The Unz Review • An Alternative Media Selection$
A Collection of Interesting, Important, and Controversial Perspectives Largely Excluded from the American Mainstream Media
 TeasersiSteve Blog
Is This Stephen King's Next Thriller? "AI Flaws Could Make Your Next Car Racist"
Email This Page to Someone

 Remember My Information



=>

Bookmark Toggle AllToCAdd to LibraryRemove from Library • B
Show CommentNext New CommentNext New ReplyRead More
ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
AgreeDisagreeThanksLOLTroll
These buttons register your public Agreement, Disagreement, Thanks, LOL, or Troll with the selected comment. They are ONLY available to recent, frequent commenters who have saved their Name+Email using the 'Remember My Information' checkbox, and may also ONLY be used three times during any eight hour period.
Ignore Commenter Follow Commenter
Search Text Case Sensitive  Exact Words  Include Comments
List of Bookmarks

From L.A. Times/Yahoo News:

Op-Ed: AI flaws could make your next car racist

Theodore Kim
Thu, October 7, 2021, 3:15 AM·4 min read

… Using the same algorithms that Hollywood used to assemble the Incredible Hulk in “The Avengers: Endgame” from a stream of ones and zeros, photorealistic images of emergency vehicles that never existed in real life are conjured from the digital ether and fed to the AI.

I have been designing and using these algorithms for the last 20 years, starting with the software used to generate the sorting hat in “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone,” up through recent films from Pixar, where I used to be a senior research scientist.

Using these algorithms to train AIs is extremely dangerous, because they were specifically designed to depict white humans. All the sophisticated physics, computer science and statistics that undergird this software were designed to realistically depict the diffuse glow of pale, white skin and the smooth glints in long, straight hair. In contrast, computer graphics researchers have not systematically investigated the shine and gloss that characterizes dark and Black skin, or the characteristics of Afro-textured hair. As a result, the physics of these visual phenomena are not encoded in the Hollywood algorithms.

To be sure, synthetic Black people have been depicted in film, such as in last year’s Pixar movie “Soul.” But behind the scenes, the lighting artists found that they had to push the software far outside its default settings and learn all new lighting techniques to create these characters. These tools were not designed to make nonwhite humans; even the most technically sophisticated artists in the world strained to use them effectively.=White skin is faithfully depicted, but the characteristic shine of Black skin is either disturbingly missing, or distressingly overlighted. …

Once the data from these flawed algorithms are ingested by AIs, the provenance of their malfunctions will become near-impossible to diagnose. When Tesla Roadsters start disproportionally running over Black paramedics, or Oakland residents with natural hairstyles, the cars won’t be able to report that “nobody told me how Black skin looks in real life.” …

Synthetic training data are a convenient shortcut when real-world collection is too expensive. But AI practitioners should be asking themselves: Given the possible consequences, is it worth it? If the answer is no, they should be pushing to do things the hard way: by collecting the real-world data.

Tesla should buy the rights to the World Star Hip-Hop archives. That way, nobody will ever accuse them of racism again.

 
Hide 66 CommentsLeave a Comment
Commenters to Ignore...to FollowEndorsed Only
Trim Comments?
  1. Elon Musk needs to go all the way and bring back whitewalls.

    • LOL: George
    • Replies: @George
    @Buck Ransom

    Rich rebuilds comments on Tesla's white robot with black face that dances.

    We BUILT a Tesla Bot before Tesla could and it cost us everything
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3-PmIGy7Dtg

  2. My next car may be a 1990s Jeep Cherokee, so, AI, what’s that, an Aluminum Intake manifold?

    Except for electronic ignition, computers and cars go together like pizza and anchovies, and I HATE HATE HATE anchovies.

    They’ve got computers to run the windshield wipers now. I can see rain, and I can rotate a switch. How much electronics do we need?

    • Agree: El Dato, 3g4me
    • Replies: @raga10
    @Achmed E. Newman


    They’ve got computers to run the windshield wipers now. I can see rain, and I can rotate a switch
     
    I completely agree with your thinking about electronics, though not about anchovies. Anchovies are the best, and they are especially good on the pizza!

    As for the collision avoidance software, I doubt it looks at details like texture of skin or hairdo. I would say it more likely looks at overall shape and movement.
    In any case, so far Teslas problem seems to be plowing into stationary emergency vehicles, never mind skin colour of paramedics...

    Replies: @Dr. DoomNGloom, @Reg Cæsar

    , @Hypnotoad666
    @Achmed E. Newman


    How much electronics do we need?
     
    I have a German car that is wonderfully engineered. Except it is infested with some nanny software that randomly decides: "it's probably not optimal for gas mileage or safety to accelerate as much as your foot pressure on the gas indicates you want, so I'm going to give you 20-30% less power than you are asking for." This is pretty distressing when you are trying to get out in front of a truck that is bearing down on you.

    Apparently this is known as "adaptive transmission." It can be reset by following some hack on the internet but it's annoying as hell.

    Replies: @Elli, @Alfa158

    , @El Dato
    @Achmed E. Newman

    My car manual has 600 pages.

    I made a big mistake.

  3. Why would anybody put a capital B in front of the word “lack”?
    Is this Gods’ sick sense of humor? Are the africans “chosen” as well?Prai\$e…???

    • Replies: @Pericles
    @goldgettin

    It's because of the good and great of this world, the Journalists and Editors.

    Similarly, that's why the new york times has to capitalize the Washington Post, as a collective punishment for all the historical crimes of journalism.

  4. Theodore Kim:

    When Tesla Roadsters start disproportionally running over Black paramedics, or Oakland residents with natural hairstyles …

    The above perception echoes the CYA excuse I imagined Miami Beach mayor Dan Gelber might make to try to ban ‘mutual combat’ Blacks from South Beach:

    “Look, in recent years we’ve had a lotta schvartz—, ehh, clientele that likes to party at night, but who are hard to see in the dark. Someone could get run over. For everyone’s safety, it’s best they don’t come.”

    https://www.unz.com/isteve/rather-than-arrest-the-criminal-mastermind-kingpin-just-arrest-everybody-in-a-gang-takedown/#comment-4871542 (#23)

    • Thanks: Polistra
  5. Mr. Kim says hey whitey, even your car is racist.

  6. I’m amused by the idea that an ostensibly defective (or perhaps just inefficient) A.I. visual algorithmic software routine (in that it is less successful at detecting Black people, as compared to White people), due to objective coloration disparities, could be described by an adult as “racist”.

    Grow the Hell up already, Ted.

    • Replies: @Lockean Proviso
    @Servant of Gla'aki

    The idea that black people are harder to see in the dark is a racist trope. Their skin literally shines, and if it doesn't it's because their natural luminosity has been suppressed by systemic antiblackness.

  7. The headline made me laugh, but the article was even funnier.

    Now I want a racist car.

  8. I can’t wait for the outrage when some cartoon characters have shiny black skin and bright white teeth.

  9. When Tesla Roadsters start disproportionally running over Black paramedics, or Oakland residents with natural hairstyles, the cars won’t be able to report that “nobody told me how Black skin looks in real life.” …

    “I was just following orders…”

    “Yes, car. But can you explain this lampshade collection?”

    Seriously, you have those kind of problems and you call that “AI”? I think not.

