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Microsoft to Supply Electronics to Formula 1

samzenpus posted about 8 years ago | from the blue-car-of-death dept.

433

Yooden_Vranx writes "speedtv.com reports that beginning in 2008, Microsoft will be the sole supplier of Engine Control Units to Formula 1. Apparently, moving to a single supplier is part of the FIA's (Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile) attempts to cut costs. The article does not clarify whether this cost reduction is enabled by cutting back on tech support, what percentage of the engine's power will be required to run all the 'features' embedded in the device, or whether 'crash' will now refer primarily to software behavior rather than driving incidents."

cancel ×

433 comments

Couldn't resist... (4, Funny)

brownsteve (673529) | about 8 years ago | (#15664609)

I hope it doesn't crash!

Re:Couldn't resist... (0)

WindBourne (631190) | about 8 years ago | (#15664617)

And you will never know. Almost certainly, it will be everybody else except for windows.

Re:Couldn't resist... (1)

legallyillegal (889865) | about 8 years ago | (#15664691)

Sadly, it will not be able to prevent Jacques Villenueve from crashing all the time.

Restart the vehicle, does it crash this time? (5, Funny)

khasim (1285) | about 8 years ago | (#15664703)

Rotate the tires, sometimes that helps.

Re:Couldn't resist... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664815)

The Europeans may insist on source codes for the software before MS can install them on the cars

Re:Couldn't resist... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664850)

Lets see....
Instead of the Andromeda Strain Virus it would be the Andretti Strain...

Blue Screen Error... Begining dump of physical memory and fuel. Please reboot

This Device driver has not passed WQC Program , press continue to install Device: ABS Braking System

Keyboard not connected please press "F1" To conintue....

Re:Couldn't resist... (3, Insightful)

CosmeticLobotamy (155360) | about 8 years ago | (#15664860)

Hahahahahahahaha! It's funny because it's 1998! Oh, wait.

Well, it's still funny because it's the same joke from the summary! Things are always funny if you say them twice.

Re:Couldn't resist... (5, Funny)

j79zlr (930600) | about 8 years ago | (#15664874)

Gentlemen, restart your engines!!!!!!!!!

Too many jokes.. (3, Funny)

Dynamoo (527749) | about 8 years ago | (#15664610)

To paraphrase Chandler when Joey turns up in the Elf costume in Friends.. "Too many jokes.. must mock Microsoft". Awww shucks. Let's start with having to press CTRL-ALT-DEL on the steering wheel at 200 MPH and take it from there..

Re:Too many jokes.. (5, Funny)

Saven Marek (739395) | about 8 years ago | (#15664665)

Given the context, wouldn't it be Press F1 to continue

F1? geddit? oh well.

Really BSOD (1)

eclectro (227083) | about 8 years ago | (#15664840)


What's this?!?! A bluescreen?!?! I'M AIRBORN AAAAARRRRRRrrrrgghh!!....

Great news! (0, Troll)

Scrameustache (459504) | about 8 years ago | (#15664612)

I love car crashes on TV!

What does Microsoft use for embedded systems? (2, Funny)

headkase (533448) | about 8 years ago | (#15664613)

This is a good chance for Microsoft to show off their embedded systems (Maybe WinCE? The article doesn't say.). Now as long as the race cars don't suddenly blow up ;)

Re:What does Microsoft use for embedded systems? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664702)

One of the nice beneits for F1 racing is that technology trickles down into mainstream cars after a decade or so. Whilst having a standardised ECM system will reduce costs it also effectively ends the reaseach into this field in F1 as there is no longer an advantage to be obtained.

Additionally, cost should probably not be a consideration in F1 - this is a no-holds-barred quest to be the fastest on a circuit. The current budgets are embarassingly large regardless. If you want to have some sort of 'capped' motorsport, there are plenty of other classes to participate in.

In F1 there should be design rules for safty - not cost savings.

Re:What does Microsoft use for embedded systems? (4, Interesting)

pchan- (118053) | about 8 years ago | (#15664712)

This is a good chance for Microsoft to show off their embedded systems (Maybe WinCE? The article doesn't say.)

