Shoulda taken that left turn at Albuquerque

Gwendolyn has a pop-up box on her dash which, in later model years, would have accommodated a navigation system. I once looked into the possibility of retrofitting the device, but inasmuch as the price was way on the wrong side of a thousand dollars and the data disc was likely to be several years old, I decided that this was not such a great idea.

And that was before I read this:

So I bought a new car this summer. When I bought it I really thought I needed a navigation system. I haven’t used it in months, and then when I turned it on recently, it found me. In the middle of the ocean. I thought this odd, but my old nav system would lose me on occasion so it wasn’t a big deal. However every time I turn the damned car on now I’m in the middle of the ocean and I need to “realign” myself in the world.

I think it’s safe to assume she’s not in fact in the middle of the ocean.

I am, however, somewhat distrustful of this sort of machinery. I have an MP3 player which, once connected to the PC for download, resets the shuffle and puts Abba’s “Waterloo” at the head of the queue — whether or not any tracks were in fact downloaded; it will do it on a recharge cycle, even. This isn’t quite as scary as being lost on some side road in the Adirondacks, but it serves as a reminder that electronic servants all rely on software, and all software has bugs of some sort. (Ask anyone with a 30GB Zune.)


  1. McGehee »

    1 January 2009 · 9:28 pm

    My Sansa MP3 player resets the shuffle at the first song alphabetically whenever I’ve turned it off — it’s locked up and I’ve had to reboot. The truck’s cigarette-lighter power point works even with the ignition turned off, so I can leave the player in the truck on Pause for days at a time and the shuffle stays where I left it.

    Except in the event of the aforementioned need for a reboot. Which may be the result of leaving the player on Pause for days at a time…

  2. zigzag »

    2 January 2009 · 3:16 pm

    Pismo Beach !

  3. Baby Troll Blog »

    2 January 2009 · 4:20 pm

    On the Subject of Our……

    ELECTRONIC SERVANTS, Chaz Hill observes that they all run on software – buggy, poorly-documented, designed by engineers, engineered by marketers, marketed by designers….

  4. McGehee »

    2 January 2009 · 5:02 pm

    But which way do I turn to get to the Coachella Valley, and the carrot festival therein?

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