The Times Journal & Russell County News
Thursday, Apr. 24, 2014 — RUSSELL SPRINGS & JAMESTOWN, KENTUCKY — russellcounty.net
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Cruisin': The Flying Car
In Jan. 13 Issue
By Ron Cowell, Columnist

Remember when you went to take your driver's test and how the nerves overtook your body? Just the driving lessons made you nervous. How about the future test takers… They may not only have to take the driver's test but get a pilot's license also. Now isn't that something?

According to research and articles I have read this is going to be the thing of the future, the flying car!

We often see articles about the cars of the future but check out the future flying car. They are in existence today. No more traffic jams, just lower your wings and fly to work. I'm not sure a lot of people really want to own and fly a personal flying car. It has been looked at and worked on and even produced over the past years.

The 1962 cartoon The Jetson's introduced a flying car and I remember everyone saying "Wouldn't that be fun to fly to work in the morning? Didn't thrill me all that much because I believe if God wanted me to fly he would have given me wings.

But the improbable future has a way of backfiring on us. Despite occasional fanciful articles in Popular Mechanics depicting mini-helicopters and hovercars poised over futuristic homes, serious contenders for a workable flying automobile design were being produced as early as the First World War. A three-seat flying car plied the skies at the 1917 Aeronautic Exposition in New York.

Tearing a page out of The Transformers, most of the subsequent airborne vehicles were hybrids -- planes that could travel on the road and in the air. Vehicles that could transform from car to airplane in a matter of minutes are definitely a part of the future.

Today, NASA is developing its "Highway in the Sky" computer navigation system that could theoretically allow millions of people to pilot personal aircraft without crashing into each other -- though running out of gas would have implications far beyond a visit from your local auto club. And ultralight materials and miniaturized control systems are leading to a new generation of experimental flying cars.

Californian Woody Norris has successfully demonstrated the AirScooter, a personal plane that can fly for almost three hours at a time.  Norris told CBS's 60 Minutes "This stuff that we're surrounded by, that we think is so cool is really old stuff. We haven't seen anything yet.  The good stuff is coming." What good stuff? Air rage, backyard crash landings?

Personal aircraft endlessly circling a McDonald's balloon for the morning cup of coffee?

And what about towing your boat or camping trailer on vacation, midair collisions. Well I guess as strange as it may sound it will be a part of our everyday life in the future. Well maybe not some of us but our grandkids.  Talk about worrying about the kids taking the car out for the first time.

Any way you look at it, it's coming. I'm just glad I grew up when learning to drive all I needed to know was where the gas, clutch and brake was. Not altitude and where to land.

If your club or organization is having a car show, cruise in or function you would like to let folks know about send me all the information to me at  djron47@yahoo.com, or if you know someone you would like to see featured in the article contact me at the same address.

All information has to be to me at least two weeks before the event.

Till next time, "Keep Cruising".

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The Times Journal is a weekly newspaper issued on Thursdays. It was first published on October 13, 1949, by Andrew J. and Terry Norfleet.
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P.O. Box 190
120 Wilson St.
Russell Springs KY 42642
Phone: 270-866-3191
Fax: 270-866-3198
Russell County News is a weekly newspaper issued on Saturdays, and is mailed free to every address in Russell County, Ky. It was first published on February 1, 1913.
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