Iterative bad design

« Concerns have been raised about intermittent faults when opening the doors of the Class 377 trains at certain stations on the Thameslink route. » The original problem? Engineers decided to use GPS location to determine whether the trains are in a station. Unfortunately, GPS is provided by satellites, so it doesn’t work in tunnels or underground — for example, at stations like St Pancras. The engineers’ solution: Install GPS repeaters in the stations to transmit GPS signals down the tunnels.

Only apparently real

This is a scene a couple of blocks from where I live. The curvature of the pole isn’t just distortion from the cheap zoom lens; it really is leaning over slightly. When I first moved to America, one of the things I noticed was the ugly cabling everywhere. Not just cables, either—big cylindrical metal transformers are stuck out in plain view on the tops of poles. I’m not alone in noticing this; friends who’ve visited from the UK have also taken pictures.