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Homemade Cruise Ship
Friday, 19 October 2007

Talk to most paddlers and they all have a dream of building their own canoe or kayak. Not a lot of people actually get around to doing it. Even less get around to building their own cruise ship. Francois Zanella from France decided to take on the task and has finally finished it. He estimates that it took 25,000 hours to complete. The 33.5 meter long vessel is a 1/8th scale model of Royal Caribbean International's 1992 cruise ship, Majesty of the Seas and is 4.75 meters wide. Over the 11 years to took to complete the project, he built it on land beside his house then launched it in June 2005. Sorry the photo is so bad. There is a clearer one on the wikipedia listing as well. More info: wikipedia.org
The Wilderness Canoe Association recently announced that they have acquired the website Canadian Canoe Routes from its founder Richard Munn. With 5600 registered users and over 200,000 posts, it is a massive resource canoeists living in or planning a trip to Canada. Over the years there were various threats of scrap the whole thing and shut it down due lack of time to effectively maintain the site. It didn't help things when you had some very vocal people complaining that things were running the way they would like it. The whole thing left some bad feelings on both side of the computer monitor. I often drop in and see what is new and keep tabs on the paddling gossip at the grassroots level. With the WCA taking over the entire project, it will ensure that this vast resource will be available for the public for many more years. With more moderators online now, it should help keep the conversations on topic a bit more.

Google Street View
Tuesday, 25 September 2007

Google's Street View Car Today Sean and I were walking back to work from Tim Hortans here in downtown Toronto when we saw one of the Google Street View cars drove by. It was shooting photos of Bay Street. So, when they finally release Street View for the Toronto region, you might just see us there. We actually were walking along one of the side dead end streets when it passed us. About a block down the road, it turned around and passed us going the other way. Knowing it was going to come back, we ran over and sat on a rock in a park and tried to look like supermodels. We sat apart on purpose so it wouldn't look like we were holding hands... What is Street View you ask? Where have you been? It is an add-on to Google Maps. Zoom into a major US city like New York or San Fran. Once you zoom into the downtown core, you will see a little Street View button appear. Click over and bring on the good times. Looking for one of the REI's in San Fran? Here is a link. As you can see, there is plenty of parking on the other side of the street. I found a photo of the Chevy Cobalt car that Google uses. The car we saw today had California plates so it looks like they shipped up the fleet to Toronto. Strapped to the top of the car was a funny looking 360 degree camera that is used to take the photos. You can find lots of good technical information on Gizmodo. As you can see, we I get excited about the little things...

Site Tip - kayakpaddling.net
Wednesday, 12 September 2007

My friend Serge Savard just directed me to kayakpaddling.net. It is an animated Sea Kayak Instruction website. It has full flash animations on all the basic information for somebody just getting started into kayaking. It's absolutely fantastic and I'm completely blown away. Thanks for the tip Serge!

Shipping Disaster Photos Part 2
Wednesday, 01 August 2007

Still kind of hooked on large shipping disaster photos. Not sure what it is but just can't look away. I think that it is the shear size of those vessels. [Link] When I was 10, I remember walking around the port in Halifax, NS on a family vacation. We were invited aboard a cargo ship from Pakistan. They gave us the full tour, which was way better then any museum ship, as it was real and working right in front of us. I have vivid memories of walking through the bridge and meeting the captain. The crew were very excited that we were on board. My dad was just as excited as they were.
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