If you weren’t already aware I bought a boat last month. It’s probably a large part of the reason I haven’t made many blog posts recently. It’s been great & even though I didn’t have the boat in the water & ready to sail until late July, I’ve still gotten in some great evenings & weekends. Now however we’re in hurricane season. Now I get nervous each time I see or hear the word “hurricane” on the news. It didn’t seem like we got this many hurricanes last year, (1 in fact, which ended up being a tropical Depression by the time it hit) but now that I bought a boat it’s like every weekend. In any event I thought I’d throw together a list of resources that help track hurricanes & predict their paths. I’m certainly hoping that this storm (Danny) goes out to sea!

Link: IbisEye – Atlantic Hurricane Tracking 1850 – Present.
Link: StormPulse – Tropical Storm tracking, including “”cone of uncertainty.”
Link: Tropical Atlantic – National Hurricane Center model data (“Spaghetti Plots.”)

Today is one of the lesser celebrated yet extremely important holidays; Earth Day. With recent trends in recycling on the rise and the public embracing the cause more and more it’s great to see new products coming out which not only help to keep our planet green, but also keep your money in your wallet. Imagine being able to cut your car’s emissions while simultaneously increasing your fuel efficiency. That’s just what Sabertec makers of the Blade claim to be able to do.

Sabertec tells us that the Blade can in effect reduce greenhouse gasses by up to 34%, & filter vehicle air pollution by up to 57%, all the while increasing your vehicle’s fuel efficiency by 10-30%. By capturing post-catalytic particulate matter through a filter replaceable filter, the Blade is also able to decreases the time it takes for your vehicle’s catalytic converter to heat up preventing exhaust from slipping back into the combustion chamber as it is expelled, theoretically maximizing gasoline efficiency. I recently had a chance to speak to William O’Brien, CEO of Sabertec, as well as Director of Blade Sales, Steve Joyce, here’s what they had to say.

Link: BladeYourRide.com

While I’m not the biggest fan of the MBTA, I’m in the market to buy a house, and would like it to be near the train so that there is easy access to the city. Specifically I’m looking for somewhere that is walking distance from the train. Initially I was looking for somewhere near a subway station, but I’ve broadened my search to include houses near commuter rail stations. I get a number of email about houses which are for sale, but the first thing I want to look into is location. How far is this place from the nearest train station. Aside from knowing the area, there doesn’t seem to be any way to find this information.

Services like Netflix or Blockbuster Online have really made renting movies a lot easier, it seems like the hardest part is returning the DVDs to the warehouse. I mean DVDs arriving strait to your door is like the epitome of laziness, but it is also so great. I plan to post further about this in the future, but this is not the subject of this post. Today I am writing about a different convince. One which helps me to actually return my movies in a timely manor. I’m spoiled by email and delivering messages from either my desk or right from my phone on my hip. Finding a mail box on the route I’m already traveling is a huge help. I found myself wishing that there was some tool to help me find these road side mailboxes ahead of time rather then by combing the horizon with each turn I make on the way to work. Then I found Mailbox Map. It’s a mash up of Google maps and the United States Postal Service mailbox locations. just enter your address, or zip code, and you will instantly have a visual list of all the mail boxes on or near your location or planned route of travel. Here’s just another tool fueling my laziness and I love it!

Link: Mailbox Map

It only took until Tuesday, after a short delay (snow day) from mother nature to get back to work from a great vacation. I flew out early last Sunday to Jackson Hole, Wyoming and skied for 5 days returning late Saturday night. The conditions were great! It was my first trip out west so I was psyched to get such good snow. Each night we got new snow & one day nearly a foot of fresh snow fell as we skied. In anticipation for the trip I bought a new camera replacing my Canon Powershot SD400 Digital Elph with another Canon, this time the SD1100 IS. I’ve been a big fan of the Canon cameras & their operating systems. I find Canon cameras extremely easy to use, and quite reliable. I took a bunch of pictures this past week, as did others I was with. I compiled, captioned, & posted them all on Picasa, take a look!

Link: Vacation Pictures from Jackson Hole, Wyoming – 2009

From the Boston Globe: A North Shore man who is sailing around the world by himself has rounded the Cape of Good Hope at the southern tip of Africa and is heading east into the teeth of a storm. “We’re pretty much on edge here right now,” said Rich Wilson, 58, of Marblehead, who has been sailing the 60-foot Great American III in the Vendee Globe solo yacht race for a month. “I’m tired. The boat’s going very fast. We’ve got a storm coming tomorrow night, so there’s a very high tension level not knowing how strong it’s going to be,” he said in a satellite telephone interview this afternoon from his boat. “This is the scary part of it all because you’re so far away from anything,” said Wilson.

Wilson said injuries he received earlier in the race to his back and ribs are much improved, but it’s grueling work sailing his boat, which was hitting 18 knots — that’s water skiing speed, he pointed out — under winds of about 35 knots this afternoon. Raising and lowering the boat’s sails is hard work and the craft is constantly in motion, he said. “This thing has been going on and on and it’s going to continue to go on and on and on,” said Wilson. “It can be pretty violent. You’ve just got to be holding on all the time. It’s tough … You’re going to have a nice night’s sleep, but I’m not.”

