In the May/June 2016 issue of the FAA Safety Briefing, an article by Susan Parson caught our eye. In “eLogbook Logistics: Considerations for Moving from Paper Log to Digital Login” Susan reviews the present state of electronic pilot logbooks and suggests some important things to consider when making the switch from paper. Her suggestions include common sense issues like data security and ease of use, but also more nuanced considerations such as the sentimental value of a logbook.
Below are six ways that ForeFlight’s digital pilot logbook meets (and exceeds!) some of the considerations that Susan outlines:
Electronic signatures: ForeFlight Logbook allows flight instructors to sign off on students’ flights, and also provides a wide range of pre-written endorsements for instructors to select and sign. Adding a signature locks the entry or endorsement from editing by the student – an important security benefit over paper logbooks.
Easy data entry: Entering flight data line by line would be easy enough in Logbook, which has “smart” tools and options that help you conserve keystrokes – but thanks to its integration with Track Logs, you don’t even have to do that! Fields like departure and destination airports, flight time, and distance are auto-filled based on the recorded Track Log, allowing you to simply review and approve the new entry.
Generating reports: Susan mentions the pain of sifting through line after line of paper entries gathering data for a Form 8710 Application for Airman’s Certificate or Rating – a task that takes only a few taps in ForeFlight Logbook. The app compiles and exports all the data needed for a Form 8710 in exactly the layout provided on the official form. General pilot experience reports for different date ranges can also be generated and exported to email or print.
Secure backup and export: As part of the company’s cloud data ecosystem, Logbook is automatically backed up to ForeFlight’s secure servers, keeping your flight data safe. Furthermore, you can export your data to a CSV file from ForeFlight Web, allowing you to keep your own backup on a computer or in another cloud account, as Susan does.
Accessibility: A second benefit of saving your logbook in the ForeFlight Cloud is being able to access it anywhere, anytime, from any of your iOS devices with ForeFlight installed. Should you find yourself without access to the app itself, you can also access your data in ForeFlight Web, which supports nearly every modern web browser.
Preserve memories: A logbook’s ability to evoke rich and powerful memories is arguably as valuable to a pilot as its primary role of logging flights. ForeFlight Logbook strives to maintain this ability with photo attachments. You can add unlimited photos to flight entries, aircraft profiles, certificates, and endorsements, all of which are saved with the rest of your data in the ForeFlight Cloud, and are accessible from any of your devices.
We thank Susan for her thoughtful and informative article. We’ll continue to raise the bar with ForeFlight Logbook to make flight logging more efficient and more enjoyable for pilots. You can learn more about ForeFlight Logbook here.