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Then the figure sharps got after the engine power, and they tried to show if one ship had something like 15,000 horse-power, more or less, what the combined ships must have and what could be done with it on land—that is, how many railroad trains, each a mile long, could be pulled so many thousands of miles; how many bridges like those across the East River they could pull down with just one tug at them; how many cities such power could light; how many great factories and mills could be run with that power, and even how much goods could be made out of it—well, after that the amateur began to wonder if he could add up two and two. ...When you think that each of these ships represented a weight of from 15,000 to 18,000 tons more or less, and that you had to move that ship at the rate of 10 knots an hour and keep it within 400 yards of a ship in front of you; when you consider how some ships move a trifle of an inch faster than another ship at the same number of propeller revolutions; when you think that one of the propellers of your own ship will do more work than the other at the same number of revolutions, and that this will throw you out of your course and make you steer badly if you don't correct it; when you think that your leader may vary in his speed; when you think of all this, you can begin to understand the problem of those officers on the bridge to keep the ships in line and at proper distances.