There are hardly any excesses of the most crazed psychopath that cannot easily be duplicated by a normal kindly family man who just comes in to work every day and has a job to do.
—(Terry Pratchett, Small Gods)
The BRS Gwynith is an air ship of the Byrlothian Resistance. She is sentient, needing no crew to fly or man her, though she generally has a crew aboard for doing repairs and to go where she cannot.
A young man, disowned by his family, traveling the world in an attempt to redeem himself with his musical talent and his prowess with a sword.
The Chinese, when attacking a castle or fort, flew kites over the city wall and used the length of string it took to get it there as a measurement to know how far they had to dig a tunnel to get under the wall.