Of course WinCE (it's their only embedded OS, not counting the XBOX OS and WinXP embedded). The real point of this exercise is to get Microsoft software in *production* automobiles. Technology developed or refined in F1 and other racing leagues often makes its way down to consumer vehicles (antilock brakes, stability control systems, variable valve timing, hydraulic clutch, ...). Microsoft wants new engine control technology developed on and tied into WinCE. When the time comes to transfer that to the production world, WinCE will come along with it.

Having worked with WinCE, this is a very scary proposition. I'd be terrified of putting it on any device that doesn't have a RESET button (hmm, why do all WinCE phones have reset buttons but Symbian ones don't?). One can only imagine how much they paid the F1 people to "standardize" on a software platform that is individually and independently developed by each team/manufacturer.

Re:What does Microsoft use for embedded systems? (4, Funny)

Nutria (679911) | about 8 years ago | (#15664882)

Of course WinCE (it's their only embedded OS, not counting the XBOX OS and WinXP embedded).

Gee, I guess that means it's not their only embedded OS, then, does it?

Even a Republican like me can figure that out...

Re:What does Microsoft use for embedded systems? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664907)

Seems to be good enough for Apple [svenontech.com] . They use it for transactions in their stores. I doubt you've ever even used WinCE (called Windows Mobile now btw). Seems like your comment is just MS-bashing FUD.

engine clippy (5, Funny)

ryen (684684) | about 8 years ago | (#15664621)

Something tells me this is going to be bad...

Engine Control Unit: Pressure is rising abnormally in main engine block. Would you like Windows to attempt to fix the problem?
Driver: *OK*
Engine Control Unit:This feature requires the latest service pack from windowsupdate.com. Would you like to download and install?"
Driver: shit.

Will the driver have to press "Start"... (5, Funny)

slashjunkie (800216) | about 8 years ago | (#15664624)

... to turn the engine off?

or, be prompted with dialogs along the lines of "Applying the brakes will cause temporary loss of your vehicle's speed. Are you sure, Y/N?"

Re:Will the driver have to press "Start"... (5, Funny)

kevlarman (983297) | about 8 years ago | (#15664667)

To complete your application of the brakes, you will have to restart your engine. Would you like to restart now?

F1 and F1 (1, Funny)

frisch (754695) | about 8 years ago | (#15664637)

It must be a bad omen when Formula 1 is referred to as "F1" for race fans, but for techies like us, F1 means something completely different, especially in M$oft terms.

Cannot wait. (0, Redundant)

Shaun Olsen (956330) | about 8 years ago | (#15664645)

It's a good thing too, Microsoft operating systems are way better than all the others that most haven't even heard of, I mean come on, 'Linux'???

Snide Microsoft Jokes Are ... (1, Insightful)

greenmars (685118) | about 8 years ago | (#15664649)

BORING
BORING
BORING

Re:Snide Microsoft Jokes Are ... (-1, Offtopic)

raider_red (156642) | about 8 years ago | (#15664816)

SHUT UP, BILL!

Windows Genuine Advantage (5, Funny)

mgemmons (972332) | about 8 years ago | (#15664658)

As McLaren rounds turn number 5 at Jerez, a small balloon pops up in his HUD:

You may be a victim of software counterfeiting. This copy of Windows is not genuine and is not eligible to receive all updates and product support from Microsoft.

Click Get Genuine now to get more information and resolve this issue.

Obligatory clippy quote (1)

Spy der Mann (805235) | about 8 years ago | (#15664660)

Hello there! :) Looks like your braking system just failed!

(ten seconds later...)

Looks like you're losing a lot of blood! Would you like to...

Just image if it were Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664661)


But it isn't Linux, because Linux is GPL and F1 is a business, and business can't, and of course would not, use GPL.

Bollocks (4, Informative)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | about 8 years ago | (#15664837)

Some F1 teams use Linux and open source. If they're only using GPL code internally (ie. not distributing it) they don't need to distribute their code.

Anyway, most would be using Open Source drivers etc and the actual application would be closed source (which is GPL-OK).

Even having open source engine management would not be that limiting. It's generally the configurations that are proprietary, rather than the actual control mechanisms.

WinCE (the likely MS choice) only works on a few CPUs and only in certain modes (eg. little endian only). Most F1 engine management are likely using things like MPC5200s running in big endian mode.

This all smells of hoax.

Great (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664663)

Now blue screens are going to involve hemoglobin.

Formula 1 new slogan (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664666)



Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah... Boom!

