Dave Phillips wrote:I'm a bluff old traditionalist. As one who currently has a "SD crash on iPad" issue I'm not going to get overly animated about the affair. I often fly with SD and a fancy G1000 but I alway carry a paper chart and guess what? Sometimes the easiest thing to do is consult the chart. Anyone who thinks that a SD crash is a safety issue needs to look at their safety management technique.
I agree. I am a huge SD fan (I also have ANP but have never used it in flight because SD does everything I need), but I still have a PLOG and paper chart with my route marked on. The odd SD crash in flight is annoying only in that my log files get split up and I like to export them to Google Maps. There is no safety issue for me.
I too think Monocock's concern lies in the direction of 'eggs in one basket' policy, not Skydemon or any other useful program/gadget
Not having anything else available to provide essential information(Charts, flight guide stuff) and just relying on bit of equipment, which may provide false information is, to me, folly.
<SHIP RANT MODE ON> Just using my marine experiences, witnessing the vast majorioty of navigation officers on board ships, relying SOLELY on GPS positions throughout the whole voyage, to the absolute rejection of any other means of checking, star/sun sights, visual bearings, visual observations, radar positions, Deduced Reckoning etc etc (ie all the long established navigation techniques), even in a close quarters situations (eg canals/rivers/coastal passages etc) - Makes my blood run cold - These guys won't do summary checks, not even glancing to confirm the beacon or buoy they've just passed, with ruddy great IDs painted on them or flashing the correct sequence, is actually the one that they were expecting to pass. They just rely implicitly on the outpourings of the GPS. They stand there on the Bridge, thumb in bum, liuke dumb lazy sheep. <SHIP RANT MODE OFF>
So - Monocock - I feel your concern - Not for SkyDemon per se (as I think it's the best thing since sliced smoked salmon), but on pilots operating with no form of back up ability.
Signed: EGHHZXAC - Life's tough if you don't weaken.
I agree with Mono and Grumpy One. Relying on one system only is not sensible. I have tried SD and can see how good it is, and have been looking for an excuse to buy SD and the new mini iPad but talk on this and other threads about all the continuous updates and now the crashes on iPad have so far put me off purchasing. I use a 296 and a paper map at present, and no doubt will have to upgrade the GPS to keep up, so SD may still be my first choice, although I think I'll keep my 296 working as well as my paper map!
Last edited by lurker1 on Sun Dec 30, 2012 11:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
I must be coming down with something - but I must agree with Monocock and Grumpy. I love SD. It is a fabulous tool with emense functionality - but nonetheless I always carry a chart, always carry paper copies of my emergency instrument approach plates, alway use my installed nav equipment, and always carry my specialist aviation GPS with me (in my headset case) in case I need it. If I am flying in bad weather, I always have my portable Garmin GPS powered up and programmed with my intended route.
I've said this beore on this forum. Maybe I am lucky - cos SD has never failed me. But I recognise that the iPad is just a piece of consumer electronics. and as such, it is not tested in the same way that a dedicated aviaion GPS is. Great though it is, I am not yet ready to trust it in the way I trust my Garmin's (installed or portable).
Lefty wrote:the iPad is just a piece of consumer electronics. and as such, it is not tested in the same way that a dedicated aviaion GPS is.
It's a little better than that - it was cleared last year by the Feds for use as an Electronic Flight Bag. Now that's essentially just a viewer for plates, but with the right software and config control, it's almost at the point of being 'dependable'.
I have been using SkyDemon on a variety of platforms since it came out and have found more crashes of the software on the iPad 3 than on anything else, although it crashed 3 times immediately after loading on the iPad Mini but never since and not in flight.
I have had ANP on my Android phone for a while now and use it very occasionally as a backup but have put it on the iPad Mini and flew with it for the first time today. It seems to have moved on a bit since the last version I tried. I particularly liked the pseudo "Synthetic Vision" function and the ability to enter the QNH into the altitude ribbon tied it accurately to the altimeter. With the Mini in portrait mode it sits in the left half of my knee board with the right part free for notes. I liked the way the route view pops out into a comprehensive frequency list without removing the moving map from the screen. I found the flight log accurate and complete and found the decimal time displayed useful.