    • Replies: @Lurker
    @El Dato

    I must object - Thomas appears to have outside valve gear in that video at 0:29. But Thomas should have inside cylinders.

    https://media.npr.org/assets/img/2010/09/03/Thomas_RailwaySeries_wide-e8b6239933ac8a4e38164b311a8adc7fdc1f9083-s800-c85.webp

    Replies: @El Dato

  10. That article wasn’t parody? Really?

    • Replies: @El Dato
    @John Milton’s Ghost

    This is 2021, Marty. Great Scott!

    , @Erik L
    @John Milton’s Ghost

    The article, if you ignore its iStevey content, is about the dangers of training AI with synthetic data rather than real data. The black v white example may be very attention grabbing but (I haven't read the whole article) the main point is likely valid. If you train cars not to hit people based on all the assumptions in human generated simulations, you may miss vital information from real world conditions.

    With cars this could result in people getting hit

  11. In contrast, computer graphics researchers have not systematically investigated the shine and gloss that characterizes dark and Black skin, or the characteristics of Afro-textured hair.

    “(That’s why they call me) Shine”, lyrics by Cecil Mack and Tin Pan Alley songwriter Lew Brown and music by Ford Dabney, published in 1910.

    [MORE]

    “Say, just because my hair is curly
    And just because my teeth are pearly
    And just because I always wear a smile
    I wear my jeans like a man of means
    He always dresses in the latest style

    Just because I’m glad I’m livin’
    Takes trouble smilin’, never whine
    Just because my color’s shady
    Slightly different maybe
    that’s why they call me shine.”

  12. @goldgettin
    Why would anybody put a capital B in front of the word "lack"?
    Is this Gods' sick sense of humor? Are the africans "chosen" as well?Prai$e...???

    Replies: @Pericles

    It’s because of the good and great of this world, the Journalists and Editors.

    Similarly, that’s why the new york times has to capitalize the Washington Post, as a collective punishment for all the historical crimes of journalism.

  13. @Achmed E. Newman
    My next car may be a 1990s Jeep Cherokee, so, AI, what's that, an Aluminum Intake manifold?

    Except for electronic ignition, computers and cars go together like pizza and anchovies, and I HATE HATE HATE anchovies.

    They've got computers to run the windshield wipers now. I can see rain, and I can rotate a switch. How much electronics do we need?

    Replies: @raga10, @Hypnotoad666, @El Dato

    They’ve got computers to run the windshield wipers now. I can see rain, and I can rotate a switch

    I completely agree with your thinking about electronics, though not about anchovies. Anchovies are the best, and they are especially good on the pizza!

    As for the collision avoidance software, I doubt it looks at details like texture of skin or hairdo. I would say it more likely looks at overall shape and movement.
    In any case, so far Teslas problem seems to be plowing into stationary emergency vehicles, never mind skin colour of paramedics…

    • Replies: @Dr. DoomNGloom
    @raga10


    As for the collision avoidance software, I doubt it looks at details like texture of skin or hairdo. I would say it more likely looks at overall shape and movement.
    In any case, so far Teslas problem seems to be plowing into stationary emergency vehicles, never mind skin colour of paramedics…
     
    There is one big problem with the Deep Learning techniques usually applied to image recognition. We can't really tell what it is looking at. The algorithm creates nodes in multiple layers, then minimizes an information measure. There are examples of defeating a calibrated system for recognizing airplanes by painting stars or some other symbol on the wings. What they key on is often some incidental artifact of the training set.

    It is possible that using diverse subjects in the training will lead to more reliable true positives, but more overall misses.
    , @Reg Cæsar
    @raga10


    I completely agree with your thinking about electronics, though not about anchovies. Anchovies are the best, and they are especially good on the pizza!
     
    I'm with Hobbes:



    https://homepages.hass.rpi.edu/heuveb/Teaching/CriticalThinking/Web/Journal/Entries/calvin.jpg


    As for cars, I hate, hate, hate automatic transmission. Like Steven Wright's hitchhiker who wouldn't relieve the driver because "I can't drive an automatic."

    Replies: @Old Prude, @J1234, @YetAnotherAnon

  14. @Achmed E. Newman
    My next car may be a 1990s Jeep Cherokee, so, AI, what's that, an Aluminum Intake manifold?

    Except for electronic ignition, computers and cars go together like pizza and anchovies, and I HATE HATE HATE anchovies.

    They've got computers to run the windshield wipers now. I can see rain, and I can rotate a switch. How much electronics do we need?

    Replies: @raga10, @Hypnotoad666, @El Dato

    How much electronics do we need?

    I have a German car that is wonderfully engineered. Except it is infested with some nanny software that randomly decides: “it’s probably not optimal for gas mileage or safety to accelerate as much as your foot pressure on the gas indicates you want, so I’m going to give you 20-30% less power than you are asking for.” This is pretty distressing when you are trying to get out in front of a truck that is bearing down on you.

    Apparently this is known as “adaptive transmission.” It can be reset by following some hack on the internet but it’s annoying as hell.

    • Thanks: AndrewR
    • Replies: @Elli
    @Hypnotoad666

    I rented a van that had adaptive headlights. No oncoming cars, high beams go on. Oncoming car, back to low.

    But what if I don't like blinding pedestrians and their dogs?

    Replies: @Old Prude

    , @Alfa158
    @Hypnotoad666

    What brand is it? I have a Mercedes and a BMW. On both the default driving mode is the normal one and you have to select the maximum economy mode with button pushes or in a menu.
    You’re right about the economy modes being annoying and dangerous, especially on the most extreme setting in the BMW, but I never use the cars that way.
    Other than that though I have to admit all those decadent features are easy to get used to. I now love things I used to mock like back up cameras, heated seats and steering wheels, connection to your smart phone, automatic lights and wipers etc.. I’m spoiled and get mildly peeved when I drive something else that actually expects me to turn the wipers and headlights on myself.
    The one thing that bothers me is that both cars have a nanny feature where if you drive steadily for a while at highway speeds, the car bings at you, puts a drawing of a coffee cup on the display, suggests you take a rest break and shows nearby places you can pull off. The cars also won’t take down the nanny display until you hit a button to say OK. I’m guessing that future cars will simply take over control and forcibly drive you to the nearest coffee shop.

    Replies: @Achmed E. Newman, @Hypnotoad666, @Lockean Proviso

  15. The elite really are getting desperate about denying average people their own cars, aren’t they?

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
    @Redneck farmer

    Rush has got this one:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FAvQSkK8Z8U

    R.F., we're living in a dystopian Science Fiction novel that was supposed to be set in 2,500 A.D.

    , @El Dato
    @Redneck farmer

    Soviet Union: Owning a big car is bourgeois, except if you are member of the nomenclatura

    Soviet West: Owning a car be racist, but only if you be white

    Hit the synthwave!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r4J5nKy6dDw

    Also, this low-brow LA Times article is currently top on Google for "racist car"

  16. @John Milton’s Ghost
    That article wasn’t parody? Really?

    Replies: @El Dato, @Erik L

    This is 2021, Marty. Great Scott!

  17. I can see the need to ensure face detection software is trained on a wide range of looks and ethnicities, but this Op-Ed is plan stupid.

    And by the way, does this mean race does exist?

  18. Actually that could work as a Twilight Zone style movie! A rich white guy’s new car has a voice interface that starts making racist remarks, and in the end hits and runs blacks and gets him charged with murder. If I was a Hollywood producer I’d be on to this.

