What the actual fuck. It's a car that you've paid several tens of thousands for.
Google pestering you for personal data in return for '''''free''''' services is terrible because they are a monopoly, but in a sense we're to blame by expecting not to pay money for maps, mail, search. But this is about a car, on average one of the most expensive things a person owns.
Makes you wonder... How will we look back on this day and age 40 years from now?
The cynic in me wants to say we will look back and wish our things still had off buttons.
__For example, the Tesla Model S 75 enabled internet usage on the 17-inch LCD touch screen that allowed the driver to perform a large number of tasks that were not
driving-related (e.g., checking and composing Facebook posts)
It's insane how much of a problem distracted driving is with mobile phones right now. I can't see "improving" cars by making them "smart" helping.
 https://www.caranddriver.com/news/eyes-off-the-road-study-co... (props to them for linking to the actual study rather than vaguely summarizing the paper)
 Actual study. PDF warning: https://publicaffairsresources.aaa.biz/wp-content/uploads/20...
Some constructors are coming back from the "no physical button" fad. At least for the things you should able to use while driving. The problem is the development cycle there is not in weeks or months but multiple years.
one of the most distracting and
dangerous things I can think of
"Citizen! Your opinion does not agree with groupthink. You will be driven to a reeducation center."
Just going to show that paying money for something doesn't guarantee that you aren't also the product.
> During the 2012 campaign, Barack Obama’s reelection team had an underappreciated asset: Google’s executive chairman, Eric Schmidt. He helped recruit talent, choose technology, and coach the campaign manager, Jim Messina, on the finer points of leading a large organization. “On election night he was in our boiler room in Chicago,” says David Plouffe, then a senior White House adviser. Schmidt had a particular affinity for a group of engineers and statisticians tucked away beneath a disco ball in a darkened corner of the office known as “the Cave.” The data analytics team, led by 30-year-old Dan Wagner, is credited with producing Obama’s surprising 5 million-vote margin of victory.
He already said the UKs surveillance apparatus was terrifying in comparison.
From what i hear in the customer service office up front, info-tainment universally sucks. There isnt a single manufacturer that hasnt turned the radio and air conditioner into some sort of rube goldberg machine. the switches on the steering wheel also adhere to absolutely no standard, so drivers are either turning the volume up on that classic rock song they love or setting the cruise control to plow through an intersection.
To add insult to injury, these systems are all needlessly expensive. a knob or a button will last ten times longer than a screen, especially if the vehicle is light truck/small business or god forbid, a family wagon/minivan.
The thing about the 4G interface software is that originally it was a powered accessory in the vehicle, but these days its an integral component. that means if it goes out, or you remove it, the car throws a code in the ECU and a light shows up on the dash. Why? internal combustion doesnt require 4G. in fact most drivers one would argue are better on the road without cellular networks.
If you want to avoid this weird 1984 wonderland of cars that spy on passengers, go for an older car. Mileage rarely matters anymore for cars 2006+, and platforms from manufacturers can remain the same for a decade. That means the only thing that changes is the interior cloth or shape of a button. I drive a 2005 Dodge Charger RT, and the only two people who know the music I like are my dog and my husband.
Rather than living with an older car, I think we should tackle issues like this head-on, since they're not going away. Legislation, or just making a shitstorm for the manufacturer, stuff like that.
In this case didn't GM specifically ask people to opt-in anyway? As long as it's overt, and not in some fine print somewhere, I don't think it's that big a deal.
Another case where the masses just don't really care that much and those of us who do get to pay the price. And ... while I say that, I admit I haven't disabled the OnStar on my Camaro. Buddy of mine with exactly the same car did but he's a bit more paranoid than I am, and the monthly "how shitty of a driver are you" message from OnStar creeped him out. Whereas it just made me want to try harder to make the score lower (it's like golf, yes?? ;-)). Now, if they start sending the data to my insurance company, then I'm yanking out the LTE immediately.
Having controls on the steering wheel are much safer than having someone blindly reaching for a knob or touchscreen. How many crashes have happened because someone has looked down and taken a hand off the steering wheel to adjust the volume knob? It only takes a second for someone to pull out in front of you or for a pedestrian to step out into the street. The less you need to take your hands off the steering wheel and the less you need to look away to control other things, the less you'll be looking somewhere and doing something else when that critical moment happens.