The race began Nov. 9 in the French port of Les Sables D’Olonne. It’s expected to last about 100 days. Stormy weather hit the participants just after they left the starting line, and some were forced to turn back.

Wilson is the president of sitesALIVE!, a company that works to connect students to learning adventures on land and sea. He is participating in the race to share his experiences with schoolchildren through the Newspaper in Education program. He doesn’t expect to win and is currently in 20th place out of 24 still in the race, with more than 17,000 nautical miles to go.

His log entries, photos, and podcasts can also be found at the sitesalive.com website, where he also answers students’ questions. The site also contains essays from a team of experts on topics related to his voyage

Wilson was distracted for a moment during today’s interview by a loud noise outside the boat’s cabin, but then decided with relief it was “just a wave against the hull.”

“I’m tired and I’m probably not being particularly joyous today,” he said. “Tomorrow night’s going to be a tough night.”

-ByMartin Finucane, Boston Globe Staff.

Link: Great American III

As summer begins winding to a close, hurricane season is just getting started. The folks at the Sarasota Herald Tribune have created a sweet map and data mashup for tracking hurricanes at Ibiseye.com. It uses Google Earth imagery and maps. You can even choose to overlay it with the latest satellite image. You can track Fay, or any other storm in the archives. All of the current weather advisories from NOAA are on the site as well. In addition to hurricanes and tropical storms, this site also keeps track of all current weather advisories like flood warnings, heat advisories, thunderstorms, etc.

The site gained it’s namesake from the Ibis, which is said to be the last bird to leave ahead of a storm and first to return; ibisEYE.com gives a similar view of all hurricanes to hit Florida from 1851 to today.

Read more

I’ve been watching NBC all week looking for Olympic Sailing coverage, but I’ve learned they don’t show it on TV. It’s available on the NBC website, and you should watch it there.

Here’s a Message From Dean Brenner, Head of the US Olympic Sailing Committee:

Hello everyone,
I’m heading to the west coast on Wednesday for three days of team processing and a send-off event in San Francisco. We leave for China from SFO on July 26, and the Games begin on August 8.

Here are the best ways to follow along during the Games: http://www.ussailing.org/olympics/blog/dean/index.asp. Our PR officer will be managing our own site with features and information specific to our team: http://olympics.ussailing.org/Olympics.htm. I’ll have a daily blog from the Games as well, starting on July 29: NBC Sports will be a great place for hard news and scores: http://www.nbcolympics.com/

NBC has decided to feature more than 20 sports on the web only. Sailing is one of them. You won’t see one minute of sailing on TV, but you’ll see tons on NBCOlympics.com . They will be paying attention to see which of these 20+ sports get the most hits. IF YOU WANT TO DO SOMETHING REALLY GOOD FOR SAILING, make this link one of your daily visits: http://www.nbcolympics.com/sailing/index.html

PLEASE SPREAD THE WORD ON THIS. The more traffic we can drive to the sailing portion of NBC’s Olympic site, the more they will be willing to cover us in the future. Finally, if you want to get fired up, start here: http://www.amazingawaits.org/#/universe,video/

I’m about to test the theory that a person can’t be on an adrenaline high for 5 weeks straight. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Have a great day, sail fast, and GO USA!


Well, ski season is officially over. It’s really hard for me, but what a season it was. For the first time ever I hiked Tuckerman’s ravine and made a pretty nice run down. It was definitely exhausting, but it was honestly the experience of a lifetime. I will absolutely do it again. I highly recommends looking at the pictures. Apparently the day I went was one of the most popular weekends in recent history up there, and there were thousands of people up there. It was almost like a beach party. Te trip down was way better the the trip up. We took the Sherborne trail down and it might actually have been my favorite part of the day. What a beautiful and rhythmic ride down. So now that the weather is getting nicer it’s time to start thinking about summer sports. I’ve begun working on my boats and can’t wait until they’re in the water. I also bought a new bike with plans to do a lot more bike riding this year. While searching for good bike routs nearby I came across a great website for mapping your bike rides, as well as searching through rides cataloged by other people nearby. I’ve posted a few of the routes I like on my page, but all of MapMyRide.com is pretty cool to check out. I’d recommend it. Read more

A lot of times I release a new part of this website which is mostly just for me, but could also be handy to others. I have worked on a couple pages like this lately, one of which is my Surf Page. It’s pretty bare at the moment, and not linked from anywhere but here, but I do have plans to incorporate a lot of the board sports I do in a more prominent way. The Surf Page is pretty much just a reference page for me so that I can see the surf and check the reports in the Southeastern Massachusetts area, but if you’re a surfer from the area, or feel like following it, this page should be a good starting point. I’ll post a little information about some of the other pages I’ve made ion the near future.

Link: EricDresser.com :: Surf Page