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"We are the protagonists of our stories called life, and there is no limit to how high we can fly."

PHD. MBA. MHS. Type rated on A350, A330, B777, B747-400, B747-200, B757, B767, B737, B727. International Airline Pilot / Author / Speaker. Dedicated to giving the gift of wings to anyone following their dreams. Supporting Aviation Safety through training, writing, and inspiration. Fighting for Aviation Safety and Airline Employee Advocacy. Safety Culture and SMS change agent.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Time To Bounce

Today I am off to Atlanta to maintain currency... but for your reading pleasure, thoughts and discussion topics from Captain Jim.

As always, thought provoking...

"This holiday I had the opportunity to discuss “automation dependency” with our son and son-in-law, both with considerable programming experience at Microsoft and HP. The bottom line of our discussions was that when faced with multiple complex problems requiring multiple complex solutions the ability of a computer to efficiently prioritize solutions in the proper order might be called into question.

Offsetting these discussions was a Charlie Rose interview with a Silicon Valley icon who suggested that computers will soon be able to write their own problem solving code thereby creating their own “work-around” for an AF-447 situation and eliminate the need for hand-flying. The net result described by Stephen Hawking might be that “our rush to understand and improve life through science and technology could actually hasten our own demise”.

Giving this further thought, you could say that hand-flying and ship-handling skills rely on empirical evidence while automation depends on analytical input to create programmed orders. You could also say that hand-flying/ship-handling skills are wasting assets (due to attrition) while automation technology is increasing. This begs the question of how best to salvage value from a wasting asset?

American Airlines, Capt. Warren Van Der Burgh, suggests in his lecture “Children of the Magenta” that most pilots “have no idea what algorithms are programmed into an FMC – not even close”. If this situation remains, then it would seem logical to assimilate a greater degree of hand-flying skills into automation programming.

As “real-life” hand-flying and ship-handling opportunities decrease it seems important for simulator programming to include a greater amount of input from actual experienced pilots rather than relying primarily on non-flying computer programmers. We have tried this approach at PMI with successful although quite time consuming results. The problem then becomes finding enough experienced ship-handlers to work with computer programmers and also to facilitate and debrief the exercises. Maybe this would not be as much of a problem in aviation."  
Captain Jim Wright
What do you think?
Enjoy the Journey!!
XOX Karlene 

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