Improving a Boat with Software

When we first moved on board Wanderbird we began opening cupboards, cabinets and access panels and discovered years of parts and pieces squirreled away. A mysterious tab behind a bathroom shelf led to a cavern full of boxes, filters and spares. When Luke asked one day if I had seen a particular item – we both recalled having seen it; but was it behind the bathroom mirror or in bin number 6, deep within the center bilge access?

It became apparent we’d need to track all this inventory. After a brief search turned up nothing much better than a simple database I started writing a vessel management application. As we experienced life aboard we identified many other areas where an app could help. Maintenance schedules were high on Luke’s list, a proper travel log were on mine and it was clear that some financial tracking would interest Paul.

Three years later as we’ve refit our way through the pandemic, the application is beginning to show signs of life as a useful program. I often hear of captain turn over, or boats transitioning from one owner to another and a package like this could really benefit any vessel of substantial size. There are countless extensions from expansion into charter operations to data sharing between vessels with like missions.

Hopefully we’ll be wrapped up with the mechanical refit in the next few weeks and we’ll be back to more adventurous posts, but for now, it’s back to programming.