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Old 05-26-2015, 10:48 AM   #1
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Coming from Ford

This is something interesting that I just came across. It will be interesting to see how this works in real life. Ford F-150 getting trailer backup assist feature that takes your hands off the wheel | Fox News

Jack
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Old 05-26-2015, 11:33 AM   #2
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Sweet!

Jack, Where were all these things when I was young? The technology sure has sweetened the pot on what is available to assist us in our towing and parking abilities these days! We needed this many years ago! Nice to know this is in the pipeline. Ed
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Old 05-26-2015, 11:34 AM   #3
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These sort of technologies raise an important question of principle - "to what extent do we wish technology to enable us to avoid the need to learn skills?"
Adopting these technologies has obvious advantages, but these have to be set against the disadvantages, for example:

1. If the technology fails, as it will, what is one's course of action? Call AAA to assist with backing into a State Park camping slot because one has not learnt the skill?

2. There is a pleasure in performing a skilful act, such as efficiently backing into a slot, first time. This satisfaction would be lost.

These considerations apply to other technologies, such as the use of GPS without learning the basic skill of reading a map, and the use of calculators without learning basic manual arithmetic methods.
It is not an easy issue, as we wouldn't all want to be back in the age of the abacus and the sextant. It's not an issue suited to one-line rejoinders, IMHO.
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Old 05-26-2015, 11:57 AM   #4
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Assisted back up tech

Nick, I assume that if you don't want to use this technology you just don't turn it on! As for me I was a semi tractor/trailer driver and have used trailers since my early teens behind farm tractors and trucks so a new technology doesn't mean my skills will be lost by using it! For newer drivers I do agree with you that they need to learn the skills involved with towing and parking a RV or any other type of trailer. Ed
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Old 05-26-2015, 12:08 PM   #5
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Nick, I assume that if you don't want to use this technology you just don't turn it on! As for me I was a semi tractor/trailer driver and have used trailers since my early teens behind farm tractors and trucks so a new technology doesn't mean my skills will be lost by using it! For newer drivers I do agree with you that they need to learn the skills involved with towing and parking a RV or any other type of trailer. Ed
However if you don't use the skills you may lose them! I was brought up on slide rules, then along comes the calculator then the computer. Now I can plug the numbers into an equation and it spits out the answer in fractions of a second. I found one of my old slide rules the other day and had to really think about how to use it...

I am all for the "auto drive" vehicles... to a point.

Probably won't bother with the trailer parking technology, I do just fine on my own.

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Old 05-26-2015, 12:27 PM   #6
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However if you don't use the skills you may lose them! I was brought up on slide rules, then along comes the calculator then the computer. Now I can plug the numbers into an equation and it spits out the answer in fractions of a second. I found one of my old slide rules the other day and had to really think about how to use it...



I am all for the "auto drive" vehicles... to a point.



Probably won't bother with the trailer parking technology, I do just fine on my own.



Aaron

Forget how to use it... I just want to be able to read the small numbers.
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Old 05-26-2015, 12:43 PM   #7
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Old 05-26-2015, 04:22 PM   #8
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Forget how to use it... I just want to be able to read the small numbers.
Magnifying glass...

I got a digital vernier caliper the other day, too dang hard to read the graduations on the old one.

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Old 05-26-2015, 05:51 PM   #9
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When we bought our Flex the salesman was bragging that one of their salesmen drove a new Flex from Portland to Eugene without hardly 'driving' at all. Once he got on teh freeway he turned on the adaptive cruise control (or whatever you call it) that slows down and speeds up on it's own, the lane following technology that watches the lane lines to keep you in your lane, and of course when he got there he let it parallel park itself. How much of this is true, I don't know (if a car salesman tells you, I figure it's a pretty low chance of any of it being true), but it's all stuff Ford promises. Now they'll initiate sway control and back the trailer up for you? What won't they do?

As for me, I've decided it's time to learn how to back up my own trailer (after 12 years and countless attempts and advice from helpful friends). My husband patiently guided me yesterday as I put it in the driveway. It was a big target, but it was still pretty challenging for me! I let him take over and put it behind the house!
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