The Burnetts are merrily sailing along. Just a couple of hours ago they hoisted their new Quantum asymmetrical spinnaker. For non-boaty-types, this is the giant, colorful sail hoisted when sailboats go downwind that loks as if the boat is ramming a hot air balloon. Ours is particularly festive, and we are hoping the astronauts in the Space Station enjoy the flourescent raspberry blip when they look down on the Atlantic. Because they can probably see it.
Mel is going to talk about something called, “User experience design.” This is a techie field that Mel became interested after she used a computerized medical record system called Cerner Powerchart. Cerner Powerchart must have had zero user experience design, which is an effort to make technology easy and pleasurable for the user. It is sad that this is a “new thing.” Why is Mel reflecting on that? Because they hoisted the spinnaker today.
Here is some data for you: the user experience of hoisting a spinnaker needs a little work. A more tedious process does not exist in sailing. This was only the second time the Burnetts hoisted Rasperry Fields and the first time using a new, longer sock. They had put the new Bainbridge sock, which of course came without any instructions, on themselves, and apparently they twisted a lot of curse words into it, as they all came flying out with the first attempt to hoist. Spinnaker socks can store a lot of swear words!
But the spinnaker is up, engines are off, and we are on our way!
Boat stuff: 153 nm in 24.6 hrs. Spinnaker is up with no engines. We are making 8-9 kts in 10-12 kts of apparent wind. The seas got bigger and are now supposedly 3 meters, and they are pushing us down our course, so we only have a light dusting of Dramamine in us.
This e-mail was delivered via satellite phone using Global Marine Networks, LLC’s XGate software. Please be kind and keep your replies short.