Saturday, March 3, 2012


Application: iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch
Function: Marine points of interest, NOAA Charts
Cost: Free!

I was recently contacted by Pedro Valdeolmillos who found my blog and wanted me to take a look at a new app he is developing. The BlooSee app is intended to be an extension of his website.  The BlooSee website is a user driven community of water enthusiast who add Infopoints of interest and Routes to the website database.  The site goes beyond points of interest and has added features of social networking, groups of similar interests, wind data and a user created boat database.  The site allows users to invite others members to become friends or join groups. So it is kind of a Facebook for mariners with some added navigation features.

  • Infopoints include - Facilities, Dangers, Other, Travel & Hospitality, Diving & Snorkeling, Fishing, Aids to Navigation, Services, Ocean Conservation, Surf-Wind-Kayak, Commercial Services and Arts & History.
  • NOAA Charts for the USA, Brazil and New Zealand and Google Maps and Satellite views.
  • Social networking community of users
  • Develop Groups with similar interests
  • Boats database developed by users
  • Integrated wind forecasts
  • Sharing to email, Facebook and Twitter
  • Internet connection required
Pedro's plan for the app is to add much of the functionality that is found on the website to the app.  Lets take a look at the app and its' present functionality.

Opening the app you will notice a Google map display with points of interest for your current location. The map can be changed between satellite, maps or a hybrid combination. The Gear icon on the top left of the display allows you to select the type of map and filter what info points you want to display on the maps. 

Four soft keys on the bottom of the screen include Winds, Charts, Find Me and Nav.

Charts are only available for the USA, Brazil and New Zealand at this time. The slider bar on the bottom right side allows the user to change the opacity of the overlayed NOAA charts. I really liked the ability to adjust the overlays!

The Wind selection allows the display of wind data and the ability to page forward in time to see the forecast data.

Find me locates your position on the Google Map.
The Nav feature provides some basic GPS navigation features. The author has a disclaimer when you open the app that the maps, charts and points are for reference only.  It does provide your moving position along with speed and course information from the on board locational services of the iPad.

The power of the app is not the navigation feature, it is really in the marine information points of interest.

The  List icon on the top left of the opening screen will show the points of interest in your immediate area. 

As more users add data to the site, it will become an invaluable tool to locate all the marine services needed by the weekend boater or world cruiser.

This list is interactive and by tapping the point you can drill down for additional information. Location, latitude, longitude, website, address, phone number, map and a short description of the item.

The level of detail and the contact information make it a no-brainer to find the perfect marina, restaurant or marine store.

The app is well on it's way to becoming a must have for all marine enthusiast.  A few things that might make it better would be offline use of map, charts and the database.  It will only works now if you have an Internet connection.  The integral use of the Google maps might make that difficult.  The NOAA charts could easily be configured to be used offline.  Offline use would make it more versatile and usable offshore.  It would allow users the ability to plan and locate points of interest on their way to the next port.

I really like what I see in the BlooSee website and app.  The author and developers are attempting to create a virtual resource for all types of marine information. The social networking aspect is a key in making it interactive and allowing people to share their adventures on the water with family and friends.  I am amazed every day at the creative minds out there developing ideas like this. I look forward to the many additional features and updates planned for the BlooSee app.

What do you think of the app? Please comment or make recommendation so the developer can provide the must have features we all need.

~~~Sail On~~~

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