Article

Titans: Google Maps versus ECDIS


by Melvin Mathews - published on 3 November 2020 331 -

This article was already published on Melvin Mathews' blog on Feb 25th 2020
(see link at the end of the article)


Humans have been using maps for thousands of years. It is therefore not surprising that ‘Cartography’ as a subject exists, which is the art and science of making maps. The oldest known maps are preserved on Babylonian tablets from 2300 BC. They were later depicted on scrolls and paper. But it’s not until the electronic age that maps have come alive.

Google Maps and ECDIS (Electronic Chart Display and Information System) can be considered to essentially serve the same purpose. While Google Maps is used for finding our way on land, the ECDIS facilitates navigation at sea. At a basic level both show us maps in an electronic form, indicate where we are and can provide a route if we can specify a destination.

Google Maps turned 15 years old this month and it may be an appropriate time to compare it with similar systems in other industries, hence the comparison with ECDIS.

ECDIS

- While the ECDIS was in voluntary use for many years, it was never free to use. It became mandatory for HSC (High Speed Craft) on the 1st of July 2008. Subsequently, the mandatory carriage of ECDIS for other ships depending on the ship type, size and construction date, (as required by SOLAS regulation V/19.2.10) commenced in a phased manner from 1 July 2012 onwards.

- ECDIS is regulated because it is considered a complex, safety-relevant, software-based system with multiple options for display and integration. The ongoing safe and effective use of ECDIS involves many stakeholders including seafarers, equipment manufacturers, chart producers, hardware and software maintenance providers, shipowners and operators, and training providers.

- Over the years, IMO (International Maritime Organisation) Member States, hydrographic offices, equipment manufacturers and other organizations have contributed to the development of guidance on a variety of ECDIS-related matters and was accepted as meeting the chart carriage requirements of SOLAS regulation V/19 in 2002.

Google Maps

-Google Maps was launched as a super easy and useful way for people to get around. However, it is the pace at which features, and capabilities have evolved that makes it an unbelievable experience. It is not only a website or application that gets us from A to B, using the fastest or shortest route, it allows web developers easy access APIs to put google maps on their own sites.

-With over 1 billion users per month the adoption and use rate is very high because one can virtually never get lost. For 200 million businesses worldwide, it provides, opening hours, ratings, prices etc, which provides relevance to data and makes life easier. Google maps has made it easier for business to manage their presence, update their business info, put up pictures, respond to reviews, etc.

-The local guides program which is 120 million strong, share reviews, photos and knowledge about places around the world. For those with mobility needs Google maps offers wheel-chair accessible routes for over 50 million places. Augmented reality helps you to understand which way to walk, with arrows and directions overlaid.
- Google Maps achieved all this innovation by providing it for free, but for how long?
- Does regulation in ECDIS stifle its innovation?
- If it were not mandatory would the ECDIS survive in the market?
- How much reliance & trust do we have on things we receive for free?
- Besides showing us the shortest and fastest route, would the greenest route be of interest?
Are there others areas & topics worth considering?

Let me know your thoughts
Melvin Mathews
Editor's note:
Opinion pieces reflect the personal opinion of individual authors. They do not allow any conclusions to be drawn about a prevailing opinion in the respective editorial department. Opinion pieces might be deliberately formulated in a pronounced or even explicit tone and may contain biased arguments. They might be intended to polarise and stimulate discussion. In this, they deliberately differ from the factual articles you typically find on this platform, written to present facts and opinions in as balanced a manner as possible.
What's your opinion on this?
Login or register to write comments and join the discussion!
Read more...

Video Route Planning With ECDIS

published on 11 July 2020

What is voyage planning, Who is responsible, how do we comply with the rules and how do we utilize the features and functions available in an ECDIS? Chart Projections and Chart Accuracy https://youtu.be/kOaWimnAN-U Principle Used For Creating Electronic Charts https://youtu.be/xY_MBubhUFs Display of Electronic Charts https://youtu.be/qnoFO0T-cLo Route Planning With ECDIS https://youtu.be/s5ebZQru7mg Sailing With ECDIS https://youtu.be/GZrmzE24K44 Whats is Electronic Chart Display? https://...

