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    Re: The Zen of Sextant Navigation
    From: Robert Eno
    Date: 2005 Nov 16, 20:45 -0500

    Nay. Not at all.
    The tools are an integral part of the whole process. It is not only the
    ends -- the DR plot -- which make for a thoroughly enjoyable experience, but
    the means by which this is accomplished. If it were just a matter of
    arriving at a DR, then it would just be mathematics, or in an extreme case,
    just go for a GPS.
    But the tools.....ah the tools. The beauty of a precision bronze sextant.
    The heft. The history behind it. And the wonderful accoutrements that come
    with the sextant like bubble attachments, telescopes, artificial
    horizon.....And after you have taken your sight, there are the wonderful
    trig and log tables, the Nautical Almanac, the forms, the plotting tools.  I
    love these things.
    Or to put it another way, any pursuit worth its salt is usually accompanied
    by a panoply of wonderful toys with which to play.  What is a carpenter
    without his tools?
    Think of operating a boat: sure, it is wonderful to cruise the seas and I
    love doing this, but I also love tinkering with my boat; with my engine, the
    accompanying gear, the rope work, knots, splices, anchors, chain and the
    million other things that have to be done to keep a boat well-maintained and
    seaworthy. This too, is part of the satisfaction that accompanies the
    overall experience.
    So I have to disagree with you Peter. The tools are indeed very important
    and part of the Zen of celestial navigation.
    ----- Original Message -----
    From: "Peter Fogg" 
    Sent: Saturday, October 15, 2005 2:13 PM
    Subject: Re: The Zen of Sextant Navigation
    >> From: Robert Eno
    >> My two bits' worth of philosophy on a windy, cold Saturday afternoon.
    > On a lovely Sunday morning just slowly revealing itself; a rosy glow
    > through
    > complex slowly moving clouds, towards a day that is unlikely to be cold
    > or,
    > unfortunately, contain any rain ...
    > I think you're all missing the point with your obsession about tools,
    > although I understand their appeal.
    > Let us remember that the basis of navigation is not tools at all, it's a
    > DR
    > plot. To put that another way; it's a state of mind, of being aware of
    > space
    > and time and movement, and of recording and interpreting them.
    > Various tools may be available to assist and refine this process (starting
    > with a pencil and paper). All have their advantages and failings. Like us,
    > none are entirely to be relied upon, but all are potentially useful.
    > At the risk of belabouring my point, nav is not about tools, any more than
    > gardening is. The Polynesians who lived and migrated between small islands
    > scattered about a vast ocean navigated without any tools.

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