What I am getting at is that although SkyDemon does lots of things very well, so does ANP and does some things SD does not do. It does have its limitations but as a piece of software that allows you execute a flight using a CAA chart, it works, is a little cheaper than SD if you don't fly in too many areas that require a new paid for chart and doesn't deserve the reputation it gets from some on here. It could do with NOTAM though!
I'm at the point where I feel as if I have enough moving map devices both installed and on tablets to put the GPSmap 496 up for sale.
Monocock wrote:I know you think I'm anti your product. I'm not anti it, I just can't get on with it, but that's not my point here.
Perhaps people think that (I do) because nearly every post you make here on the topic sounds that way. Just a thought.
Monocock wrote:What I'm anti is people relying solely on one single electronic device to fly a track, check weather, check NOTAM's and file flight plans
So everyone should have more than one electronic device? Nonsense, you can't expect that of people. Some people will, no doubt, but for the rest (and majority) they should find an electronic device they understand, find easy to use, and makes their life easier in the ways that they like. As with all electronic devices, they should be prepared for it to fail. Carrying a paper chart as a backup is clearly sensible.
Most of what you said in that paragraph is not referring to in-flight operations. You spoke of checking the weather, checking the NOTAMs and filing flightplans, for example. There's not a thing wrong with using one piece of software for all those operations if it makes life easier, as if it should ever fail to deliver the information or functionality you want there are always other ways of doing it, such as reverting to the Met Office website, the AIS website or AFPEx or briefing desk. Asking people to take a step backwards in ways they have found to make their life easier is not going to work.
Monocock wrote:Stuff about a gentleman at Popham
I expect the gentleman you spoke to was one of the vast majority of SkyDemon users who have absolutely no problems with it whatsoever, and has learned to trust it like you learn to trust any tool as time goes by. Whether or not he should also carry a paper chart is his decision; you and I would probably say yes he should.
Monocock wrote:Added to the increase in frequency of the 'Why is SD crashing after the update' threads
There's been an increase in people starting new threads when there are already threads on the go. Since we started recording telemetry on crashes occurring within SkyDemon earlier this year, we've diagnosed and fixed so many that the number of crashes experienced on a daily basis has reduced tenfold. I'm very proud of this.
Monocock wrote:I'm just more convinced that a manual system of weather checking, NOTAM knowledge and flight planning might be safer for those who have the tendency to allow themselves to become rather over-reliant on one system
Thank goodness those people have you around to save their day.
Monocock wrote:I will finish by saying that I do find it amazing how people don't seem to be allowed to say on this forum that SD isn't for them and that there are other very good, cheaper, and less 'eggs in one basket' products out there.
I am intrigued. Can you point to an example where a moderator has stepped in and discouraged, or even removed, a thread or post by someone either saying that SkyDemon isn't for them, or is poor, or saying how good some other piece of software is?
With all respect, I didn't criticise your product, just a particular trend towards going 'non-paper' and the risks associated with that, exacerbated by a product that's showing some slightly worrying cracks when relied upon perhaps too heavily. Everyone else saw my point.
I'm a little perplexed as to why you've responded/reacted how you have. Please don't take your annoyance out on me alone, when, if you read the posts above, I'm not alone with my thoughts.
I'm sorry if you've taken it personally, that's not what was intended.
Lefty said [quote]I am not yet ready to trust it in the way I trust my Garmin's (installed or portable). Top /quote] I feel the same. It took me sometime before I felt confident to trust my 296 and I suppose that'll be the same with any other device I buy in the future to some extent. I'm happy with primary nav on paper map, backed up by 296. SD (free version) for planning at home provides just a lot of good info quickly. We're talking about confidence in new products and to me it sounds like the hardware is what is letting down SD, not the software.
Using SD on a 'Bepy' unit gives me a superb desktop planning unit, and a solid and reliable (until now) magenta line to fly along with the superb 'radar' view. A couple of little on-screen boxes give me times to waypoints, speeds and other useful stuff.
It seems to the outside observer that the advent of the old big-sized iPad has changed either use or expectations with people talking of checking NOTAM in flight, looking at airfield plates, checking the weather and even using it to guide them around airfields.
Are these bells and whistles really necessary? Or is the whole thing becoming overcomplicated?
