I just wanted to take a moment to recall one of my favorite ages- 8 years old. The thing I remember most vividly about that time was my interest in drawing inventions on pieces of paper with friends and imagining how cool whatever the thing we had drawn would be. We drew race cars, battle ships, castles, catapults, tree houses,.. the list is endless. The fun of it was that we were imagining things, and there was no sense of impracticality that stopped us from dreaming big.
I still find myself drawing things that may seem impractical just for fun. But the cool thing is that we're now capable of achieving some of the things we dream of most. OpenROV is sort of like that I think. And I think that with increasingly advanced technology becoming available to consumers, the dreams of today will quickly become the realistic ambitions of tomorrow. As an open source group, we can take crazy ideas seriously because collectively, we may have the know-how to do things that have never been done before.
The other day, I found myself doodling in my notebook and, inspired by the (then) upcoming landing of the Mars Science Laboratory, I sketched a lander of sorts that could support multiple ROVs and be deployed down to the ocean floor. I pictured a research vessel with multiple control consuls in its cabin and imagined a sort of LAN party-esk scene as me and a bunch of friends would pilot our ROVs around some unknown underwater land, each sitting at our own station and yelling back and forth to one another "fly over here and check this thing out!" or "help me pick this up!"
When MSL touched down successfully the other night, the value of dreaming big and thinking like a kid was concreted in my mind. As engineers, inventors, tinkerers, and hobbyists, we can do anything. Crazy ideas are always welcome on OpenROV- you never know who may have a way to make it work. So post your sketches... heck, if you have kids, post their sketches too. The possibilities are limitless...