Embedded Development and its Use in Recreational Sailing
Before there were motors and computers, men used wind power to move their boats. For navigation, they depended on stars. But modern recreational sailboats have nearly made them obsolete and now they contain an eclectic mix of modern and old technologies. While a diesel powered motor runs the boat, computer enabled compasses set the course and show you the direction. Modern day sail boats are also are packed with sensors like GPS and wind detectors. All of these run on embedded technology.
Other embedded systems on sail boats include actuators (rudder servo, sail winch) and XBees to enable remote communication. You can control these through an board computer or if you are more enterprising and innovative, a hand held tablet. Embedded products can also measure key parameters like fuel consumption and torque if the boat is mechanical. Moreover, they also help you collect data, analyze parameters and make reports on the condition of the sailboat.
Embedded systems have become so vital for safety on sail boats that sailing enthusiasts do venture on to the high seas without these devices. So embedded products are playing an important role in making sailboats tough and hardy, to meet the vagaries of the ocean.