That satellite-connected Wi-Fi hotspot sounds wonderful, right? Remember when we used to worry about locking down Wi-Fi routers? Ha! Were we ever stupid. Obviously we should make them mobile and hand over full control to someone who combines the greed of Solomon and the morals of a serial killer. Now, if a tech-talented teen doesn't like his grades he can wait until his math teacher gets in her car, hack AndroidAuto Eternal Beta 1.714.632b, and remotely steer her into a light pole ... or his English teacher (not a new idea if you follow OnStar hacking developments).
I don't want to get into the high-five fest taking place at the NSA as these technologies speed to market -- or what Google, Facebook, Verizon, and all the other big data bastards will do with this new fire hose of personal info we'll spew their way. Also, any guesses on which is safer: Slugging a double shot of Johnny Walker before sliding behind the wheel, or snapping pics with your Toyota sideview cams and voice-posting them to Instagripe, as you watch a must-see kitten video your girlfriend liked on FriendWorm via your Dell Me2Glass, all while cruising down the interstate at 75 mph and sipping a $10 latte with one hand because you're sleep-deprived from your late-night tweeting, swiping, and tapping?
In case of emergency
Why not? Should a fender bender beckon, your Windows Car 8.1 OS will hit the brakes with 99.95 percent SLA certainty. If a few hundred consumers get turned into highway jelly early on, we'll issue a recall, post an appropriately self-effacing but not quite guilt-proving root cause analysis graphs, then sell them version 9.
Unless you're a frat-boy starter-upper with a low-IQ app idea and the blind, unshakeable optimism that comes from being 25, stunningly ignorant, and in love with yourself, you tend to become more averse to technology as you see our subspecies rush blindly forward with its digital baubles. Or maybe I watched "Battlestar Galactica" and "Terminator" a few too many times and don't relish the idea of giving control of 80 or 90 percent of my next-gen smart car to a mechanically unstable, spyware-infested, personal-data-sucking SkyNet-to-be.
I'm going to the garage now to conduct a careful once-over on Pop's grand ol' Benz. Pretty soon, it may be the only way I can get to around without risking an in-transit IRS audit or Pammy tracking me with Google-branded cornea transplant to see if I went to Stop & Shop as ordered or if I'm loitering at the last RadioShack on earth.
Take care of those classic cars, people. You'll thank me when the Transformers take over.
This article, "Honk if you love smart cars -- and viruses and hacks and data leaks," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Follow the crazy twists and turns of the tech industry with Robert X. Cringely's Notes from the Field blog, follow Cringely on Twitter, and subscribe to Cringely's Notes from the Underground newsletter.