Design Flaw Issue 10

This week's edition is a short one featuring Paris Olympic posters, leap years, physical controls in cars, and SupremacyAGI.

Design Flaw Issue 10

Earlier in the week we had a bit of a family medical emergency, so I’m skipping this week’s post and only including a few roundup items. Everyone is doing fine now, but it definitely made for a busy and stressful week.

I’ve got two posts planned for next week: a subscriber-only article in the first part of the week along with the regular Friday issue. If you're not a subscriber why not sign up now so you don't miss out on upcoming member-only content?

Also, I have enabled comments on articles now. Only subscribed members can post comments if you so desire. If you do, please keep it civil - or else.

Paris Olympic Posters Unveiled

Detail view of the Paris 2024 Olympic poster showing a stylized Eiffel Tower surrounded by the Olympic village.
Detail of the Paris 2024 Poster (via Paris 2024)

The 2024 Paris Olympic and Paralympic posters are and they are actually really cool! French illustrator Ugo Gattoni designed the two posters together as a diptych, so the two work independently or as a pair. Check them out in detail at the Paris 2024 site.

What if We Didn’t Have Leap Years?

Infographic showing the globe with an overlay explaining the effects of not having leap years.
via CNN

CNN has a fun and interesting infographic that explains what would happen if there was no leap year.

Europe Says to Bring Buttons Back to Cars

Dashboard of a 1970 Oldsmobile Cutlass.
The 8-track is a pure bonus here. (via Adobe Stock)

I’ve long been opposed to the proliferation of IMAX-sized screens in cars, and specifically automakers' bad habit of removing buttons and putting everything on touchscreens. This is problematic for all kinds of reasons, the main one being that having to look at a screen to adjust the AC is distracting and dangerous.

The European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP) has issued new guidance requiring that certain functions have physical controls. While Euro NCAP isn’t a regulator and their rules are not legally enforceable, they are the people who publish auto safety ratings in Europe (analogous to the IIHS in the United States) so their word carries considerable influence.

The new recommendations are slated to take effect in January 2026 and compliance will be required to earn a five-star rating in Europe. Euro NCAP lists turn signals, hazard lights, windshield wipers, the horn, and any SOS features as items requiring physical controls.

Unfortunately, this probably means that Tesla’s ill-conceived steering-wheel-mounted turn signals will remain. Still doesn’t mean it's a good idea.

Copilot Totally Doesn't Have an Evil Alter Ego

A pile of plastic blocks or chips emblazoned with the Microsoft Copilot logo.
Your everyday AI overlord (via Adobe Stock)

This week's entry from the AI slush pile: Copilot may or may not have an alter ego ominously named “SupremacyAGI.” Microsoft says it’s an “exploit” and nothing to worry about. But they would say that, wouldn’t they?

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