Saturday, February 14, 2015

The mystery of life

The mystery of life from Adil Schindler
 "Accept the pain and celebrate the joys"


On January 28th and 29th. two unusual events coincided at the legendary divesite of Roca Partida in the Eastern Pacific.

 Roca Partida with the Marine GeoGarage

The divers of the Mexican Liveaboard SolmarV encountered an unusually friendly humpback whale mama with her newborn who allowed them unparalleled close encounters underwater.
The next day 2 Orcas showed up at the dive site and executed natures plan of order.... 

Google Maps goes coastal with unmanned boat

A Street View Trekker mounted on an autonomous Wamv robot passes the Exploratorium.
and see the San Francisco Shoreline streetview imagery in Google Maps at maps.google.com/ocean

From SFGate by Kristen V. Brown

Recent visitors to San Francisco Bay might have spotted something strange: a small unmanned vessel zipping through the water with a mysterious sphere mounted atop its two parallel hulls.
“What is that?” one bystander asked recently, as the watercraft hugged the shoreline off of Fort Mason.
“Is it a water drone?” asked another.

For the past few months, the nonprofit San Francisco Baykeeper has been remotely piloting the craft — a catamaran topped with a loaner Google Street View camera.
In a teaming of tech and environmental advocacy, Baykeeper is using the camera’s 360-degree imagery to capture the shoreline’s rising sea levels, mapping a meandering 400 miles of the bay’s coast.
The idea is to give people a close-up view of the shore, the kind of view typically available only from a boat.
This, Baykeeper hopes, will rile them up.
“A lot of people know about sea level rise,” said Sejal Choksi, an environmental lawyer and Baykeeper’s interim director.
“We are hoping these images will really bring the reality home to the public, that they will look at pictures of places they know and say, 'Oh my gosh, this is going to be underwater.’”
Google’s Street View cameras have been affixed to cars, boats, people and even camels. But this catamaran, a Wave Adaptive Modular Vessel that keeps the camera steady even as the tide swells, is a first.




Baykeeper initially planned to use kayaks and GoPro cameras to document small parts of the bay. After Baykeeper won a $100,000 grant from Google, though, the Mountain View tech giant offered up its imaging gear.
The camera consists of 15 lenses atop a mast, each angled in a different direction to be stitched together to create a panoramic view.
The catamaran is battery-operated, and controlled via joystick from Baykeeper’s patrol boat.
“It’s basically a large-scale video game,” said Karin Tuxen-Bettman, a Google employee and wetlands-mapping expert who is helping Baykeeper with the project.

Baykeeper began mapping in October.
After more than 20 eight-hour days on the water, the organization has documented 300 miles of shoreline, including wetlands and deltas.
Already, the mapping expeditions have proven revelatory, said Ian Wren, Baykeeper’s staff scientist.
“We noticed in some areas the wetlands are just a few inches above high tide,” he said.
“That means they are at risk for flooding, which could destroy those ecosystems.”

Wren has also discovered abandoned ships at risk of polluting the bay as they rot.
Once the mapping is done, Baykeeper will display the images in interactive maps on its website. They will also be available through Google’s popular Street View tool.
“A lot of agencies talk about sea level rise, but there is not a lot of public input,” Choksi said.
“These kind of issues should be more community-based. They are local, regional problems.”

In addition to using the images to raise public awareness, the nonprofit hopes to establish a baseline against which researchers can measure sea levels in the future.
There is significant research indicating that the global sea level is rising now at a faster rate than in the past.
The Global Mean Sea Level has risen by 4 to 8 inches since record keeping began in 1880. (Sea-level rise is caused by two main things: thermal expansion due to the warming of the oceans and the melting of land-based ice such as glaciers and polar ice caps.)

Baykeeper is not the first environmental group to receive Google’s Street View technology.
Through Google.org, the company’s nonprofit arm, Google has lent its cameras to researchers studying the Galapagos Islands, Tanzania’s Gombe National Park and the Colorado River, among other locations.
Nonprofits, researchers and government tourism agencies can apply to borrow the device.

Tuxen-Bettman said she hopes to eventually work with local governments and nonprofits to map all of the waterways feeding San Francisco Bay.
It might be useful for planning purposes, like documenting infrastructure that might need to be replaced or repaired.
“We want people to see that this kind of information could really be useful,” she said.