Sure, the lack of standards suck. I drove a loaner this past weekend because my car was at the dealer getting work. The new car had similar steering wheel controls but some of the lever switches did things in the opposite direction. But after driving with it for a day, I got used to it and that was that. They aren't too complicated that it takes years of study to figure out. Look at the manual. Try it out while in park and you'll be fine.
What happened in 2006 that made them less vulnerable to wear and tear?
We are the gears that make our world go around. Live the change you want to see.
.. what does that have to do with anything?
I would have thought this was within the remit of the EFF, but then so are a lot of other things.
—Eufy RoboVac 11S - Robot Vacuums
—Coway Airmega 300 - Air Purifier
I recently had a discussion about the iRobot Roomba line. I don't need a vacuum connected to the internet, yet every vacuum in the Roomba lineup now has an internet connection. Why? I cannot see a benefit to the consumer.
Anyways, I think this is a fantastic idea and have started to put a list here together here. Any other products I should add?
Well, they do make pretty neat wifi coverage maps of your home. But I guess they could do that without actually going online.
For example, I can say to you now that apple, google and samsung devices are very high on spyware. Would you even start considering replacing your phone?
The list would be extremely useful. And would drive paying customers to companies that are less crooked. Race to the top is a thing, it happens. Encouraging it is a good idea.
Consumer choice for smartphones seems to be at an all-time low, when it comes to software. (Hardware seems as diverse as ever, with a few exceptions, such as the actual modules for talking to the cell towers.)
You have iOS, Android... And a few small OSs which only work on very specific hardware, that tends not to be available after a year or two.
What I want from a phone is fairly limited, which I think makes me more flexible, but I can't really find anything that doesn't spy on me.
* Email (IMAP will do)
* SSH (with key support)
* Web browser
Anything I can find is either spyware-riddled, probably backdoored, or so out of date that purchasing it makes it as expensive as a flagship phone.
The baseband is still untrustworthy, but I think that's about as good as it gets.
Just because the majority of people use devices that disrespect their privacy doesn't mean that I have to. Even on the Android side of things, there are varying degrees of privacy-respecting ROMs that you can flash to try and curb the amount of spyware that your phone has.
It's narrow, not useless.
Remove connectivity, and that data collection is moot.
I'm looking to buy a car in the coming months / year - and I've narrowed it down to the C43, S60 and G70 and all those cars come with "connected features" that I have no need or want for. (find your car anywhere, unlock and remote start your car, send maps to your car, set climate control, check fuel/servicing etc. via an app / website). I partially blame Tesla for starting this trend.
It's absolute madness that we have cars companies that generally don't know a ton about software building technology that's generally insecure, will not be updated and mass producing it at scale and being used by 10000s (or even 100000s) of people worldwide. This is a recipe for a easily avoidable disaster waiting to happen and people who've paid 10s or 100s of thousands of $ are the victims. (and ofc they'll use this as an excuse to add more tech instead of less making it a house of cards - Eg. Oh you want secure features - guess what? we've added 4G/5G/LTE support. oh we'll also take in all your data to pay for it anyways).
> It's absolute madness that we have cars companies that generally don't know a ton about software building technology that's generally insecure, will not be updated and mass producing it at scale and being used by 10000s (or even 100000s) of people worldwide.
This! This a thousand times!
Last year I bought a new car, and one of my main deal-breaker criteria was the presence of an LTE modem. I don't want an internet-connected computer-on-wheels built by a company that has no idea how to build secure software and that doesn't have an engineering culture that's compatible with security. There's a too-large chance that they'll mess up and someone would ransom my car for a bitcoin (in the best-case hacking scenario).
It was tricky to figure out what cars had network connections, since the salespeople don't understand the technology, just the sales pitches. The questions that worked best for me were "Does this car have connected features such as remote door unlocking available?" followed by "If I want those features after I buy the car, will I have to take it back to get something installed?" Some cars, like Subarus ship without the connected car features, but the dealership can enable them remotely once you sign up for the monthly charges. That means their cars have an always-on LTE modem.
