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Old 09-24-2013, 03:36 PM   #16
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Seems backward to me. The rules were implemented without valid reason or adequate study, simply because somebody thought there was a minor possibility that something could happen.
Seems to me that it's fair enough to ban it while the risk is unknown.

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So anecdote and uneducated opinion were enough to create bureaucracy, but not to remove it.
I'm not so sure the opinion that it wasn't possible to be sure there was no risk was all that uneducated, but in any case requiring a higher standard of evidence to allow something than otherwise seems fair enough.

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Simple common sense (and fear of liability) should have had the aircraft manufacturers do the science long ago: and then ensured that no passenger electronics could interfere with the aircraft systems, precisely because there will always be those who don't turn them off.
Many aircraft flying today were designed when the current level of personal electronic device usage was undreamt of.

/JB
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Old 09-24-2013, 03:38 PM   #17
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It doesn't say they will allow phones to remain on. It says the use of cell phones and text messaging will still not be allowed, and no wi-fi under 10,000 ft.
The article says "the FAA is preparing to recommend that airlines allow a select number of devices to remain on during takeoff and landing". While that's vague, I expect (or at least hope) it means that you can use your phone or tablet to play games, work on a document, read, watch movies, and listen to music during takeoff and landing.
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Exactly. In fact, the article states that people's biggest concerns are fellow passengers being distracted and not paying attention to emergency instructions prior to takeoff.

Kind of like getting distracted making assumptions while reading the article I suppose.
I've flown about once every month my entire professional life. The last thing I need is another explanation of how to buckle a seatbelt.
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Seems backward to me. The rules were implemented without valid reason or adequate study, simply because somebody thought there was a minor possibility that something could happen. So anecdote and uneducated opinion were enough to create bureaucracy, but not to remove it.

Simple common sense (and fear of liability) should have had the aircraft manufacturers do the science long ago: and then ensured that no passenger electronics could interfere with the aircraft systems, precisely because there will always be those who don't turn them off.
Yes!
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Old 09-24-2013, 04:45 PM   #18
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Some, on the other hand, have felt that any changes in the rules should be based on science, research and the understanding of experts in the field, and that the opinion of those with no relevant education or experience is of little value.

/JB
I think you need to brush up on what the AIAA is, and those who pay attention to their publications

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Seems backward to me. The rules were implemented without valid reason or adequate study, simply because somebody thought there was a minor possibility that something could happen. So anecdote and uneducated opinion were enough to create bureaucracy, but not to remove it.
Precisely. I don't feel like looking for it now, but I've previously posted links to reports showing that even though the aircraft manufacturers take this very seriously, they've not been able to reliably reproduce electrical interference from consumer electronics.

Or you could just read through the several 20+ page threads we've already had on this.
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Old 09-24-2013, 05:07 PM   #19
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More than one thread on this topic in the past has devolved into baseless flaming because some people intrinsically believe that government rules are always for a reason. In other words, many have accused those who ignore stupid rules as irresponsibly trying to bring down aircraft.
The reason for those accusations are that researchers had not sufficiently concluded that there was little or no risk posed. Those who chose to ignore the rules were potentially putting other peoples lives at risk, not just their own.

Now as it happens, I don't think devices in airplane mode pose any risk to an plane, but since I'm not an authority on the matter nor expert in the field, I will abide by the rules put in place for the safety of everyone onboard. If I'm on a private plane, well, then it's me at risk and my choice to ignore rules.

That line of discussion has been done to death in many threads though.

All that said, I think it's good news that devices can be used during take off and landing. I just hope people do continue to turn off devices that do transmit such as mobiles until research shows they're safe or not.
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Old 09-24-2013, 05:11 PM   #20
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Precisely. I don't feel like looking for it now, but I've previously posted links to reports showing that even though the aircraft manufacturers take this very seriously, they've not been able to reliably reproduce electrical interference from consumer electronics.
The issue is, when it comes to safety, they need to be able to prove that it is safe to use them. Failing to prove that they're unsafe is not the same as proving they're safe.

When you're the one making the rules that impact the lives of others, you tend to err on the side of caution so I can see why lack of evidence was sufficient to impose the rules but not to easily remove them. Clearly sufficient research has now been done that they feel the risk is so low they're now willing to change the rules until any evidence proves otherwise.

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Or you could just read through the several 20+ page threads we've already had on this.
Yep

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Old 09-24-2013, 05:26 PM   #21
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What a shame, that you never turned it off like you were supposed to. I always did.


Yes, but what about your cordless automatic chain saw???
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Old 09-24-2013, 06:37 PM   #22
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Yes, but what about your cordless automatic chain saw???
I doubt the chain saw of any kind would've passed inspection at boarding. Not the kinds with actual metal teeth anyway. The ones that are made of organic material... No comment.