Tagging WTF (0, Offtopic)

distantbody (852269) | about 8 years ago | (#15664674)

Pardon for being off topic, but HTF do I know what others have tagged a story, other than the static 'examples'? I'm not a nube, but maybe I must have missed something...

- I know you can read my thoughts boy. -

Re:Tagging WTF (1)

ResidntGeek (772730) | about 8 years ago | (#15664787)

Uh... right next to the arrow? Is this a troll? Please for the love of Poseidon tell me this is a troll.

Re:Tagging WTF (1)

distantbody (852269) | about 8 years ago | (#15664848)

"...other than the static 'examples'..."

But will it use their OS? (3, Informative)

RallyDriver (49641) | about 8 years ago | (#15664675)

It would be interesting to get more tech specs. Would they even seriously consider running Windows on the main processor?

There is little or no value for an engine ECU like this to run an OS at all, the acme of simplicity in time and safety critcal software is a single hardcoded loop ... far less opportunity for bugs and (pun) race conditions.

Perhaps it will simply be a branding thing for MS, c.f. the McLaren "Mercedes" engine of a few years ago which was actually built by Ilmor and only ever entered Germany if there was a race there :-)

Re:But will it use their OS? (1)

rm999 (775449) | about 8 years ago | (#15664817)

Like it or not, Microsoft employs many of the smartest programmers and engineers out there, and they offer a lot more services and products than just Windows.

I don't think they will use Windows for this, but maybe I am underestimating the complexity of what they need in these cars.

Re:But will it use their OS? (2, Insightful)

Moofie (22272) | about 8 years ago | (#15664875)

"Microsoft employs many of the smartest programmers and engineers out there"

Yes, but what do they DO to them?

"a lot more services and products than just Windows"

Most of which suck pretty badly. What's your point?

Re:But will it use their OS? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664906)

"Ultimately it comes down to taste. It comes down to trying to expose yourself to the best things that humans have done and then try to bring those things in to what you're doing. I mean Picasso had a saying he said good artists copy great artists steal. And we have always been shameless about stealing great ideas ehm and I think part of what made the Macintosh great was that the people working on it were musicians and poets and artists and zoologists and historians who also happened to be the best computer scientists in the world."

"The only problem with Microsoft is they just have no taste, they have absolutely no taste, and what that means is - I don't mean that in a small way I mean that in a big way. In the sense that they they don't think of original ideas and they don't bring much culture into their product ehm and you say why is that important - well you know proportionally spaced fonts come from type setting and beautiful books, that's where one gets the idea - if it weren't for the Mac they would never have that in their products and ehm so I guess I am saddened, not by Microsoft's success - I have no problem with their success, they've earned their success for the most part. I have a problem with the fact that they just make really third rate products."

Re:But will it use their OS? (1)

QuasiEvil (74356) | about 8 years ago | (#15664827)

Yours is the only proposal I've heard so far that makes any sense - what ECU designer in their right mind would want an OS in the way? A quick look through Google shows that WinCE makes claims of being an RTOS, but I can't seem to believe it, nor can I find actual specs on what exactly are their definitions of "real time". Quite frankly, I just don't believe it, nor would I personally trust any mission-critical, timing-critical functionality to an operating system that wasn't specifically written for it (think pSOS, etc). Personally, I wouldn't use an RTOS at all in an ECU (basically because there's just no need for it), and yes, I have tinkered a bit with engine computer code.

Well, there's one good thing (5, Funny)

HomerJ (11142) | about 8 years ago | (#15664677)

At least something other than Takuma Sato will be the cause of a crash on an F1 circuit.

Now that's frightening... (1)

A Nun Must Cow Herd (963630) | about 8 years ago | (#15664679)

Apparently, moving to a single supplier is part of the FIA's (Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile) attempts to cut costs.
Keeping in mind it's Microsoft, I can just see the hotly contested litigation over death due to software malfunction.

Microsoft Bashing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664684)

So now, not only will bashing Microsoft get you modded up, but will also get you on the front page? Man, I'm going to have to try that one.

