WA­TER­FRONT

Power & Motor Yacht - - IN THIS ISSUE -

Elec­tron­ics tests in the Florida Keys. Win­ning a boat for a good cause.

The Florida Keys have a cer­tain mys­tery to them, even though these wa­ters have been ex­plored, ex­ploited, and thor­oughly en­joyed. But every time I pay a visit, I find some­thing more to see as the tones of water change with the depths, the cloud cover, the time of day, seem­ingly even the tem­per­a­ture. It’s enough to draw you back again and again. Time seems to slow here, even as it goes by in a snap.

But the views would have to wait. This time I was keep­ing my eyes in­side the boat, on the dis­plays pump­ing out data from some pow­er­ful new elec­tron­ics from Sim­rad, Lowrance, B&G, and GoFree—brands un­der the um­brella of elec­tron­ics man­u­fac­turer Nav­ico. And so in­stead of watch­ing for birds, and weather, and signs of fish be­neath the sur­face of that multi-hued water both in­shore and off, we turned our eyes to the screens, set up for our re­view on a se­lec­tion of boats in­clud­ing a cou­ple of SeaVee 390Zs (one of which is shown), a Yel­lowfin 34, a Yel­lowfin 36, a Dusky 278, a J/111 sail­boat, and even a few sea kayaks rigged for fish­ing skinny water. What bet­ter way to get a sense of the real-world ap­pli­ca­tion of pow­er­ful tech­nol­ogy than this in­vi­ta­tion-only event, held at Hawks Cay Re­sort at Duck Key.

Jour­nal­ists came from around the coun­try not for the scenery and the warm Keys breezes, but for the tech­nol­ogy, and ac­cess to the team of en­gi­neers, prod­uct man­agers, and pro­fes­sional cap­tains who all do their part to

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de­velop the line, and were on hand to share what they learned and give in­sight into how they got there. Talking points were shared and re­peated all around, a script well mem­o­rized.

But it was the Keys, of course, and that place does things to peo­ple—it’s al­most like it brings out one’s in­ner pi­rate. And it’s funny, I no­ticed at times that we got more thought-pro­vok­ing in­sight to the prod­uct developers’ meth­ods from the in-be­tween com­ments, the light­hearted asides, than some of the on-the­wa­ter demos.

One Nav­ico team mem­ber, gazing off into that blue, bluer, bluest water, shared that his team had a list of more than 300 fea­tures they wanted to in­cor­po­rate to fu­ture models, and that it’s a mat­ter of bud­get­ing re­sources to add it. And time of course. Be­cause time seems that much more valu­able in the Keys. (Learn more about these Nav­ico prod­ucts in an up­com­ing is­sue).

—Ja­son Y. Wood

EDITED BY SIMON MUR­RAY

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