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post #1 of 13 Old 03-15-2019 Thread Starter
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Sailing Resume | Logbook | Web App

In searching for a decent App that would record my sailing experiences I wasn't really satisfied with anything out there. So I created my own. I would love to get some feedback from others. If you have a moment check it out at https://able-seaman.com

Able Seaman Features:
  • Sailing Resume
  • Log Book
  • Certifications
  • Tagging Friends
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post #2 of 13 Old 03-15-2019
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Re: Sailing Resume | Logbook | Web App

A proper and legal logbook must be in a bound book form, with no pages ever torn out or erasures. Any errors must be lined out with a signature. It must be kept religiously, including just moving around an anchorage or going to the fuel dock. If it isn't done this way, it will have no legal standing in an Admiralty Court.
Of course, unless you end up in court, this is not very important, but I thought I'd throw it out there, just in case you ever became the captain of a vessel involved in some sort of incident in which the court would require the official logbook.
I've kept my logbooks faithfully since 1969, on every vessel I was operating, for pleasure or professionally. It is very handy for trip planning and recording things of note, such as avg/max wind speed/direction, sea state, average boat speed, max boat speed, sails used/reefed, fish caught and on what lure at what speed, vessels sighted or personal notes about the voyage (if short enough) or at watch changes by the watchstander, if a longer voyage.
We keep a separate logbook for the engine room, where oil/filter changes, repairs, taking on fuel/water and new installations are recorded. On my freighters/tugs, we also noted speed versus fuel consumption (very important), and in the case of the refer ship, the hold temperatures, hourly.
Sorry, but I don't have a private facebook account, so I couldn't see your ideas.

"Any idiot can make a boat go; it takes a sailor to stop one." Spike Africa aboard the schooner Wanderer in Sausalito, Ca. 1964.
“Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.” ― Kenneth Grahame, The Wind in the Willows

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post #3 of 13 Old 03-15-2019 Thread Starter
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Re: Sailing Resume | Logbook | Web App

Thanks for the feedback. The purpose of the web application is not to replace an official legal logbook requirements. Though I would suggest not having a backup of such an important document seems a bit risky. The main purpose of the application is giving sailors an easy way to record and log hours/nautical miles sailed. Many chartering companies require a "Sailing Resume". This application seeks to give sailors an efficient standardized way of recording these entries to be summarized in their personal sailing resume.

I am aware not everyone has a Facebook login. I am looking to add Google's authentication as well. I may allow custom credentials later but with today's privacy laws using a third party identity provider is the safest option for someone starting out like me.

Thanks!
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post #4 of 13 Old 03-15-2019
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Re: Sailing Resume | Logbook | Web App

Sounds interesting, but not interested in FB, or Google accounts either.
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post #5 of 13 Old 03-16-2019
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Re: Sailing Resume | Logbook | Web App

Of course Cap is correct. I would be surprised if many recreational sailors maintain an legal/offcial logbook. But I can see how it could be useful for reference.

I had a spiral bound book which I used for a season or two... then decided to set up a spread sheet for the boat which has different tabs where I record information. One tab I record maintenance issues... repairs, what has to be repaired, anything notable is entered for each day I am on board and there is something to note including location and trips, engine hrs, oil & filter changes (tells me what engine hrs I have the next oil change due. I don't record weather, sea current, wind and so on unless it is remarkable. Another tab I record all the equipment, date installed / removed / serial # etc. I have a few tabs for calculations... electric, loads, wire size, boat measurements... sails, rigging, another for inventory: what's stored where, Another for spare parts (never complete or current), watch schedules, offshore checklist, mooring parts, and a tab for each year's winter storage which includes, location and list of projects, cost, time, dates and so on. tab for important contacts, and even shopping list/stores needed to purchase. I can add a new tab as needed for anything such as record all information/data about a cruise if I like... or a tab for a new project. The idea is a spread sheet with tabs is excellent and if dutifully filled out it is has all the information about the boat and my sailing experiences I could want or need. I would be lost without this repository of information.

I can move the log from the PC on board to the one at home with a USB thumb drive and have the entire log in my pocket if I go someplace. I don't see the utility of putting this online. I have multiple copies I synchronize so I don't fear losing the log. And it has search feature which is handy for finding information. I can highlight cells with field and or text color to make things stand out. It's far from perfect... a work in progress over almost 20 years. Like the boat and me the log evolves. It works!

pay attention... someone's life depends on it

Last edited by SanderO; 03-16-2019 at 05:39 AM.
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post #6 of 13 Old 03-16-2019
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Re: Sailing Resume | Logbook | Web App

Sorry I can't comment on your design or function. I'm always leary about using other log ins to sign onto websites other than the one it is designated for. That goes doubly for Facebook and Google. But, that's just me.

As far as log books go I am planing on going the other way. I use a written log in a bound book as Capta describes where I keep my voyage log and any other notes pertaining to the boat. I plan on taking a photo of each page as it fills up (probably with my cell phone) and eventually upload it into a file in the cloud. Then I will have several backups of it and can access it whether I am on the boat or not. The one thing about a written log and notes on paper is it always works and will never get obsolete. Having back ups in the cloud (or on the phone) allows me access the data no matter where I am.

