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  • The latest TMC Podcast (#14) is now available on YouTube and all major podcast networks. We covered FSD Beta's exciting v11 update, Enhanced Autopilot coming to the U.S. and Canada, and more!

Everything wrong with V11 update / user interface.

Tesla touchscreen complications at Pikes Peak International Hill Climb


Doesn't say which software version.

Anyone who has frustratingly fiddled with touchscreen controls while speeding down the highway can relate to Blake Fuller’s predicament on Sunday.

Well, sort of.

Fuller, a three-time champion in The Broadmoor Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, was the first driver off on Sunday morning, making him the first to experience the thick fog and damp course.


Making his challenge more complicated was the light rain and frosty windshield while in his 2021 Tesla. While going as fast as 125 miler per hour on the winding mountain course, he tried to scroll through his touchscreen controls to operate the windshield wiper and defrost, while wearing gloves.

“I felt like an older person trying to program a VCR in the middle of my run,” said Fuller, whose time of 12 minutes, 9.362 seconds was sixth-best in the exhibition division and, in these conditions, lagged well behind the winning time of 11:02.802 in a Tesla in 2020.

"It’s a combination of pressing the buttons and scrolling wheels. It's like juggling, and I don't juggle well."

As a race veteran, Fuller could rely on his knowledge of the course. But only to an extent.

“I actually know the course well enough, but it’s almost like somebody saying, I’m going to blindfold you, and then I’m going to remove it, then I’m going to blindfold you and remove it again,” Fuller said. “So you go back and forth mentally.”
 

Tesla touchscreen/fogging complications at Pikes Peak International Hill Climb (Part 2)​


Randy Pobst in the 2021 Tesla S Plaid had some pretty bad windshield fogging, which hugely impacted his run. He would have probably won his group, and likely been top 10 overall if it wasn't for this.

It's not certain whether the car could not keep the windshield clear or if he didn't have the defogger turned all the way up, and couldn't or wouldn't attempt to change the settings. He never attempted to use the touchscreen to adjust the climate control.

"What I didn't expect was for my windshield to fog up. I even had a defroster. This Tesla (unintelligble) up the air conditioning for goodness sakes, 'cause it's electric. Well the combination of the windshield fogging up, and the fog fogging up. I couldn't see! It was like this.. baah, oh god where am I, uuuurgh (repeated worried noises)... that's exactly how it was, slow down, can't see... Very very frustrating. And what it became was survival, I could have easily have driven the Plaid straight off the mountain.
...

In racing, in the rain, vision is the most important thing, and I have a defroster - and we had it on - but it wasn't enough. There are some little spots down here at the base of the windshield where I could see the Plaid, but ... so I'm very very frustrated and disappointed.
...
We'll turn the defroster all the way up next time."


Would a racing driver take his hands off the wheel to adjust a climate control dial while struggling to see? Arguably I would say yes, you would crank the fan to full if you could. Perhaps he should have left the climate controls on the display, but as it was I guess he didn't want to attempt to adjust the defogger on the touchscreen while driving. He didn't address this point as to whether the touchscreen was an issue.

I watched a few other videos from other drivers and they didn't complain as much about the internal fogging up of their windshields.

At the end he appears to loosen his seat harness in a vain attempt to wipe the windshield with his finger, which seems a risky idea in a race situation.
 
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The cost savings of having touch screen only (cheap haptic feedback buttons on the yolk save $ not having real stalks, cameras vs real rain sensors, etc) plus Elon's odd thinking that all the cars, regardless of Plaid-ness, should have game console living room feels to them means we get lame semi-adequate wiper functionality.
 
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Well at least Elon publicly stated the UI is terrible and needs work. Saw several articles, but here is one:
 
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Well at least Elon publicly stated the UI is terrible and needs work. Saw several articles, but here is one:
Wait... what will all those fanboys that have been steadfastly defending the interface say now? Do they admit they were wrong or go against their prophet, Elon?
 
Having now spent some time with v11, something which I'm really struggling with is accessing music. When I want music I instnctively look for something like musical notes (iTunes association probably), intending to get to 'music' and then choose which one I want. I don't start by looking for a bluetooth icon or a USB dongle. I mean, Bluetooth is a comm's protocol (near enough), not music, and a USB dongle (stick) is for storing computer files. Perhaps that's just me but if I had to take one of those decision tree map surveys some designers use to choose interface elements, the feedback from mine would be that these icons are a terrible way of providing access to music.
 

HankLloydRight

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Jan 18, 2014
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Well at least Elon publicly stated the UI is terrible and needs work. Saw several articles, but here is one:

Don't get your hopes up. I'm sure just like every other time, they'll bring in a new UI "designer" or two (likely just out of college because they're hungry and cheap), come they'll up with a completely different UI/UX metaphor, and it will be considerably worse than what we have today. Until the entire UI/UX team is fired and replaced with seasoned and experienced ACTUAL UI/UX developers who actually drive the car, it will just be another lather, rinse, repeat.

Sure, I'd love to be 100% wrong on this, but this isn't the first time Elon has said the software needs to be rewritten.
 
Don't get your hopes up. I'm sure just like every other time, they'll bring in a new UI "designer" or two (likely just out of college because they're hungry and cheap), come they'll up with a completely different UI/UX metaphor, and it will be considerably worse than what we have today. Until the entire UI/UX team is fired and replaced with seasoned and experienced ACTUAL UI/UX developers who actually drive the car, it will just be another lather, rinse, repeat.

Sure, I'd love to be 100% wrong on this, but this isn't the first time Elon has said the software needs to be rewritten.
Sometimes I wonder if they even hired actual UX people that studied human interaction.... I've worked with a bunch of recent college grads who studied human interaction and ux design, and have not really had any issues with them. They've always seemed to turn things around quite well for us... Some of the design choices I see in the Tesla make me wonder if they had actual UX or Human Factors engineers, etc or not.
 
Sometimes I wonder if they even hired actual UX people that studied human interaction.... I've worked with a bunch of recent college grads who studied human interaction and ux design, and have not really had any issues with them. They've always seemed to turn things around quite well for us... Some of the design choices I see in the Tesla make me wonder if they had actual UX or Human Factors engineers, etc or not.
you're not the only one!
 
Well at least Elon publicly stated the UI is terrible and needs work.

He also said all human input is error, so I wouldn't get your hopes up for anything sensible ever coming to the UI again.

I'm really struggling with is accessing music.

Not only are the icons pure nonsense, but now each "source" is its own icon. Like, wtf? The one place that having to tap more than once isn't a common occurrence and they give quick-access buttons. But everything useful is two or three taps away?? Just glad I'm not the only one annoyed by this particular issue.

I do hope they hire some UI veterans

While they're laying off data labelers from the AP team? That seems like the least likely hire imaginable right now.

Sometimes I wonder if they even hired actual UX people that studied human interaction

The answer is obviously no. We've got years of evidence.
 
Another V10 holdout, so happy to have avoided the (to me) amazing functional downgrade and so far, no issues from the dreaded 'update or possibly lose connectivity' threat related to 3G dying; LTE connects all the time just as it ever did.

I do check in to see if the newer updates have improved and w/o fail, sadly but predictably, folks report new bugs still in new releases and too often on stuff that used to work but now does not - and with Tesla's layoffs broadening it, what would that mean to a competent UI rewrite?
 

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