Thinking Ahead

on the boat

One of the more challenging aspects of living on a boat is having to cope with resource constrains, communication and mobility limitations. I don’t think I was fully prepared for this before I went on the boat. It only struck me after I had been on the boat for a few days that cell phone connection was intermittent in the Salish Sea, there was limited internet access, and we were not always docked.

This was not an easy lesson to learn and I realized that I had to think really far ahead in terms of planning my work. Although we generally had internet connection at Snug Harbor, the connection can get cut off when the boat moves, or sometimes even fail completely. I really had to budget my time and make full use of “internet time”. Moreover, I could not rely on internet being available for the entire night.

Both Dr. Kodner and Dr. Buckman, our guest for two nights, were really helpful in helping me cope with this challenge. Most of the time, students use database (SQL) queries to filter and arrange data. This requires internet. When internet is not available, there is only Excel, which has a myriad of useful functions that make data analysis that much easier. Furthermore, Dr. Veirs has suggested that it’s possible to work with SQL as an offline application. That’s something!

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