In armed conflict and in daily life, ships have become an integral part of modern commercial and military systems. Fishing boats are used by millions of fishermen throughout the world. Military forces operate vessels for naval warfare and to transport and support forces ashore. Commercial vessels, nearly 35,000 in number, carried 7.4billion tons of cargo in 2007. As of 2011, there are about 104,304 ships with IMO numbers in the world.
Ships were always a key in history's great explorations and scientific and technological development. Navigators such as Zheng He spread such inventions as the compass and gunpowder. Ships have been used for such purposes as colonization and the slave trade, and have served scientific, cultural, and humanitarian needs. After the 16th century, new crops that had come from and to the Americas via the European seafarers significantly contributed to the world population growth.Ship transport has shaped the world's economy into today's energy-intensive pattern.
Ship's A.I. was created untold millennia ago by the Celestials as the operating system for a data collection device. The Celestials had genetically manipulated humanity, and they left the Ship in the area that would come to be known as Mongolia to monitor humanity's progress.
Circa 1100 A.D., a Mongolian immortal known as Garbha-Hsien (later known as Saul), discovered the Ship and lived next to it while he researched its mysteries. Saul never attempted to enter the Ship.
In time, the Egyptian immortal En Sabah Nur learned of Saul and sought him out as another immortal. In a confrontation, En Sabah Nur slew all of Saul's guards. Saul then sought to humble his fellow "forever-walker" by revealing the secret titanic vessel. Having had previous experience with futuristic technology due to his encounters with Rama-Tut, Nur attacked Saul and left the other immortal for dead and entered the Ship. He emerged later as a vastly changed being who now called himself Apocalypse.
In duplicate bridge, a board is an item of equipment that holds one deal, or one deck of 52 cards distributed in four hands of 13 cards each. The design permits the entire deal of four hands to be passed, carried or stacked securely with the cards hidden from view in four pockets. This is required for duplicate bridge tournaments, where the same deal is played several times and so the composition of each hand must be preserved during and after each play of each deal.
Each board is usually marked with the following information: board number – (usually in the sequence '1' to '32') identifies the deal and helps to order the play of multiple deals; compass directions – used to match the four hands to the four players at a table; dealer – designates which player is the "dealer"; this designates the player who is to make the first call of the auction; vulnerability– often represented by color code: a "vulnerable" partnership is usually shown in red and a "not vulnerable" partnership in green, white or no color. Most designs include a slot or pocket to hold a paper travelling score sheet.
Board-foot can be abbreviated FBM (for "foot, board measure"), BDFT, or BF. Thousand board-feet can be abbreviated as MFBM, MBFT, or MBF. Similarly, million board-feet can be abbreviated as MMFBM, MMBFT, or MMBF.
In Australia and New Zealand the term super foot or superficial foot was used to mean the same.
Board foot is the unit of measure for rough lumber (before drying and planing with no adjustments) or planed/surfaced lumber. An example of planed lumber is softwood 2 × 4 lumber one would buy at a large lumber retailer. The 2 × 4 is actually only 11⁄2in ×31⁄2in (38mm ×89mm) but the dimensions for the lumber when purchased wholesale could still be represented as full 2 × 4 lumber, although the "standard" can vary between vendors. This means that nominal lumber includes air space around the physical board when calculating board feet in some situations, while the true measurement of "board feet" should be limited to the actual dimensions of the board.