2001-05-15

Brain-Dead Cruise Control

My parents owned a 1984 Oldsmobile station wagon which shared with other cars of the same era a flaw in the design of the cruise control mechanism. If you were driving along using cruise control and dropped the car into neutral, the car would start to slow, and the cruise control would open the throttle a bit, but the car would still go slower, so the cruise control would open the throttle more... It is of course irrational to attempt to make a car go faster by opening the throttle when the car is in neutral.

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