Crash, virus infection, BSOD (0, Redundant)

quad4b (858152) | about 8 years ago | (#15664687)

Imagine: You are Fernando Alonso racing for Renault in your eighth race of the year. A near perfect string of victories and, on your last lap your engine resets itself to factory specs. You reboot, relizing you haven't been saving your ajustments frequently and stare in horror as your steering wheel comes up with a Blue Screen of Death. You reboot again as your engine stalls and you lose steering. Shumacher flies by (he's running Red Hat). You shut down your engine, wait 30 seconds then start up again in safe mode. Your pit crew has lost wireless remote access to your computer because networking has shut down and can't trouble shoot.

Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse, a psycho automotive manufacturing robot (its three laws of robotics having been hijacked by a truly malicious worm) operating MS's robotic OS jumps on to the field and runs at your car, firing up it's arc welder as it approaches your cockpit...

the goggles do nothing (1)

Shaun Olsen (956330) | about 8 years ago | (#15664689)

Jesus christ, this Microsoft bashing is giving me a brain tumor.

I have this wacky idea that there is going to be a slight difference in technologies between a home operating system and a freaking Formula 1 car operating system.

Please, step down from all your high horses before you fall and hurt yourselves.

Re:the goggles do nothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664743)

I have this wacky idea that there is going to be a slight difference in technologies between a home operating system and a freaking Formula 1 car operating system.

Yeah, probably very slight. You know they love to cram as much of Windows (as-is) as they can into everything they do, no matter how stupid that is. Their server operating systems include Media Player and MSN Messenger and other stupid end-user type stuff that makes absolutely ZERO sense on a server, for Christ's sake.

I suppose when the car pits and gets its tires changed, the car's instrument cluster will pop up a little balloon saying "Windows for Formula 1 Cars has detected new hardware..."

Typical Microsoft Behaviour (2, Funny)

Elvis77 (633162) | about 8 years ago | (#15664696)

Typical of Microsoft: "Microsoft have been granted exclusive contracts to be the sole suppliers" sounds like anticompetative to me... look out... here comes the Justice Dept with a Sherman Tank

Re:Typical Microsoft Behaviour (4, Funny)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | about 8 years ago | (#15664723)

This DoJ? Are you kidding? When it comes to antitrust enforcement, the current DoJ doesn't use tanks. They use Yugos with Super Soakers mounted on top.

Re:Typical Microsoft Behaviour (1)

LearnToSpell (694184) | about 8 years ago | (#15664813)

I just got this image in my head of the Popemobile cruising around and Benedict standing there with a leaky garden hose.

Re:Typical Microsoft Behaviour (1)

ChronosWS (706209) | about 8 years ago | (#15664842)

Yes, it was very anti-competitive of the FIA to grant Microsoft exclusive rights to provide products to their private racing series. *insert eyeroll here*

WGA, anyone? (4, Funny)

djupedal (584558) | about 8 years ago | (#15664697)

What do you mean it just stopped?

I'm telling you... I was entering turn 3, off the throttle for just a 1/1000th of a second, and when I tried to bring the revs back up, the damn car just stopped.

Ok, Mr. Schumacher, please sit tight and give us a moment to check the logs....

...moment later..

We think we've located the issue, Sir. Since you crashed the A car during practice, you're in the backup car. We cloned the race configuration from the computer off the A car to the B car, but we neglected to refresh the hardware/software credentials.

Yes....and...

...and when WGA's routine credential check ran, it determined that the software was illegal per contract and shut everything down.

...and...

And...you want we should kick Massa out of his ride so you can finish the qualifying session?

Actually....no. I think I'll just sit here and block the track so nobody else can get in a run :)

Troll4ore (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664698)

could save It [goat.cx]

What? Why? (1)

wandazulu (265281) | about 8 years ago | (#15664700)

Seeing as there's plenty of crash-related jokes already, I'll just skip to the chase and ask the question most on my mind:

WTF???

I can't honestly believe this ECU will be running some flavor of windows (NT Embedded? Win2k embedded? XP embedded? WinCE?) and what they bring to the table. Microsoft went on about how WinCE 3.0 was a "real time" OS, but what other than the PocketPC has it been used for?

And while we're at it, what's the point of an OS in a car in the first place? I would think that the number of items that a computer has to deal with are fixed (I'm sure there's a lot, but it's not like you're going to install software on a car) and presumably the OS is some unbelievably simple scheduler a la the DSKY of the Apollo days ... a simple interrupt mechanism, a priority queue, and lots of inputs...

