07/06/2022
– It has, again, been a
long time
between updates. It may be of interest to understand why.
Our website was originally developed using
Microsoft FrontPage
in 1997. We kept on working with this
for years. Eventually it was replaced with the more powerful
Microsoft Expressions Web
program,
which was later made a free download. As perhaps we should have foreseen, eventually Microsoft
dropped support for Expressions Web, we continued to struggle on with Expressions Web being used on
one of our older computers. However last fall we found that we had to develop a work around procedure
to keep using Expressions Web using another program to handle the uploads to our web site, as for
whatever reason Expressions Web would no longer do it. Finally, this older computer became unreliable
and at the end of last year we found ourselves with no way to update the site. Despite being very
overloaded with work we started researching to find a
replacement package
. We reviewed a very large
number of packages and gradually weeded them down to one package,
Xara Web Designer Premium
,
which we downloaded. The manual is nearly 600 pages and the capabilities are very great. However, I
do worry that it seems very difficult to drill down to the .html code itself. However, it looks like they
have gone to great lengths to make that unnecessary. A number of great capabilities like forums, the
ability to post videos, etc. are available, which I have great hopes we can make use of. This updated page
is
our first attempt
at creating a revised page using this program.
Many students will have noticed
severe delays
in getting
lesson corrections
back to you during the
first half of this year. This was because of illness on my part which resulted in an
operation in mid-
March
. Recovery from this was very slow. For a very long time I was only able to work
about an hour
at a time before having to lie down for anywhere from a half hour to an hour. By June I was able to work
right through the day
with only an occasional need to lie down for a quarter of an hour to a half hour.
This has allowed us to gradually
catch up with lesson correcting
work until we now have no more than
a couple of lessons in the queue at a time. It is probable that I will need a follow up operation later in the
year.
In our last update, toward the end of 2021, I mentioned that we were separating out the material in
the second half of
Lesson 19
to make our first and probably only
“free floating”
lesson in the form of a
book which can be acquired by our students at any time. This book is called
“Wealth for the Working
Person”
and is intended to lay out a conservative plan by which any
ordinary working person
can,
through
regular modest investments
, attain first
financial independence
, so that losing a job means no
insecurity of income, and somewhat later have
real wealth
by any measure. So many of our students get
jobs early in their studies it seems logical to get them
investing as soon as possible
. Further for many
students yacht design will be a second career and they are studying while working at whatever job they
have now. They also might as well start building wealth now. The
first draft
of this book is done now,
and I have a book put out by the printing company on how to prepare the manuscript for printing with
proper formatting. We are in the middle of that now. I’m managing to get in about 2 hours per evening,
roughly 14 hours per week on this. Not very fast but we’ll get there. I’ve learned a lot but I’m
embarrassed by how much I’ve had to learn to prepare the book for publication.
Another project we are working on is better calculations for
certain types of rigs
. We’ve always
taught the mathematics of both unstayed and stayed rigs, but recently we’ve had an occasion to design
what I would call a
“partially stayed” rig
. A good example of one of these would be a sloop with a
headstay and shrouds which run, perhaps roughly 2/3 of the way up the mast, but no backstay and no
staying for the upper part of the mast. As far as we can tell designers have always done this type of rig
“by guess and by God”. As good designers tend to be fairly conservative this has normally been pretty
successful. However, I do remember that early versions of a British twin keel design had a partially
stayed sliding gunter rig. As I understand it, despite a couple of re-designs, they kept having these rigs
fail. They final switched to a fully stayed rig which was very successful but not as attractive as the
original. We owned one of these rather charming little boats for several years fairly recently. In any case
we have gathered all the engineering thinking we need and are working out the calculations for partially
stayed rigs which will be added to
Lesson 14
. Other Lesson revisions and additions are all part of our
efforts to make the second half of the curriculum more “self-teaching” like the first half of the curriculum.
Yacht Design School
has grown to the point where I can’t spend much time on
custom design
projects any more. We’ll continue to
finish up
some of our
idea designs
and do more detailed drawings
for some of our older designs using our advanced students and draftsmen to give them a little paying
work. When custom design projects, or custom work on existing designs, do come in, I will work with the
client to develop a
Concept Design
and the
Lines
. Then we’ll assign a draftsman to finish the design
under my supervision just as we’ve been doing, but with more emphasis on using the draftsmen in order
of those who’ve gotten furthest in our YDS Main Curriculum.
Changes we’ll be making to the web site which should be coming up soon will be to
eliminate
the
purchase option for
Flamingo nXt
. This photorealistic rendering plug-in has been replaced by a fully
integrated
photorealistic rendering
capability in
Rhino 7.0
itself. We will also change the page about
the really nice
bronze windlass
. We no longer stock this, but we can refer you to the original
manufacturer of the windlass who still produces them.
June this year brought a visit by one of our most promising students and his family. They were
here two days, and we not only had a wonderful time talking, but also he was able to assist me by
bringing down stairs a large number of files which I am trying to thin out and consolidate into a smaller
number of file cabinets in our library. This is part of an on going change brought on by the very strong
tendency for draftsmen as well as our advanced students to work remotely from their home offices, rather
than studying and working here.
We’ll try to post updates
more frequently
. There are always a great many things we are trying to
get done simultaneously. Most of these would be interesting to one degree or another, but the very fact
there are so many of them makes it hard to find time to report adequately.
10/31/2021
– I always know when I’ve left updating this page
way too long
when I start getting emails
asking if we are “still” designing or still teaching yacht design. Of course we are, it’s just that we are so
overloaded
we tend to always be trying to deal with more “urgent” things than updating the site. This
isn’t great in that we have a number of
really nice designs,
we haven’t gotten on here and a lot happening
with the school that people aren’t hearing about..... By the way, if anyone knows of a web site
development and maintenance program which can replace Microsoft Expression Web, which is no longer
available, let me know. I've been trying for weeks to post the latest updates. …. One change that is of great
importance is that we’ve taken on another instructor,
Jay Majors,
who will be teaching and lesson
correcting more and more of the
Main Curriculum.
He is also doing the
CAD
Course
teaching. We’ve
gotten a number of inquiries about
videos
and
video conferencing
. I’ve just never had sufficient time to
do much in that area, but Jay has
already done
some video conferencing with our students and is
enthusiastic about doing more in this area. …. On the YDS front I’m greatly expanding what has been the
second half of Lesson 19, which is on how a yacht designer can handle his or her
personal finances
and
investments
in order to gradually attain
financial independence
and eventually
wealth
. This is going to
be a
separate Lesson,
presented in the form of a book. Unlike the other lessons this one can be
taken at
any time.
There are two reasons for this. Unlike the other lessons this one doesn’t build on the
knowledge of previous lessons. It is completely self-contained. Also there is so much demand for trained
yacht draftsmen that our students are getting good jobs in the field long before they’d ever be learning
about how to invest a portion of their earnings each month. Since working full time in the field tends to
slow down their studies, we felt it would be beneficial for them to have the opportunity to learn how to
invest as early in their careers as possible.
Time
is more important than the amount you are investing
each month. You don’t want to put off starting investing or you’ll be much less wealthy in your older
years, or will need to invest a higher percentage of your income.
We aren’t going to add in the many previous years of updates going back to 1997. If anyone wants to see
them for historical purposes we can make them available.