Review: Disasters at Sea — Deadly Neglect, the Loss of the Marine Electric

Thirty-six years ago this week, the SS Marine Electric sank off the coast of Virginia with the loss of 34 officers and crew. There were only three survivors. The tragedy resulted in major reforms in ship inspections and operations and ultimately saved many lives. Last month, a new documentary series premiered on the Smithsonian Channel, Disasters at Sea. The second episode … [Read more...]

Movie Review – Nolan’s “Dunkirk,” Immersive Tour de Force, Incongruous Muddle, or Both?

Christopher Nolan's movie, Dunkirk, opened Friday to rave reviews. The New York Times calls it "a tour de force ...both sweeping and intimate."  The Guardian calls it "utterly immersive" and predicts that the movie "will doubtless become the definitive cinematic depiction of this remarkable chapter of history." I saw the film last night and while I generally agree with … [Read more...]

Cyber Security at Sea – Microsoft XP on Carriers, Hacking Tridents & Spoofing GPS

When reporters were recently being given tours of the Royal Navy's new "supercarrier," HMS Queen Elizabeth, some were surprized to see a distinctive logo on several computer screens on the bridge and in control rooms. The logo was for Windows XP, the Microsoft computer operating system introduced in 2001. The ship itself was under construction for over eight years and the many … [Read more...]

In Books: Deadly Straits by R.E. McDermott

http://youtu.be/yrXyuEQsmLQ by Rick Spilman - For the sake of full disclosure, I am not a huge fans of thrillers, particularly thrillers involving ships. The plots often strike me as implausible and the descriptions of the ships and ship operations often border on the laughable. (Too often, they leap across the border.)   This is not the case however … [Read more...]