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post #641 of Old 11-14-2012
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Re: HMS Bounty in trouble...

Originally Posted by MarkofSeaLife View Post

For the new generation of sailors paper charts are archaic.
Would that include those times when the electrons might cease flowing aboard a small boat at sea, or into her chartplotters and/or computers?

Nah, that could NEVER happen, right? (grin)

Originally Posted by MarkofSeaLife View Post

So what is apparent to you at a glance on paper is apparent to me at a glance on computer.
I've debated this issue at length elsewhere, no need to repeat it here... I'm simply not entirely comfortable going anyhere without a paper backup, but that's probably just me... Many people nowadays obviously feel quite comfortable doing so...

My point was, however, more precisely this: In trying to imagine the circumstances the skipper of RULE 62 found himself off Lynyard Cay that evening, the likelihood of an overwhelming desire on the part of everyone aboard that boat to "get us off this damn thing, NOW...", a more 'leisurely' perusal of his options would not have been as readily available via electronic means, as it would had a larger format paper chart been spread out before him...

To obtain a similar degree of information that could have been gleaned from an appropriate chart 'at a glance' generally involves considerably more 'work' - in the form of zooming, panning, atc - when using electronic means... I don't think I'm alone in sensing 'The Big Picture' might not be as readily available when relying on electronic means, it certainly isn't to me...

One thing that captain needed to do that night, was more fully 'explore' his options... I'm sorry, but for him to have fully done so, to have assessed the merits of running around behind a spot like Hole in the Wall, or up to Sandy Point, or down to Royal Island or the safe haven of Spanish Wells using a plotter or computer alone, could simply not have been easily done 'at a glance', the necessary information simply isn't available in a single screen shot, as it is on paper... At least, certainly not on my C-Map card of that regiion, when viewed on my 10" Simrad display...

And, it doubt that's just my tired "older generation" eyes talking, there... (grin)

One thing I've noticed since the advent of electronic navigation... In places conducive to gunkholing - the Bahamas and Maine, for example - it seems nowadays less likely to encounter boats in the sort of 'unexpected' places that might intrigue one during a previous evening's perusal of a large paper chart... There seems to be very little of the "hey, THAT looks like a cool spot, why don't we check that out..." going on anymore... Rather, choices now seem to be made simply more in accordance with the recommendations of cruising guides, and all the waypoints and routes provided to take you there...

And that, I believe, is partially a result of the limitations or difficulty of 'browsing' a topography as intricate as the coast of Maine on a 13" computer screen, as opposed to a traditional chart several feet square... Used to be a big part of the routine of cruising, spread out the chart on the table after dinner had been cleared, pour another glass, and browse the possibilities for the following day... Now, that's morphed into firing up the Honda 2000 on deck, and shooting a CD from the latest season of MAD MEN into the player... (grin)

Like reading a book on Kindle as opposed to the physical object in your lap, or shooting images digitally as opposed to on film - there's nothing wrong with either means, of course.... But, that doesn't mean that they're the same...

Last edited by JonEisberg; 11-14-2012 at 12:23 PM.
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