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Intro: 
Technology is heavily relied on by boaters. It is used to help navigate through the waters, find fish, and aid the user in finding where they were previously. It is used to tell vessels about the weather, and assist them in communicating between land and sea. However, no technology is perfect in any society nor any point in time. Over the years, there have been many incidents regarding boaters and issues with their technology. This technology could have either failed or been misunderstood. Technology is used all over with boating. It is utilized in the Navies, for shipping and leisure. There are many issues which occur with boaters, primarily for entertainment. However, the commercial boaters have also had their incidents. When reliability issues take place with this technology which can be very dangerous to the people using them. The technology on the vessel can malfunction at any time or work incorrectly at any point in time. This could give the boater false information which can be very dangerous. Surveillance is also another issue with boating. Many boats have trackers which can tell particular people, such as family members, where their location is. This could be very dangerous if this information is stolen and or sold. As technology grows and becomes more advanced and prominent, some boaters get left in the past. Newer technology and different economic groups create a Digital Divide. There are many other factors which create social and ethical issues, and these will be mentioned throughout this research paper. 

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Background:
I live in a country which is known for its boating and its fishing. As a person who also likes to fish, I understand that the technology used on boats is not entirely accurate and should not be looked at as perfect. Many people I know have a boat, and all of them are equipped with the same necessary technology to aid safe navigation.  Almost all boats in today’s society are equipped with technology which involves GPS (global positioning system), Data Logging and GIS. I chose to research this topic because I have been in a boating accident and I have also been close to other accidents.

Data Logging and GIS: 
Data Logging is “the process of collecting data over time with a data logger (or data recorder).” It is used in many parts of society which need to record data consistently. Data Logging is very helpful because it does not require a human to record the data, reducing cost, they can be used 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Finally, some areas which need to be recorded are not humanly possible. For example, a data recorder can be used to measure the heat of a volcano for one month straight. Humans cannot physically function as close to a volcano as a machine can, nor for as long. This shows us that Data Logging is very beneficial to society. However, there are many negatives. Data recorders could malfunction leading to serious issues; they can also read incorrectly. This could create problems in the future with the final product. If a data recorder is being used to collect data on how many people access an area and it fails, this will give incorrect data which may harm what the data is being used for. Finally, Data Logging reduces the need for hiring humans. Once the collector is set up, humans are no longer needed to record the necessary data and lose this job, increasing unemployment rates. (Data logging ITGS Wiki)
“A Geographic Information System (GIS) is a system which allows layers of data to be placed on map data to visualize and analyze it.” (Technical Terms Glossary) This is taking information, possibly from Data Logging, and showing it on a map. For example, showing different depths in the Atlantic Ocean. This is beneficial because it can be used all over to display information in particular areas visually. I believe that data logging and GIS is good for boaters for these reasons. Although there are could be some reliability issues, the overall technology is beneficial for boaters. 

Technology on boats:
Boats have many different types of technology. Ranging from the basics like methods of propulsion, like engines, to technology to aid navigation, such as GPS, Radar, and Sonar.
 GPS stands for Global Positioning System. It works by using satellites 20,000 kilometers in the sky and IT systems such as Satellite Navigation, mobile phone or handheld GPS units. These show how far away you are from a minimum of three satellites by timing how long the messages sent from the GPS take to reach where you are. This then tells the user where they are on Earth. GPS can be very beneficial for boaters in many situations. For example, if vessels need to share their location with each other, they can use their GPS to find their location and share it, or use their GPS to find the other vessels. It can also be used to track where you were in the past when working with GIS. (How does GPS work)
Radar is another IT system which is commonly used on boats. It can be used to show what is in the surrounding areas and what is miles away. It works by sending out sound waves which reflect off of its surroundings and come back to the radar, displaying it on a screen. This aids not just boaters when it is dark, but also when there is inclement weather. It even supports them to find land, and also helps airplanes and many other transportation methods.  (How does marine RADAR work?)
Finally, there is Sonar. Sonar, short for “sound navigation and ranging” works the same way as radar. It has a transducer which sends out sound waves which hit an object in the path of the sound wave, the wave then echoes back to the transducer. The transducer then reads the time taken for the wave to come back and the strength of the wave to display the surroundings on a monitor or display. This can aid boaters in reading how deep the water is in real time and also see what is in the water beneath the boat. This can aid boaters because they will be able to know the depth of the water and what is beneath them. Therefore telling them if their vessel is capable of going into certain areas. (What is sonar?) Radar, GPS, and sonar aids boaters in navigating safely. 