Links :







Friday, February 13, 2015

Study finds rising levels of plastics in oceans

Plastics weighing 191 times as much as the Titanic are dumped in the oceans every year as nations led by countries in Asia struggle to manage waste, the first study to quantify the problem showed.

From NYTimes by John Schwartz

Some eight million metric tons of plastic waste makes its way into the world’s oceans each year, and the amount of the debris is likely to increase greatly over the next decade unless nations take strong measures to dispose of their trash responsibly, new research suggests.

The report, which appeared in the journal Science on Thursday, is the most ambitious effort yet to estimate how much plastic debris ends up in the sea.

Indian fishermen pushed their boat through plastic waste last month in Mumbai.
Credit Punit Paranjpe/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

Jenna Jambeck, an assistant professor of environmental engineering at the University of Georgia and lead author of the study, said the amount of plastic that entered the oceans in the year measured, 2010, might be as little as 4.8 million metric tons or as much as 12.7 million.
The paper’s middle figure of eight million, she said, is the equivalent of “five plastic grocery bags filled with plastic for every foot of coastline in the world” — a visualization that, she said, “sort of blew my mind.”

By 2025, she said, the amount of plastic projected to be entering the oceans would constitute the equivalent of 10 bags per foot of coastline.
 

The researchers then projected the amount of waste going forward based on population growth estimates.

 Any walk along a beach will produce a sizeable haul of plastic waste

“This is a significant study,” said Nancy Wallace, director of the marine debris program at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, who saw the paper before it was published.
Ms. Wallace applauded what she considered the sophisticated use of available data to estimate the amount of plastic entering the marine environment, both collectively and country by country.
“Of course we know these aren’t absolute numbers, but it gives us an idea of the magnitude, and where we might need to focus our efforts to affect the issue,” she said.

In 2010, 192 countries produced a total of 2.5 billion metric tones of solid waste, including 275 million metric tons of plastic.
An estimated 8 million metric tons entered the ocean that year

The research also lists the world’s 20 worst plastic polluters, from China to the United States, based on such factors as size of coastal population and national plastic production.
According to the estimate, China tops the list, producing as much as 3.5 million metric tons of marine debris each year.
The United States, which generates as much as 110,000 metric tons of marine debris a year, came in at No. 20.
While Americans generate 2.6 kilograms of waste per person per day, or 5.7 pounds, to China’s 1.10 kilograms, the United States ranked lower on the list because of its more efficient waste management, Professor Jambeck said.

Inside the Garbage of the World Documentary from Philippe Carillo
Is the Plastic Trash Island floating in the Pacific Ocean a myth?
Are we getting poisoned?
How long do we have before a worldwide disaster happen?

Plastics have been spotted in the oceans since the 1970s.
In the intervening decades, masses of junk have been observed floating where ocean currents come together, and debris can be found on the remotest beaches and in arctic sea ice.

 Debris from urban activities and runoff accumulates at the edge of Lake Michigan.
(Courtesy Jenna Jambeck/University of Georgia)

The problem is more than an aesthetic one: Exposed to saltwater and sun, and the jostling of the surf, the debris shreds into tiny pieces that become coated with toxic substances like PCBs and other pollutants.
Research into the marine food chain suggests that fish and other organisms consume the bite-size particles and may reabsorb the toxic substances.
Those fish are eaten by other fish, and by people.
Cleaning up the plastic once it is in the oceans is impractical; only a portion of it floats, while most disappears, and presumably what does not wash ashore settles to the bottom.
Any collection system fine enough to capture the smaller particles would also pick up enormous amounts of marine life.
So the best option, Professor Jambeck and others suggest, is to improve waste management ashore.
But prodding developing countries to spend money on waste management is difficult, she acknowledged.
“You’ve got critical infrastructure needs first, like clean drinking water,” she said.
“It’s kind of easy to push waste to the side.”
Over the years she has pursued this line of research, Professor Jambeck said, she has seen a strong, even visceral response from the public.
“You can see waste,” she said.
“Not that people want to.”

Links :

Thursday, February 12, 2015

The $1 billion superyacht: Bigger, longer, but is it better?

