Thursday, 15 August 2013

The Ducks Have It

I have just finished reading Moby Duck by Donovan Hohn.
OK, the duck wasn't quite this big but I like this one.  It has sadly popped.

The book is an absolute must for any budding oceanographers.  I read it as I have oceanographers working for me and I thought it was about time I paid some attention to their noble art.  It covers the study of what happened to the plastic bath toys that fell into the Pacific Ocean in 1992 when a container fell off a ship. It's a mix between a study of ocean currents and ponderings on man's environmental impacts.  Plastic pollution scores high.  I particularly liked it as it was written by a non-oceanographer who got hooked by the study of the oceans as any right minded person should.  Perhaps I'll be an oceanographer in my next life?

Late last week on Radio 4's "show my your instrument" (is it only me that giggles at that?) Helen Czerski showed us her buoy.  Here it is.  As one of my team said, if you didn't see the picture on the website you'd think she was talking about a giant lollypop.  It's worth listening to - bubbles are the way to go.

Saturday, 10 August 2013

Longitude and Venice - with a very tenuous connection

I recently was pointed towards a BBC article on Longitude.  Nothing new on the John Harrison front but interesting to note some of the crazy - or do we now call this "thinking outside of the box"? - ideas that were postulated.

I have recently been to Venice and snapped this ship: sort of on the same theme.
13 08 02 3-Rialto to San Giorgio (27)
And alongside the standard holiday photos of gondolas and canals I found a few maritime treasures.
13 08 02 3-Rialto to San Giorgio (28)
Nice anchor.
13 08 01 8-St Marks and Home (1)
I didn't visit this naval museum.  If I'd been by myself I would have wandered in but I couldn't be bothered to suggest it to my holiday companions.  Mind you, if I'd known it was only 1-55 EUR entrance fee I might have suggested it.  Ah well, something to look forward to for next time.

Piazza San Marco has a wonderful astronomical clock.
13 08 01 8-St Marks and Home (13)
13 08 01 8-St Marks and Home (21)
You'll note the V and 40 above the clock.  And, indeed, it was 1740.  I double checked when I went back a couple of days later.  At 1020 funnily enough.  It only displays to the nearest 5 minutes but that'll do me.
13 08 03 2-St Marks (11)