Author (Your Name)

Jared P. Lazzaro, Colby College

Date of Award


Document Type

Senior Scholars Paper (Open Access)


Colby College. Computer Science Dept.


Allen B. Downey

Second Advisor

Randolph M. Jones

Third Advisor

Leonard S. Reich


This project involves the design and implementation of a global electronic tracking system intended for use by trans-oceanic vessels, using the technology of the U.S. Government's Global Positioning System (GPS) and a wireless connection to a networked computer.

Traditional navigation skills are being replaced with highly accurate electronics. GPS receivers, computers, and mobile communication are becoming common among both recreational and commercial boaters. With computers and advanced communication available throughout the maritime world, information can be shared instantaneously around the globe. This ability to monitor one's whereabouts from afar can provide an increased level of safety and efficiency.

Current navigation software seldom includes the capability of providing upto-the-minute navigation information for remote display. Remote access to this data will allow boat owners to track the progress of their boats, land-based organizations to monitor weather patterns and suggest course changes, and school groups to track the progress of a vessel and learn about navigation and science. The software developed in this project allows navigation information from a vessel to be remotely transmitted to a land-based server, for interpretation and deployment to remote users over the Internet. This differs from current software in that it allows the tracking of one vessel by multiple users and provides a means for two-way text messaging between users and the vesseI.

Beyond the coastal coverage provided by cellular telephones, mobile communication is advancing rapidly. Current tools such as satellite telephones and single-sideband radio enable worldwide communications, including the ability to connect to the Internet. If current trends continue, portable global communication will be available at a reasonable price and Internet connections on boats will become more common.


Navigation, design, remote navigation system, U.S. Government's Global Positioning System (GPS), networked computer, wireless connection