Sunday, February 24, 2013

John Pavlus Is Full Of It

Couldn't help shaking my head when I read this ludicrous post from John Pavlus (no, I've never heard of him, either) at MIT Technology Review after it was linked by Instapundit. As I told Glenn in an email, pretty much every single charge Pavlus makes here is factually incorrect:
Think Windows 8 is a usability nightmare? Two pilots of the infamously expensive F-22 fighter jet recently went on 60 Minutes to describe how this “phenomenal, phenomenal machine” poisons its pilots’ air supply in the course of normal flight.
Pavlus plays it sneaky here, hiding behind verbal statements on an old episode of "60 Minutes" (and we all know how dedicated to accuracy that show is) instead of informing his readers that the hypoxia incidents on F-22 were later found to have nothing to do with the aircraft (so much for 'poisoning its pilots'), but rather to a faulty valve on g-suit vests that aren't even unique to the Raptor (they were designed for the generation-older F-15 and F-16s).

But wait, there's more:
But the plane is also smart enough to land itself with no help from its passed-out pilot. This is UX design by way of Brazil: the human interface is so bad that it actively tries to kill you the entire time you’re using it, and so good that it can deliver your comatose body back to safety with no help from you at all.
I just spent twelve years working on F-22 (my last day on the job was last week; I've left the program to go to work on Army Aviation systems for a different company, and will be divesting the last remnants of my Lockheed Martin stock within the next few days), and I can state categorically that this is one hundred percent Bravo Sierra. There is no automatic landing system on the Raptor. Never has been. No F-22 can 'land itself.' That has never happened, and it's not even possible. That level of automatic pilot isn't in the system.

Facts like these are, of course, irrelevant to Pavlus, who lards up the rest of his post with anti-military and pro-gun-control rantings that he tenuously relates to the state of commercial operating systems. Apparently there wasn't a way to note that Windows 8 sucks without indulging your ideological prejudices... and certainly not if you happen to be a "journalist" like John Pavlus.


  1. And it was the FN-FAL which had the superlative UX that the M16 has never approached.


  2. Thank you!

    Also, what intelligent features does the AR-15, a semi-automatic, have that would help an "...untrained lunatic can use the technology with hellish effectiveness." The first time at the rifle range I almost fired an unqualified score. The last range, in the Marine Corps, I fired a 232 out of 250. This was after practicing constantly with a 'Freestyle Unlimited' rigged compound bow for six months. The rifle helped not a whit because I fired it for that one week period only. That writer is having a major BS malfunction.