Okay, I can't resist one:

"The program 'Brakes' has become unresponsive. Do you want to end the task?"

Re:What? Why? (2, Interesting)

fredNonesuch (927976) | about 8 years ago | (#15664753)

It's painfully obvious if you step back and think a bit. They sell game software. Marketing, in it's usual tortured logic, sees an opportunity for tie-ins with racing gameware.

It's highly unlikely that Microsoft will actually source the parts - they'll just subcontract out the actual work and slap their name on it. It's no different than laser printers and many other tech in that sense.

Re:What? Why? (2, Insightful)

rolfwind (528248) | about 8 years ago | (#15664868)

And while we're at it, what's the point of an OS in a car in the first place? I would think that the number of items that a computer has to deal with are fixed (I'm sure there's a lot, but it's not like you're going to install software on a car) and presumably the OS is some unbelievably simple scheduler a la the DSKY of the Apollo days ... a simple interrupt mechanism, a priority queue, and lots of inputs...


The only type of OS you want in a car, if any and as in any mission critical application, is a microkernel os. No, nothing else, not even linux.

Microkernel OSes for made for mission critical, have a small number of lines and are mathematically proven.

Error (1)

Stormwatch (703920) | about 8 years ago | (#15664701)

This automobile has encountered an illegal instruction and will be shut down.

HAHAHAHA... "FEATURES"... (-1, Troll)

AugstWest (79042) | about 8 years ago | (#15664706)

Oh, man, never heard that one before. I think it's a reference to "bugs!"

HAHAHAHAHA.... You Slashdotters sure do come up with some incredible original material. I bet someone will even make a "Start" button joke!

And wait for it.... wait for it.... YES! a BSOD JOKE!!!!

You guys are regular Carrot Tops. My knee's worn out from slappin' it.

post ignores (1)

mattr (78516) | about 8 years ago | (#15664717)

microsoft automotive. It's not going to be running win xp.

Scary - a little.. (1)

tuomoks (246421) | about 8 years ago | (#15664721)

I love F1, so.. How this can happem ? I would understand any of these DOD realtime system providers for fighter planes, etc.. but MS ? They have no experience of this types of systems. They have a lot of bright people,etc.. but it takes time to understand (realtime)systems where you can not make even one mistake. And - as far as I know, none of the current Windows flawors is realtime ( anybody? ). Scary, I hope they can make it.

Re:Scary - a little.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664770)

As a software engineer for a real-time flight sim software product, I must say Microsoft does not currently support real time, semi-realtime, or even expectable time operation. Sure, for most realtime applications semi-realtime is acceptable, however microsoft can't even provide that -- you never know the the OS is going to need to take a shit and pause a good 15 seconds on your supposedly non-blocking system call. Windows is horse shit for these type of tasks, and I have found that they just really don't care, becasue thier application is not intended to do it.

They said they wanted to slow the cars down... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664750)

From the article:

In addition, the WMSC also announced that due to a significant increase in cornering speeds in F1 this season, the sport's Technical Working Group will be consulted regarding possible measures to slow the cars down.

Clearly, Microsoft will help them achieve their Technical Working Group goals.

Not up to the FIA (2, Insightful)

Quick Reply (688867) | about 8 years ago | (#15664754)

It shouldn't be up to the FIA to decide, the teams should make their own decisions, whether that be choosing a Microsoft OS or another.

Re:Not up to the FIA (1)

fido_dogstoyevsky (905893) | about 8 years ago | (#15664786)

It shouldn't be up to the FIA to decide, the teams should make their own decisions, whether that be choosing a Microsoft OS or another.

This is the FIA that puts MORE restrictions on design if it possibly can - so requiring a single source of components is entirely in keeping with their past method of operation. Maybe we need a 21st century equivalent of the 750kg formula?

Re:Not up to the FIA (1)

ChronosWS (706209) | about 8 years ago | (#15664855)

And I suppose NASCAR shouldn't mandate vehicle weights, displacements, and everything else about the car either? This is a racing series. It's par for the course for there to be various mandates to achieve whatever goals the series desires - in this case purported cost savings. If racing teams don't like it, they can go form their own series.