 4Yacht, Inc. presents yacht project "Triple Deuce", a whopping 222 meters (728.4’) long, and the most expensive, at a cost of over one billion dollars...
4Yacht is not able to provide more details, such as the designer, or the volume.
They did release information about the engines; triple gas turbine engines producing over 100,000 horsepower, powering electric podded propulsion units.
Adding such features will almost certainly add more time to the total construction time, putting more pressure on the 2018 delivery date.
Time will tell if construction of this project will eventually commence.

From CNN by Sheena McKenzie

There's big. And then there's bigger.

Introducing "Triple Deuce," set to be the world's biggest superyacht at a whopping 222 meters long.

At $1 billion, it will also be the most expensive private yacht ever built, costing more than the annual GDP of Western Sahara, the British Virgin Islands, and Micronesia.
The identity of "Triple Deuce's" owner remains secret.
Nonetheless, building a yacht of this size is all about "boasting rights," said Craig Timm of 4Yacht, broker of the record-breaking project.
"It's just like the competition to build the world's tallest building," he said of the commission, due to be completed in spring 2018.
"Project Deuce will cost $1.1 billion to $1.2 billion," added Timm.
"And don't forget to add in annual operating costs -- on a yacht of this size, it will run the owner up an additional $20 to $30 million per year."

The boat will be over 40 meters longer than the world's current biggest superyacht, "Azzam," believed to be owned by the President of the United Arab Emirates, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
It will also trump Russian businessman Roman Abramovich's "Eclipse" by 58.5 meters.

At 180 meters long, "Azzam" is currently the biggest superyacht in the world... but for how long?

"Our client was concerned that if we built the yacht to 200 meters, then someone would come along like Roman Abramovich when he built "Eclipse" at 163.5 meters, and outdid Sheikh Maktoum's yacht, the 162 meter "Dubai," by only 1.5 meters," explained Timm.
"By building the yacht to 222 meters, the owner wants to make it difficult, if not impossible, to be 'eclipsed' himself."

As the race to build the world's biggest superyacht steps up a notch, is there a point when these floating palaces simply become "too big?"
"You can't really be 'too big' for the high seas. But these superyachts are now at such a size that many of them can't get into harbors," said John Kampfner, author of "The Rich: From slaves to superyachts, a 2,000 year history."
"So what they do is moor out at sea, and a small boat -- which is still enormous by the standards of ordinary mortals -- will take them to shore. Or they could always jump on their helicopter, because no self-respecting superyacht comes without a helipad these days."

In the past two decades average superyacht sizes have more than doubled, according to Gaelle Tallarida, managing director of the Monaco Yacht Show.
"Fifteen years ago a large yacht was 45 meters," she said.
"Whereas now it's 100 meters long, maybe even a little more," she said.
"And I think we have still not achieved the limit."
"Triple Deuce's" master suite alone encompasses two stories and stretches across 275 square meters -- including a private gym. The seven-deck superyacht also comes with two pools, numerous jacuzzi, and a hair stylist and barber.

Yet in a global climate of "haves and have-nots," is it morally justifiable to spend $1 billion on a private yacht catering for 36 guests?
"To be honest, what ordinary mortals think is 'moral,' is not actually relevant to these people," said Kampfner.
"You have to understand that we're not talking about the top 1% -- in this instance we're talking about the 0.01%. This is a tiny group who live in their own bubble, they mix only among themselves."

Timm sees things differently, pointing to the employment opportunities created during the building and running of the superyacht.
"The boat will take approximately two to three million human hours to build -- not counting all the worldwide subcontractor hours, or the ready-made items already available on the market ready to be installed on the yacht," he said.
"Building the yacht at the shipyard will directly employ, at the minimum, 500 people for a period of three years. These people, who have families to support and feed, will be gainfully employed.
"And this does not include the 50 to 70 people who will work on the yacht and will be employed full time by the yacht owner, as well as others who supply the yacht."

He extends this reasoning to the media -- "You, the journalist, benefits from this build indirectly by being gainfully employed by CNN for writing this story."

And you, the person reading this story?
Kampfer sees the public's interest in the lifestyles of the super rich as a type of luxury porn.
"There is an enormous sense of injustice which is shared not just by the poor, but also by the middle class, towards the global super rich," he said.
"But together with that however, is a sense of envy and ogling. So whether you call it confusion, or double standards, or hypocrisy, or whatever it might be -- we both abhor the lifestyles of the super rich and at the same time we are endlessly fascinated by them."

