terse & at large

GRRRRR. Arrrgh. And sometimes a travel log.

Tuesday, November 09, 2004

On Cars

Call it irrational, but I can't help feeling irritated whenever I see a Mitsubishi Space Wagon (it's also quite sad when you do a web search for "Mitsubishi Space Wagon" and the Mistubishi home page appears on the third page) on the roads. I don't know what it is; perhaps it's because, from the rear, in its own aesthetically displeasing way, it's always at least three colours - colour of car itself, the [large,] gaudy band of red and yellow and the grey bumper (well, three, if the car's also grey or silver, but usually four).

Kinda obiang in a vehicular kind of way.

***

While on the subject of cars... which idiot Honda engineer thought it would be a good idea to have the dashboards on new Hondas to be brightly lit at all times? I'm seeing more idiot drivers who drive without their headlights because, glancing down, oh look! Dashboard bright. Lights must be on.

Why are other idiot drivers flashing their lights at me?

***

Next month, on Playboy magazine: Nekkid at the Airport!

Nov 9, 2004
Airport's 'naked' scans raise concern

London - AN X-RAY machine that sees through air passengers' clothes has been deployed by security staff at London's Heathrow airport for the first time, raising concerns about privacy.

The device at Terminal 4 produces a 'naked' image of passengers by bouncing X-rays off their skin, enabling staff to spot instantly any hidden weapons or explosives, the Sunday Times reported.

But the graphic nature of the black and white images it generates - including revealing outlines of men and women - has raised concerns about privacy both among travellers and aviation authorities.

In the United States, transport officials are refusing to deploy the device until it can be refined to protect passengers' modesty.

The Terminal 4 trial - being conducted jointly by the British Airports Authority and the Department for Transport - became fully operational last month and is intended to run until the end of the year.

If the new body scanner is able to cope with large volumes of passengers, improves detection rates and, crucially, receives public acceptance, it is likely to be rolled out across all Britain's airports.

The scanner, which resembles a tall, grey filing cabinet, operates in a curtained area and passengers are asked to stand in front of it for their image to be registered.

Once checked, the images are immediately erased.

Security officials quoted by the newspaper claim that it is a far more effective way of countering potential terrorists because it detects the outline of any solid object - such as plastic explosives or ceramic knives - which conventional metal detectors would miss.

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