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It can be a bit tricky to read people's minds when it comes to finding out what they want, so we are going to start tracking the wish list on this page. Feel free to add comments or make changes here to let us know what you want in HiSeasNet. It may be some features on the web site, some form of additional support, maybe more bandwidth, possibly some new routing features, or something entirely different. Whatever it is, let us know or risk not getting it. The more specific you can be, the better.

Here are some of the Wish List items we have completed recently:

  • Better statistics – The traffic plots are now breaking down shore-to-ship traffic into individual ship numbers on a 5 minute interval.
  • More POR bandwidth – The POR C-band satellite has been supporting 5 ships at 160kbps shared. It was upgraded to 256kbps in August 2008. With the upgrade, the AOR and POR satellites both handle up to 5 ships at 256kbps shared bandwidth.
  • A way for techs from different institutions to communicate, list, or otherwise collaborate on what network services are offered on their ships. – This wiki has a place for it. We just need people to post stuff they want publicized.
  • Improved communications with scientists and higher level users of the HiSeasNet system – This wiki will hopefully help out with that by providing a place to keep track of projects, suggestions, and other information useful to scientists going out on HiSeasNet-equipped ships.

Here's what we have in the works:

  • Better communications between DAC and Comtech – There are plenty of times when the antenna locks onto the wrong satellite. Too many times. Newer antennas have a way to prevent this, but we need to test it before rolling it out to all of the ships.

Here are some suggestions that we are still thinking about:

  • Bandwidth Accelerators – Some of you have suggested we try out bandwidth acceleration tools (Cisco, Riverbed, Mentat, SkyPipe, etc.) to get some better performance over our slow link. At a quick glance, we arent sure if these tools would be effective, but a test might be something to determine that for sure. However, if they are effective, that increases cost of every installation, and we would likely need to install boxes fleet wide (or at least satellite-band-wide). Let us know if you are willing to take the downtime to try it out and/or pay the cost if it works.
  • Automatic re-routing through faster connections – This might involve a VPN-like solution where ships might connect to HiSeasNet routers through the internet instead of a satellite and retain the rest of their routing. This might be done when the ship ties up and gets a shore connection, has a short trip to another satellite operator, or has a SWAP connection.

Here's what we are still dreaming about:

  • Potentially better Ku-band coverage over the North Pacific. – This requires an additional antenna at the earth station and additional bandwidth on yet another satellite...if one exists. This isnt looking as promising as it used to.
  • Maybe some day more permanent C-band coverage in the IOR or Ku-band coverage in the Med. – This would require earth stations in places that can actually see the satellites that cover those areas.
  • Automatic backup power at the earth station – There are sometimes power problems at the earth station, despite being on a UPS circuit. Having a backup power source might be helpful for avoiding longer outages.

What do you need from us?

What resources are missing or are difficult to get to? Is there something we can change with the website or other processes to make things better for the ship or science operations?