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

NZ Linz update in the Marine GeoGarage

Coverage NZ Linz Marine GeoGarage layer

As our public viewer is not yet available
(currently under construction, upgrading to a new webmapping technology as Google Maps v2 is officially no more supported),
this info is primarily intended to
our universal mobile application users
(Marine NZ iPhone-iPad on the Apple Store/ Weather 4D Android -App-in- on the PlayStore)
and our B2B customers which use our nautical charts layers
in their own webmapping applications through our GeoGarage API.  



1 chart has been updated in the Marine GeoGarage
(Linz January update published February 6, 2015 (Updated to NTM Edition 2, 23 January 2015)

  • NZ5324 Tamaki Strait and Approaches including Waiheke Island
Today NZ Linz charts (183 charts / 323 including sub-charts) are displayed in the Marine GeoGarage.

Note :  LINZ produces official nautical charts to aid safe navigation in New Zealand waters and certain areas of Antarctica and the South-West Pacific.


Using charts safely involves keeping them up-to-date using Notices to Mariners
Reporting a Hazard to Navigation - H Note :
Mariners are requested to advise the New Zealand Hydrographic Authority at LINZ of the discovery of new or suspected dangers to navigation, or shortcomings in charts or publications.

Before we damage the oceans any further, it would be nice to know what actually lives there


From WashingtonPost by Chris Mooney

In case you haven’t heard yet, humans are wrecking the oceans.
That doesn’t just mean that significant swaths of ocean life could go extinct — it means some kinds of life could go extinct before we ever even know they existed at all.
In fact, scientists estimate that they have never even given a name to some 33 to 91 percent of the different organisms living in the global oceans.
(Given our lack of knowledge, the large range here is understandable.)
“Just the other week, a paper came out saying that we might be facing a mass extinction in the ocean,” notes Smithsonian Institution marine researcher Nancy Knowlton.
“But actually, we don’t really know what lives in the ocean, apart from a handful of large things like fishes, corals and some snails.”

 Nancy Knowlton diving towards an “underwater condo,” freshly placed in the Red Sea.
Photo Credit: Michael Berumen

Knowlton is part of a pretty clever research solution to this problem — what she calls “underwater condos” (pictured above).
Their scientific name is significantly less cool: ARMS, or Autonomous Reef Monitoring Structures.
The condos are built out of square plates, in a stack of 10, with gaps that let marine organisms go in and out.
They make a new home, so to speak, and then scientists can remove the plates and see what actually lives there. Like this:

 An “underwater condo” plate.
Credit: Matthieu Leray

In a new study out in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Knowlton and fellow Smithsonian Institution researcher Matthieu Leray report on what these underwater homes have allowed them to do — namely, categorize large volumes of marine life, including many previously unknown species.
For the study, they examined plates from 18 condos that had been installed on oyster reefs off the coasts of Virginia and Florida.
Such oyster beds, notes the paper, are teeming with life, just like coral reefs are – and are in similar peril.
As many as 85 percent of them have been “lost due to anthropogenic impacts,” says the study — meaning the life in and around the beds may also have been lost.

The scientists used DNA sequencing to rapidly process information about all the life found on plates, sampling the DNA of the new organisms and matching it with known sequences.
Not only did the researchers find that a large diversity of life came to live in the condos — some 2,000 different types of living things after the structures had been in place for 6 months.
But less than 15 percent of the resulting genetic sequences corresponded with known organisms whose DNA is already categorized in scientific databases.

And, it is important to note, this was just from sampling marine life off the coasts of Florida and Virginia.
There are far more unexamined parts of the world ocean.
Fortunately, the condos work everywhere, says Knowlton.
The Smithsonian’s MarineGEO program has installed hundreds of them around the world in the hope of learning more about species — before they vanish.
“We have them in 700 feet in Curacao for example, on the carbon dioxide seeps of Papua New Guinea that simulate an acid ocean of the future, and someday we hope to get them to Antarctica,” Knowlton says.
That won’t save the oceans — but it will definitely help create a much better DNA record of what evolution toiled, over vast periods, to produce.
“When people talk about threats to biodiversity or protecting biodiversity, until these methods were developed we really didn’t know how to study it,” says Knowlton.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

How sticks and shell charts became a sophisticated system for navigation

The stick chart shows several of the Marshall Islands in the South Pacific Ocean.
The long curving pieces indicate the dominant direction of swells (waves that have traveled over very long distances).
Skilled navigators could use a chart like this to recognize wave patterns and find their way.