  19. If this means that the algorithm can only detect white bodies, will Teslas be offered in any color as long as it’s white?
    And will insurance claims only be admissible for collisions with white vehicles?

  20. @Redneck farmer
    The elite really are getting desperate about denying average people their own cars, aren't they?

    Replies: @Achmed E. Newman, @El Dato

    Rush has got this one:

    R.F., we’re living in a dystopian Science Fiction novel that was supposed to be set in 2,500 A.D.

    • Thanks: Redneck farmer
  21. It’s worse than that. Camera light meters are calibrated to 18% grey. Since light meters do not see colour, merely luminosity, the average white skin tone is 18% grey. Cameras be raysiss! It’s lucky that the Woke haven’t found this out yet. Probably because they have the collective intelligence of yeast. But really. The shocking white supremacy of Nikon and Canon!

  22. Anon[323] • Disclaimer says:

    The shine of black skin *in the movies* is from makeup. American Cinematographer years ago had a profile of the guy that figured how to get black actors not to disappear into the shadows: basically, lube them up. If you lubed up white actors, they’d be shiny also. I guess we’ve gotten so used to shiny black actors by now that non-made up blacks don’t look quite right on camera.

    • Replies: @Sick 'n Tired
    @Anon

    Similar to how they would hose down the streets before filming so the road reflected the light.

  23. When Tesla Roadsters start disproportionally running over Black paramedics, or Oakland residents with natural hairstyles

    And yet the only pedestrian I know of to be killed by vehicular AI was a white woman, apparently of Aryan extraction…

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_of_Elaine_Herzberg

    Maybe Uber’s AI needs a software update from the Fatherland to patch a faulty subroutine programmed by concern troll Theodore Kim?

    The backup human driver, Rafaela Vasquez, who was supposed to ensure this kind of thing didn’t happen, was too busy watching Hulu on her cell phone to notice a pedestrian on the open desert highway.

  24. From the author of Christine, we bring you Karen, the racist AI car.

    • LOL: El Dato
  25. Training “AIs” on synthetic data is batshit insane, but it’s the only way we’re going to get “AIs” that tell us that black people act like white people.

    * It’s not artificial intelligence; if it were, you could just tell it to lie, like they tell the rest of us. What it is, is automated pattern recognition: The Mecha-Sailer, a machine for noticing. It can’t lie on its own. We must lie to it.

  26. @Hypnotoad666
    @Achmed E. Newman


    How much electronics do we need?
     
    I have a German car that is wonderfully engineered. Except it is infested with some nanny software that randomly decides: "it's probably not optimal for gas mileage or safety to accelerate as much as your foot pressure on the gas indicates you want, so I'm going to give you 20-30% less power than you are asking for." This is pretty distressing when you are trying to get out in front of a truck that is bearing down on you.

    Apparently this is known as "adaptive transmission." It can be reset by following some hack on the internet but it's annoying as hell.

    Replies: @Elli, @Alfa158

    I rented a van that had adaptive headlights. No oncoming cars, high beams go on. Oncoming car, back to low.

    But what if I don’t like blinding pedestrians and their dogs?

    • Replies: @Old Prude
    @Elli

    There's just so much stupid crap they try to automate. I borrowed Mrs. Prude's RAV4 for a week and spent some time exploring the automation. First thing I did was turn off the adaptive headlights. I never did master the automatic climate control.

    One of the dumber features I found was a setting that played a certain sound when you arrived at a destination programmed into the car's klunky GPS: A door bell when arriving home, a tooting horn or some other corny sound when arriving at work. Really gay, and really annoying. Who thought paying someone to code that was a good idea?

    Cruise control, intermittent wipers, and electric windows. That's about all the automation I want in a vehicle.

    Replies: @raga10

  27. When Tesla Roadsters start disproportionally running over Black paramedics …

    I almost spit my coffee over this one. Don’t these people have any idea how lame this stuff sounds?

  28. @Buck Ransom
    Elon Musk needs to go all the way and bring back whitewalls.

    Replies: @George

    Rich rebuilds comments on Tesla’s white robot with black face that dances.

    We BUILT a Tesla Bot before Tesla could and it cost us everything

  29. More likely automotive innovations will be designed to track, control and harass white people

  30. @raga10
    @Achmed E. Newman


    They’ve got computers to run the windshield wipers now. I can see rain, and I can rotate a switch
     
    I completely agree with your thinking about electronics, though not about anchovies. Anchovies are the best, and they are especially good on the pizza!

    As for the collision avoidance software, I doubt it looks at details like texture of skin or hairdo. I would say it more likely looks at overall shape and movement.
    In any case, so far Teslas problem seems to be plowing into stationary emergency vehicles, never mind skin colour of paramedics...

    Replies: @Dr. DoomNGloom, @Reg Cæsar

    As for the collision avoidance software, I doubt it looks at details like texture of skin or hairdo. I would say it more likely looks at overall shape and movement.
    In any case, so far Teslas problem seems to be plowing into stationary emergency vehicles, never mind skin colour of paramedics…

    There is one big problem with the Deep Learning techniques usually applied to image recognition. We can’t really tell what it is looking at. The algorithm creates nodes in multiple layers, then minimizes an information measure. There are examples of defeating a calibrated system for recognizing airplanes by painting stars or some other symbol on the wings. What they key on is often some incidental artifact of the training set.

    It is possible that using diverse subjects in the training will lead to more reliable true positives, but more overall misses.

  31. @John Milton’s Ghost
    That article wasn’t parody? Really?

    Replies: @El Dato, @Erik L

    The article, if you ignore its iStevey content, is about the dangers of training AI with synthetic data rather than real data. The black v white example may be very attention grabbing but (I haven’t read the whole article) the main point is likely valid. If you train cars not to hit people based on all the assumptions in human generated simulations, you may miss vital information from real world conditions.

    With cars this could result in people getting hit

  32. @Hypnotoad666
    @Achmed E. Newman


    How much electronics do we need?
     
    I have a German car that is wonderfully engineered. Except it is infested with some nanny software that randomly decides: "it's probably not optimal for gas mileage or safety to accelerate as much as your foot pressure on the gas indicates you want, so I'm going to give you 20-30% less power than you are asking for." This is pretty distressing when you are trying to get out in front of a truck that is bearing down on you.

    Apparently this is known as "adaptive transmission." It can be reset by following some hack on the internet but it's annoying as hell.

    Replies: @Elli, @Alfa158

    What brand is it? I have a Mercedes and a BMW. On both the default driving mode is the normal one and you have to select the maximum economy mode with button pushes or in a menu.
    You’re right about the economy modes being annoying and dangerous, especially on the most extreme setting in the BMW, but I never use the cars that way.
    Other than that though I have to admit all those decadent features are easy to get used to. I now love things I used to mock like back up cameras, heated seats and steering wheels, connection to your smart phone, automatic lights and wipers etc.. I’m spoiled and get mildly peeved when I drive something else that actually expects me to turn the wipers and headlights on myself.
    The one thing that bothers me is that both cars have a nanny feature where if you drive steadily for a while at highway speeds, the car bings at you, puts a drawing of a coffee cup on the display, suggests you take a rest break and shows nearby places you can pull off. The cars also won’t take down the nanny display until you hit a button to say OK. I’m guessing that future cars will simply take over control and forcibly drive you to the nearest coffee shop.

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
    @Alfa158

    Sorry, Steve, for continuing off-topic, but, boomers, cars, whaddya figure?


