00 Feature Request Vetted >4 Votes

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FS#2140 - Improve "Auto Follow Boat" feature

Attached to Project: 00 Feature Request Vetted >4 Votes
Opened by Wayne (Ambler) - Saturday, 20 August 2016, 04:40 GMT
Last edited by Rick Gleason (rgleason) - Wednesday, 26 October 2016, 20:35 GMT
Task Type Feature Request
Category Backend / Core
Status Assigned
Assigned To Dave (bdbcat)
Operating System All
Severity Critical
Priority Normal
Reported Version future version
Due in Version Undecided
Due Date Undecided
Percent Complete 0%
Votes 5
Private No


If the "Auto Follow Boat" button is pressed AND you have "Look Ahead mode" ticked you will get a jumpy screen AND I hate that. It is caused by the predictor line needing to pass through the centre pixel of the screen!

Here is the REAL solution instead of having a look ahead mode... When the "Auto Follow Boat" is selected, it should place the boat in the screen centre THEN you should be able to pan the screen to where YOU would like to see your own boat placed WITH the Auto Follow Boat icon remaining lit, unless you have panned your boat off the screen where it will then no longer be lit and no longer be in Auto Follow mode. This will place your boat fixed at the location or pixels on the screen while the screen moves. Keeping North up or route up will stop any screen rotation too.

If you would like a demo of how this works really well, download a Memory-Map trial version for free and try it. I love that program but it won't run CM93 (or any other vector charts) or GE2KAP (yet).
This task depends upon

Comment by Rick Gleason (rgleason) - Wednesday, 26 October 2016, 20:36 GMT
Hit 5 votes, moved to Feature Request - Vetted.
Comment by Dirk (rooiedirk) - Tuesday, 20 December 2016, 20:21 GMT
I agree on an improvement needed. A simpler solution would be, the headingline should pass the center pixel plusminus 10%. This will still follow larger course changes without intervention of the user.
Comment by Wayne (Ambler) - Wednesday, 21 December 2016, 07:34 GMT
I think that would be complicating to program. Is that 10 percent of 360 degrees or 10 percent of the pixel count on the screen?
Position your boat anywhere on the screen and still be in auto follow mode, great when turning a corner in a congested waterway to view AIS targets ahead of time! How good would that be?
Comment by Dirk (rooiedirk) - Wednesday, 21 December 2016, 08:49 GMT
I used a few different ECDIS systems. There they used two different solutions.

1. You could draw a rectangle somewhere on the screen, and as soon the own-ship moves out of that rectangle the chart is redrawn, so it will be in again.
2. The own-ship is posisionated like "O" is doing now on abt. 70%, and headingline center screen. Then the chart will stay as it is until the own-ship moved to abt. 60%. On a major course change the chart is redrawn.

With method 1 you need to draw a new 'rectangle' after a major course change.
Method 2 will keep the charted area optimal. Where a major course change could be considerd as headingline more then 10% off screen center.

"Position your boat anywhere on the screen and still be in auto follow mode, great when turning a corner in a congested waterway to view AIS targets ahead of time! How good would that be?"
You can do that already, But if you do that with Auto follow you will have to readjust after taking the corner, or you lose info before the turn.

From my experience, method 1 is annoying, as it forces you to fiddle around with your chart-system more (adjust after- or before every course change), and I prefere to keep my eyes as much as possible 'on the water'.
Comment by Wayne (Ambler) - Wednesday, 21 December 2016, 11:14 GMT
Thanks for your input and thoughts. We traditionalists who prefer North up when viewing a chart be it paper or electronically are possibly a dying breed.

Memory-map still outshines OpenCPN in its well thought out ECDIS moving chart display with user choice of own ship position on screen. It only uses raster charts (which after all, are how we hydrographic surveyors wished to portray our work for safety of navigation).

So lets see if the developers can set us free to be able to choose how much chart we need to see relative to our position.