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Transportation

Computers Key To Air France Crash 911

Posted by kdawson
from the who-or-what-do-you-trust dept.
Michael_Curator writes "It's no secret that commercial airplanes are heavily computerized, but as the mystery of Air France Flight 447 unfolds, we need to come to grips with the fact that in many cases, airline pilots' hands are tied when it comes to responding effectively to an emergency situation. Boeing planes allow pilots to take over from computers during emergency situations, Airbus planes do not. It's not a design flaw — it's a philosophical divide. It's essentially a question of what do you trust most: a human being's ingenuity or a computer's infinitely faster access and reaction to information. It's not surprising that an American company errs on the side of individual freedom while a European company is more inclined to favor an approach that relies on systems. As passengers, we should have the right to ask whether we're putting our lives in the hands of a computer rather than the battle-tested pilot sitting up front, and we should have right to deplane if we don't like the answer."

Comment: Should work with kilometres too! (Score 2, Funny) 234

by PalmHair (#27183235) Attached to: "Spin Battery" Effect Discovered
Scientists think that with a few modifications the new technology could work with kilometres too, though it would still be recommended that the host country is a monarchy or at least a strongly-presidental republic.

Other technical difficulties like the extremely strong gyroscopic effect should be overcome as well.

Comment: Re:Doesn't Make Economic Sense (Score 1) 769

by PalmHair (#27099815) Attached to: GM Cornered Into Defending the Volt
During WW2 the GM engineers at Opel built the famous Blitz truck which was heavily used against the US forces. Opel were also manufacturing jet engines for the German Me-262 jet fighter, which was much faster than its American rival Mustang (powered by the British-made Merlin). First the war went all ugly and now no bailouts - well, life is unfair.

...this is an awesome sight. The entire rebel resistance buried under six million hardbound copies of "The Naked Lunch." - The Firesign Theater

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