SailNet Community - View Single Post - Google Glass and it's effect on sailing
View Single Post
post #78 of Old 11-26-2013
Senior Member
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 261
Thanks: 4
Thanked 10 Times in 9 Posts
Rep Power: 6
Re: Google Glass and it's effect on sailing

Originally Posted by Bene505 View Post
... Coming into harbor just now we had a tug boat coming the other way in a narrow-ish channel. My 'Glass showed it was the 'Lasy Susan' about to spin my world around. Indeed, the AIS prediction had it passing very close to me in 2 minutes and 20 seconds. I stared at the words 'Lazy Susan' on the Glass and then winked. VFH went live, with his ID already dialed in.

"Lazy Susan, this is the sailing vessel Rag Dryer, off your bow", I said.

About this time I glanced to my port, blinked a long slow blink and brought up the depth overlay, adjusted for the present tide height. It was too shallow to go there. The Active Captain link was working too, as there was an unmarked piling 100 yards off, one of several obstructions in the area. It looked good to the starboard, but it meant backtracking a bit. And he might be headed that way.

"Rag Dryer, Lazy Susan", was the reply. Voice recognition took a second, it's usually pretty slow like that. Finally, up popped the name Vincent Boatsalot, age 42, divorced twice, 3 kids, smoker, failed a drug test back in 05. It was dismissed because he ate a poppy bagel that morning. The retest the next day was fine. No DUIs. Tax payer. Good credit rating. Jets fan.

My 'Glass told me that his 'Glass was looking at me. I can only assume my 'Glass was informing his 'Glass that I was looking at him. (And there was another sailboat in the distance looking at each of us.)

"Are you taking the turn to your port or continuing straight", I said.

"We're going straight; suggest 1 whistle.", was the reply. Those tug drivers are good.

So I glanced up at the autopilot icon and did the usual wink nod and look to the right. The boat immediately changed course.

Then I took a sip of my coffee and went back to listening to my favorite 80s channel. The coffee was good so that I order another pound to be delivered to the marina and twittered how much I liked it. That done, I took another sip.

As the tug passed, I brought up VHF with his ID again and said "Go Jets".

I was surprised at the reply as he said "80s music rocks, Bene505."

Two blinks later and we were following each other on Instagram, so I DVR-ed back a couple minutes, edited the screen shot and posted a picture of his fine ship. He immediately liked it and hash-tagged it for his friends to see, at #tugsunderway.

Then I took another sip, slowed the boat down and left my hammock on the bow to get a refill.


Brad, I wish my experience was a good one like yours. But my Google Glass tale is one of disaster and woe... There I was, sailing into the channel on my return, when all of a sudden-

I had just brought down the sails and gotten them secured a few minutes ago. Turning into the channel we were taking wind on the port beam, not a big deal but I had to keep correcting steerage to port just a little because of shallow water to stbd and a rocky jetty. I wasn't making full RPM and I swore I was hearing an intermittant rattle. Tapped the 'Glass and diagnostics looked okay. Temp was good, good coolant level, oil pressure looked good.... but that rattle- and we just weren't making the headway I expected.

Tide was running out, so that accounted for the loss of headway, but that rattle- what the heck was it? Eye Blink to bring up engine diagnostics again. Quick snap of my neck to flip to the next screen. nothing. Quick Snap. nothing there. Quick Snap. "DO YOU WANT TO UPGRADE TO THE FULL VERSION OF "app" ?

Dammit! Quick shake of my head. "NO!"

the box closes.

Next box "Limited Time Offer: Sale on Diesel Parts! click now to save $$$, order today to get it by Tuesday with Super Saver Shipping"

Dammit! "NO!" I shout and shake my head violently

Alarm sounds in my ear. "ALARM CHECK!" I shout. The Alarms screen pops up. DEPTH ALARM: MINIMUM DEPTH

I look up and the wind has caused us to drift stbd so I course correct. But I see a hundred yards ahead that a tug pushing barges has rounded the bend and is coming at me. Why didn't AIS give an alarm?!

I tap my 'Glass. That stupid popup is there asking if I want to buy diesel parts. I clear the popup.

ALARM! GONG GONG GONG GONG GONG GONG The "US NAVY GENERAL QUARTERS alarm ringtone I had selected for my alarm sound was an obvious poor choice right now.

"Alarm check!" I shout to the continuous GONG GONG GONG GONG GONG that is pulverizing my brain by the second.


Damn popup! How long has this alarm been blocked by the popup?

"Radio!" I shout

The Radio App comes up, tuned to 16. Great.


"NO! CLOSE! CLEAR!" I shout while shaking my head side to side to close the app, trying to focus my vision through the head shaking as I frantically scramble to find a course that will clear the barges and still allow me room so that I don't get pushed up on the jetties by his wake.

My wife is screaming now because she has just come up from below and sees what is going on.

I throw my 'Glass across the cockpit because the popup is blocking one of my eyes and the alarm sound in my ear is driving my crazy.

My son picks up my Google Glass and puts it on. He sees the popup and begins tapping the side of the glasses. He somehow brings up my list of previously visited internet sites and blinks.


Mom looks over at Junior who is wide-eyed- mouth gaping, and he's got both arms stretched out in front of him, with both hands squeezing the virtual Charmin.

So, there I was- threading the needle with my wife beating me across the head and shoulders with my West Marine collapsible boat hook screaming like a banshee, Junior over there learning way too much too soon about the birds and the bees, well the birds mostly.... and me trying to save our lives because I got us into this mess worrying about my engine.

Thanks, Google Glass.
ShoalFinder is offline  
Quote Share with Facebook
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome