The Dashboard is Dead, Long Live the Dashboard!
The other day I was driving to a local hardware store. The store was only a couple miles from my home and all I needed was a box of wood screws to complete a small project in my backyard. My smartphone was dipping into the 10% remaining charge zone, so I left it at home on the charger. No harm – no foul, right?
Some functions I offload to my smartphone are quaint, but admittedly inane
Like many of you, I use my “phone” for a great many little tasks; some trivial, some super helpful, and some functions I offload to my smartphone are quaint, but admittedly inane [for me, the LinkedIn app on mobile would be an example]. On this brief drive I did not need to know how my stocks were performing, or what the weather was within a 5 mile radius of my position, nor did I need to solicit reviews of local restaurants. I was feeling fully empowered with my decision. My mind at rest in the knowledge that that little slab of glass, aluminum and silicon was unnecessary and even excessive to my mission.
New England is Anything but Sleepy
If you haven’t been, be it known that New England is notorious for winding, heavily tree-lined roads which connect one colonial town to another. It’s very common to experience speed limit changes from 40 mph down to 25 back up to 35 to 30 (you get the picture) all within 2 miles of travel. I live in an area heavily dotted with two non-complimentary features (for motorists), namely; speed zones & police traps.
I live in an area heavily dotted with two non-complimentary features; speed zones & police traps
Driving along, my thoughts firmly planted on getting screws, I look up to see a police cruiser crouched in an obvious pounce position — cocked at a 30 degree angle to my lane of traffic — at the local ice-cream stand parking lot. I began scraping my mind to recollect the speed limit. Oh, snap! How fast am I going?!
It was the frantically autonomous act of searching the cockpit of my nothing special commuter car for the speedometer when I realized…it was sitting on my kitchen counter. At home. On the charger. I honestly hadn’t looked at the instrument cluster in my car’s dashboard for so long, I didn’t even know where to glance to determine my current speed.
After this revelation I reflected on what my final and possibly most critical criterion was for choosing my nothing special commuter car;
Seamless connection to my SmartPhone
Ford should have bought Nokia. GM can still snap-up RIM, on the cheap. Heed my words, oh ye’ of the auto industry.