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FMT - Updated Tracks

Egrets LandingEgrets Landing Posts: 952 Officer
First draft of East Coast tracks are complete to GA line. West coast is almost to Big Bend. Rest of West Coast, St Johns down to Farm 13 and major lakes are last. Imagery for FL north of Miami/Naples is running and I hope to have it ready by mid May. Its going to be tight. There are some 2015 photos available now and comparisons are being made to previous photos. The most recent imagery is not always the best to use, particularly if it is not flown at low tide. Everywhere the tracks are done, the markers and buoys and signs are fixed to their 2014 locations. How many did I move? Many thousands. Some a few feet and others like 500 feet not to mention all the ones that were added or removed altogether.




  • linesider 159linesider 159 Posts: 828 Officer
    I live on utb, what exactly do the tracks show where the lines are?
    2016 Sterling 220XS (SOLD), see build thread here: Here
    2005 Lake and Bay Backwater (SOLD)
    Current Boats: 2008 SCB Topcat 250 XS
    2014 SCB Stingray Sport Merc 300XS
  • Egrets LandingEgrets Landing Posts: 952 Officer
    I live on utb, what exactly do the tracks show where the lines are?

    Where to run your skiff. See the other threads with photo examples in this section and most recently the one below.
  • mtd885mtd885 Posts: 1,159 Officer
    I am a satisfied customer. My area, the lower keys takes years to learn. FMT has shortened the learning curve considerably. Two days ago I took a route I've taken several times before. This time the cloud cover made it difficult to see the channel. FMT provided the local markers which were spot on making my trip smooth sailing.
  • FlatsBoyFlatsBoy Posts: 1,392 Officer
    Looking forward to the completed version and to update my chip!
    Still the best mapping for Florida there is bar none!
  • HookupAndGoHookupAndGo Posts: 201 Deckhand
    You were looking for someone to run the Sebastian area (if I remember correctly). Do you still need that done?
  • Egrets LandingEgrets Landing Posts: 952 Officer
    You were looking for someone to run the Sebastian area (if I remember correctly). Do you still need that done?

    It's already done. However, if you are expert in the area (including the N. an S forks of the River) and can check our work and perhaps augment it with some additional tracks/edits/corrections I would be interested to chat with you.
  • HookupAndGoHookupAndGo Posts: 201 Deckhand
    I generally fish north of Sebastian area down into Wabasso. However I usually don't go up into the Sebastian River, it is on a "to go" list. I also work Melbourne north to Cocoa pretty much on the Indian River side if that helps. There are definitely others that know the area much better than I do, but I do get around. Funny, some of the people I know that are experts in the N & S forks don't even have sonar/fishfinders.
  • Egrets LandingEgrets Landing Posts: 952 Officer

    Cedar Key at dead low
  • HookupAndGoHookupAndGo Posts: 201 Deckhand
    There you go... nothing like the lab out in front pointing the way... Mine always had trouble with the fiberglass deck and just didn't like not having traction. But, he did love to go out and swim the sand bars.

    Nice pic
  • Egrets LandingEgrets Landing Posts: 952 Officer
    If you are heading to the Keys in late May/June bring your FMT chip and I will switch it out for you there.
    The plan is to have the State fully complete by then. Currently, the Tracks and marker corrections are substantively complete up the East Coast to Georgia and up the West Coast to near Panama City as shown below. Over the next month, the Tracks and other map Vector components should be done for Florida with a few inland areas remaining. However, maps are like houses - these things are never really done and constantly need to be updated.

    With respect to the Imagery, we have acquired some sophisticated software that can batch edit thousands of photos and mosaic them to be relatively seamless as well as enhance for the brightness and contrast and other corrections/results we are seeking for the final chips. To date, S. Florida’s first draft of photos is complete and that was all done individually by hand. There were about 2,500 photos for S. Florida. It was quite a bit of work to do that and the results were good but it can be better.

