This page is a list of projects I think are a) a good idea, b) would be useful to somebody, and c) that I would like to do.  Of course, the face that I haven't yet done most of them means it's likely I never will.  If you know of anyone doing a similar project or are interested in any of these, please contact me.  It's a bit of a braindump right now, in no particular order, but I hope to organize it better "soon".

  • A website about the history and contributions of Bermudians of Portuguese and Azorean descent, as well as Bermuda residents from Portugal and the Azores.
  • Anything Google Earth, a.k.a. Digital Bermuda. If you haven't already figured out, I have a digital fetish. I have thinking about these ideas for a while, and think a lot of them would be really useful for tourism. See e.g. Bermuda Walking Tours.
    • Online maps of running routes/loops with distances and notes (e.g. steep, rutted, lots of traffic, good view, etc.)
    • Online map of the railway trail, with history, key viewpoints, nearby amenities (restrooms, shops), etc. I noticed that the railway has just gotten new signs with its of historical facts and stories. That would be perfect to put into Google Earth. I also found the Bermuda Railway Pages, so it looks like they are making good progress on this.
    • Online map and companion to the book Hiking Bermuda by Cecile Davidson. This book is available in most Bermuda bookstores, and has nice routes and descriptions of several scenic walks.
    • Twist Government's arm to get them to license their digital maps to popular online mapping sites such as Google Maps or Yahoo Maps or whatever.  I think this would be a great boon for tourism, and perhaps the Tourism Ministry could underwrite.  Whenever I raise this topic, my friend who is a GIS professional patiently explains why it will be very complicated and difficult, but I still think it's a good idea.
  • Broken Wall Photo Blog. Everytime I drive to work in the morning, I think it would be instructive to keep track of how many broken walls I see on the roadside. I assume they are due to accidents, and they are hard to notice because the freshly broken limestone makes a sharp contrast to the road. The idea would be be to take a photo of each break, and note the time and location.
  • Marine Navigation/Performance Projects. If it involves water, sails, and electronics I am a sucker for it. See also this page of links and the Panbo marine electronics blog.
    • Online map of Bermuda's navigation buoys and marks. NOT FOR NAVIGATION, but for planning and education purposes. Generate a list of the marks and their descriptions, stick them into a KML file, and voila, look at them on Google Earth or Google Maps.
    • Open source route planning software for ocean voyaging. Read GRIB files, polar data, and generate "optimal" routes for ocean voyages. See also this paper and MaxSea's routing.
    • Open source race performance software for sailboats, inshore and offshore. For testing include modules to generate fake instrument data, including modeling wind shifts etc. Flexible on-screen displays, strip charts, record polars for post-race analysis, current calculation, optimal course to steer, tacking angles, etc.
  • Projects in Race Relations. Generally I believe race is a serious issue in Bermuda, that we need to work it out, and that the best way to do that is for individuals to have sincere discussions and to be willing to listen to and learn from their fellow Bermudians. I don't believe that the American orthodoxy on race applies completely to Bermuda -- we have a very different history. Not better, but different. Also, I am tired of listening to people from overseas visit Bermuda for a weekend and then tell us about our problems -- I think we have more then enough knowledge within ourselves about what the problems are, and how we can continue to get better. I am especially fed up with the politicization of the issue. Finally, I do believe in white privilege, but I don't believe that it is the sole cause of problems in race; and, I am not interested in sitting around whipping myself about my whiteness (nor in having you whip me), but I am interested in working on concrete solutions to improve our society here in Bermuda.  Related sites: CURE and CURB.
    • Small discussion groups on race. These groups should pull 8-10 people from across racial and political lines. The participants must be willing to engage sincerely on the topics, and most importantly, to listen and acknowledge.
    • All-Bermudian videos of groups of blacks and whites having frank discussions about race and related issues, inspired by MIT's It's Intuitively Obvious series. The key is for the participants to have honest discussion which can have a powerful impact on people watching the videos later.
  • Political and Historical Research. Finding out more about Bermuda's history, especially politically, and making that information more widely available. In keeping with my digital fetish, that means getting it online, typically scanned or transcribed.
    • Dissemination of key historical reports. You can visit my library to see PDFed and OCRed scans of historical reports about race riots in Bermuda and race relations, such as the Wooding, Pitt, and Clark reports.
    • Getting more historical source information online. JonnyStar has made a good start with the early PLP platforms. I would like to add more from the UBP side.
    • Online presentation of Bermuda's historical election results. This data is available at the Parliamentary Registrar, but I am working on a project to organize it into a more interactive form, with photos, etc. See the current draft here. I also want to collect lists of Senators (with affiliation: IND, UBP, PLP), cabinet members and responsibilities, and the Speaker of the House.
    • Digitizing old newspaper collections such as The Recorder.  I wouldn't worry about the Mid-Ocean News, The Royal Gazette, or The Bermuda Sun as they are ongoing concerns and can deal with it themselves.  I feel that in today's world, if it's not online, it doesn't exist for a large and growing segment of the population.  I envision working up a project with the Bermuda National Library to scan their microfiche archives of The Recorder and get them online.
All original content (c) 2012 Douglas S. J. De Couto unless otherwise noted.