The equations we now use inevitably will be useless in our future, why do we persist in screwing around with them? They're hindering development while we wait for the inevitable as if it is a definitive line we'll cross somewhere down the road.
On the northern Chesapeake this Memorial Day weekend there were far fewer boats than I expected - probably a sign of the economy - there are also many, many boats for sale.
The monster cigarette boat roaring up and down the river near North East MD seemed particularly obscene in light of the BP disaster and the assumed decline of the "lords of the universe" with money and fuel to burn. Utterly destroying the ambiance of a pleasant place at such a time ( Memorial Day and an era where conscience should rule out ostentatious display of fuel/money gluttony) was lost on these guys, yet indeed it was a display of fuel versus hp efficiencies.
They may spend their 10 bucks a year on "Save the Bay" crabfests but they're killing a bit more of the bay with every high speed run, only possible by the "efficiency" of on board diesel or gas.
I have a thumping universal 3-20 which frankly is healthier than I want it to be, because I envision an electric drive, battery bank and solar charging system in its place. Yeah, I know there are heavy metals in the batteries, inefficiencies in the motor winding and far more in the solar collection but I want a sustainable/recyclable system even if it is less efficient, even if it is a drop in our proverbial bucket.
Going slower or not going as far ( by car, boat or whatever) may be the selling point of our future propulsion.
Oil and gas let us travel fast and far but except for a wealthy few we all ended up in the same placed - screwed.
We gotta look at this problem differently.
So I say go to it Lazlow - you have an excellent dream there - there will be twists and bumps (remember the last big oil/gas crisis?) but you're going to learn, do something meaningful and pave the way for the next person.
Some solar, wind and maybe water/wave generation might shrink that diesel down too.