Good for the sport but the supplier.. (1)

GoatVomit (885506) | about 8 years ago | (#15664766)

Disregarding the supplier this is a good move since TC will be banned in 2008 and thus the need for FIA provided ECUs the engineers can't supposedly tamper with. The drivers have to actually use the gas pedal for something else than on/off. One has to remember though that bending the rules is nothing new for F1 and there's always some controversy about something. Flexiwings my ... buttocks?

I just wanna know... (1)

JustNiz (692889) | about 8 years ago | (#15664767)

what the hell do Microsoft know about real-time anything?
Also, who was the moron at the FIA that actually made this decision and by what criteria did they decide Microsoft could actually do a good job?

Re:I just wanna know... (1)

The Bungi (221687) | about 8 years ago | (#15664870)

what the hell do Microsoft know about real-time anything?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_CE [wikipedia.org]

Also, who was the moron at the FIA
Humanity shares your outrage, I'm sure.

Re:I just wanna know... (5, Insightful)

JustNiz (692889) | about 8 years ago | (#15664890)

Windows CE is NOT a real-time operating system, no matter what Microsoft claim.

I'm sorry. I just had to (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664768)

HAHAHAHAHAHAHA! You so funny! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA! You so original! You make me laugh! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! You funny man! I like you jokes! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Wow...my sides are hurting with that funny, funny quip you just threw down on us like some clever maniacal funny man! You so funny! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Someone even posted you to the front page to show how funny you really are to the rest of us! Quip, quip says you! Everyone! Over here! Look at the funny man! He made a funny about crashes! Get it? crashes...HAHAHAHAHA! It's a reference to race cars...yes when they crash...HAHAHAHAHA! Yes, I am not sure where this guy is from but boy is he funny! Who invited him to the party? We gotta have this guy over more often! Honey? Come down here a second and listen to this guy 'tell it like it is' in a really funny way. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAH! , that's priceless. "The article does not clarify" Gold. Just pure gold. How do you do it? So many people post here on Slashmork but then you see a funny gem like this. HAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Pure hilarity. When's the last time you actually saw Windows crash and so wittily remark about it? Had you stopped using Windows 98 this would not happen and hence your joke would 'have no teeth' as it were. But the brilliance of you relating in the race car crashing with Microsoft had me splitting my sides. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! You funny man. So clever, so very very clever. I'll bet you were the funny man in high school too. Wow. You still got it!

astounding (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664769)

your car can not find the specified driver...

Hmmm. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664775)

If it's F1, does that mean MicroSoft is helping?

Unfair bashing (5, Insightful)

LanimilbusLE (793833) | about 8 years ago | (#15664776)

Maybe Im wrong, but I feel like there has been a huge influx of blatant Microsoft bashing lately in the article descriptions. Some of it is humorous, some of it may be true, but it just seems like Ive been reading some OSS-Microsoft-hating version of Fox news. I dont remember it always being this way. Seriously, what gives?

Re:Unfair bashing (2, Insightful)

raider_red (156642) | about 8 years ago | (#15664836)

Are you new here? I think MS has always been the target of bashing on this sight, whether it's fair or not.

Re:Unfair bashing (1)

LanimilbusLE (793833) | about 8 years ago | (#15664846)

I've been reading for a few years, but I've just noticed an increase. Either an increase or it just started bothering me.

Malicious summary (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664780)

Whoa, nice objective summary there. I am not new here but this is low even by /. standards. No doubt you guys are hate-filled retards. yeah, mod down but remember there are alternatives where the truth is spoken freely. go ahead, mod down in your little world there, a-holes

Siemens/MES (5, Informative)

archdetector (876357) | about 8 years ago | (#15664784)

The contract was awarded to Microsoft MES, not Microsoft Automotive. I believe MES is a joint venture with Siemens, the technology partner to Mclaren (The shiny silver cars, for those who don't follow racing. Philistines.). Since McLaren already supplies a good deal of motorsports electronic components, this isn't much of a surprise.

Re:Siemens/MES (1)

Moofie (22272) | about 8 years ago | (#15664885)

Siemens. Yeah. They'll fix everything.

*shudder*

Re:Siemens/MES (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664900)

That's comforting to know. A search on Siemens ECU turns up lots of very impressive hits. Microsoft must be in this as the "learning" partner. Anything else simply doesn't make sense.