I came to this epiphany last week when I went to do a quick check on the boat and look at the sketch I made last season of dimensions for a new sail cover. The sketch I made was in the log book. I took a photo of the sketch and can now use it at home to fabricate the new sail cover.
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Last edited by mbianka; 03-16-2019 at 07:01 AM.
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post #7 of 13 Old 03-16-2019
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Re: Sailing Resume | Logbook | Web App

Quote:
Originally Posted by mbianka View Post
Sorry I can't comment on your design or function. I'm always leary about using other log ins to sign onto websites other than the one it is designated for. That goes doubly for Facebook and Google. But, that's just me.

As far as log books go I am planing on going the other way. I use a written log in a bound book as Capta describes where I keep my voyage log and any other notes pertaining to the boat. I plan on taking a photo of each page as it fills up (probably with my cell phone) and eventually upload it into a file in the cloud. Then I will have several backups of it and can access it whether I am on the boat or not. The one thing about a written log and notes on paper is it always works and will never get obsolete. Having back ups in the cloud (or on the phone) allows me access the data no matter where I am.

I came to this epiphany last week when I went to do a quick check on the boat and look at the sketch I made last season of dimensions for a new sail cover. The sketch I made was in the log book. I took a photo of the sketch and can now use it at home to fabricate the new sail.
This is a sensible approach.

We definitely want a record which won't disappear over time. Hand written is not bad for that but can get water damaged and does suffer from normal decay... but maybe not for the time span you have a boat.

++++

When the ExCel spread sheet appeared it represented a sea change (pun intended) for me as a way to deposit, reference, access, manipulate all manner of information and data. It is incredibly powerful, flexible, adaptable. It has great graphic capabilities.. of course can be printed, or sent in an email, or posted to the www, transported on digital media (evolving technologies) Although I don't do it... you can insert/import photos. It's so flexible and powerful it seems it can almost do anything! Of course you can copy and paste and edit tabs or cells or even the entire workbook which is a very efficient way to work.

I set up an ExCel for each client/project I have with tabs for aspects of the project. I have annual tabs for which I use as templates for the next (new) year, editing out what no longer applies.

Writing is nice... when you can read it! But it's also not data. I prefer to enter information as text, numbers which is dynamic and not simply pixels such as a photo of a log book page. I also see immense limitations in template forms to fill in data. They are perhaps more organized... but inflexible.

I would be surprised to learn that sailors are not using excel for their "logs" as it seems a no brainer. It does require a decent size screen/interface to work with... so a smart phone is not optimal. But a tablet could work and definitely a laptop or a PC.... and those are seen more and more on boats.

Try it... you'll like it and never go back

pay attention... someone's life depends on it
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post #8 of 13 Old 03-16-2019 Thread Starter
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Re: Sailing Resume | Logbook | Web App

Thanks for the feedback. As a software engineer with 10 years of experience it is a common misconception about using other identity providers for secure login being less safe. In fact I am always more leary of sites that use their own authentication. While I am sure no one here has ever re-used the same password on two sites cough.. cough.. Most people do reuse password or variants of them and if the site is ever compromised you have no guarantee your information will be protected. I would suggest reading up on OAuth2 to learn more.

Anyway I didn't mean for this thread to be a discussion on login security. I think I didn't do a great job of explaining the features. It's main purpose is to create a sailing resume and recording your sailing experience. While it does have some logbook features it isn't meant to replace a ship's logbook. It is more of a logbook for that individual. For example if you don't own a boat but still want to record your sailing experience tracking down multiple ship's logbooks seems to be tedious an inefficient.

For example, I own a 1983 Catalina 25. But my sailing experience is more than just what is recorded in my logbook on the boat. I have sailed on different boats sizes, waters, etc. And I wanted a way to record that information and summarize it.

I like the idea of SanderO recording maintenance information as well. Eventually I would like to add boat information and I think it would be a great idea to expand on that. I am aware that those who have been keeping logbooks for years probably aren't looking to switch over. However I think creating a resume for Charter etc could still be beneficial. I'll try and get some screen shots posted for those who don't wish to login.

Thanks!
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Last edited by Sean Thornton; 03-16-2019 at 02:08 PM.
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post #9 of 13 Old 03-16-2019
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Re: Sailing Resume | Logbook | Web App

Resume is not a bad idea if you do intend to charter. (I don't) I would probably give them my Shiva Excel and let them read that and decide if I know boats. It does include a tab with a facsimile of a traditional logbook for one two week cruise.

Aside from sharing boat stuff in this forum, I wouldn't want my info to live online or in the cloud.

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post #10 of 13 Old 03-16-2019
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Re: Sailing Resume | Logbook | Web App

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Originally Posted by Sean Thornton View Post
While I am sure no one here has ever re-used the same password on two sites cough.. cough.. Most people do reuse password or variants of them and if the site is ever compromised you have no guarantee your information will be protected.
As long as you pepper and hash a stored password this shouldn't be an issue even if your database is compromised.

But, as you said, not the point of the whole discussion. I have considered building something like this myself, it sounds like something I'd use.

My only feedback would be to accept the feedback you're getting... perhaps best bet is to offer Facebook/Google logins AND site specific login, cater to users' needs and they will come more easily (I speak from painful experience on this one).

Good luck with your project.

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