Volkswagon, the world’s largest automobile manufacturer, issued a software patch for the 11 million vehicles sold with “clean diesel” motors. The patch links to Android and iOS smart phones, enabling the driver to replicate the acceleration profiles used during EPA emissions testing.
In announcing the patch, Volkswagon’s CEO said, “Those already taking directions from their smart phones will be perfectly comfortable with the new feature. Instead of ‘turn left in 200 yards’, the phone will command ‘release the accelerator by two millimeters in five hundredths of a second.'” When asked whether that was a practical solution, the CEO enthused: “That’s the beauty of the engineering! Do you know how hard it was to coordinate the voice announcement to end just in time to allow the driver to take action?”
Facing the prospect of billions of dollars in fines from environmental regulators across the globe, the new VW software prioritizes emissions above collision avoidance. As an explanation, the CEO offered, “Any deviation from the commanded – I mean ‘requested’ – acceleration sequence will cause the exhaust to belch a huge cloud of poisonous particulates. So the driver might as well run over the children in the cross walk.”
In a parallel, ISIS announced the availability of a new freemium game based upon the “Hit-and-Run” scoring system adopted by American teens to vent their frustration with dawdling pedestrians.