The general idea
When starting 'My Ancor Watch' a basic screen is shown as here on the left. The last GPS information is shown in the text table on the left and a graphical plot of the boats movements are shown in the graph in the middle.
In the graphical plot, the ancor is the white dot in the middle. The yellow line represents the cable (the maximum position the boat can move without the anchor dragging). The green area, which is surrounded by the red alarm line indicates the area during which the program is silent.
Should the boat move out of the green area, an alarm is triggered.
When 'dropping anchor', the program starts registering all positions and plotting them on the screen. If the position of the anchor in your program is not right, it is easy to move it around.
In the example to the left, we have 62 meters of chain (or rope or whatever) out and we have choosen to be alerted if we move more than 87 meters away from the anchor.
We also see that the last position received by the GPS on the phone indicates that we are 23 meters south and 9 meters west of the anchor position.
Depending on the location and time of day, there will be a warying numbers of satellites in view. The more satellites in view, the more accurate the positions will be. Normally the accuracy is within 10 meters and often as low as 3 meters!
It is not uncommon that we anchor in steady winds and therefore bet on that we will not swing around. Maybe we sneak up close to land to be more protected, or maybe we anchor close to a boat that is tied up to a bouy, or maybe we just want to know if the wind is shifting.
Whatever the reason is, 'My Anchor Watch' supports it. Any sector of the anchor circle can be excluded from the allowed swing area. Hence, if the wind shifts and the boat drifts into the area which is blocked an alarm will be signaled.
If the boat moves outside of the green area an alarm is signaled. The alarm can be any combination of :
- Dialog text alarm (as in the picture)
- Vibration alarm
- Sound alarm
- Alarm send to another phone via SMS
All alarms can be indivudally configured and turned off for a snooze period or permanently.
Remote monitoring and control
If you are not onboard and you worry about how things are onboard, you can still get an update of the situation. Simple commands can be SMSed from another phone to the phone running 'My Anchor Watch'. The program then replies with a SMS with the information. It could be information about the current settings, the present position of the boat or maybe a status of how many alarms of various types have occured.
You can even change certain settings via SMS and therefore keep total control of the situation.
Code words and error checking ensures that no unauthorized access occurs.