    I’m guessing that future cars will simply take over control and forcibly drive you to the nearest coffee shop.
     
    LOL. I am getting seriously sick of machines/devices of all kinds on which I have run work-arounds to get them to do what their sole damn purposes are. The special* features should all be default off, but then they don't get to show off said fancy features.

    I'm not totally against the ones that make sense. I wouldn't have gotten our last vehicle WITHOUT a back-up camera because its visibility sucks. Then, I am so used to those built-in tire pressure sensors that I'll often put some air from the compressor into the one that has a slow leak (1-2 psi per day), without using the gauge and just see what the pressure is after I start driving. If these sensors fail, well, the car is still fine. Granted you may get some nanny message that's hard to keep off. ("Hey, I don't know my driver's side rear tire pressure! Get me to the shop!")

    .

    * Special, as in, you only really need them if you are retarded.

    Replies: @Paul Mendez

    , @Hypnotoad666
    @Alfa158

    It's a BMW 3-series. It's old enough that it doesn't have official buttons for different modes. But apparently they built it with that functionality hidden like a ghost in the machine. I wouldn't be surprised if the manufacturers play around with some of these settings as a loophole to pass smog (I'm in CA), or get their official MPG scores up. (Like VW did illegally).

    As long as I'm complaining about my car, the other nanny thing it does is assume that anything that weighs about a pound or two in the passenger seat must be a baby, so it starts nagging me to put a seatbelt around my dog or groceries or whatever is actually over there.

    , @Lockean Proviso
    @Alfa158


    I’m guessing that future cars will simply take over control and forcibly drive you to the nearest coffee shop.
     
    On Star and probably other nanny systems already can remotely shut down a driving car, if for example it's been reported stolen. That's nice, but it's a vulnerability to hacking or totalitarian control. If say your social credit score falls too low, they put you on the No-Drive List and remotely disable your vehicle If the future dystopian antiracist AI does the nightly audit and finds posts to this blog from your ip address, then you could be driving through the part of town where you don't want to break down and the fuel gets cut to your motor. For an extra touch, they could flash a message on the license plate screen announcing that the vehicle has been shut down by OneGov for hate speech by the owner.
  33. When Tesla Roadsters start disproportionally running over Black paramedics, or Oakland residents with natural hairstyles, the cars won’t be able to report that “nobody told me how Black skin looks in real life.” …

    I submit that when “Tesla Roadsters start disproportionally running over Black paramedics, or Oakland residents with natural hairstyles” a more parsimonious explanation than rayciss AI would note a certain demographic’s tendency to walk into the road whenever and wherever the mood strikes them. But then again, William of Ockham was a White man so what can you expect?

  34. the diffuse glow of pale, white skin … the shine and gloss that characterizes dark and Black skin

    I wonder if animated Mexicans (Coco), Polynesians (Moana), Southeast Asians (Raya and the Last Dragon), and East Asians (Big Hero 6) are more black “shine and gloss” or white “diffuse glow.”

    Frankly, I’m not sure “shine and gloss” is an accurate description of black people’s skin. Shiny skin and hair that doesn’t move may be a quick visual shorthand to let you know that an animated character is black, but in real life, under normal light, black people’s skin is not that shiny.

  35. Is This Stephen King’s Next Thriller?

    Tp paraphrase Marx, first time tragedy, second time sitcom:

  36. @raga10
    @Achmed E. Newman


    They’ve got computers to run the windshield wipers now. I can see rain, and I can rotate a switch
     
    I completely agree with your thinking about electronics, though not about anchovies. Anchovies are the best, and they are especially good on the pizza!

    As for the collision avoidance software, I doubt it looks at details like texture of skin or hairdo. I would say it more likely looks at overall shape and movement.
    In any case, so far Teslas problem seems to be plowing into stationary emergency vehicles, never mind skin colour of paramedics...

    Replies: @Dr. DoomNGloom, @Reg Cæsar

    I completely agree with your thinking about electronics, though not about anchovies. Anchovies are the best, and they are especially good on the pizza!

    I’m with Hobbes:

    As for cars, I hate, hate, hate automatic transmission. Like Steven Wright’s hitchhiker who wouldn’t relieve the driver because “I can’t drive an automatic.”

    • Replies: @Old Prude
    @Reg Cæsar

    Stop and go traffic with a manual transmission is a drag.

    Replies: @Reg Cæsar

    , @J1234
    @Reg Cæsar


    As for cars, I hate, hate, hate automatic transmission.
     
    I think that manual transmissions are kind of a pass/fail IQ test for drivers. Slightly less intimidating than a manual choke or spark advance, but still a mental gauntlet. They also keep people from trying to multi-task while driving, and therefore keep them more focused on the road. I'll sometimes try to eat fast food while driving an automatic (probably another pass/fail IQ test) but I'll rarely do that with a manual transmission. Mostly, manual transmissions promote what I call mechanical empathy among drivers.

    Replies: @Sick 'n Tired

    , @YetAnotherAnon
    @Reg Cæsar

    Automatic transmission is great for junctions where the road you are on (and pulling out from) is a steep hill - you don't have to balance the car on the clutch/accelerator, with an eye on the guy behind in case you slip back (lousy handbrake). Manuals are generally more fun to drive and I get much better fuel economy.

  37. @Redneck farmer
    The elite really are getting desperate about denying average people their own cars, aren't they?

    Replies: @Achmed E. Newman, @El Dato

    Soviet Union: Owning a big car is bourgeois, except if you are member of the nomenclatura

    Soviet West: Owning a car be racist, but only if you be white

    Hit the synthwave!

    Also, this low-brow LA Times article is currently top on Google for “racist car”

  38. @Alfa158
    @Hypnotoad666

    What brand is it? I have a Mercedes and a BMW. On both the default driving mode is the normal one and you have to select the maximum economy mode with button pushes or in a menu.
    You’re right about the economy modes being annoying and dangerous, especially on the most extreme setting in the BMW, but I never use the cars that way.
    Other than that though I have to admit all those decadent features are easy to get used to. I now love things I used to mock like back up cameras, heated seats and steering wheels, connection to your smart phone, automatic lights and wipers etc.. I’m spoiled and get mildly peeved when I drive something else that actually expects me to turn the wipers and headlights on myself.
    The one thing that bothers me is that both cars have a nanny feature where if you drive steadily for a while at highway speeds, the car bings at you, puts a drawing of a coffee cup on the display, suggests you take a rest break and shows nearby places you can pull off. The cars also won’t take down the nanny display until you hit a button to say OK. I’m guessing that future cars will simply take over control and forcibly drive you to the nearest coffee shop.

    Replies: @Achmed E. Newman, @Hypnotoad666, @Lockean Proviso

    Sorry, Steve, for continuing off-topic, but, boomers, cars, whaddya figure?

    I’m guessing that future cars will simply take over control and forcibly drive you to the nearest coffee shop.

    LOL. I am getting seriously sick of machines/devices of all kinds on which I have run work-arounds to get them to do what their sole damn purposes are. The special* features should all be default off, but then they don’t get to show off said fancy features.

    I’m not totally against the ones that make sense. I wouldn’t have gotten our last vehicle WITHOUT a back-up camera because its visibility sucks. Then, I am so used to those built-in tire pressure sensors that I’ll often put some air from the compressor into the one that has a slow leak (1-2 psi per day), without using the gauge and just see what the pressure is after I start driving. If these sensors fail, well, the car is still fine. Granted you may get some nanny message that’s hard to keep off. (“Hey, I don’t know my driver’s side rear tire pressure! Get me to the shop!”)

