Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Unintended Consequences: The Boeing 787 Dreamliner

There's good news, and bad news, about the Boeing 787 Dreamliner. And, it's the same news:
  • Good news: The Dreamliner's control system is so sophisticated and so integrated that passengers can plug in their laptops and connect to the world
  • Bad news: The Dreamliner's control system could be hacked
According to The Times (UK): "The technology used by the new generation of aircraft is now so advanced that aviation officials fear that terrorists could use it to fly the plane."

The FAA says it won't certify Boeing's Dreamliner until data connections in the cabin don't allow someone with a laptop to hack into the airliner's control system. A ZDNet blog (cited below) brings up a very good question: How did Boeing, six years after the 9/11 attack, let the Dreamliner get this close to rollout with a potentially-lethal glitch?

There's a slightly technical discussion of the Boeing 787 control system issue at "Boeing 787 at risk of in-flight hacking" ZDNet, January 5, 2008.

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Note! Although I believe that these websites and blogs are useful resources for understanding the War on Terror, I do not necessarily agree with their opinions. 1 1 Given a recent misunderstanding of the phrase "useful resources," a clarification: I do not limit my reading to resources which support my views, or even to those which appear to be accurate. Reading opinions contrary to what I believed has been very useful at times: sometimes verifying my previous assumptions, sometimes encouraging me to change them.

Even resources which, in my opinion, are simply inaccurate are sometimes useful: these can give valuable insights into why some people or groups believe what they do.

In short, It is my opinion that some of the resources in this blogroll are neither accurate, nor unbiased. I do, however, believe that they are useful in understanding the War on Terror, the many versions of Islam, terrorism, and related topics.