Outrageously Beautiful Nudi(branch) Pictures!

Don’t worry, it’s not what it sounds like! Check out this video of these amazing sea creatures.

National Geographic – Living Color – Photographer David Doubilet introduces the glamour slugs of the sea.

More about Nudibranchs

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Sea Shanty Shakedown – Roller Derby Lives!


Wow! Who knew that roller derby lives? Right nearby in Providence no less! With a nautical theme too! Perfect sponsorship beer battle between the local contender Narragansett and the old blue collar favorite Pabst Blue Ribbon! Children under 6 are free! What a family event! I must be dreaming. (Link)

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Messing About In Ships Podcast Episode 24

Lou Vest calendar photo Jan 2008 Heather Knutsen - header

Episode 24 of Messing About In Ships has launched.

(70 minutes)

Download MP3:Messing About In Ships episode 24 (May 29, 2008 )

Subscribe Via iTunes HERE

Shownotes: Messing About In Ships blog

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"One year of NASA’s exploration budget would allow us to explore the ocean for 1,600 years"

The TED Conference might be out of reach of most of us but thanks to the miracle of YouTube we can experience presentations by some of the world’s greatest thinkers and doers.

Here is Bob Ballard’s great 2008 presentation. I saw him deliver a similar program at the 2006 BIF2 conference in Providence. He’s a very entertaining and passionate speaker delivering an important message. Please watch and enjoy.


Interestingly, he closes by asking why we aren’t colonizing the sea. Sounds like he’s an advocate for seasteading, too.

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Bermuda Maritime Education Pilot Program

I haven’t been able to keep up my normal pace of posting over the past week mainly because a project that I’ve been working on at Northeast Maritime Institute (NMI) is about ready to launch. Here’s a link to an article by Bermuda Sun senior writer Meredith Ebbin which will give you a good snapshot of what our MATE (Maritime Apprentice Training and Employment) program is all about. (Pilot Program to train young seaman – May 23, 2008 ) Here’s a link to an earlier Royal Gazette article which provides even more background. (Young Bermudians get chance for careers at sea – July 19, 2008 )

NMI partners in this exciting and innovative program include the Bermuda Sloop Foundation, a youth development charity which owns and operates the sail training vessel, Spirit of Bermuda (above) and the Adult Education School, an alternative adult school that offers opportunities to persons 16 years and over who have failed to gain basic educational qualifications in the traditional system. NMI’s other partners in this initiative include Bermuda’s Marine & Ports, Maritime Administration and National Training Board.

The MATE program launches on June 2 in Bermuda with 3 weeks of STCW Basic Safety Training and Able Seaman’s classes, then the students will hop aboard the Spirit of Bermuda to sail to Fairhaven, MA where they will spend the next 9 weeks enraged in a rigorous academic and practical maritime education program.

Surprisingly for an island nation, Bermuda has lost contact with it’s rich maritime heritage. One of the MATE program’s objectives is to try to remedy this. But the most important outcome of this initiative will be that young Bermudians who have have fallen out the system will be provided with the education and skills training to pursue maritime careers at home or across the globe. It’s a very worthwhile project of which I’m really please to be a part.

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Happy National Maritime Day!


From the US Maritime Administration website:

On May 22, 1819, the S.S. Savannah left its home port of Savannah, Georgia, on its way to Liverpool, England.  The ship “put to sea with steam and sails” and reached Liverpool, England, in 29 days and four hours, becoming the first steamship to cross the Atlantic.  While the steam engine performed faultlessly, it was not the only means of propulsion; historians have estimated that the Savannah was under sail 80% of the time.  Nonetheless, it was an impressive achievement, one that signaled the beginning of the era of steam, and American technological leadership.

By a Joint Resolution passed on May 20, 1933, Congress declared May 22nd to be National Maritime Day.  This is the text of the resolution. 

Whereas on May 22, 1819, the steamship The Savannah set sail from Savannah, Georgia, on the first successful transoceanic voyage under steam propulsion, thus making a material contribution to the advancement of ocean transportation:
Therefore be it Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

That May 22 of each year shall hereafter be designated and known as National Maritime Day, and the President is authorized and requested annually to issue a proclamation calling upon the people of the United States to observe such National Maritime Day by displaying the flag at their homes or other suitable places and Government officials to display the flag on all Government buildings on May 22 of each year. (link)

If you listen to Episode 24 of Messing About In Ships you’ll learn how Captain John Konrad of gcaptain.com celebrates the maritimest day of the year.

I’m celebrating it in Bermuda!

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Seasteading: Making Waves and Living with them too.

BLDGBLOG One of my favorite blogs, BLDGBLOG, had a interesting post yesterday about seasteading, that is “creat(ing) permanent dwellings on the ocean – homesteading the high seas.” Deep-water city-states (May 19, 2008 )

What interests me here, aside from the architectural challenge of erecting a durable, ocean-going metropolis, is the fact that this act of construction – this act of building something – has constitutional implications. That is, architecture here proactively expands the political bounds of recognized sovereignty; architecture becomes declarative.

The stakes for design have gone up, in other words. It’s not just a question of producing better loft apartments, for which you can charge an extra $300,000, or of perfecting the art of luxury kitchen space; it’s a question of designing architecture for extreme conditions and, should your architecture survive, thus opening up room for a new form of what might be called post-terrestrial sovereignty, i.e. governance freed from landed terrain.

BLDGBLOG’s interest was piqued by an article that Alexis Madgridal wrote for Wired entitled Peter Thiel Makes Down Payment on Libertarian Ocean Colonies (May 19, 2008 ) Thiel and some of his friends seem to be pretty serious about this: they’ve put their hard cash on the table to fund The Seasteading Institute and they’ve written a 300 page how to guide which in the open source spirit is freely downloadable here in case you’re one of those DIY types.

Google’s Patri Friedman, the grandson of Nobel Prize winning economist Milton Friedman, is the executive director of The Seasteading Institute.

Friedman estimates that it would cost a few hundred million dollars to build a seastead for a few thousand people. With costs that low, Friedman can see constellations of cities springing up, giving people a variety of governmental choices. If misguided policies arose, citizens could simply motor to a new nation.

“You can change your government without having to leave your house,” he said.

Wonder if these guys have watched this movie a few too many times.


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Monday Moon Over Mattapoisett


Tonight’s beautiful moonrise over Mattapoisett Harbor. Across Buzzards Bay in the distance is Falmouth on Cape Cod. On the left is Ned’s Point lighthouse.

Each afternoon when I get home from work, the harbor gets a little more populated. It’s a great time of year!

Taken at 9:32 PM from the deck of our home with a Nikon D200 with VR 80-400mm (80mm); 1.1 seconds, f4.5, ISO 200.

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Monday Morning Motivator: "Yes, and…"

Joe Pine was the co-author, along with Jim Gilmore, of one of my favorite business books of all time, The Experience Economy. In this clip, he discusses and plays the improvisational “Yes, and…” game. Please watch:


While the “Yes, and…” exercise is a foundation for successful improvisational theater, the same rules apply to the practice of leadership. Listening and building on the conversation will more often than not lead to innovative solutions, create a positive outcome and build stronger relationships. Give it a try!

Now you say… “Yes, and…”

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