Ask PYS: Navigation

Dawn, on Jun 21, 2011 asked:

I'm looking for a way to attach my Mac laptop to my existing GPS so that I have a bigger screen for planning and record keeping purposes. It would have to be autopilot interactive. The only software I have found does not include Canadian waters. Any Mac friendly thoughts?

One solution is to have your Mac configured for a dual boot and have the Windows OS run the navigation software. There is plenty of windows based navigation software.

In terms of integration with the autopilot, this gets complicated because your autopilot can only obey one talker at a time (unless you get a multiplexer). Right now your current chartplotter is integrated to the autopilot. It would be a small challenge to get the chartplotter and the navigation software running on your Mac to integrate both to the autopilot.

The simple solution is to get a GPS puck receiver for the Mac and forget the autopilot integration.
We have limited experience with Macs on the water but hope this helps!