MAX Update No. 4: Crash Test Dummy


Last Drive for MAXThis one's going in my wallet. It's the last pretty picture of MAX, on its way to a date with destiny. An hour later, MAX was in Eureka, stopped behind a van that had stopped for pedestrians, and the car behind me didn't stop for anything.

According to the accident report, the driver was progressing at a legal 30 mph and failed to notice that us other drivers weren't progressing at all. MAX is much shorter now, and wrinkly from stern to prow, since the impact from the back pushed me into the van in front.

So, what can we learn from this experience? We can learn how quickly we can make a new car, that's for sure. MAX is totaled, and though officially it's being rebuilt, it's going to be a bit like the joke about Abe Lincoln's axe:

“Yep, it's an heirloom, that axe has been in our family for 150 years.”

“Gosh, it looks brand new.”

“We've given it the best of care, generation after generation. My great grandfather replaced the handle, and my grandfather replaced the head.”

Jack McCornack
8/29/2008 10:01:22 AM

Aw shucks, Eddie (blush). I'll pass your comment along with my request for a raise...oh, wait, that won't work, I'm self-employed. There are a couple more MAX articles scheduled before the PIAXP race begins (September '09), and some peeks at what the other competitors are doing.

Eddie Colon_1
8/29/2008 6:55:16 AM

I'd like to say that this MAX column is really a great idea, I read the first article , enjoyed it alot, now I am looking forward to the next article. I am sure lots of other subscribers will feel the same. This is gonna be a big hit with subscribers and non-subscribers. I am also reading the MAX blog, but lots of people who only get the magazine will want new MAX articles in the magazine. Please continue telling this great X-Prize story, it has everyone's attention.

Jack McCornack
8/13/2008 10:37:37 AM

Thank you Bill, MAX (now code named Lincoln's Axe) should be on the road again in a week or so. Sad but true, your advice re clamming up at the scene of the accident is sound. Our legal system is geared toward adversaries, not consensus; that's why this particular MAX Update had to wait 'till fault was determined--for example, I'd hate to have to explain (particularly to a jury of my peers) why I failed to scream like a little girl when it might have done some good. The flip side is, I believe I can best improve my skills by focusing on ways I can do better rather than ways other people can do better, and "It was all her fault" wouldn't leave me much room for personal improvement. In closing, here's a little highway safety diddy from the '50s: He was right--dead right--as he drove along, But he's just as dead as if he'd been wrong

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