DadRed’s car has too many lights. Far too many lights. I can’t tell what is “car is about to die” important and what is “Hi, I see you are driving. Would you like to use my template?” If Microsoft’s un-lamented Clippy was a car, it would appear on the dash of this vehicle.
When everything has a chime, horn, indicator, or light, the driver (or pilot) develops information overload. Like an electrical circuit, this leads to load shedding. What is important? Or what looks most important? That gets my attention. Ideally, this is the road, the mirrors, and then the speedometer and so on. In reality? whatever is orange or red and flashes catches my eye. Even if it is only a report that the speed limit on this bit of road is now 45. This is not helpful.
Apparently, car people don’t talk to airplane people. Aeronautical engineers have already learned that pilots tune out warnings that sound too often, or too early. Minor alerts should not be large, red, and flashing, or people get conditioned to ignore large, red, flashing lights. Too many similar sounding warnings causes the same problem. We ignore the honking. This leads to the (in)famous “Why didn’t you hear the Tower telling you that your landing gear was still up?”
“I couldn’t hear the radio over the warning horn, sir.” Which the pilot ignored, because it always sounded when he did this, this, and that. Since he had to do those things every time he landed, well, you know what happened.
My pickup has a master caution. Alas, it also only tells you what needs attention once, when you start the car. Thereafter the light stays on, and you might not be sure if this is “change the oil” or “gas cap is dangling” or “pull over because you have no oil and the engine is about to lock.” Give me a dedicated engine-things light, please, or a secondary things-of-pending-need light. Or just trust me that I know when to change my oil.
SIGH. Car people have not learned. The cluttered display gets ignored. DadRed’s car, at one point during a normal drive, had twelve different alerts, indicators, and other things on the main instrument panel, plus the speedometer and the gas-efficiency indicator. No tach, no oil pressure, no engine temp. You know, the important things. Toss in the secondary computer display, and gadzooks, there are too many lights.