IMHO, it's going to take at least ten years for 1) car companies to learn the hard way how to develop secure software* and 2) develop a reliable and safe self-driving car that works in my climate. I figured now was the time to buy one of the "last good" cars that I could drive until this stuff is sorted out.
Turns out the one I got has a Android center console that's rootable through a well-known method, but at least I have to manually connect to a Wifi network for that to happen. And, frankly, who does that?
* IIRC, Microsoft took a similar path, first having comically insecure software, to taking security seriously, to actually getting good at it.
I had to do something similar to a sound system I owned. For some reason, they added Bluetooth with absolutely no authentication, so anyone in range could pair to it. I just removed the Bluetooth adaptor (it uses I2C and/or SMBus to communicate with the rest of the system).
You had a great point (about FCC) and I'll see if I can do something about this for the cars I plan on getting.
If I were to hazard a guess, the actual modem you are looking for if in the dash, as it seems that is where the "entertainment brains" are.
Why do you think this is insecure? Because its cars?
> I partially blame Tesla for starting this trend.
Ford. Ford started with Sync. Mentioning Tesla is a outsider move.
Why would you think billion dollar fortune 500 companies wouldnt hire programming and security experts?
Because of the engineering culture. As an example, I've interviewed at GM for software positions and i've interviewed at actual tech companies for similar positions and their process, questions and answers all show how different software is thought of by upper management.
it's changing ofcourse, but it's slow and in the mean time people will get hurt.
> Ford. Ford started with Sync. Mentioning Tesla is a outsider move.
Ford started it with Sync. But no one cared about Ford. You don't see youtube videos of excited people claiming their Ford can be remotely started via an app on their phone for example. It was a sales/marketing pitch by Ford.
Tesla on the other hand...brought the your car is a phone on wheels concept to the masses and popularized it to the point that other car companies feel the need to add it all to cars whether they have the skills or not. (not that Tesla is any better, as that recent post by an ex-engineer showed)
> Why would you think billion dollar fortune 500 companies wouldnt hire programming and security experts?
This is like asking why Equifax would not hire programmers and security experts yet they as we all know...even after that massive data breach, Equifax has yet to change their culture or process or hiring.
Link to post please?
They're not a software company, so not only do they lack experience, they lack the company culture. As a PG essay once pointed out (in the context of American car design), if your manager lacks knowledge of a thing, then they also lack knowledge necessary to identify a competent expert to hire.
The company is world-class at systems integration. If you want a giant component built in Italy to mate with a giant component made in Japan, they can manage to deliver the specs, have them built and tested independently, shipped to their factory floor, and joined perfectly. And repeat the manufacturing process, every day, for years.
If you suggest that the database should use a transaction for saving a crucial piece of data, they're lost. They've got internal policies that work great for bolts and wires (standardize all the things!), but suck for software (every software system must use the same database system, which we selected 30 years ago, i.e., it's no longer maintained). Specs are written like hardware specs which will change only minimally (we need a larger bolt), but of course they change all the time in significant ways (need to add a new core feature to the software which will require a completely different schema). Release cycles are literally measured in months, and they have a culture of hard public deadlines, so most problems simply can't get fixed in time, even if they're identified.
It doesn't surprise me in the least that car companies are having problems with software.
I mean, they could try putting the onus on the seller.
For a while VW (and the Germans) were the only holdouts.
The industry chose otherwise and gave us spying cars.
Needing to update maps using an sdcard doesn't seem like a limitation at all to me. It's a big advantage! I control when my stereo makes updates .. and my stereo doesn't track me!
If they're going to sell our listening habits and whatever else, then at least they can give us the wifi for free.
After getting a GM/Chevy recently, it reminded me of removing the bloatware on a cheap Windows laptop, except in this case, I didn't have the option to install a fresh OS. It comes bundled with free trials of OnStar and Sirius, both of which employ tactics to keep you onboard. Sigh...
What's it going to take to put these heinous actions in the grave?
OnStar required calling to cancel. They provide a web UI where you can add a new payment method but you can not remove all payment methods or cancel. Once you've convinced the person on the phone that you want to cancel, a new option to remove your payment method appears in the UI. The person on the phone didn't tell me to go back to the UI, I was just paranoid and saw it by accident.
I'd read enough horror stories on consumer affairs with, for example, people still being charged after they canceled.