Surveillance: 
Surveillance is the use of an IT system to monitor a person’s activities. This is an issue with boating. There are many companies which, for safety reasons, sell a device which uses GPS technology to show where a boat is. This location is connected to an account which is made by the user online before attaching the device on or in the vessel. This could be a potential surveillance issue because the account made shows the GPS location. If the account is breached, it will show the boat’s location to people with unauthorized access. This could lead to theft of the vessel, hijacking, and potentially kidnapping. Surveillance is a huge issue in certain parts of the world. In the Indian Ocean, West of Africa, there have been countless issues with piracy due to the Somali pirates. These pirates intercept Shipping vessels, hijack them and request a ransom of thousands or even millions of dollars. According to OBP, (Oceans Beyond Piracy), around $6.6 to $6.9 billion are lost due to piracy. Piracy occurs when pirates breach the communications between the large shipping vessels in the area, they intercept the ship and attempt to take it over. (OBP Reports and analysis)
This is a major surveillance issue because it impacts many of the shipping companies and many privately owned boats which all have very negative impacts in our global society. 

Digital Divide: 
There is a digital divide between all people and all parts of society. The Digital Divide is the gap between those who have access to an IT system and those who do not. This is seen throughout the boating community. For the boaters, there is a Digital Divide with technology on their boats. This is mainly seen in the leisure scene. Many people who enjoy fishing and own a boat, have different types of boats and enjoy different kinds of fishing. Some boats have technology which is needed for their leisure. 
There are many types of technology which can aid fishermen in yielding more fish. Some of these technologies are GPS, Sonar and Radar. These technologies can be quite expensive to purchase however are very helpful for fishing. This creates a digital divide issue because not all fishermen can afford these technologies which reduces the chances of catching fish without the technology. Living in a lower income country where a lot of people are fishermen, I can personally see the difference in yield compared to a fisherman with a lot of technology and a fisherman with a limited amount of technology. For example, a well-known person known as Thomas Paine enjoys lobstering when the season opens on August 1st each year. Before the season opens, Tom builds lobster ‘condos’ which creates an artificial house for lobster to live in. He then uses GPS and GIS to mark the location of each of his condos he sets out. Tom usually catches about 400 lobster on the first day of the season. This is a very good amount of lobster for the first day of the season and especially for someone who catches lobster for the fun of it rather than to pay bills. A fisherman named Daniel Lowe, catches about 1200 lobster per season. Daniel does not have a lot of technology other than an old GPS. This shows us that, Tom Paine catches about a third of what Daniel catches in a year, in one day. This is due to the fact that Tom has newer technology on his boat compared to Daniel’s boat. This creates a digital divide issue due to the fact that Tom Paine has newer, therefore more accurate technology compared to Daniel’s older and slower technology. This allows Tom to get on his spot much faster, preventing him from wasting anytime. This newer, better technology allows Tom to yield more lobster in a shorter amount of time compared to Daniel. This creates a rich-get-richer and poor-stay-poor situation. 

People and Machines: 
People and Machines is the interaction between technology and people. The ethical concern surrounding this is technology replacing human jobs. An example of this in boating is auto-pilot. Autopilot works by using a computer which connects and works with the vessel’s steering, GPS and compass. The user of the boat has to set a location on the GPS and the autopilot will sail to that location. However, there are still many issues with it. If there is an object in the water, such as a piece of driftwood, the computer will not see it and will most likely hit it, which could damage the vessel and potentially cause a Titanic situation.  It takes years of education to become a captain of a vessel. Auto-pilot on vessels has been implemented for many years, however, it is not completely trusted, therefore a captain is still hired to ensure everything is safe on the boat. However, over time artificial intelligence will become safe enough to use to the point where captains will no longer be needed on the vessel, increasing unemployment. 
There is also the issue of people relying too heavily on technology for navigation. For example, a GPS on a boat could tell the captain that he or she is in a safe area, and he or she believes this, however, the captain is actually in a very shallow area which could cause the boat to hit the seafloor and injure or kill the passengers on board. Since 1914, three major cruise ship accidents have occurred. Many of them seem to have been caused by not having the necessary technology on board. First, the RMS Empress of Ireland collided with the Storstad, a 6000-ton Norwegian vessel. There was a thick fog which decreased visibility and inevitably caused the collision. If either ship had the proper technology, such as radar, a device for determining the presence and location of an object, neither of the ships would have collided. This incident caused about 68.5% of the people on board to die. The ship’s watertight doors were unable to close in the sub-zero conditions. If either of these ships had radar, this collision would have been prevented and lives would have been saved. (World’s worst cruise ship disasters)
Also, there is the issue surrounding people using technology incorrectly, or not using technology at all. On July 26th, 2015, Austin Stephanos and Perry Cohen planned a fishing trip to the Bahamas in which they would cross the Gulf Stream from Jupiter, Florida to Grand Bahama, Bahamas. As they left Jupiter after getting their final supplies, a storm rolled in causing the weather on the ocean to become very rough and dangerous. The parent’s of Austin called him after seeing the storm, and after no response, they issued the kids as missing. Searches were issued by the Coast Guard in attempt to find the boys and/or their 19 foot boat. 2 days later their boat is found capsized, however missing the lifejackets, cooler and the boys. This gave the families hope to keep looking. The Coast Guard used their technology (GPS, Sonar and radar) in attempt to find the boat and or kids. Although the two boys had many years of experience on the ocean, the boat they used did not have a radio on board. This prevented the boys from announcing their status when they got into rough weather. Although Austin did have a cell phone on board, a cell phone could get water damaged from the rain in the storm, and it will take much more time to make a call to others in the area. This is a major issue due to the fact that the ocean is relentless and can change at any point in time especially when someone is traveling 70.3 miles over the Gulf stream.  (Distance from Jupiter to West end Bahamas) 
From this, we can see that the boating technology used has failed in the aforementioned ways. Technology can take away the jobs of thousands of captains around the world. Also, if a user does not have the required technology to do something safely, this creates an issue which can be life-threatening. 