0

Opinion Should the Captain go down with the ship?

by Melvin Mathews - published on 10 November 2020

At one point, the Captain on the Ship while being highly respected, also carried great responsibility and had the ultimate accountability for everything on board. But this respect, responsibility and accountability has not come overnight, or just when the Captain wears his four stripes.

0

Opinion If you facilitate 90% of the world's trade, would you influence change?

by Melvin Mathews - published on 1 December 2020

Without a shadow of doubt, shipping is a key enabler of our current way of life and the globalized world we live in today. The irony is that the average person is unaware of the significance or contribution of the shipping industry and how much we rely on ships working without disruption

1

Video Good old times: PLA Thames Pilots at Work

published on 18 May 2020

Footage showing the ARCADIA leaving Tilbury Landing Stage and PLA pilot boarding sugar ship bound for Thames Refinery. footage taken from the documentary short film ' Till I End My Song'

0

Video Oversized Kasko through Kiel Canal by NAUTITEC / KOTUG / BIJMA

published on 29 July 2020

Going Beyond Borders. The first oversized Kasko (120m x 40m) passed the Holtenau locks at Kiel on her way from the Neptun shipyard in Rostock to Meyer shipyard in Papenburg.
The planning and simulation study on this towage has been performed by NAUTITEC and KOTUG, with the great assistance of pilots and Kiel canal authorities on behalf of Meyer shipyard.
Produced by AVE-Solutions in order of Nautitec, Kotug and Bijma Sleepdiensten.

0

Video Documentation: How New York Harbor Pilots Master Treacherous Waters

published on 10 September 2020

What does it mean to be a harbor pilot? More info here: http://gothamist.com/2016/05/26/video_ny_harbor_pilot.php Starring Robert J. Blake, Jr. Video by Jessica Leibowitz Produced by Jessica Leibowitz and Shayla Love MORE GOTHAMIST FILMS Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/Gothamist Dailymotion: http://www.dailymotion.com/Gothamist GOTHAMIST ACROSS THE WEB Gothamist.com: http://gothamist.com Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Gothamist/ Twitter: https://twitter.com/gothamist Instagram: https:/...

1

Video My First Ride In My Work's Jet Pilot Boat.

published on 10 May 2020

A video of a fellow captain at my work giving me my very first ride in the companies jet pilot boat. Im impressed.

0

Video Port Revel Ship Handling in France | by National Geographic

published on 27 September 2020

They look like toy boats, but they serve a serious purpose. An outsider at this facility near Grenoble, France, may see grown men riding arounda lake in miniature ships. But these are pilots of the world's largest ships, and they're practicing navigation with meticulously engineered 1:25 scale models of real cruisers, tankers, and containerships. Port Revel Shiphandling Training Centre, in operation since 1967, has had more than 6,000 maritime pilots and merchant ship officers from all over...

0

Video How a Steel Box Changed the World: A Brief History of Shipping

published on 16 September 2020

As the container shipping industry continues to boom, companies are adopting new technologies to move cargo faster and shifting to crewless ships. But it’s not all been smooth sailing and the future will see fewer players stay above water. Don’t miss a WSJ video, subscribe here: http://bit.ly/14Q81Xy More from the Wall Street Journal: Visit WSJ.com: http://www.wsj.com Visit the WSJ Video Center: https://wsj.com/video On Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pg/wsj/videos/ On Twitter: https://...

1

Article Sixth High-Speed Launch for Delta Pilots

by Gladding Hearn Shipbuilding - published on 27 November 2019

Delta Launch Services has ordered a new pilot boat from Gladding Hearn Shipbuilding (Duclos Corporation).

This is the sixth St. John’s Class launch built by the Somerset, Mass. shipyard. Delivery of the new 52-footer is scheduled for July 2020.

0