Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Swarthmore, PA
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I've mentioned elsewhere here that I'm increasingly using OpenCPN with a netbook in the cockpit in place of my handheld GPS. It interfaces wirelessly with my AIS receiver to show all the surrounding commercial traffic, which is substantial in my area. However I found myself frequently zooming in to see nearby features, then zooming out to see AIS traffic approaching from ~2 nm away. I was doing more computer manipulation than I wanted to. Then I realized that I can actually launch OpenCPN twice and put the windows side by side. One window is zoomed in, and the other zoomed out. This gives me both simultaneousely, completely eliminating the need to touch the netbook. It also makes much better use of the screen space, because the wide geometry of the screen is not optimum for chart plotters - two taller windows is much better.
I did have to do a little fiddling with a software multiplexer to feed the GPS to both windows, but that was relatively straightforward.
I'm not sure I've seen any commercial chartplotter that can present two simultaneous views like this:
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1998 Catalina 250WK Take Five (at Anchorage Marina, Essington, on the Delaware River)
1994 Mason 44 Firefly on loan from my BFF (West River, Galesville, MD)
1991 15' Trophy (Lake Wallenpaupack)
1985 14' Phantom (Lake Wallenpaupack)