ShipPlotter AIS Reception Analysis & Website Upload Spreadsheet/Program

User Guide for ShipPlotter.xls by Neal Arundale

Creates a list of current ships in CSV and/or HTML and/or XML and/or KML format
Dynamically graphs No of ships, Message rate and Maximum range
Uploads any/all of above to a webserver

The AIS data must be received by the COAA ShipPlotter program.
Excel 97, 2000, 2002, 2003 or 2007 must be installed.
Windows 98 or later.

Quick Start

Click this link, with ShipPlotter running, open the spreadsheet & enable macros.
Excel will display a screen similar to this, but with no points on the graph.

After 5 minutes (the default setting) the first point on the graph will be plotted and the number of messages received since startup will be listed above the graph.

Features (Click the links to see the current files for Scarborough)
At a user defined polling interval the COAA ShipPlotter program is interrogated.
The polling scheduled is controlled within Excel eliminating the use of the Windows task manager.
The AIS data received is displayed in a graphical format.
You can choose to list current ships in CSV and/or HTML and/or XML and/or KML format.
Any or all of the above formats may be automatically uploaded to a webserver of your choice.
The  Graph may optionally be uploaded to a webserver
The CSV list contains all the message data currently being decoded by the COAA ShipPlotter program.      (MMSI,Name,Latitude,Longitude,COG,SOG,Heading,Rotation,Status,Accuracy,Type of Ship,Draught,Length,Destination,Call sign,IMO no,ETA,Beam,GPS position fwd,GPS position port,Time last message received, Share code ais data,Range,Bearing,CPA & CTA)
The HTML list can be viewed with a browser on your PC or by users visiting your website. If you wish to display a different subset of the ship data received, this is done by altering the content on one sheet of the Excel workbook. Similarly it is simple to alter the format with a basic knowledge of HTML.
The XML list may be used to interface with Google maps, click here to view the webpage when rendered by Google maps. The default format I have set up will interface with the HTML sample webpage which can be downloaded from the files section (vbscripts) of the ShipPlotter forum.
The KML list again will interface with Google maps, in this case you can use the Google server to combine the ship's data with a map. This is done by just going to a link directly in this case
The default format is almost as simple as it can be so that you can see the wood from the trees.
Optionally, you will be informed when you start the program if I have uploaded a new version of the Excel code (Win 2000 on).

If you click on the Data tab (at the bottom on the Excel screen) you will see a list of the ships, somthing like below.

  If you click on the Summary tab you will see a summary of the data something like this

The HTML, XML and KML tabs are used for uploading the data to a website, for more information go to AIS Data Analysis Website Upload Guide

ShipPlotter > Options
There are a number of options which affect the way you will see the data being received. These are simply changed by selecting the options box from the Excel menu bar.

The Options box will be displayed

Refresh  is the frequency ShipPlotter will be polled and the Graph updated, set to 0 stop polling
Graph Range sets the number of points that will be displayed on the time axis of the graph. By default the last 500 entries are kept so you can change this to display a larger number of points retrospectively.
Message Rows are the number of rows of data that will be displayed above the graph. The default is the last 5.
Max Ship Range is the maximum range ships ais data will be loaded into the spreadsheet from the Shipplotter data.  This is of use when TCP messages are being received by shipplotter but you are only interested in ships within a certain range from your home location. If set to 0 all ships are loaded.

Check for Updates if unticked Excel will not check each time it is started whether there is an updated version on my server.

ShipPlotter > Controls
There are a choice of the following options
    Start     Restarts the scheduler - if you have stopped it
    Stop     Stops the scheduler - if running
    Purge   Clears all the data obtained from ShipPlotter

ShipPlotter > Help
Will display this page

ShipPlotter > About
Will display a message box similar to the one below. If you wish to report a bug, this is very helpful.

Uploading to a website
Detailed instructions may be obtained from the page AIS Data Analysis Website Upload Guide

Changing the Layout of the Worksheets

You should not change the layout of the Graph or Data worksheets.
You may change the layout of the Summary Sheet, or add other Sheets including Graphs, that link to any other worksheet.

Changing the Summary
The Summary sheet is a normal Excel pivot table linked to the Data worksheet. I have included it as a "sample"
Click on any cell within the summary table
Right click and select wizard
Click on Layout
Drag the Headings into the table & Finish

If you double click on any total you will get a new sheet created containing only the rows off the Data worksheet making up the total.
You can use pivot tables to summarise any data held on an Excel worksheet. It is an extremely powerful way of not only listing totals but also splitting values into ranges and graphically showing the result. For example you can simply plot a Graph of the Speeds of ships in bands of say 5kn and the graph will be updated each time the worksheet is updated. Or you could plot a Graph of Range vs Bearing.
For more information I suggest you Google Pivot Tables.

Changing the VBA Code
See here more information about altering the VBA code