abasile wrote:LeftieBiker wrote:Not really an argument for or against, but some of you may recall a lawsuit about a decade ago: an elderly couple bought an RV, and set out on a vacation trip. After getting on the freeway, they set the cruise control, and...both went into the back for a cup of coffee. The RV crashed, of course, and they sued, arguing that the salesman hadn't adequately explained how the cruise control system worked, and what its limitations were.
That one has sure made the rounds! http://www.snopes.com/autos/techno/cruise.asp
Perhaps more to the point of people blindly trusting technology is the phenomenon known as "Death by GPS": http://arstechnica.com/cars/2016/05/death-by-gps/
I'm currently reading Milner's book "Pinpoint: How GPS is Changing Technology, Culture, and Our Minds," of which the above is an excerpt. I've never heard any of my ranger friends refer to it in that way, but we all know of people who've gotten into trouble because they were blindly following GPS directions, and either stopped paying attention to where they were/were going/had been, so that when the GPS was damaged/had dead batteries/couldn't get a signal they were helpless I(often because they didn't have maps/compasses and even if they had, didn't know how to use them or any natural indications of direction). Or, they simply didn't use their brains and evaluate if what the GPS was telling them made sense - the 'driving off a cliff or into the ocean' crowd.
This is a symptom of how we receive and process information, and Milner details much of the research into this area in the book. However, I'd noticed the effect myself shortly after I'd learned to drive. I found that if I was driving someone home and just following their spoken directions ("turn left here"), it was far too easy to stop paying attention to the route, and after dropping them off I often had great difficulty orienting myself and reversing my route to get back to somewhere I recognized. I forced myself to pay attention and not to let myself drop into auto-following mode after that, but it still requires some effort not to do so.