Articles written by Lars Brandstäter

Welcome to new ports and areas! 2011-05

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Welcome to new ports and areas on Digital Seas, Fleetmon and Fleetmon mobile! This is the May 2011 roundup:

  • Vladivostok – the far north-east is online, spasibo Sergej!
  • South Africa, Plettenberg Bay – thanks David!
  • River Foyle, Greencastle, Ireland – thanks Michael!
  • Bari, Italy
  • Tauranga, New Zealand
  • Helsinki/Tallinn – thanks Jarmo!
  • Traena, Norway – thanks Raymond!
  • Kalajoki, Finland – thanks Johannes!

Image Quality Guidelines updated

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With the valuable input and suggestions of our top image uploaders, the Digital Seas Image Moderator’s team has completed an extensive review of the Image Quality Guidelines for Digital Seas. The new Guidelines are a little bit more relaxed, for example on bow and stern shots, and encourage a limit on multiple uploads for the same vessel. We felt that such a limit was necessary so all uploaders can follow equal rules and some disappointing situations can be prevented.

As always, image quality is most important and will always be the determining factor!

We hope the new Guidelines will make it easier for you to choose your most fascinating images for sharing on Digital Seas!

The changes in summary:

  • More liberal attitude to images – Bow and Stern shots are now allowed
  • A cap (maximum) on the number of photos a member is permitted to upload of any one vessel
  • A suggestion as to the optimum image size and shape to make images more acceptable in appearance when viewed full screen
  • Guidelines that are easier to understand to members whose first language is not English
  • Clarification of the site’s attitude towards modified (HDR) photos

See the Guidelines in detail on the FAQ page:

All systems are up and running smoothly

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new_digital-seas_servers_2011Scheduled Downtime Today until 8 pm UTC
Dear friends of Digital Seas, today we are going to replace two (AIS reception + Image Store) servers.

There will be no access to Fleetmon, no thumbnail views available and no uploads possible in the time from 5-7pm UTC.
We are hopefully up and running a lot faster afterwards, once services will be fully restored.

Thanks for your patience and Stay tuned!

Fleetmon mobile: v1.5.3 released in App store

in Updates, FleetMon Apps by

Fleetmon for the iphone got three minor updates over the last weeks, thanks to our busy development team.
Newest feature is the Digital-Seas live AIS coverage map as an overlay inside the spotter. Now you can enjoy the equal tracking experience inside Fleetmon :web or :mobile. Here’s the list of our 1.5 additions:

✔ new: Coverage layer added to Fleetmon’s spotter map (same view like Fleetmon :web)
✔ new: Improved vessel search (now interactive search, like web site search)
✔ Fixed some minor glitches and issues

✔ new: flicker free update of vessel positions on map
✔ new: swipe gesture to delete vessels from “My Fleet”
✔ new: status feedback in message bar
✔ Fixed bugs to improve stability

– for users having difficulties to input their login data, we adjusted the interface (my Fleet functions)
– fixing a memory leak
new map switch (moved from preferences into map)

more good stuff to come in the next weeks :-)

Fleetmon AIS: Public Demo starts today

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Today, Digital Seas is excited and proud to bring the fastest AIS fleet monitor on the web right to your browsers: Fleetmon AIS is here!
After almost a year of development time we feel ready to release this stunning real-time monitor for AIS signals. You waited patiently, aware of performance decrease due to the ever growing port coverage and ship database during the last year. We wanted only the best performance and had to solve many questions in the last months. Thanks for the support!

Now enjoy handling all our AIS coverage in a single software, giving you blazing fast access to any maritime area within seconds, 1 sec update intervals and a brand new search for vessel names, IMO and MMSI numbers.

Of course your own vessel list is available now inside the monitor and you can add vessels right away. Your list will be conveniently synchronized between Digital Seas and Fleetmon in your browser and Fleetmon mobile on your iPhone and iPad.

Research vessel details and vessel track data with a single click. Zoom in and out with your mouse wheel or keyboard fast. Choose from different maps as background. Enjoy exploring the ship traffic all over the world!

