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post #21 of 22 Old 04-09-2008
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Don, I suspect the FCC isn't just sitting on their butts on that issue. Consider if you will that once they approve them for everything that floats...Everything that floats might have them. That could mean hundreds, sometimes thousands, of AIS signals and there might simply not be enough bandwidth on the AIS channel to accomodate that. Result?

If everyone had one, the system might collapse.

Especially once local authorities got pressured by do-gooders to make them mandatory equipment for every piece of flotsam that could carry a beer cooler. That picture could get real ugly, real fast. Even if the system could accomodate it.

Be careful what you wish for.
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post #22 of 22 Old 04-09-2008
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The biggest issue I'm aware of with AIS transponders is that they rely on data from the vessels own instruments (GPS, speed logs, etc.) to transmit the vessels status correctly.

It's a big enough issue now with big ships showing up as "stationary" when they're actually under way and on a different course to to the one they are actually one because of issues with on-board instrumentation - without adding thousands of stinkpots to the mix!! The result would be sheer chaos - for the big ships as well as us little guys.

Like Micro$oft Windows, AIS is one of those great ideas that hasn't quite got the bugs ironed out..

A bad day on a boat beats a good day in the office
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