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Comment ACARS and NextGen ATC (Score 1) 117

From what I've gleaned from the measly information dripping out our way, the basis of the NextGen ATC system is going to be based on ACARS. This scares me greatly, as ACARS in my experience in using it over the past decade is that it's utterly unreliable. "ACARS NO COMM" is seen in the MCDU scratchpad far more than any other message. They better have a super-duper improved communication network ready for this, or I'm calling it right now - it's a dead-in-the-water system if it attempts to use today's utterly fragile ACARS network.

Comment Re: Airline pilot checking in... (Score 1) 167

You know, I'm not even saying that Tesla should be responsible for providing this training, except maybe to have an easy way to make sure the Autopilot functions remain disabled if the customer isn't comfortable with it or doesn't feel adequately trained in its use. Not likely with a Tesla purchaser, I realize. Again, I'm putting the responsibility directly on the operator of the vehicle to ensure they have the necessary skills to appropriately use the automation. How they gain those skills is up to them.

From the beginning I've been a huge proponent of this type of technology. We've all seen how our populace is more interested in surfing than driving, and it's now proven to be saving lives and reducing collateral damage. I couldn't be happier, and this is the way we need to be encouraging all manufacturers to go. Tesla has the balls to push out this technology when it can be a safety asset, even in Beta. I give them all kinds of kudos for that, and will consider their vehicles first during my next round of shopping. I'm currently rocking a '13 Leaf, and it meets 90% of my driving needs, and I have a gas-banger for my long-range road trip car. The pickup truck only gets driven when my wife needs a load of mulch or I'm planning a big day at Home Depot or Lowes.

Comment Airline pilot checking in... (Score 1) 167

Just to chime in about the "Autopilot" name: The name is irrelevant. You're the one driving the car, and you alone are assuming the responsibility to know how it operates AND when to use it properly to both the limits of yourself and the system, nomenclature be damned. But if you ask me, "Autopilot" is just a bit aspirational. Does one "pilot" a car, or "drive" it? I've always "driven" cars and "piloted" airplanes. But YMMV, naturally. I'm not mad about it, just sayin'.

What I actually came here to ask is whether there is any data separating out airline pilots using these Tesla systems to see if mandatory training for proper use of appropriate levels of automation in varying conditions has any outcome on the incidence of crashes. What I'd wager is that this training and experience might carry over from one area to the other, seeing reduced incidences of crashes by airplane-autopilot trained drivers. This could mean that until we get to truly autonomous cars, it'd be wise to at least have some sort of minimum training requirement before enabling levels of automation on an individual driver basis.

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