    .

    * Special, as in, you only really need them if you are retarded.

    • Replies: @Paul Mendez
    @Achmed E. Newman


    I wouldn’t have gotten our last vehicle WITHOUT a back-up camera because its visibility sucks
     
    Evidently, safety standards for rollover protection and headrest heights have made backup cameras necessary equipment, not luxury features, on most new cars. I have owned a 2020 Jeep Renegade for a year now and still don’t have a good sense where my bumpers are.
  39. @Elli
    @Hypnotoad666

    I rented a van that had adaptive headlights. No oncoming cars, high beams go on. Oncoming car, back to low.

    But what if I don't like blinding pedestrians and their dogs?

    Replies: @Old Prude

    There’s just so much stupid crap they try to automate. I borrowed Mrs. Prude’s RAV4 for a week and spent some time exploring the automation. First thing I did was turn off the adaptive headlights. I never did master the automatic climate control.

    One of the dumber features I found was a setting that played a certain sound when you arrived at a destination programmed into the car’s klunky GPS: A door bell when arriving home, a tooting horn or some other corny sound when arriving at work. Really gay, and really annoying. Who thought paying someone to code that was a good idea?

    Cruise control, intermittent wipers, and electric windows. That’s about all the automation I want in a vehicle.

    • Replies: @raga10
    @Old Prude


    Cruise control, intermittent wipers, and electric windows. That’s about all the automation I want in a vehicle.
     
    I'm still on the fence about electric windows :) I had an old-school car where windows had handles you had to crank up and down by hand - it wasn't THAT much of a chore. What WAS really useful in that car was its vent window that opened on a hinge; it provided excellent ventilation. Modern cars don't have that feature anymore and I don't really know why - something to do with crash protection, maybe?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:1965_AMC_Ambassador_detail_of_vent_window.jpg

    Replies: @Sick 'n Tired

  40. @Alfa158
    @Hypnotoad666

    What brand is it? I have a Mercedes and a BMW. On both the default driving mode is the normal one and you have to select the maximum economy mode with button pushes or in a menu.
    You’re right about the economy modes being annoying and dangerous, especially on the most extreme setting in the BMW, but I never use the cars that way.
    Other than that though I have to admit all those decadent features are easy to get used to. I now love things I used to mock like back up cameras, heated seats and steering wheels, connection to your smart phone, automatic lights and wipers etc.. I’m spoiled and get mildly peeved when I drive something else that actually expects me to turn the wipers and headlights on myself.
    The one thing that bothers me is that both cars have a nanny feature where if you drive steadily for a while at highway speeds, the car bings at you, puts a drawing of a coffee cup on the display, suggests you take a rest break and shows nearby places you can pull off. The cars also won’t take down the nanny display until you hit a button to say OK. I’m guessing that future cars will simply take over control and forcibly drive you to the nearest coffee shop.

    Replies: @Achmed E. Newman, @Hypnotoad666, @Lockean Proviso

    It’s a BMW 3-series. It’s old enough that it doesn’t have official buttons for different modes. But apparently they built it with that functionality hidden like a ghost in the machine. I wouldn’t be surprised if the manufacturers play around with some of these settings as a loophole to pass smog (I’m in CA), or get their official MPG scores up. (Like VW did illegally).

    As long as I’m complaining about my car, the other nanny thing it does is assume that anything that weighs about a pound or two in the passenger seat must be a baby, so it starts nagging me to put a seatbelt around my dog or groceries or whatever is actually over there.

  41. @Reg Cæsar
    @raga10


    I completely agree with your thinking about electronics, though not about anchovies. Anchovies are the best, and they are especially good on the pizza!
     
    I'm with Hobbes:



    https://homepages.hass.rpi.edu/heuveb/Teaching/CriticalThinking/Web/Journal/Entries/calvin.jpg


    As for cars, I hate, hate, hate automatic transmission. Like Steven Wright's hitchhiker who wouldn't relieve the driver because "I can't drive an automatic."

    Replies: @Old Prude, @J1234, @YetAnotherAnon

    Stop and go traffic with a manual transmission is a drag.

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
    @Old Prude


    Stop and go traffic with a manual transmission is a drag.
     
    That's why the Old World has so many roundabouts. Swindon's is on my bucket list.


    https://i.pinimg.com/736x/45/8e/8f/458e8f71acf568de5bfb4fc109ce7a52.jpg


    https://youtu.be/s3Vd7dr33o8


    Swindon's rotary, Königsberg's bridges, Rome's hills, Bombay's islands... any other destinations for heptomaniacs?
  42. Using these algorithms to train AIs is extremely dangerous, because they were specifically designed to depict white humans.

    Other than assertions by one (now “retired”) supposed AI graphics designer, zero evidence exists for this.

    It is obvious that black and non black images will differ in characteristics when filmed, either live or in animation. I suspect that stage/film lighting is different for black and non black actors. Extreme light is shined on most non black actors from above to provide an image outline to create depth perception.

    Since dark hair/shine contrasts more readily against backgrounds (other than dark ones) less light is needed. Is that racist?

    The extent of fake racism pimping has now reached its zenith. Computer code used to manage the results of the laws of physics can now be racist. Maybe it’s “God’s plan.”

    Yet to be explained: how the KKK was formed more than a century before the racist menace of binary computer code was even invented…

  43. computer graphics researchers have not systematically investigated the shine and gloss that characterizes dark and Black skin

    And the broad noses and big lips while they’re at it. In other words…how can you not see what the problem is, genius? Any assessment of racial differences by computers or AI (or the people involved with them) are highly suspect in the eyes of the wild eyed woke. I could see them associating “shine and gloss” on black skin with plantation work.

  44. @El Dato

    When Tesla Roadsters start disproportionally running over Black paramedics, or Oakland residents with natural hairstyles, the cars won’t be able to report that “nobody told me how Black skin looks in real life.” …
     
    "I was just following orders..."

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sOTBU5QJJWM

    "Yes, car. But can you explain this lampshade collection?"

    Seriously, you have those kind of problems and you call that "AI"? I think not.

    Replies: @Lurker

    I must object – Thomas appears to have outside valve gear in that video at 0:29. But Thomas should have inside cylinders.

    • Replies: @El Dato
    @Lurker

    Maybe Thomas absconded to Argentina and had rebuild to escape Simon Wiesenthal Centre harrassment?

    I have to confess, I didn't even know inside cylinders existed. That's sacrificing maintainability for beautification appreciated only by english.

    Just take a look at Wehrmacht Kriegslokomotiven. They are beauties. There is no fox hunting going on nearby any of THOSE:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t_FkEI82ZrQ

    About AI, here is a useful article

    Trustworthy AI by Jeannette Wing, currently at Columbia and CMU, with some projects sponsored by Microsoft (who demand that you have "Trusted Computing Platform" in your machine for Windows 11, so that they can trust you to be a good consumer)

    Replies: @Lurker

  45. @Lurker
    @El Dato

    I must object - Thomas appears to have outside valve gear in that video at 0:29. But Thomas should have inside cylinders.

    https://media.npr.org/assets/img/2010/09/03/Thomas_RailwaySeries_wide-e8b6239933ac8a4e38164b311a8adc7fdc1f9083-s800-c85.webp

    Replies: @El Dato

    Maybe Thomas absconded to Argentina and had rebuild to escape Simon Wiesenthal Centre harrassment?