FIA boneheads strike again. (4, Informative)

JonMartin (123209) | about 8 years ago | (#15664788)

As a longtime F1 fan I am not surprised. The FIA (and Bernie and Max) have been out of touch with the needs of the sport for quite a while. The "cost-cutting" move to V8s from the nice V10s ended up costing a lot of money and angering the teams. They pushed out Michelin because Michelin wouldn't toe the line. They won't restructure the revenue stream to help the teams and then blame the teams for making the sport too expensive. They create the two race engine rule that reduces the spectacle for little cost saving. All while ignoring one of the biggest expenses: testing. It is so simple: take away in-season private testing, make Friday an open test day and have one engine for qualifying and race (don't get me started on how messed up qualifying is).

Just as ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664792)

.. the car rounds turn 3 in the 'Brick Yard' at 205 mph
the driver is presented with ... ...

the 'Blue Screen of Death!'

Nough said!

Toodles!

funding (1)

hpavc (129350) | about 8 years ago | (#15664793)

I cannot see this being for real, like so many other f1 rumors during the season. Single supplier brakes and tires have been talked about quite a bit. Anything, anything at all to do with the engine seems very far fetched.

Side note microsoft's has botched a lot of the honda/bar electronics when two way telemetry was allowed involving stalling cars.

I can picture it now... (1)

Rendo (918276) | about 8 years ago | (#15664799)

"And the race begins.... But the cars don't seem to be moving.... *listens to earpiece* What's that? All the cars have the BSOD! Look, all the techies are running out rebooting their cars.... Oh no... That one crashed again! Oh this is a sad day in racing!"

haha (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664800)

this is a bad idea.

In the middle of the race "oh my god, i think i've been hijacked"..."norton internet security has failed, you are infected wiht SubSeven"

suckers.

Yippie, more shovelware. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664801)

So what happens when the shovelware OS is infected with a "virus" (skript-kiddie fun toys) due to classic piss-poor coding techniques and the F1 race car starts running over spectators, sifting through the wallets of staff, and purporting to be Paypal requiring you to "update your billings informations or be cancelse" (note spelling)? Can we call this Windows Fista F1 Edition?

Of course they're using in Formula One cars... (1)

neuro.slug (628600) | about 8 years ago | (#15664803)

Anything with a lesser engine couldn't render the Aero theme and apply brakes at the same time.

Re:Of course they're using in Formula One cars... (1)

advs89 (921250) | about 8 years ago | (#15664845)

haha... perfect. I was reading this article just for the jokes, and i have to give this one my vote. If i had modpoints, you would get all of mine right now! -advs89

It will be pretty good stuff (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664807)

Mostly because I believe Microsoft has stolen a lot of their code from better products.

Look, this is just another company trying to spread out because it's not worth their time to capture the remaining 10% of the OS market they don't already own (thank you, Michael Dell, for our profitability. Sincerely, Bill). As the years move on don't be surprised to see Microsoft in all kinds of stuff you wouldn't now associate them with; just like Apple, which now makes more money off music appliances than it does off computers.

The salient point is that it's unwise to think Microsoft's market position is due to technical superiority rather than incredibly asute business acumen (just ask IBM.) It's also unwise to think that American Capitalism, which supposedly works via buyers making intelligent decisions in the marketplace, actually has any intelligent decision-makers left in its ranks.

Microsoft can afford to lose money on this one if it gets their foot in the door for this type of application. When CE shows up on NASA spacecraft, then I start to worry.

huh? (1)

chadliness (965871) | about 8 years ago | (#15664809)

moving to a single supplier is part of the FIA's (Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile) attempts to cut costs
I'm admittedly a die hard free-market kinda guy so maybe I'm blinded but how in the world is this going to save anyone any money? There's no mention in the article of what happens when Microsoft decides to raise the price 50%. But I guess that would never happen.

Schumacher's domination ended by BSOD! (1)

buellisti (876927) | about 8 years ago | (#15664810)

Talk about the equivilant of gutting a Rolex and replacing the works with a dollar store digital watch!

FIA Web Site:

"Microsoft MES has been selected as the official ECU supplier to the FIA Formula One World Championship in 2008, 2009 and 2010."

Actually, it is merely a means of making sure that Michael Schumacher remains unseated. Alonso has done a hell of a job this year driving, but imagine a racing season where the random appearance of BSOD determines the points leader.

