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Remember 'If Microsoft made cars…' jokes?

Rick DeMeis
2/16/2012 11:51 PM EST

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cdhmanning
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re: Remember 'If Microsoft made cars…' jokes?
cdhmanning   2/19/2012 7:10:29 AM
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Trying to find the CD slot in an unfamiliar car while driving? Naughty, naughty man!

Bert22306
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CEO
re: Remember 'If Microsoft made cars…' jokes?
Bert22306   2/20/2012 6:40:51 AM
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Let's see now. You mean, "If Microsoft made cars, you'd experience things like 'unintended acceleration?'" Cheap shot, acknowledged. Japan Inc. is finding it difficult to build cars with character, especially these days. The one brand that seems to give it a good try would be, IMO, Mazda. It's a shame, because the engineering that goes into them is quite good. The flair is lacking. It might have to do with too much "design by committee." I know, off topic, just came out.

sharps_eng
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re: Remember 'If Microsoft made cars…' jokes?
sharps_eng   2/20/2012 10:55:59 PM
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63mpg at 40mph - shocking! I just found out how to reset the mileage computer on my '08 Focus, and was very surprised to find how much the efficiency of the 1.8 diesel engine improved at low revs. I always assumed that engine efficiency was best at some mid-point of the rev range, so I would usually 'ride light' on the throttle while spinning the motor, rather than drop out of the power band by changing up a gear. A hangover from biking I suppose. Without mpg instrumentation I never knew how effective it was with petrol cars but if fuel is running low this modern diesel is sure to get me home, happily pulling 40mph at tickover in top gear! There are many country roads around here that are 40mph limits, many that aren't safe above that, and plenty of times when traffic holds down speeds, so 5th gear miserly opportunities are plenty! Anyone know what algorithm these things use for the mpg calculation? How long is the averaging window? Sometimes it seems stuck at 42mpg then suddenly we are getting 53. Of course maybe it was headwinds or just a different gear... we don't have any hills so it isn't that!

Duane Benson
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re: Remember 'If Microsoft made cars…' jokes?
Duane Benson   2/21/2012 4:49:51 PM
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The easiest user interface to understand is a knob. Of course, that statement breaks down when you reach a certain number of knobs. After that, it takes some very hard work to make a complex product useable. Maybe the question should be: "What if Apple made cars?" They seem to have done the best job of making complex technology useable. No. They aren't perfect, but useability has always been their strong suit. Even without Apple in the car business, consumer would benefit if automakers studied Apple's UI design concepts.

old account Frank Eory
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re: Remember 'If Microsoft made cars…' jokes?
old account Frank Eory   2/22/2012 9:58:20 PM
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I can see it now: "Siri, please drive me home."

przemek0
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re: Remember 'If Microsoft made cars…' jokes?
przemek0   2/21/2012 11:59:42 PM
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@sharps_eng: don't trust the built-in algorithm: get a Bluetooth OBD reader and read it on your phone. YOu can display all engine parameters, including instantaneous and averaged MPG. You can get them for around $20 on eBay. Re: controls, I was ambushed this way when I rented a car in England. I picked it up in a dark garage, and couldn't find the light switch. Because it was dark.

prabhakar_deosthali
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re: Remember 'If Microsoft made cars…' jokes?
prabhakar_deosthali   2/22/2012 11:46:27 AM
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I had a similar experience while riding a Mercedes car. I was accompanying my MD to a party and he asked me to load a CD. After struggling for almost 15 minutes , I was excused by my boss as he himself was driving that car for the first time and was not completely familiar with its dashboard panels.

Duane Benson
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re: Remember 'If Microsoft made cars…' jokes?
Duane Benson   2/22/2012 10:24:05 PM
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Nevada apparently just passed legislation to allow self-driving cars on their roads. They still require a licensed driver in the seat in case of problems and that person can't be intoxicated, so no rolling out of a bar, passing out in your car and expecting to get home. I expect that the driving factor behind this is to make the state more R&D friendly - get some dollars when auto manufacturers set up camp to test out their robot cars.

zeeglen
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re: Remember 'If Microsoft made cars…' jokes?
zeeglen   2/23/2012 12:44:34 AM
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There was a time when a man could roll out of a bar, climb into his vehicle, say "gee-up Nellie!" and pass out. Can silicon really replace a horse? :)

TFlynn
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re: Remember 'If Microsoft made cars…' jokes?
TFlynn   2/25/2012 8:43:52 PM
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The problem started when people wanted more than 1HP.

Jeanshack
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re: Remember 'If Microsoft made cars…' jokes?
Jeanshack   2/24/2012 7:06:36 PM
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I got a jeep which kind of has only a CD player and you can never miss it because it takes up the major part of the dash board

FrankCF
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re: Remember 'If Microsoft made cars…' jokes?
FrankCF   2/28/2012 2:09:13 PM
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I don't understand the excitement with push button start. I had that on my 50 plymouth!

bcarso
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re: Remember 'If Microsoft made cars…' jokes?
bcarso   3/1/2012 6:09:10 PM
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Ilove how the critical button was labeled "Close". Rather like shutting down Windows with the Start icon. I may wind up with a veritable antique, so much do I hate the proliferation of features in new cars. When a friend got one of the first Prius (what should that plural be?) he just couldn't get enough of showing off the display, which showed one how the vehicle was doing clever things with electricity and internal combustion etc. It made me very nervous. Brad

JensenRV
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re: Remember 'If Microsoft made cars…' jokes?
JensenRV   5/14/2012 8:41:20 AM
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I think you did a fantastic job of reviewing the car as an electronics editor. It did not bore me to read the article, and the introduction was somewhat thought provoking. Thanks for the great read, and I am going to make an appointment to take one of these for a test drive soon. William - http://www.jensenrvdirect.com

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