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    Wired: Mandatory Car Black Boxes Are Coming.

    Wired reports on the likely addition of mandatory black boxes to autos and how the data collection could affect individual privacy:

    Next month, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is expected to declare that all vehicles must contain an event data recorder, known more commonly as a “black box.” The device, similar to those found in aircraft, records vehicle inputs and, in the event of a crash, provides a snapshot of the final moments before impact.

    That snapshot could be viewed by law enforcement, insurance companies and automakers. The device cannot be turned off, and you’ll probably know little more about it than the legal disclosure you’ll find in the owner’s manual. […]

    How much it affects you depends upon where you live and what data points it records. How much it will affect you in the future may depend on a new set of standards that spell out exactly what data is collected and who can access it. […]

    The lack of uniformity concerns Tom Kowalick. He chairs the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers P1616 Standards Working Group on Motor Vehicle Event Data Recorders, one of three panels aiming to set universal standards for event data recorders (EDR). […]

    Standards proposed in 2008 would ensure that data once available only to automakers IS publicly accessible. The new standards would make accessibility universal and prevent data tampering such as odometer fraud.

    “It also addresses concerns over privacy rights by establishing standards protecting data from misuse,” Kowalick said.

    The standards also propose specific guidelines and technology to prevent the modification, removal or deactivation of an event data recorder.

    Those regulations would, in theory, make black box data more reliable than what is currently collected. But they also would prevent drivers from controlling the collection of information — information that they own.

    4 Responses to “Wired: Mandatory Car Black Boxes Are Coming.”

    1. David B Says:

      We do not need or want standardization, the only use for standardization is for spying on the owners. Police would be able to download info on the spot. The requirement for a black box has nothing to do with creating a safer vehicle. Proof: an EDR for recording the forces on an occupant for the purpose of creating a safer vehicle needs to record delta V in 3 directions XYZ and does not need to record seatbelt usage , exact position of steering wheel, exact speed, or need to be standardized or cabable of being downloaded by everyone. Government requires delta V in only one direction, but requires seatbelt usage, exact position of steering wheel, exact speed and able to be downloaded by everyone. In other words, the Government required black box is pretty damn useless for building a better car, but is very useful for spying on people. As everything else that the government mandates is all about control and rarely has anything to do with protecting the people.

    2. David B Says:

      Abolish NHISTA, use third party certification.
      We got along fine in the 50s and 60s without govt pre approval of everything from the cars we drive to the health choices we make. Cars used to cost less than a 6 month salery, now a decent car costs more than a person makes in a year, and the govt wants to put more costly regulations on car manufacturers including dealers fees and an airplane style black box that records our every move. with the way we are goung, cars will end up costing a two year salery. Henry Ford got it !!! his workers needed to be able to afford to buy his product for him to stay in business. I my self bought my last new car. decreasing wages and increasing costs, thanks to the govt, I just can’t afford it.

      how far we have gone from the principles that founded this country when we as a society decided that we need govt approval from of our cars, our medical choices, our schools, our retirement choices, our cell phones,, and how far we have come towards a totalitarian govt when we accept govt mandated black boxes that record our every move.

      We used to be the land of the free and the home of the brave — now we are a nation of cowards residing in a facists corporate controlled police state.

    3. David B Says:

      The govt approves eveything from our medical decisions to the cars we drive, to the food we eat. The United States is moving towards a

      command economy, which is why we are becomming a black hole as far as manufacturing, construction, and innovation. We need govt

      approval to build our house differently, to put up a fence, to drive a different car, to seek alternative cures, to consume un-

      pasturized milk or alternative foods, to take the medicines we want, to open a business. Am I the only one who sees something wrong

      with this picture?

    4. David B Says:

      when I was attending highschool in the early 80s, We were told multiple times that a free market economy will out-perform a command economy every time andIbelieved it and still believe it to this day. I learned that even that the old soviot union had slightly more population than we do, it only had only fraction of the production capacity that we had – they had to totally gear their facturies toward their war effort while we were enjoying both guns and butter. i looked at an ariel picture of russia, I think from Time magazine. Every parked car looked the same, a 2 door econo box for the masses in 3 or 4 different colors, except an occasional black sedan for the plutocrats. while we were enjoyion Hi-Fi sterios,VCRs, big screen tvs, and the emerging personal computers, the typical russian had a govt approved small single speaker radio and a govt approved small TV. All the govt approved housing buildings looked the same ofcourse, resembling NY Citys 4 wing public housing hi-rises. Communist Russia did have a lot of military technology, but rarely transferred into their civilian world. Finaly, in the 90s, their govt collapsed from the weight of their command economy and their constant waging of war.

      Well Guess What. We are moving toward a command economy where the govt tells us what cars we can drive, how cars are to be built, how our houses are to be built, what styles and architecture is acceptable in many neighborhoods, what medical treatments we can and can Not have (the govt has to approve of the treatments and the procedures that want for our selves and keep our medical records). NY City will deny a art store because there are too many and california will deny permission to build a house because the garage is larger than society norms, and will tell Steve Jobs that he can not tear down a old house on the property that he bought to build a new energy efficient house because the govt decided that the old house has historical value. The govt has tried to mandate policeware on computers and clipper chips on our encryption devices. We have mandated black boxes on our cars. We are doing exactly what Stalin wanted to do, but didn’t have the technology. we need all kinds of permissions from the govt to start a business and bookshelves of regulations to follow.

      History is repeating itself. manufacturing, construction, and innovation in The United States has virtually halted. Our ever expanding, constantly warring govt is going bankrupt.

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