Old Buoys Network

This post got me thinking.

If @redballbuoy, @redflatheadbuoy and @blueconebuoy were all on Twitter, they were probably not alone. (N.B. @blueconebuoy seems to have been bad buoy because Twitter suspended his account.)

Sure enough, the Sea-Fever research department has unearthed an old buoys’ network that spans the globe from ocean to ocean. Thanks to Buoy Alarm, the below graphic gives an indication of just how pervasive this network is today.

Buoy Alarm

Now you can monitor the ups and downs and what’s “current” with these old buoys on Twitter (@buoyalarm).

Thankfully, it seems like some members of this old buoys’ network have been up to some good work as far as maritime heritage and the environment is concerned:

Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail

NOAA’s Chesapeake Bay Interpretative Buoy System

Surprise “Stimulus Package” for Canadian Maritime Lobstermen

"World's Largest Lobster" by ellenmac11 on Flickr.com

Earlier today Canadian Maritime Lobstermen got a surprise when they called a government number regarding financial support for the struggling industry. According to The Canadian Press:

Maritime lobster fishermen in need of financial help got a lift of another kind Tuesday when they were directed to a toll-free number that was supposed to detail an aid package but connected them to a lusty sex line instead.

One of the several toll-free information numbers released by Fisheries Minister Gail Shea hooks callers up to a sex line that offers fishermen nary a detail on the lobster stimulus package.

(A spokesperson) said he didn’t know how many people had called before the correction was made, but added that the department hadn’t received any complaints.

Photo credit: World’s Largest Lobster by ellenmac11 on Flickr.com

Roman Abramovich’s Photo-Proof Super-Duper Yacht

 Might be one of the last images you see of Roman Abramovich's super yacht

Does it strike anyone else as odd that someone would build the largest yacht in the history of the world but wants to make sure that no-one can take a picture of it.

…the boat’s most unusual feature is perhaps the anti-paparazzi “shield”.

Infrared lasers detect the electronic light sensors in nearby cameras, known as charge-coupled devices. When the system detects such a device, it fires a focused beam of light at the camera, disrupting its ability to record a digital image.

The beams can also be activated manually by security guards if they spot a photographer loitering.

Is it just me, or does this guy have too much money. Somebody please tell Mr. Abramovich that James Bond was really make believe.

Russian Billionaire Installs Anti-Photo Shield on Giant Yacht – Wired Gadget Lab (Sept. 21, 2009)

Roman Abramovich zaps snappers with laser shield – Times Online (Sept. 20,2009)

Moby Monday — Crowdsourcing Emoji-Dick

Next stop: Klingon
Emoticons are fine as far as they go, but they do not express the whole range of human experience—our hopes, our dreams, our heartbreaks; our recycling, our maple leaves, our bananas. For that, you need emoji, which are Japanese emoticons for people with a lot of stuff to express (and maybe a lot of time on their hands).

In fact, emoji are now used by Japanese texters as a form of written language. This gave Fred Benenson an idea. The product manager at Creative Commons decided to have a book translated entirely into emoji, using the micro-contracting site Mechanical Turk for labor and the micro-funding site Kickstarter for scratch. But for a translation subject, he went decidedly macro: with enough backing, Benenson plans to produce a translation of Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick, the English language’s premier text on recycling, maple leaves, and bananas.

Benenson estimates the cost of translating Melville’s 1851 novel at $3,500 and is currently seeking pledges of $5 to $200. If enough backers sign on by October 19, their donations will be accepted and work will proceed. In the end, supporters will receive benefits based on their investments. Five-dollar backers will get a PDF file of the final product, while $200 backers will receive a color, hardcover limited edition Emoji-Dick book, numbered and signed “by the author.” Wonder how Benenson is going to swing that one?

Margaret Guroff is the editor and publisher of Power Moby-Dick.

Venice’s Aqua Alta: Adversity and Opportunity

Keeping with the rising sea theme, NPR’s Sylvia Poggioli tells us that Billion-Dollar Floodgates Might Not Save Venice (Sept. 20, 2009) Listen here:

(4 minutes)

Of course, opportunity rises out of adversity, especially when it comes to extreme sports, like wakeboarding.

[YouTube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tyqGHc10dvE]
YouTube – “Aqua Alta Surfing”: St. Mark’s Square on a Wakeboard