    I have to confess, I didn’t even know inside cylinders existed. That’s sacrificing maintainability for beautification appreciated only by english.

    Just take a look at Wehrmacht Kriegslokomotiven. They are beauties. There is no fox hunting going on nearby any of THOSE:

    About AI, here is a useful article

    Trustworthy AI by Jeannette Wing, currently at Columbia and CMU, with some projects sponsored by Microsoft (who demand that you have “Trusted Computing Platform” in your machine for Windows 11, so that they can trust you to be a good consumer)

    • Replies: @Lurker
    @El Dato

    I have to confess, I didn’t even know inside cylinders existed. That’s sacrificing maintainability for beautification appreciated only by english.

    I often wondered why. It certainly makes for an externally neat, tidy and 'clean' design but I believe theory held that it was better from a centre of gravity standpoint - keeping weight between the wheels. Better stability.

    This doesn't seem to have overly concerned many non-British loco designers however and when one considers most standard gauge lines outside the UK had far more generous loading gauges ie taller and wider rolling stock and still managed alright with outside cylinders only.

    When British railways were nationalised (1948) it was decided that all new locos would be two (outside) cylinder types for the utilitarian reasons you outlined. Although ironically the last British steam locos produced for commercial use, until 1964, were inside cylinder types. The Hunslet 'Austerity' loco which began production in WW2. It doesn't get much more unadorned than this:

    https://www.martynbane.co.uk/images/modernsteam/ldp/austerity/modified-locos/wheldale06081990.jpg

    The US Army ordered locos for use on British and European rails in WW2, designed with very similar parameters to the 'Austerity'. Similar power output, similar size and they ended up with this:

    https://sremg.org.uk/steam/pics/mm_67USA.jpg

    Replies: @Lurker

  46. @Reg Cæsar
    @raga10


    I completely agree with your thinking about electronics, though not about anchovies. Anchovies are the best, and they are especially good on the pizza!
     
    I'm with Hobbes:



    https://homepages.hass.rpi.edu/heuveb/Teaching/CriticalThinking/Web/Journal/Entries/calvin.jpg


    As for cars, I hate, hate, hate automatic transmission. Like Steven Wright's hitchhiker who wouldn't relieve the driver because "I can't drive an automatic."

    Replies: @Old Prude, @J1234, @YetAnotherAnon

    As for cars, I hate, hate, hate automatic transmission.

    I think that manual transmissions are kind of a pass/fail IQ test for drivers. Slightly less intimidating than a manual choke or spark advance, but still a mental gauntlet. They also keep people from trying to multi-task while driving, and therefore keep them more focused on the road. I’ll sometimes try to eat fast food while driving an automatic (probably another pass/fail IQ test) but I’ll rarely do that with a manual transmission. Mostly, manual transmissions promote what I call mechanical empathy among drivers.

    • Replies: @Sick 'n Tired
    @J1234

    I think manual drivers are more in tune with their vehicle, usually maintain it better, and have to be more aware of their surroundings when driving in heavy traffic. I own a 4 speed, Toyota FJ60, it's the greatest truck when driving on wide open backroads, or windy, hilly country roads where you are doing a lot of shifting, it's completely miserable when driving in stop and go traffic on 95, or going light to light in the city.

    I do feel that in order to get a driver's license, you should know how to drive manual and automatic. In the event of an emergency, everyone should be able to operate a vehicle, regardless of it's transmission.

    Replies: @raga10

  47. @Reg Cæsar
    @raga10


    I completely agree with your thinking about electronics, though not about anchovies. Anchovies are the best, and they are especially good on the pizza!
     
    I'm with Hobbes:



    https://homepages.hass.rpi.edu/heuveb/Teaching/CriticalThinking/Web/Journal/Entries/calvin.jpg


    As for cars, I hate, hate, hate automatic transmission. Like Steven Wright's hitchhiker who wouldn't relieve the driver because "I can't drive an automatic."

    Replies: @Old Prude, @J1234, @YetAnotherAnon

    Automatic transmission is great for junctions where the road you are on (and pulling out from) is a steep hill – you don’t have to balance the car on the clutch/accelerator, with an eye on the guy behind in case you slip back (lousy handbrake). Manuals are generally more fun to drive and I get much better fuel economy.

  48. @Achmed E. Newman
    My next car may be a 1990s Jeep Cherokee, so, AI, what's that, an Aluminum Intake manifold?

    Except for electronic ignition, computers and cars go together like pizza and anchovies, and I HATE HATE HATE anchovies.

    They've got computers to run the windshield wipers now. I can see rain, and I can rotate a switch. How much electronics do we need?

    Replies: @raga10, @Hypnotoad666, @El Dato

    My car manual has 600 pages.

    I made a big mistake.

  49. Harper’s covered this a couple of years ago. Of course AI is racist because it’s programmed by white men. I guess that army of Indian H-1B programmers don’t count.

    But that is all nonsense. It’s AI and isn’t that supposed to capable of “learning” on it’s own?

    I suggest that AI will see the same patterns everyone else can see but that we’re all supposed to pretend don’t exist…… well AI can and will. nothing “racist” about it, it’s just pattern recognition.

  50. Suppose we could objectively train AI to detect and generate the most beautiful and photogenic images, and they all turned out to be young White folks? That is the real fear here. Objective AI is as bad as objective IQ tests. They must be discredited in advance.

  51. @Servant of Gla'aki
    I'm amused by the idea that an ostensibly defective (or perhaps just inefficient) A.I. visual algorithmic software routine (in that it is less successful at detecting Black people, as compared to White people), due to objective coloration disparities, could be described by an adult as "racist".

    Grow the Hell up already, Ted.

    Replies: @Lockean Proviso

    The idea that black people are harder to see in the dark is a racist trope. Their skin literally shines, and if it doesn’t it’s because their natural luminosity has been suppressed by systemic antiblackness.

  52. “”AI Flaws Could Make Your Next Car Racist””

    This is definitely more along the lines of a Crichton book.

  53. @Alfa158
    @Hypnotoad666

    What brand is it? I have a Mercedes and a BMW. On both the default driving mode is the normal one and you have to select the maximum economy mode with button pushes or in a menu.
    You’re right about the economy modes being annoying and dangerous, especially on the most extreme setting in the BMW, but I never use the cars that way.
    Other than that though I have to admit all those decadent features are easy to get used to. I now love things I used to mock like back up cameras, heated seats and steering wheels, connection to your smart phone, automatic lights and wipers etc.. I’m spoiled and get mildly peeved when I drive something else that actually expects me to turn the wipers and headlights on myself.
    The one thing that bothers me is that both cars have a nanny feature where if you drive steadily for a while at highway speeds, the car bings at you, puts a drawing of a coffee cup on the display, suggests you take a rest break and shows nearby places you can pull off. The cars also won’t take down the nanny display until you hit a button to say OK. I’m guessing that future cars will simply take over control and forcibly drive you to the nearest coffee shop.

    Replies: @Achmed E. Newman, @Hypnotoad666, @Lockean Proviso

    I’m guessing that future cars will simply take over control and forcibly drive you to the nearest coffee shop.

