Category: decision making

Pitching your Tent in Dogshit

Living is nothing more than postponing the moment where you kill yourself. So far so good, but I have come really close a number of times. And retrospectively, mostly due to a lack of attention to the details. One that continues to stand out to me was when I was a student at Virginia Tech…. Read more »

Coronavirus; Why don’t we think through the problem first?

  While our coronavirus experience seems so novel, in the arc of maritime history, pandemics like this are far from unusual. Actually, the most unusual part of the present pandemic is that we have not had to deal with a pandemic like this for over 100 years. Taking into account that in those 100 years… Read more »

Barbados: The Goldilocks Approach to Sustainability

Mathematically, worldwide sustainable energy is a real possibility, but it will require a very significant change in thinking, attitudes, efforts, and financial commitments to accomplish. All over the world we are encountering experiments, trials, and even significant changes in human attitudes, but, so far, we cannot point at an integrated success story of societal change…. Read more »

Guns Blazing; The War of 1812 and the Jersey Shore

In 2014 our friends at Navesink Maritime Heritage Association organized an event that commemorated New Jersey’s 350th anniversary. Martin & Ottaway and a number of maritime organizations quickly jumped in as event sponsors and their sponsorship allowed the replica vessel Onrust to visit the Navesink River where New Jersey was originally settled. This year Navesink… Read more »

Books That Messed with My Head (2018 Update)

Note: I posed a question at the bottom of the original blog and in August 2016 added two book to the bottom of the list in response. In 2018 added two more books. Books are fun, but very occasionally I have encountered books that have actually changed my understanding of humanity and the world. Only a very small number… Read more »

The King and His Consultant; A Fairy Tale

I wrote this story many years ago, back when .PDF readers were still very confusing to use and cell phone systems were analog. It deals with what, today, I call “hyperventilation control,” a timely subject, I would say. I hope our clients, colleagues, associates, friends, and family will enjoy it as a heartfelt Martin & Ottaway holiday present. Happy… Read more »

How Not To Be Ignorant About The World

Ignorance is very pervasive and fighting ignorant behavior can be very exhausting. Jonathan Swift is believed to have said that you cannot reason someone out of something they were not first reasoned into. If that statement is true, and it certainly contains a lot of truth as far as I can see, it means that… Read more »

USS Somerset, The Real Lesson of 9/11

On March 1, 2014 the USS Somerset (LPD-25) will be commissioned in Philadelphia. The Somerset is the third and final San Antonio Class vessel named after 9/11 locations. The other two vessels of the same class that preceded the USS Somerset are the USS New York and the USS Arlington.  The names of the earlier… Read more »

Getting Lost Is No Big Deal. Not Knowing That You Are Lost Can Kill You

Accident analysis is a strange and complex task. Often blame is considered to be the motivator for an accident analysis, but the most interesting and useful purpose of an accident analysis is to tease the universally useful gems out of the huge pile of information that tends to get generated during an accident analysis. I… Read more »

Costa Concordia and QESTH

A while ago Wayne Thomas forwarded the “Costa Concordia Report on the Safety Technical Investigation” to everybody in the office and only just now did I have a chance to read it. While the report is not dated or specifically identified as “final” it appears this is an English language version of the last word… Read more »