The new Fleetmon AIS will completely replace the well-known Fleetmon FM1 applet introduced in 2007. Setting standards back then, it could not handle the huge increase in AIS usage all over the world.
This replacement gives us the freedom to introduce a new database and better APIs for future development of Digital Seas. Your comments and suggestions will help us to establish a new era of AIS fleet monitoring on the Internet, right here on Digital Seas!

Go for it:

P.S.: In the Fleetmon 2.0 Demo, the daily access is limited to a certain amount of time. Just drop us a line, should this not be sufficient for you.
All Digital Seas contributors with more than 500 images will be automatically set for full access during the next days.

Forum Area for Reports and Comments:

Fleetmon: Live Action, following the Sunsail Race in South England

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This year Sunsail will present the 80th “Round the Island” race on the cost of South England.
Today we can follow quiet a lot Sunsail Yachts equipped with Class B AIS transponders in the Solent. With the short delay of some seconds (AIS transmission), this is an almost live experience and very attractive to watch.
Take a look yourself within Fleetmon:
Look into English Channel, Southampton.

(all FM2 beta testers relish the display of this cool race event)

German readers:

Welcome to new ports and areas! 2011-04

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Digital Seas welcomes new AIS ports, areas, and stronger antennas:

+ Reggae AIS from Kingston, Jamaica – thanks Mike!

+ China, Shanghai – thanks Eddie!

+ Canada, Saint John and Fundy Bay – thanks Arthur!

+ USA, Boston – thanks Adam!

+ FR, Bayonne-Tarnos – merci Alain!

+ UK, Poole

AIS sharers, don’t forget to contact us to get your personal set-up and new Fleetmon access!

Fleetmon :mobile v.1.5 out in the Apple store today

in Updates, FleetMon Apps by


Ooh Boy, this update marked the biggest effort since the release of Fleetmon :mobile in Fall 2009.
Make sure you set the right login data inside the iPhone settings to relish the brand new “My Fleet” function inside the app. We also started with a new Gallery feauture inside Fleetmon to show all this great vessel images in the best possible quality.
The open Digital-Seas community is growing fast. Enjoy perfect ship images, real time vessel tracking and live ship reports. Take part at our community forum.
With access to more then 60.000 unique vessel images, live coverage of over 20.000 vessels and a ship database with more then 120.00 records, Fleetmon is the fastest and feature richest App in the Store.

✔ new: “My Fleet” Function, manage the same Fleet list on your device and on website
✔ new: Gallery of Ship Images , only accept the best in quality in full resolution for the iPhone (retina) and iPad
✔ new: Feedback function: send reports and comments from inside the app
✔ new: support for portrait and landscape mode on all devices
✔ new: map display with literal of sea area and nearest port for better orientation
✔ new: reDesign of vessel detail tab for faster overview and readability
✔ new: listing of last ports now also available on detail page (just swipe down…)

✔ testet with iOS 4.3 on iPhone and iPad,
✔ local image cache for reducing the data volume of transmission
✔ new server for optimizing image resolution of various end-devices
✔ implementing functional authentification against digital-seas

✔ adoption to multitasking and memory available, saving all task states
✔ new APIs for all services, new servers (of course… :-)

• free Account on Digital-Seas Website needed, to make use of “My Fleet” and live tracking functions

We had 70% of our net-traffic due to scraping the content trough available interface-ports, so we decided to introduce a scheme of authentification. We expect discussions here, but there seems to be no other smart way solving the issue of dealing with servers under heavy load. In the end we have to secure our fair users and support them with a stable service. There is a good place inside the forum to discuss this topic:

see Demonstration and ScreenShots of Fleetmon :mobile here:

Welcome to new ports and areas! 2011-03

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Digital Seas welcomes new AIS ports, areas, and stronger antennas:

+ Guinea, Conakry

+ UAE, Fujairah

+ Singapore

+ Italy, Trieste – thanks Alessandro!

+ UK, Teesport – thanks Tony!

+ UK, Penzanze/Land’s end

+ UK, Northern Ireland, Firth of Clyde

AIS sharers, don’t forget to contact us to get your personal set-up and new Fleetmon access!