I got to go sailing today for the first time, in a 24′ boat. I discovered quite a few similarities with flying, the most important of which is hysteresis, or the tendency for there to be lag in the controls. You might notice you’re drifting a bit too far to the left (port), correct with the tiller, and overcorrect because you’re too impatient for the boat (or plane) to respond. So you set up these little oscillations in the boat (or plane) where you go back and forth until you finally converge on the right heading (or altitude, or what have you.) I wonder if creating a little hysteresis trainer in Java on a webpage or something might help teach people how to control systems that have hysteresis built in…something with sound and color feedback, perhaps?
But it was great fun. Thank you Gavin and Kim!
Tonight, perhaps tangoes with