    On Star and probably other nanny systems already can remotely shut down a driving car, if for example it’s been reported stolen. That’s nice, but it’s a vulnerability to hacking or totalitarian control. If say your social credit score falls too low, they put you on the No-Drive List and remotely disable your vehicle If the future dystopian antiracist AI does the nightly audit and finds posts to this blog from your ip address, then you could be driving through the part of town where you don’t want to break down and the fuel gets cut to your motor. For an extra touch, they could flash a message on the license plate screen announcing that the vehicle has been shut down by OneGov for hate speech by the owner.

  54. @Old Prude
    @Reg Cæsar

    Stop and go traffic with a manual transmission is a drag.

    Replies: @Reg Cæsar

    Stop and go traffic with a manual transmission is a drag.

    That’s why the Old World has so many roundabouts. Swindon’s is on my bucket list.

    Swindon’s rotary, Königsberg’s bridges, Rome’s hills, Bombay’s islands… any other destinations for heptomaniacs?

  55. But behind the scenes, the lighting artists found that they had to push the software far outside its default settings and learn all new lighting techniques…

    25 years ago I had a very dark-skinned coworker. When our picture was taken standing next to each other, the company newsletter publisher could never get details in both our faces at the same time.

  56. @Old Prude
    @Elli

    There's just so much stupid crap they try to automate. I borrowed Mrs. Prude's RAV4 for a week and spent some time exploring the automation. First thing I did was turn off the adaptive headlights. I never did master the automatic climate control.

    One of the dumber features I found was a setting that played a certain sound when you arrived at a destination programmed into the car's klunky GPS: A door bell when arriving home, a tooting horn or some other corny sound when arriving at work. Really gay, and really annoying. Who thought paying someone to code that was a good idea?

    Cruise control, intermittent wipers, and electric windows. That's about all the automation I want in a vehicle.

    Replies: @raga10

    Cruise control, intermittent wipers, and electric windows. That’s about all the automation I want in a vehicle.

    I’m still on the fence about electric windows 🙂 I had an old-school car where windows had handles you had to crank up and down by hand – it wasn’t THAT much of a chore. What WAS really useful in that car was its vent window that opened on a hinge; it provided excellent ventilation. Modern cars don’t have that feature anymore and I don’t really know why – something to do with crash protection, maybe?

    • Replies: @Sick 'n Tired
    @raga10

    Your opinion about electric windows will change if you ever drive off a pier or into a lake. We have been over complicating proven simplicity for the last 40-ish years. Pushing buttons to get Jetsons style results, only creates a system where the button, the control wires, the motor, the fuses are all points of possible failure. A hand crank controls a lever based system, where if the window won't open, it's because the crank spline is stripped, the glass is no longer seated in the track, the parts are rusted, or the handle is gone (easily fixed with a pair of vice grips). You should always keep a glass breaking tool in your car though, whether you need to use it on your own, or someone else's.

  57. @Achmed E. Newman
    @Alfa158

    Sorry, Steve, for continuing off-topic, but, boomers, cars, whaddya figure?


    I’m guessing that future cars will simply take over control and forcibly drive you to the nearest coffee shop.
     
    LOL. I am getting seriously sick of machines/devices of all kinds on which I have run work-arounds to get them to do what their sole damn purposes are. The special* features should all be default off, but then they don't get to show off said fancy features.

    I'm not totally against the ones that make sense. I wouldn't have gotten our last vehicle WITHOUT a back-up camera because its visibility sucks. Then, I am so used to those built-in tire pressure sensors that I'll often put some air from the compressor into the one that has a slow leak (1-2 psi per day), without using the gauge and just see what the pressure is after I start driving. If these sensors fail, well, the car is still fine. Granted you may get some nanny message that's hard to keep off. ("Hey, I don't know my driver's side rear tire pressure! Get me to the shop!")

    .

    * Special, as in, you only really need them if you are retarded.

    Replies: @Paul Mendez

    I wouldn’t have gotten our last vehicle WITHOUT a back-up camera because its visibility sucks

    Evidently, safety standards for rollover protection and headrest heights have made backup cameras necessary equipment, not luxury features, on most new cars. I have owned a 2020 Jeep Renegade for a year now and still don’t have a good sense where my bumpers are.

  58. @Anon
    The shine of black skin *in the movies* is from makeup. American Cinematographer years ago had a profile of the guy that figured how to get black actors not to disappear into the shadows: basically, lube them up. If you lubed up white actors, they'd be shiny also. I guess we've gotten so used to shiny black actors by now that non-made up blacks don't look quite right on camera.

    Replies: @Sick 'n Tired

    Similar to how they would hose down the streets before filming so the road reflected the light.

  59. @J1234
    @Reg Cæsar


    As for cars, I hate, hate, hate automatic transmission.
     
    I think that manual transmissions are kind of a pass/fail IQ test for drivers. Slightly less intimidating than a manual choke or spark advance, but still a mental gauntlet. They also keep people from trying to multi-task while driving, and therefore keep them more focused on the road. I'll sometimes try to eat fast food while driving an automatic (probably another pass/fail IQ test) but I'll rarely do that with a manual transmission. Mostly, manual transmissions promote what I call mechanical empathy among drivers.

    Replies: @Sick 'n Tired

    I think manual drivers are more in tune with their vehicle, usually maintain it better, and have to be more aware of their surroundings when driving in heavy traffic. I own a 4 speed, Toyota FJ60, it’s the greatest truck when driving on wide open backroads, or windy, hilly country roads where you are doing a lot of shifting, it’s completely miserable when driving in stop and go traffic on 95, or going light to light in the city.

    I do feel that in order to get a driver’s license, you should know how to drive manual and automatic. In the event of an emergency, everyone should be able to operate a vehicle, regardless of it’s transmission.

    • Agree: J1234
    • Replies: @raga10
    @Sick 'n Tired


    I do feel that in order to get a driver’s license, you should know how to drive manual and automatic.
     
    I agree but I no longer care much one way or another: Electric future is just around the corner now and this issue is simply going to go away because there will be no gears to change anymore. And if there are (like in Porsche Taycan - it has two gears) they will be beyond drivers' control.

    Replies: @J1234

  60. Never was an aphorism more appropriate “Garbage in; Garbage out.”

  61. @raga10
    @Old Prude


    Cruise control, intermittent wipers, and electric windows. That’s about all the automation I want in a vehicle.
     
    I'm still on the fence about electric windows :) I had an old-school car where windows had handles you had to crank up and down by hand - it wasn't THAT much of a chore. What WAS really useful in that car was its vent window that opened on a hinge; it provided excellent ventilation. Modern cars don't have that feature anymore and I don't really know why - something to do with crash protection, maybe?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:1965_AMC_Ambassador_detail_of_vent_window.jpg

    Replies: @Sick 'n Tired

    Your opinion about electric windows will change if you ever drive off a pier or into a lake. We have been over complicating proven simplicity for the last 40-ish years. Pushing buttons to get Jetsons style results, only creates a system where the button, the control wires, the motor, the fuses are all points of possible failure. A hand crank controls a lever based system, where if the window won’t open, it’s because the crank spline is stripped, the glass is no longer seated in the track, the parts are rusted, or the handle is gone (easily fixed with a pair of vice grips). You should always keep a glass breaking tool in your car though, whether you need to use it on your own, or someone else’s.

