Apple Watch, Two Weeks In

I’ve now had my Apple Watch for two weeks, starting from AW Emergence day (thanks to my Apple Store pre-ordering prowess). I spent one of the last two weeks abroad, and the other here at work, so I’ve had a chance to use it in various ways.

tl;rd: It’s neat, but can be borderline annoying, and potentially turns you into a watch-hole.

Driving in the Rain

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I finally drove the Roadster in a decent downpour today, and I loved it. I took the (rare-in-CA) opportunity to push the limits a bit and discover how my car comported itself in the wet – I figured it was better to do this now, in a safe way, than to do it in the middle of an emergency.

Driving my Lotus in the rain was always a slightly terrifying ordeal for many reasons: no traction control, warm weather tires, a oversteer-tuned suspension and being so low to the ground you were always in someone’s spray. It was twitchy, white-knuckle stuff, and I never really enjoyed it.

And the softtop leaked on your shoulder the whole time.

The Roadster, as I have it set up today, corrects the worst of these problems. The traction control makes it *almost* impossible to kick the rear out (I tried), the car oversteered a bit, but in a very controllable way (especially helped by the electric throttle control). It is still deep in the spray, but the transparent hardtop help a bit.

I also did some very hard launches and stops on wet pavement, and the car felt in full control at all times (I was only able to trigger the ABS when I drove over some wet leaves).

Interstellar

OK, let me get this out of the way: I loved the movie. Mostly, I loved that scientists and engineers are the Heroes, and they talk like actual scientists and engineers that I know, and are flawed and human. So there’s that.

And the visuals were breathtaking. I need me some tickets to Saturn.

However, since poking holes in movies is in vogue, here is my engineery hole-pokingfest (spoilers after the More)

Tesla Roadster: Driving Experience

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Driving the Roadster is a bit weird. With the hard top on, it’s very quiet, and the motor’s whine sounds like something out of Star Trek. With the top off, the wind drowns that out, and you just get the buffeting wind increasing your sensation of speed. It isn’t a quiet ride, nothing like the 500e, but still much quieter than a performance car like this should be. I still need a headset for phone conversations, but no more earplugs. And you can talk to your passenger!

Tesla Roadster: Driving Dynamics

The Roadster was Tesla’s first foray into making cars, and almost entirely unlike its current Model S. Built on a modified version of the Elise’s bonded-aluminum chassis (which was the secret sauce that made the Elise so perfect), it laid the groundwork for Tesla’s battery, motor and electronics design. In it’s driving dynamics, it feels very Elise-like. The steering is unassisted and very direct, just like the Elise’s. It understeers a bit more (easy to adjust if I wanted to, but I think I like it the way it is), and takes a bit longer to ‘set’ in a corner, but overall I’d say its 95% of what the Elise gave me, which is awesome.

Tesla vs. All My Other Cars

At this point, I’ve owned more awesome cars than most car reviewers. I’ll cop to being a bit insane in this regard. On the other hand, it does give me a unique point of view. Below, some first week impressions of the Tesla Roadster, and how it compares to my beloved, departed Lotus Elise, my recently crunched 500e, the gone-too-soon CLS550, and my wife’s stalwart RRS.

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Voter Fraud!

Lots of political commentary this morning, all about ‘money in politics’ and ‘negative campaigns’. I have no idea what they’re talking about, because: 1) I tossed every flyer into the recycle bin, unread, 2) didn’t watch a single political ad on TV.

Don’t like money in politics? Ignore it. Make ’em billionaires mad :)
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