Here’s the latest reader question, along with my reply!
Mark asks: Enjoy your auto stories. You wrote about highway deaths going up in 2016 and 2017. You hinted you maybe thought it may have been the flashing lights and shaking of the steering wheel and other saaaaaaaaafety system warnings – or people feeling the car is looking out for their driving, so drivers are less involved. I believe it’s none of that. I believe it’s the touchscreen on the dash. Radio and cell phone demands viewing to use. Eyes off the road, and problems arise. I have one on my 2017 Harley FLHXS and have one in my 2014 GMC pick-up and my new 2018 pickup and matched the Bluetooth to my iPhone and have free XM. What a distraction. I’m an ex-pro bike racer, never had a ticket (no kidding) or wrecks, fault or no fault. I can spot idiots a mile away. I no longer use the touchscreen, it’s just too dangerous. I’m back to CDs only and I can control the sound and songs on the steering wheel, eyes on the road.
My reply: I agree with you! I believe that touchscreens have been put into cars (and no stink raised by the government, which is so supposedly concerned with our saaaaaaaaaaaaafety) as part of the push toward automated/electric cars and ride-sharing. To stupefy people with electronics – and then present the solution… automated/electric cars.
A side benefit of all this is the accelerated obsoleting of cars. Gadgets (and apps and the rest of it) which are “state of the art” today are yesterday’s news tomorrow. Think how short a useful life a sail fawn has, or even a computer. It’s a much shorter useful life than a car’s anyhow.
Or at least, used to be.
This serves the purpose – again, back to automated/electric cars – of getting people out of the “you own your car” mindset (and owning one car for 10-15 years or even longer) and into the mindset of renting a car – or just a ride.
It’s a Brave New World that’s coming…
. . .
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