'm sure you'll get a big responce when he returns.

www.harro.com.au

Dave ><>

clutter
06-04-2004, 06:28 PM
Thanks Dave,

Have sent him a message.

Mick