Computerise Your Cat!

This informative story is written by Andy Ireland one of our happy Fountaine Pajot owners from South Australia. Andy has been an owner for many years and enjoys sharing what he has learned with fellow owners.  Here Andy shares with us some great tips on how easy it is to computerise your catamaran and get an “A” grade navigation aid at the same time.

Here’s Andy’s tips…

Simply buy one Mini Mac computer, these are full blown computers with dual processors, great speed with 320 Gig HD and yet only have the footprint of about a kilo of gold, very small!

Take one Apple wireless keyboard and mouse and one HDMI cable and you are almost done.

Plug the mini mac into a powerpoint, connect the HDMI cable to your Mini Mac and TV and turn on!

Connect to your wireless keyboard and mouse, (just turn them on) and voila you have a computer with a screen as big as your TV!

Now add an internet dongle and you can browse Gmail, BOM weather, Bar cams or whatever your desire. Not to mention run DVD’s or Itunes, Iphoto and much, much more.

OK now you’ve spent about $1100, but here comes the good stuff.

And now you can get Mac navigation software (and it’s good) for $159, you’ll need a USB GPS reciever unit, and they vary from $50-$200 and it just plugs into a USB port on the Mini Mac, get a good one that’s compatible with Mac and also download the Mac compatible maps from Navionics $299, directly onto the hard drive.

All the directions should be on the Fugawi site.

Now you have a full blown GPS navigation software system right on your TV, believe me it’s really cool! And BIG!

When zooming into new ports or anchorages it’s super cool and when you do anchor, leave it on at maximum zoom and you will see any drag even if it’s only metres.

The beauty of all this is minimum wiring and maximum bang for the buck. If you cruise long distance or at night, you’ll love it. The reason for the Mac if you’ve never owned one, is SIMPLICITY! and almost no wires.

And the start up time is only seconds compared to lots and lots of minutes with a PC. An nowhere near the glitches.

If your power drops or something when you are just about to enter a port it starts up quick!

If you want a hand with this get my phone number from the Multihull Solutions crew and I’ll help you out.

Also The Mac ENC navigation software is really well supported. I have asked many questions at all times of the day and night by email and sometimes the answers come back in minutes, not sure if those guys sleep.

Sure you can do similar stuff with an Ipad but this is a REAL computer, and a REAL navigation system, with a REAL GPS receiver.

Have Fun!

Andy Ireland – “What If” – South Australia

Pic follows of the Ireland’s looking very happy onboard “What If” – cruising the Cowell Anchorages in South Australia this Easter.

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