I don't bother turning off my phone; that (and power saving in flight) is what airplane mode is for. As long as my phone isn't outputting any major radio signal activity or whatever I don't see how it'd affect airplane operations, whether it was on or off in airplane mode.
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Old 09-24-2013, 07:46 PM   #23
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I think you need to brush up on what the AIAA is, and those who pay attention to their publications
You misunderstand me - my whole point is that it should be left to organisations such as the AIAA /FAA etc to make these decisions. I have no objection at all if expert bodies choose to allow electronic device use after proper consideration - in fact I'd be delighted.

My disagreement comes when Joe Public asserts that they should be allowed because, for example, they "left their phone on once and didn't die so it must be OK".

Previous threads on this subject have been full of opinion asserted as fact from people with absolutely no expertise or understanding on which to base their opinions. My beef isn't with the conclusion, it's with the reasoning.

My reference to those with no education or experience in this matter was aimed at the unqualified public who seem to feel their gut feel has some validity, and not at any professional bodies and specifically not at the report quoted in the original post.

/JB

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Old 09-24-2013, 09:37 PM   #24
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The rules were implemented without valid reason or adequate study, simply because somebody thought there was a minor possibility that something could happen.
Are you sure about that?

I wouldn't be surprised if the rules were implemented at a time when RF interference was not only possible, but probable. Keep in mind that modern electronics operate at lower power and higher frequencies. Both will reduce the likelihood of interference, so maybe it isn't much of an issue today. That doesn't mean that it wasn't an issue in the past. (Also note that I'm not eliminating the potential for problems since some electronics are poorly designed.)

Then again, feel free to ignore myself and anyone else who argues from the perspective of physics, electrical engineering, or RF engineering. It is clear that we do not understand how modern gadgets work, since everyone knows that these gadgets operate on the principles of magic.
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Old 09-24-2013, 09:43 PM   #25
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On the flights I've been on (admittedly not many) they asked folks to put away all devices and also paper books and magazines, etc. :shrugs:
I've noticed the same thing on the large commercial flights I've taken. The bush pilots don't give such instructions, but I do it anyhow.
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Old 09-24-2013, 09:51 PM   #26
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I've always wondered why they never bothered trying to make the interior of the cabin (as opposed to the cockpit) into a Faraday cage. Block all outbound transmissions, and keep the cockpit electronics safe.
In some situations *cough9/11cough* it's useful for the passengers to be able to phone out...

There may also be some technical reasons why they can't Faraday the cabin, but the thing that sticks out in my (non-plane-designing) mind is that in hostage/terrorist scenarios, outside contact can save lives.

(Note: I absolutely don't intend to derail into a discussion of 9/11; I'm just trotting out a possible reason why they're maintained phone capability in cabins...)
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Old 09-24-2013, 11:51 PM   #27
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I wonder if this will trickle into Australian air travel. I would definitely appreciate not having to wait to read my Kindle.

I do tend to listen to the instructions prior to take-off mainly because I feel sorry for someone performing to an empty theatre, but I've noticed during those sessions that people continue to talk and ignore the presentation anyway, so I'm not sure introducing electronic device use is going to make a significant difference to attention levels.

Maybe it's different on flights in other countries.

I think someone has proposed in previous discussions that the whole exercise is more about exerting control and that does make some sense to me. All those little regulations that don't seem to make sense at the time could be more about submitting to the authority of those responsible for administering the flight rather than an acknowledgement of the safety implications of each individual item. I could be open to that interpretation.

In any case, what happens happens I guess. Even though I'm guilty of leaving my Kindle in sleep mode rather than turning it fully off, I do turn wi-fi and 3G off and I certainly make sure I don't impede the process of getting off the ground. If an attendant decides he/she needs to stop at my seat and ask me to do something, I would have to feel like my human rights were horrifically violated before I'd refuse or put up an argument.
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Old 09-25-2013, 02:11 AM   #28
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I think someone has proposed in previous discussions that the whole exercise is more about exerting control and that does make some sense to me. All those little regulations that don't seem to make sense at the time could be more about submitting to the authority of those responsible for administering the flight rather than an acknowledgement of the safety implications of each individual item.
The exerting control hypothesis is highly unlikely. All of those regulations that don't make sense to you probably make sense to the people who are trying to enforce the regulations.

Keep in mind that those people will see things that you don't because they bear a much greater responsibility, so they are much more observant of the consequences. Chances are that they've also been through many more situations where people have complied with the rules and where people have broken the rules, so they know the potential outcomes in both cases.

Now I know a lot of people think that they know better, on the simple merit that they don't like the rules. Heck, I've been in that position on particularly bad days. The thing is, I've also been in situations where I've been responsible for the welfare of other people and I've seen how those "arbitrary" rules have a positive impact.
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Old 09-25-2013, 03:23 PM   #29
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I guess what resonated with me was that the process of submitting control to responsible parties in this kind of situation could quite easily be about safety regardless of what individual items that entails.
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Old 09-25-2013, 04:20 PM   #30
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Me too! But then, I live in Chicago, where it is mandatory.
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