By Joe Novak
I like cars and have a fascination for he latest technology that emerges every year. It has been developing exponentially over the last five years as electronics get refined and more dependable. The transistor made electronics compact and affordable; however, the micro-chip sky rocked today’s electronics into everything from cars to toys.
The auto show is where you can see everything that is new under one roof and all the latest models and innovations. I enjoy speaking with the car techs about upcoming features and possible new entries. Car companies are all aiming for autonomous driving cars; no hands-on from a human. Someday they may catch up to Amish technology; a buggy whose horse knows the way home with no coaching from the occupants.
Cars are getting safer as autonomous-braking and lane assist technology gets refined. Hands-free parking still baffles me and voice recognition frustrates me since neither SIRI nor the voice lady in the dash understand my commands.
I have an interest in hybrids (part gas engine part battery power) and as this technology improves, there may be one in my future. An all-electric (EV) is not practical in this cold climate since battery efficiency decreases. Next year’s auto show will be of particular interest since my current lease will be up around that time.
I have had a variety of cars in my life; cars that I put together from pieces scrounged from friends, cars I bought that did not run until I fixed them and cars I financed a dollar down and a few bucks a week. When finances improved, I would purchase “certified” pre-owned vehicles with extended warrantees and low miles at half the price of new. My current vehicle is leased so that I can take advantage of the new technology every three years. Yes, I still haggle with the dealer for a great price or I walk; happy to drive my old truck till I find a price easy on my wallet! Every good Slovenian knows – it’s not how much you make, it’s what you hold onto that matters. I think the Amish have also figured that out, maybe that is why we get along.
This is my 200th article written for the Middlefield Post, though not all were printed; my editor has the final word and better judgement than I as to what is MP proper. I hope the good Lord allows me to keep the gray matter churning out another two hundred articles; with some luck, an epic article may emerge!
Joe Joke: I am at the age where my train of thought often leaves the station without me.