    The rest of the State (coastlines and substantive water areas) comprise over 20,000 additional photos that are about 14k x 14k pixels each with resolutions of about 1’. The gps machines currently only read to about 2’ right now before getting blurry but we are going with the highest res so as the plotters improve the photos will appear even cleaner. To the water areas I will also add the inland areas but at lower resolution and hope it all fits. The current chips are 32 GB and we are sure to eat it all. We will may have to go to a 64 gb chip to fit it all on one. There is also possibility we will need to split the state to two chips. But I think we have found a way to make a 64 GB work for most of the units but it requires a different programming methodology that we need to further test. Dealing with the rest of the photos is obviously too much to do by hand, and thus we had to find a better way. We have just begun this process of trying to figure out the best way to go about completing the photo edits with the new software. The scope of this project is enormous and the software mfg. is having to devise a special protocol for us because they had not previously run into a project of this size. No one has ever used it on this kind of scale (even the Universities) so they say and they are doing some testing for us. More than likely we will have to break up the photo set into a bunch of smaller groups to work with and then when after the corrections are done put it all back together into one group. This software analyzes the histograms of each photo before making corrections to it and applying adjustments we want. Because there are so many variations in the photos depending on the areas, determining the best commands is a bit of trial and error. For instance, the raw data at Mosquito Lagoon and at the Big Bend Coastline is generally dark. The bottom is dark and the photos are also darker than we would like. We will make it a lot brighter and improve the contrast and color so what is in the water can be seen more easily. The corrections to the imagery for those areas are very different from those needed in Tampa Bay which require much less in terms of brightness and contrast but could likely benefit from some other minor adjustments for the best result. So, moving around the State, you can see that using a blanket adjustment for anything and applying that to all the photos would not work as the raw imagery has a wide range of variance in their original histograms. We are basically going to be correcting everything to an ideal histogram setting. That is the hope and plan anyway. What I have found over the last few days is that once the adjustment protocol is developed this week, it’s going to take the computer probably about 10 weeks running 24/7 to make the adjustments. After that it will take another month or so to compress and code that data so it will fit on the chips. So, getting the final photos (hopefully ideally adjusted) on the chip by June appears very unlikely. However, I think the rest of the photos likely could be processed by then for the chip if we just go with them as they are now (unadjusted). Most of these photos are still pretty decent and even if they are not what they eventually will be in terms of brightness and contrast, I think we are likely to go ahead and try to get them coded and on the chip until the final image enhancements can be properly completed. I am not sure if we can get the 20,000 on there within the next 6 weeks or not but hopefully we can. We are trying anyway. In any case, they would be much better than what is available now if you are running Navionics and certainly much more recent. So, I am endeavoring to have a complete FL chip by mid May but final adjustments to the image set for N. FL probably will be done by Fall.

    Also, with respect to the map information, we found that some users that were running 7" and 9" screens were having difficulty seeing the tracks and picking up the marker icons at the zoom they preferred. These units with the smaller screens require the tracks to be thicker and we have made that adjustment and will provide it to those with the smaller screens. The larger screens work best with the thinner tracks.
    We changed the coding to allow most of the marker icons to appear when further zoomed out so that users with smaller screens can zoom out to see more and still see where there markers are miles ahead. It did not create too much extra clutter so we are probably going to leave that coding in place for all of the units. So, if you were finding on your chip that the you would like to see the marker icons a little sooner than it was allowing, that is now fixed and you can see them pretty far zoomed out now. We also, will set the coding so the pictures appear further zoomed out than your current chip as well.

    Here is a FL image showing the track development as of this week and some examples of some of the unadjusted photos which I’ll try to get coded over the next month. On the final run after this summer all of these will look much improved.


    Near Palm Bay

    Near Homasassa (2014) - this one needs quite a bit of work but can be improved to a decent photo based on our tests.

    Near Boca Raton

    Near Skyway Bridge Tampa late 2014

    Near Boca Grand 2015

    Near Panama City 2014

    Once FL is done, we are taking the mapping to Louisiana.
  • 91tiger91tiger Posts: 555 Officer
    Great product Glenn!

    Lousianna will be interesting with the marsh sinking into the sea as fast as it is. We will fish a spot one year that is all 8 foot tall canes and it is competly gone, under water the next season. With it changing that much it may be hard to keep relevant.
  • WC53WC53 Posts: 69 Greenhorn
    very cool! I have been waiting to see the completed BB and cedar key area. I think a difference for me is I can't keep the %$# lab in the boat:wink
    "Reality, the bane of ICC everywhere."
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