I have been seriously considering capitulating and buying a iMini. But if, as it seems, it's less reliable in use than my £60 unit I may postpone that for a couple of months longer.
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Oh dear, I never intended this thread to become an anti SD thread - I'd just like to say that I've been using SD since the IPad version came out, I've never really had any problems till the recent update - I've found it to be really reliable and good. The other issues being brought up here are not SD-specific and apply to any of the other GPS's. I've also been really impressed by Tim and his team who actually listen and respond to their customers and no doubt this issue will be resolved as soon as they get some data on the crashes - I'll be in touch with their support team the next time I experience a crash. It's good to share experiences with any tools that one uses...
I use SD pretty extensively, although I'm sure I don't fly as often as many on the forum. I think it is an excellent piece of software, and also feel that the iPad is a very good hardware platform for pilots for a variety of uses, including getting the 214 and 215 from the Met office web site, using an electronic E6B, even having the NOTAM emailed to you.
I can't comment on the use of Android tablets, or the generic Chinese devices used by some.
But in general, I think you'd have to be nuts to rely on any single piece of technology for navigation purposes in flight. I always carry (and mark up before flight) a paper chart, have hard copies of any plate I might use, and have a paper plog on my kneeboard.
In my limited experience, sensible flying should always be about providing yourself with options should things not go according to plan, whether it's actual met not matching a forecast, a runway becoming unavailable, or an item of kit failing. Anyway, I think I'm aiding and abetting in some thread drift here, but wanted to make the point.
Compared to the days when I planned on paper and used AIS and Metoffice for NOTAM and weather, then relied on Garmin Pilot 111 backed up by VOR, DME and ADF in the air, Skydemon is another world. I still prefer to use a range of tools when planning and will use different tools for different flights. Because I don't do a lot of VFR style flying I don't use Skydemon as much as I otherwise might and because I have GTN 650 and Aera 500 mounted in the aircraft I see little point in using Skydemon in the air, though I do use ipad for plates. However it seems to be very effective, practical and reasonably reliable from my observation of its use by others.
My two pen'orth is simply this. By all means rely on it as primary planning and navigation BUT have a back up, be it paper charts and plog, radio aids or both and make sure you keep your back up up to date as the flight progresses. It may also be wise to ensure that the platform it runs on is up to date and dedicated to it in the air at least, so I'd make sure all other apps on the ipad were closed and skydemon started from scratch before I took it into the air.
...exacerbated by a product that's showing some slightly worrying cracks...
Hmm. It looks to me like you can't resist a pop, even when claiming you're not!
Monocock wrote:Everyone else saw my point.
Not me. I wrote and then deleted a post in response to your earlier claim that you weren't digging at SD. In fact, on many SD threads you post the equivalent of those "Get a Mac" comments on Windows support threads.
The reason I deleted it is because your SD thread posts are borderline trolling (you even said "Go on then, shout at me" in your original post) - I didn't want to reward you with a response. But now I want to stand up for Tim because I understand his exasperation.
You don't like SD. Fine. Why not just try to ignore every SD thread; there aren't that many? And if you're genuinely interested in discussion of reliance on electronic aids, why not start a new thread of your own, instead of hijacking a request for support? Your protestations of innocence might then appear less disingenuous.
Rich T wrote:The reason I deleted it is because your SD thread posts are borderline trolling (you even said "Go on then, shout at me" in your original post)
Yes - because, as I've said before, it just seems (even more so after you're rather aggressive retort) that nobody is allowed to see any fault in SD, and when someone does dare say anything that might be an honest, yet perhaps not complimentary appraisal, they get a post like yours as a response.
Sadly, it is you who have resorted to an unecessarily aggressive approach, and until now, I haven't noticed such a theme on this thread.
I'm pleased that several other people could see where I was coming from on this (perhaps you haven't had time to read the whole thread?????), and genuinely sorry you decided to take the tone you have.
I'll say it once more...
I'm absolutely sure that SkyDemon is a wonderful and fantastic product.
It is just concerning for those who have opted for a paperless cockpit on the back of its early-found merits, that its ongoing reliability with the iPad seems to be less than perfect.
Is that clear now?
Last edited by Monocock on Mon Dec 31, 2012 10:30 am, edited 1 time in total.