By older, I mean early 90s. They have tripled in value in the last decade.
Very minimal electronics (has an ECU, cruise control, power doorlocks and windows), and easy to work on.
You can also buy salvaged Tesla parts and make your own vehicle...
So you hate getting a value for your money almost as much as the Toyota guys then?
How are those cute miniature ball joints holding up? Frame splice rusted out yet?
> They have tripled in value in the last decade.
I think you mean that the 1000lb dowel eating turd with a stupidly stupidly thin cylinder head casting that occupies the space under the hood has tripled in value in the last decade. The trucks themselves are sub par. The increase in value is because all the ones that don't have a Cummins have long since been scrapped so the ones remaining are kinda, sorta worth a couple bucks.
Regardless, Cummins 12v (and 24v) engines are so expensive that unless you can't read a wiring diagram or need weight up front for a pulling truck you're probably better served with a 6.0 LS
(Yes I'm being intentionally contrarian here but you know there's a grain of truth in what I'm saying)
Yeah, I'm kind of fed up with trucks spewing columns of foul-smelling black soot out of their tailpipes right at my car. Sorry if that makes me rude.
Also DEF, urea, is a NOx control mechanism and does nothing for the particulate matter.
Ironically, NOx emissions legislation must increase particulate emissions and worsen mpg (Less NOx needs lower T, lower T means more incomplete combustion, poorer combustion means particulates).
So DEF is an attempt by engine manufacturers to meet NOx emissions without increasing particular matter and destroying mpg.
But you'd use gov't overreach and not solve anything directly (obviously, indirectly, you'd get rid of ill-maintained and illegally modified trucks... but that's poor legislation)
The average millionaire drives a 15 year old car that they bought new (According to "The millionaire next door"). If you actually maintain your car you will discover that they last a lot longer than most people give them credit for. Some years you put more than the car is worth into it, but other years just an oil change.
Of course we all like a new car. But is it worth the extra money. Folks have a different threshold where they'll give up on ol Barney.
The closed hidden operating systems hiding in every baseband and major CPU are winning their war on general purpose computing. It's a problem.
It's a total clusterfuck of an UX.
It was untested at consumer levels at the time.
I'm sure if you got a 2017 this problem would be fixed.
EDIT: To be clear on what is factual- American Cars are known in the industry to implement new tech before everyone. This isnt an AMERIKA IS BEST, this is how these companies actually act. Euro goes for style, Japanese go for old school reliability. These are not opinions, these are styles and market niches.
A car built in 2009 is going to have 2009 technology. The first vehicles with screens are going to have UI problems and be slow.
In 2017 this is unacceptable.
https://www.warc.com/newsandopinion/news/general_motors_gene... won't load for me.
Edit: got it - http://gmauthority.com/blog/2018/09/gm-studies-drivers-radio... - The automaker’s director/global digital transformation, Saejin Park, said at the Association of National Advertisers’ (ANA) 2018 Data & Measurement Conference that the new insights can help serve up better ads.
Hey, we’ve updated TOS, accept to continue using this service!
Even after living there for only 4 years it was always extremely jarring to go to Vancouver once a year and catch a train or bus with all the advertising on every surface, people buried on their phones, consumerism, pollution, etc.
I guess you get a little more leeway with the Yukon because it's so far away from major population centers.
I know what you're saying, but the phenomenal thing about the Yukon is that if people don't like the isolation, or the cold, or whatever, they simply leave. Not a person lives there that doesn't love it, and that is part of the reason it's fantastic. I have never heard a person complain about it, or talk about going somewhere else, or say "I wish I was in xyz right now".
Nothing is sacred anymore.
Seems like so much of the tech/business ecosystem is now centered around spying on you. Your OS, amazon's echo, social media, laptops, etc.
Sounds like they were sold a fancy tracking concept without any actual practical applications.
He was placed on the cover of every album for the front page, top charts, and a hell of a lot of other playlists as well , including playlists that didn't feature him (half of playlists, according to Reddit detectives).
It was so bad, that Spotify was issuing refunds , because they basically had one artist take over the whole site.
As my anecdotal example of the insanity of the promo, I had Drake featured in playlists for Symphonic Metal. From Nightwish to Drake... Is a hell of a transition.
We really are living in a dystopia now aren't we?