Electronic Logbook

I’ve been on a crusade this year to rid myself of paper.  Evernote has replaced my notebooks, Penultimate my scribbles, and google tasks my to-do lists.  So when I began filling out another line in my logbook after a recent flight, I decided it would be the last.  After all, I already had a excel sheet of my hours, and the advantages of a digital format were already apparent: no more running out of space in the comments section, and good riddance to those pesky math errors or mistaken handwriting.

A brief search and comparison of the free and paid offerings available led me to Flightlogg.in.  This is a web-based electronic logbook that is completely free, refreshingly flexible and packed with some great features to take advantage of all the data you can supply about your flights.  The interface looks reassuringly similar to the classic logbook you’re familiar with already:

Flightlog.in main page

My first 50 flights on the Flightlog.in main page (click to enlarge)

Because I was already starting to keep my hours in an excel file, I was able to import the data with minimal additional editing required.  Once in Flightlog.in, that data is not locked away in some proprietary system as in many other applications – you can import and export to an excel-compatible CSV file at any time, and backups are sent to your email as frequently as every single day if you so wish.  You can customize the columns that are displayed, edit an entire block of entries at once, and choose from a number of privacy settings that relate to some of the social features available.  If you’d like to swap your stats with other pilots and work towards one of several achievements, this can be enabled.  For instance, because I have flown 5 distinct aircraft types at some point in my past, I rank a level 2 in the “Type Master” category.  I still need to make it out to several more airports before reaching the 50 required for the next level of “Explorer.”  Some couldn’t care less about achievements, but I think they’re a fun addition.

Flightlog.in also keeps track of your currency, as well as progress towards your next certification:

It goes all the way to ATP, but my progress there was quite pathetic.

It goes all the way to ATP, but my progress there was quite pathetic.

One of my favorite features is the ability to make tables or graphs of almost any combination of data you can think of.  You can use this to quickly access how many hours you flew in the past year, or the amount of experience you have in a given type of aircraft:

Many options / combinations available to generate tables

Many options / combinations available to generate tables or graphs

Finally, Flightlog.in automatically maps your flights on google maps, and measures the distance of each leg, providing a great visual representation of the places you’ve been, and offering ideas of areas yet to be explored.

Oh the places you'll go

Oh the places you’ll go

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