There has been a recent discussion on the Great Loop list concerning Seamanship software… otherwise described as a flight simulator for your boat. This is an idea I have thought about, especially for training and "dusting off" some skills after a time away from your boat. Or maybe when moving from one craft to another.

Despite some posters feeling that there are too many variables to make it realistic, I don’t know that I agree. It might be cost prohibitive, but I can’t really believe that its that much more complex than flight simulators. Now the dynamics of individual craft, yeah, that gets pretty "fine toothed", but for general theory and practice, I’m sure its doable.

Anyway, a couple of links were posted… haven’t gotten to try them yet, but plan to:

  • http://www.boatmaster.org/ – free limited time trial available

  • Ship Simulator – by VStep ($25-30) – Not perfect but the closest I’ve found. You can even drive the Titanic (pre-iceberg!). Half a dozen different ship sizes from tugboats to the big ones. Needs 1.6 Gigs CPU speed (preferable 2.0). – Jim