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    Re: sextant without paper charts
    From: Bill B
    Date: 2008 Oct 31, 23:26 -0400

    bruce hamilton wrote:
    > Without having to plot fixes every 15 minutes there is a tendency for
    > bridge crew to rely solely on the information on the screen and not be
    > aware of where they actually are.
    I am not an aircraft pilot, but I have done a lot of flying in small private
    aircraft with instrument-rated and commercial pilots. To rephrase what you
    said, the term I heard so often was "situational awareness." You can go
    "under the hood" and expend all of your energy watching dials, gauges and
    blinking lights; and that will eventually get you into trouble. Avoiding
    "augering in" is of great concern, but knowing roughly where you are in time
    and space is equally important.
    > Our eyes and brains are the best navigational tools that we
    > possess, and the they don't even require electricity.
    Nit picking, it does require electricity (and chemicals) but you pay a food
    bill for that. 
    > I spent 2 years on 730 foot freighters going through the great lakes.
    > If any of you have ever been through the St. Lawrence Seaway on a boat,
    > just try to imagine what it is like on a ship.
    I'll pass on the St Lawrence at the helm in a ship. St. Mary's (Superior to
    the Lake Michigan/Huron North Straits) complete with cameras, radios, lanes
    and currents is thrill enough on a sailboat delivery with a diesel that cut
    out at the worst possible time (filthy fuel tank as we later determined--and
    the owner knew it before we set sail).
    Bill B.
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