Sunday, March 16, 2008

ActiveCaptain Mobile for my Treo 650

When I broke my T-Mobile cell phone, I went to eBay to get a Palm Treo 650 to replace it. The Treo was unlocked, which means that I could continue using my T-Mobile plan where I discovered that for less than $10 per month, I could have internet access for Web surfing and email. Since then, I've been looking for navigation software for my Treo. The best I could do was PathAway, which has flexible maps so that hikers, drivers, and sailors could upload their favorite maps, but it never really worked for me.

ActiveCaptain.com has been promising a Palm version of its online service that describes 1000s of harbors and inlets around the world. I signed up to be a beta tester, but never got the non-disclosure agreement worked out. Now, the Palm version of ActiveCaptain is available--ActiveCaptain Mobile. My next posts will be about my use of ActiveCaptain Mobile.

I downloaded the trial version (20 uses) and two regional maps, which are NOAA maps in RGN format. This was so easy to do! The software loaded onto my Treo when I synced and the maps could be dragged directly to my SD memory card. I have a card that has a built-in USB connection. In minutes I was browsing Lake Michigan and the Virgin Islands.

Next, I wanted to test my GPS receiving, a Holum 1000, which is about the size of a bar of hotel soap. My Treo was already associated with the GPS receiver and the software was able to find it right away. It had a check box to connect automatically, if I wanted. Based on my previous experience with PathAway, I thought getting charts and PGS in a few minutes was amazingly simple.
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