Conclusion: 
There are many factors which have caused numerous issues for boaters over the period of time in which technology has been used on boats. Usually, the technology is very helpful, allowing boaters to navigate in all conditions. However, if the technology is used incorrectly or not used at all, it could be life threatening to the users on the vessel. However, the technology used on boats are very helpful when used correctly. If GPS is used correctly by the user, and if the GPS is working properly, there would be much less boating incidents on the waters. This is due to the fact that the users will be able to avoid dangerous areas such as reefs, shallow areas and possible restricted areas. 
Radar is also very beneficial however it has its drawbacks. It is useful to see the surrounding area in real time. This aids vessels in finding vessels nearby or even land nearby. However, due to the fact that it uses radioactive waves, too much exposure to these waves can be harmful to the users on the vessel. These waves can possibly give these users cancer. Especially to a boat captain or someone working on a vessel near the radar system for too long. 
The few negatives which are involved in the technology for boating can be easily fixed. Many of the issues mentioned above, such as the surveillance issue, is very difficult to control. Although there are methods in attempt to stop piracy, it is very hard to completely stop the issue of piracy. Also, issues related to people and machines. There have been many incidents in which boaters do not have the correct equipment on board their vessel. We can see this in the Austin and Perry situation due to the fact that they had attempted to cross the Gulf-stream without a VHF radio nor a radar. This issue can be fixed by creating a law which must force certain boats to have this technology if they plan to travel to another country by boat. This can be enforced by having the government of a home country making the population of boaters fill out a form and get their boat inspected before they travel. 
Thirdly, the issue of the digital divide. We can see that the technology does impact the fishing industries due to this. Due to the difference in economic classes, the more economically challenged fishermen have a much harder time yielding more fish compared to other, more wealthy fishermen. This creates an issue because those who need the relatively basic job of fishing need it more than the wealthier fishermen who fish for fun. 
Overall, technology used on boats can be very beneficial to all users. The technology can aid them in navigating much better than without it. If the technology is used correctly, it can make navigating much safer. Overall, I believe that the positives in this situation: radar, sonar and GPS, outweigh the negatives: people and machines, digital divide and privacy. Also, if the users ensure that the ethical concerns surrounding GIS and Data Logging can be avoided and completely if the users use the IT systems correctly and ensure that the technology is working correctly at all times. This will drastically reduce the concerns and incidents to do with the technology and boating. There will be less accidents such as boats colliding with each other and there will be a reduced chance of boats’ positions being leaked and pirated. 

Bibliography: 
1)”Data Logging.” The ITGS Wiki at BHS. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 July 2017.

2) “ITGS Technical terms glossary.” ITGS Textbook. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 July 2017.

3)How does GPS work?| Explore. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 July 2017.

4)”How Does Marine RADAR Work?” It Still Runs. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 July 2017.

5)US Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. “What is sonar?” NOAA’s National Ocean Service. N.p., 01 June 2013. Web. 20 July 2017.

6)”The world’s worst cruise ship disasters.” Ship Technology. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 July 2017.

7)    “OBP Reports and Analysis.” OBP. N.p., 17 May 2017. Web. 21 July 2017.

8) Menkhaus, Ken. “The Seven Ways to Stop Piracy.” Foreign Policy. N.p., 17 Apr. 2009. Web. 21 July 2017.

9) Staff, Investopedia. “Frozen Account.” Investopedia. N.p., 23 Nov. 2003. Web. 26 July 2017. 

10)  “Distance from Freeport to …” Timeanddate.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 July 2017.

11)   Sawtelle, Becky. “Timeline of search for Austin and Perry.” WPBF. WPBF, 13 July 2017. Web. 29 July 2017. 

12) How Autopilots Work, www.boats.com/how-to/how-autopilots-work/.
13) Rulli, Nicolas Alexander, et al. “Lobster fishing.”

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