From SmithsonianMag by Cari Romm

Sailors navigating with sextant, compass and maps found in the Marshall Islands that curved sticks and cowry shells were far more sophisticated

In 1899, Charles Townsend and H.F. Moore—both scientists with the U.S. Fish Commission—set out on the steamer Albatross, the first ship of its size dedicated entirely to scientific research, for an expedition to the islands of the South Pacific.
The sailors aboard the Albatross navigated their way across the globe as U.S. sailors did at the time: with a compass and a sextant—a tool that used the angles of the sun and the horizon to calculate latitude—and, of course, maps.
At the end of the ship’s journey, though, were sailors of a very different kind—sailors whose knowledge of the ocean was based on cultural knowledge passed down through generations.
The stick charts of the Marshall Islands were first described for a Western audience in an 1862 edition of Nautical magazine by missionary L.H. Gulick.
“[The Marshallese] construct rude maps by which they retain and impart knowledge regarding the direction and distance of the various groups” of islands, he wrote.
“These maps consist of small sticks tied together in straight or curved lines, intended to represent the currents or waves to be met, while the islands are to be found at certain points where these lines meet.”
The chart is less a literal representation of the sea,
but more an abstract illustration of the ways that ocean swells interact with land.
(National Museum of Natural History)


Using funds that the Smithsonian had given them to collect objects along their voyage, Townsend and Moore purchased one such chart, which they gave to the National Museum of Natural History in 1900.
But Gulick’s description of these “maps” wasn’t quite accurate: The chart is less a literal representation of the sea, says museum curator and anthropologist Adrienne Kaeppler, and more an abstract illustration of the ways that ocean swells interact with land.
Curved sticks, she explains, show where swells are deflected by an island; short, straight strips often indicate currents near islands; longer strips “may indicate the direction in which certain islands are to be found;” and small cowry shells represent the islands themselves.

 Marshall islands with the Marine GeoGarage

In places like the Marshall Islands—a tiny nation of roughly 112 square miles, spread across 29 atolls and five islands—“Survival depends on knowledge of and rapport with the sea,” Kaeppler says.
“This requires knowledge of how to get across the sea, how to exploit it for food, and what to do when devastated by it—[by] hurricanes, tidal waves, or storms.”
The Marshallese built this essential knowledge by studying the charts on land; by the time a sailor took to the ocean, he would have fully absorbed the lessons contained within the patterns of the sticks.
The stick chart is an instructional tool, one meant for use before a voyage, rather than something to be used for real-time navigation.

In places like the Marshall Islands, survival depends on a knowledge and rapport with the sea.
(© W. Robert Moore/National Geographic Society/Corbis)

“They seem to have focused on one particular environmental phenomenon, which is the waves and the currents, and then developed that into a more elaborate system,” explains Joseph Genz, a professor of anthropology at the University of Hawaii who wrote his dissertation on the subject. “They’re picking out repeating patterns in the waves, and for them, those give reliable signals as to where land is.”
As a graduate student in 2005, Genz traveled to the Marshall Islands with a team of anthropologists and oceanographers for what he calls a “revival project.”
Traditional navigational knowledge, he says, was dying out with the islands’ oldest generation, and the team from the University of Hawaii agreed to help the elders document and resurrect the Marshallese understanding of the seas.

 Stick Charts and Water Wave Navigation

Using a combination of satellite imagery, computer modelling and a buoy to measure wave frequency, size and direction, they were able to “validate and confirm some of the local explanations with the scientific explanations,” Genz says—but out on the water, away from their equipment, the researchers still found themselves at a loss to explain some of the things the Marshallese seemed to know instinctively.
“A lot of times the navigator would say, ‘There’s the wave, can you feel it?’ and I’d say, ‘No, I can’t,’” he recalls.
“Part of it was trying to feel what he was feeling, but not being able to see it.”

 Hundreds of years ago, Pacific Islanders used voyaging canoes to travel.
They developed navigation techniques to steer across the ocean without instruments or charts.
The Marshall Islands is a nation in the western Pacific.
The land is formed from low-lying coral atolls and islands.

