Their enormous size and weight create significant momentum. This momentum is hard to stop. When the ocean enacts its unpredictable forces it can cause deviations in the plotted course. If the captain doesn’t notice for a while, the distance we veer off-course can increase rapidly.

Fortunately, as big as these ships are, the captain is able to address the deviation quite easily.

  • Design: rudders are at the rear of the ship for the highest impact
  • Leverage: by increasing the moment, or distance from the pivot point
  • Increments: with micro-adjustments, we are able to facilitate significant change

Yes, we should create fail-safe’s to avoid our ships veering off-course in the first place. Since it’s already happened, the most useful response is to find a way to fix it. The default setting might be a knee-jerk response leading to overcorrection and a decreasing amplitude path. This is not the most efficient.

Go slow to go fast. Use all the tools in the toolbox.

Daniel Norris

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