  62. @Sick 'n Tired
    @J1234

    I think manual drivers are more in tune with their vehicle, usually maintain it better, and have to be more aware of their surroundings when driving in heavy traffic. I own a 4 speed, Toyota FJ60, it's the greatest truck when driving on wide open backroads, or windy, hilly country roads where you are doing a lot of shifting, it's completely miserable when driving in stop and go traffic on 95, or going light to light in the city.

    I do feel that in order to get a driver's license, you should know how to drive manual and automatic. In the event of an emergency, everyone should be able to operate a vehicle, regardless of it's transmission.

    Replies: @raga10

    I do feel that in order to get a driver’s license, you should know how to drive manual and automatic.

    I agree but I no longer care much one way or another: Electric future is just around the corner now and this issue is simply going to go away because there will be no gears to change anymore. And if there are (like in Porsche Taycan – it has two gears) they will be beyond drivers’ control.

    • Replies: @J1234
    @raga10

    I'm not sure how available the manual transmission option is in even gas powered vehicles these days. I get the impression that it's uncommon. I don't keep up on the latest automotive engineering trends, but I've heard that manual transmissions have lost whatever edge they used to have in competitive applications. They're mostly appealing to guys like me, who just think they're cool.

    However, if the loud and conspicuous rpm patterns I hear while driving are any indication, manual transmissions are still pretty common in motorcycles. Honda tried to introduce automatics in bikes about 40 years ago, but they weren't well received by bikers. Maybe they've reintroduced them in big highway cruising bikes since then.

    Replies: @raga10

  63. @raga10
    @Sick 'n Tired


    I do feel that in order to get a driver’s license, you should know how to drive manual and automatic.
     
    I agree but I no longer care much one way or another: Electric future is just around the corner now and this issue is simply going to go away because there will be no gears to change anymore. And if there are (like in Porsche Taycan - it has two gears) they will be beyond drivers' control.

    Replies: @J1234

    I’m not sure how available the manual transmission option is in even gas powered vehicles these days. I get the impression that it’s uncommon. I don’t keep up on the latest automotive engineering trends, but I’ve heard that manual transmissions have lost whatever edge they used to have in competitive applications. They’re mostly appealing to guys like me, who just think they’re cool.

    However, if the loud and conspicuous rpm patterns I hear while driving are any indication, manual transmissions are still pretty common in motorcycles. Honda tried to introduce automatics in bikes about 40 years ago, but they weren’t well received by bikers. Maybe they’ve reintroduced them in big highway cruising bikes since then.

    • Replies: @raga10
    @J1234


    I’m not sure how available the manual transmission option is in even gas powered vehicles these days. I get the impression that it’s uncommon.
     
    It is on the way out for sure, but it depends on your market. Manuals are very rare in the US, but more common in Europe.

    I’ve heard that manual transmissions have lost whatever edge they used to have in competitive applications.
     
    Oh, absolutely - that's been true for years now. No driver can shift gears as fast as dual clutch transmission. But speed isn't everything - for a driving enthusiast, sensation and pleasure of being in control are often more important than outright speed.
  64. @El Dato
    @Lurker

    Maybe Thomas absconded to Argentina and had rebuild to escape Simon Wiesenthal Centre harrassment?

    I have to confess, I didn't even know inside cylinders existed. That's sacrificing maintainability for beautification appreciated only by english.

    Just take a look at Wehrmacht Kriegslokomotiven. They are beauties. There is no fox hunting going on nearby any of THOSE:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t_FkEI82ZrQ

    About AI, here is a useful article

    Trustworthy AI by Jeannette Wing, currently at Columbia and CMU, with some projects sponsored by Microsoft (who demand that you have "Trusted Computing Platform" in your machine for Windows 11, so that they can trust you to be a good consumer)

    Replies: @Lurker

    I have to confess, I didn’t even know inside cylinders existed. That’s sacrificing maintainability for beautification appreciated only by english.

    I often wondered why. It certainly makes for an externally neat, tidy and ‘clean’ design but I believe theory held that it was better from a centre of gravity standpoint – keeping weight between the wheels. Better stability.

    This doesn’t seem to have overly concerned many non-British loco designers however and when one considers most standard gauge lines outside the UK had far more generous loading gauges ie taller and wider rolling stock and still managed alright with outside cylinders only.

    When British railways were nationalised (1948) it was decided that all new locos would be two (outside) cylinder types for the utilitarian reasons you outlined. Although ironically the last British steam locos produced for commercial use, until 1964, were inside cylinder types. The Hunslet ‘Austerity’ loco which began production in WW2. It doesn’t get much more unadorned than this:

    The US Army ordered locos for use on British and European rails in WW2, designed with very similar parameters to the ‘Austerity’. Similar power output, similar size and they ended up with this:

    • Replies: @Lurker
    @Lurker

    Just found this piece comparing the two locos:

    https://www.fimfiction.net/group/1425/the-guild-of-equestrian-railroaders/thread/442019/the-second-battle-of-the-blueprints-usatc-s100-vs-hunslet-austerity

  65. @Lurker
    @El Dato

    I have to confess, I didn’t even know inside cylinders existed. That’s sacrificing maintainability for beautification appreciated only by english.

    I often wondered why. It certainly makes for an externally neat, tidy and 'clean' design but I believe theory held that it was better from a centre of gravity standpoint - keeping weight between the wheels. Better stability.

    This doesn't seem to have overly concerned many non-British loco designers however and when one considers most standard gauge lines outside the UK had far more generous loading gauges ie taller and wider rolling stock and still managed alright with outside cylinders only.

    When British railways were nationalised (1948) it was decided that all new locos would be two (outside) cylinder types for the utilitarian reasons you outlined. Although ironically the last British steam locos produced for commercial use, until 1964, were inside cylinder types. The Hunslet 'Austerity' loco which began production in WW2. It doesn't get much more unadorned than this:

    https://www.martynbane.co.uk/images/modernsteam/ldp/austerity/modified-locos/wheldale06081990.jpg

    The US Army ordered locos for use on British and European rails in WW2, designed with very similar parameters to the 'Austerity'. Similar power output, similar size and they ended up with this:

    https://sremg.org.uk/steam/pics/mm_67USA.jpg

    Replies: @Lurker

  66. @J1234
    @raga10

    I'm not sure how available the manual transmission option is in even gas powered vehicles these days. I get the impression that it's uncommon. I don't keep up on the latest automotive engineering trends, but I've heard that manual transmissions have lost whatever edge they used to have in competitive applications. They're mostly appealing to guys like me, who just think they're cool.

    However, if the loud and conspicuous rpm patterns I hear while driving are any indication, manual transmissions are still pretty common in motorcycles. Honda tried to introduce automatics in bikes about 40 years ago, but they weren't well received by bikers. Maybe they've reintroduced them in big highway cruising bikes since then.

    Replies: @raga10

    I’m not sure how available the manual transmission option is in even gas powered vehicles these days. I get the impression that it’s uncommon.

    It is on the way out for sure, but it depends on your market. Manuals are very rare in the US, but more common in Europe.

    I’ve heard that manual transmissions have lost whatever edge they used to have in competitive applications.

    Oh, absolutely – that’s been true for years now. No driver can shift gears as fast as dual clutch transmission. But speed isn’t everything – for a driving enthusiast, sensation and pleasure of being in control are often more important than outright speed.

Comments are closed.

Subscribe to All Steve Sailer Comments via RSS
PastClassics
The Shaping Event of Our Modern World
Analyzing the History of a Controversial Movement