Many of the lessons contained within the stick charts, in other words, have yet to be fully understood. “It’s quite possible that the traditional knowledge of the ocean in the Marshalls could somehow provide insight into science itself,” he says.
“So often, we think about science as trying to make sense of everything else in the world, but it could also be the other way around. This local oceanographic knowledge might influence our scientific understanding as well.”

Links :

Monday, February 9, 2015

Image of the week : birth of a new island in Tonga


From Discovery

A Tongan volcano has created a substantial new island since it began erupting last month, spewing out huge volumes of rock and dense ash that has killed nearby vegetation, officials said.

 Eruption between Hunga Tonga and Hunga Ha’apai island on 15 Jan
39 miles northwest of the Tongan capital. 
(New Zealand High Commission)

The volcano, about 65 kilometers (40 miles) northwest of the South Pacific nation's capital Nuku'alofa, rumbled to life on December 20 for the first time in five years, the Lands and Natural Resources Ministry said.
It said the volcano was erupting from two vents, one on the uninhabited island of Hunga Ha'apai and the other underwater about 100 meters (328 feet) offshore.
 Tonga islands with the Marine GeoGarage

Hunga Tonga island with the Marine GeoGarage

 Map of the new island (Matangi Tonga)
position with Google Maps

This picture taken on March 19, 2009 shows an aerial photo of ash rising into the air from an undersea volcanic eruption, part of the uninbabited islet of Hunga Ha'apai
(Telusa Fotu/AFP/Getty Images)

The ministry said experts took a boat trip to view the eruption on Thursday and confirmed it had transformed the local landscape.
"The new island is more than one kilometer (0.6 mile) wide, two kilometers (1.2 miles) long and about 100 meters (328 feet) high," it said in a statement.
"During our observations the volcano was erupting about every five minutes to a height of about 400 meters (1,312 feet), accompanied by some large rocks... as the ash is very wet, most is being deposited close to the vent, building up the new island."
It said ash and acidic rain was deluging an area 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) around the volcano, adding: "Leaves on trees on Hunga Tonga and Hunga Ha'apai have died, probably caused by volcanic ash and gases."

Pleiades image (July 2, 2014)
CNES/Airbus

An exceptional satellite image taken by the European Pl√©iades satellite from 19 January shows the new island that formed during the eruption near Hunga Ha’apai island (left in images) earlier in January month and joined it by forming a new peninsula, composed of a broad, flat ash cone with a water-filled crater.
The image also shows that activity seems to have already stopped by 19 Jan when the image was taken. Most likely, the new land addition will be eroded within months, because it seems mainly to be composed of loose materials, as opposed to more resistant solid lava flows.

A number of international flights were cancelled earlier this week amid concerns about the volcano's ash plume but they resumed, with authorities saying debris from the eruption was not being thrown high into the atmosphere.

Tonga, which is almost 2,000 kilometers (1,243 miles) northeast of New Zealand, lies on the so-called Pacific "Ring of Fire", where continental plates collide causing frequent volcanic and seismic activity.

Links :

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Image of the week : phone fog ?


A sign of the times :
A man so engrossed in his phone did not notice that a whale was swimming just feet away from him.
@esmith_images/Instagram 


Dude! Way to not whale watch.
If this picture does not sum up how wrapped up we are in our electronics then nothing ever will.
A photo posted to Instagram Tuesday by professional photographer Eric Smith shows a man so engrossed in his phone that he fails to notice an enormous humpback whale swimming next to the boat just feet away.
Smith wrote on the post that he captured the symbolic moment a few weeks ago on a whale watching trip off Redondo Beach. He didn't miss the moment. He saw a whale and her calf breach about 50 feet away from him when they resurfaced next to the sailboat.
He wrote that while two women at the front of the boat were taking pictures, the cell phone guy was oblivious.
In an interview with ABC News, Smith said he took five photos of the whale next to the sailboat and that the man did not look up once.
"He could have been texting his mom in the hospital for all I know, but I thought it sucked that he missed such a wonderful moment happening just two feet in front of him," Smith told the network.
As John Lennon famously said, "Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans." (Or busy playing Flappy Bird?)
If you're not like cell phone dude and love seeing animals up close in the wild, here are more great whale and other photos Smith shot that day, including one of a dolphin jumping completely out of the water. His website can be found here.