eLORAN shown to provide accurate timing for New York Stock Exchange trades

eLORAN shown to provide accurate timing for New York Stock Exchange trades https://www.dhs.gov/science-and-technology/news/2016/04/20/st-demonstrates-precision-timing-technology-ny-stock-exchange

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The night and stars: Henry Beston on Cape Cod in the 1920s

‘With lights and ever more lights, we drive the holiness and beauty of night back to the forests and the sea; the little villages, the crossroads even, will have none of it. Are modern folk, perhaps, afraid of night?  Do they fear that vast serenity, the mystery of infinite space, the austerity of stars?…Be the answer what it will, to-day’s civilization is full of people who have not the slightest notion of the character or the poetry of night. Yet to live thus, to know only artificial night, is as absurd and evil as to know only artificial day.’

from ‘The Outermost House’, Chapter 8: ‘Night on the Great Beach’

Henry Beston on the sun – from Chapter 4 of ‘The Outermost House’, his lovely book about life on the shore of Cape Cod

‘All these autumn weeks I have watched the great disc going south along the horizon of moorlands beyond the marsh, now sinking behind this field, now behind this leafless tree, now behind this sedgy hillock dappled with thin snow. We lose a great deal, I think, when we lose this sense and feeling for the sun.  When all has been said, the adventure of the sun is the great natural drama by which we live, and not to have joy in it and awe of it, not to share in it, is to close a dull door on nature’s sustaining and poetic spirit.’

Warnings from Royal Institute of Navigation picked up by BBC, Guardian and Daily Mail…

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-32545974

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/may/03/guardian-view-on-reading-maps

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-3064306/Sat-navs-apps-threatening-old-fashioned-map-reading-skills-experts-want-taught-schools.html

Royal Institute of Navigation raises concerns about excessive reliance on electronic navigation

This blog from the President about the dangers of excessive reliance on electronic navigation tools echoes themes I set out in ‘Sextant’.

I’m really pleased the RIN is raising these important issues. They deserve to be debated much more widely: http://www.rin.org.uk/newsitem/4060/Society

Official report on the loss of yacht ‘Cheeki Rafiki’ in May 2014

Predictably, the report from the Marine Accidents Investigation Branch puts the blame for the loss of Cheeki Rafiki mainly on the failure of the keel – http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/cheeki-rafiki-atlantic-yacht-disaster-5599764

Unfortunately, since it wasn’t possible to recover the wreck, we can’t tell whether flaws in the design and construction of the yacht contributed to the disaster.

The Daily Mirror reports:

…the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) had undertaken to work with the Royal Yachting Association to clarify the requirements for the stowage of inflatable liferafts on such vessels, and the Royal Yachting Association has drafted enhancements to its Sea Survival Handbook relating to the possibility of a keel failure.

The MAIB made a recommendation to the British Marine Federation to co-operate with certifying authorities, manufacturers and repairers with the aim of developing best practice industry-wide guidance on the inspection and repair of yachts where a glass reinforced plastic matrix and hull have been bonded together.

A recommendation has also been made to the MCA to provide more-explicit guidance about circumstances under which commercial certification for small vessels is required, and when it is not.

Let’s hope some useful lessons will be learned.