Re:Schumacher's domination ended by BSOD! (2, Funny)

BCW2 (168187) | about 8 years ago | (#15664894)

They just figured out the only way you can get Ferrari and Renault engines to grenade so someone else wins a championship.

Dreams (1)

Joebert (946227) | about 8 years ago | (#15664812)

Finally, geeks everywhere can live out their dream of racing a Formula 1 car !

*if you got that, we're watching you...*

WinCE is impressive in automotive (4, Informative)

cyberjessy (444290) | about 8 years ago | (#15664820)

MS has been active in the Automotive sector for quite some time now, and is one of the biggest players in the market. They have a full fledged Automotive Division [microsoft.com] , and some of their systems based on CE go into Fiat, Volvo and others I dont know.

So if you think they just jumped into it, well no. They've been there for a long time now. And seem to be doing quite well. This will buy them lots of publicity.

And anyway, safety on F1 cars are multiple times redundant and even if the software fails there is a mechanical framework protecting the driver. The software largely handles monitoring tasks, warnings and such.

Re:WinCE is impressive in automotive (1)

DuctTape (101304) | about 8 years ago | (#15664884)

They've also got a lot of experience in Monster Trucks [microsoft.com] , too.

And just like the game, they probably didn't write it themselves, either.

DT

Mod Article Funny +1 (0, Troll)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | about 8 years ago | (#15664821)

The article does not clarify whether this cost reduction is enabled by cutting back on tech support, what percentage of the engine's power will be required to run all the "features" embedded in the device, or whether "crash" will now refer primarily to software behavior rather than driving incidents."

This is the first article in a while to deserve to be modded Funny +1, which won't help his karma (that's a pun, get it?) anyway.

The original poster also failed to point out the problems when Windows Genuine Advantage refuses to let your car start on race day because someone else may have used your license plate.

Why not Bosch? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#15664833)

Bosch has been making engine controls for longer than Bill Gates has been alive. Bosch is the most experienced name in automotive control systems.

I see more business opportunities! (1)

Majik Sheff (930627) | about 8 years ago | (#15664847)

So.. who gets the exclusive antivirus software contract?

I'm sure (1)

SI285 (741849) | about 8 years ago | (#15664863)

I'm sure this wasn't just given to Microsoft. The governing body who gave it to them must have done their research before awarding this to Microsoft. Not to mention the other vendors would have raised hell if it was improperly awarded.

Besides all MS related crash jokes... (0)

Advocadus Diaboli (323784) | about 8 years ago | (#15664876)

...just imagine the Open Source community would build an alternative OSS-ECU and that car/driver would win the championship. This would give Open Source a lot of attention.

Windows Genuine Disadvantage (3, Insightful)

gvc (167165) | about 8 years ago | (#15664886)

FIA have been trying to handicap the teams -- in particular the winning teams -- for years. They have required barge boards on the cars' bellies, smaller tires, grooved tires, inferior brakes, smaller engines.

They have also had difficulty stating and enforcing meaningful restrictions on driver aids like automatic transmissions, traction control and anti-lock brakes.

There's nothing new about FIA mandating a lame standardized component, ostensibly to level the playing field.

The same article mentions Michelin being squeezed out of F1 (i.e. Bridgestone being the only supplier). Competition provides too much incentive for improvement, and, I daresay, too little cash flow from suppliers to FIA.

Cost Cut Reasoning (1)

dutchct (673848) | about 8 years ago | (#15664892)

The reasoning behind these cuts is to try to even out the field. Many of the smaller teams can't keep up with the major manufacturers such as ferrari, toyota, honda etc, because of funding. If there is a rule saying that everybody has to run the same engine management, it will remain a fixed cost for every team and takes out some of the advantage of having boat loads of money.

Similar ideas have been explored with going with a single tire manufacturer.

Hi my name is TechGranny. I love MS, and NASCAR (1)

tetrahedrassface (675645) | about 8 years ago | (#15664901)

Just listen to how much I Love Microsoft [hackingbluegrass.com]

TechGranny is mean ornery and horny! She is also old, and slow, like windows.

A match made in heaven if there ever was one. TechGranny is OEM windows certified. TechGranny can come to your house!

peace out, its a joke folks. Don't take it seriously. I had some slack time, and recorded her.

I can hear it now... (5, Funny)

Robot Randy (982296) | about 8 years ago | (#15664902)

Gentlemen, Restart your Engines!
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