NYC’S L (or HAL?) TRAIN

Starting tomorrow, the BrooklynManhattan L train will be operated entirely by computer. After years of delays and set-backs, the computer-charged line is ready to go. NYC Transit‘s vice president has told the Daily News that “this is a sage system with proven technology.”

However, human motormen will remain on board “as a token gesture to humanity’s fading relevance” and to reassure skeptical riders that their L train won’t suddenly become a “sinister runaway HAL train making a break for New Jersey.” (Gothamist)

The Communications Based Train Control (CBTC) system was pegged at $300 million a couple of years ago. It’s a certainty that that amount has dramatically risen since, while bringing profit and joy to everyone concerned. Hopefully, this won’t turn out to be yet another Transit Authority blunder…another loss cavalierly passed on to the taxpayers.

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