AIS Receiver USB dongle

According to the latest news, the company producing this item is no longer on the market.
This AIS receiver is cheap , consume almost no power and is simple to connect (USB dongle):
It works on Windows with a supplied driver and is recognized directly by all recent Linux kernels (Ubuntu 10.10) as /dev/ttyACM0. Output is NMEA readable by OpenCPN.

Other affordable solutions:
The AIS transmissions can be received by various cheap "TV" dongles. For more information read
The RTLSDR plugin makes tuning the dongles simple directly from OpenCPN

Another approch is to use a suitable radio receiver, like Yaesu FT857 + sound card + AISMON under Windows or GnuAIS under Linux.