A.I. nearly kills couple, then saves them

This news story illustrates the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde nature of placing our lives into the hands of our advanced technologies:

A Nevada couple letting their SUV’s navigation system guide them through the high desert of Eastern Oregon got stuck in snow for three days when the GPS unit sent them down a remote forest road.

On Sunday, atmospheric conditions apparently changed enough for their GPS-enabled cell phone to get a weak signal and relay coordinates to a dispatcher, Klamath County Sheriff Tim Evinger said.

“GPS almost did ‘em in and GPS saved 'em,” Evinger said. “It will give you options to pick the shortest route. You certainly get the shortest route. But it may not be a safe route.”

But what kept them alive while stuck in 18 inches of snow for three days was old-fashioned technologies:

The couple was well-equipped for winter travel, carrying food, water and warm clothes, the sheriff said.

Posted by James on Thursday, December 31, 2009