Another Key loss

It seems that car design is pushing forward relentlessly, and not always for the good of the car.

For every car and motorcycle I have owned one of the symbols of ownership has been the key.

The key is held in such esteem that it can used for oneupmanship against your fellow man. The badge and the brand are now all part of that image concous world and the manufacturers make sure their badge is on the key.

The ignition key, and separate door key on some models) was purely a fountional requirement of the car. It provided a certain level of security and and the owner could leave teh car parked in a public area, safe in teh knowledge that is was safe(ish).

The problem with early keys is that is was easy to copy and worn one especially could be opened by any ‘olbit of metal. But this way of communicating with your car is a dead key walking because is will be replaced before this decade is out.

A car key or an automobile key is a key used to open and/or start an automobile.

Modern key designs are usually symmetrical, and some use grooves on both sides, rather than a cut edge, to actuate the lock.

It has multiple uses for the automobile with which it was sold.

A car key can open the doors, as well as start the ignition, open the glove compartment and also open the boot of the car.

Some cars come with an additional key known as a valet key that starts the ignition and opens the driver’s side door, but prevents the valet from gaining access to valuables that are located in the trunk or the glove box.

Some valet keys, particularly those to high-performance vehicles, go so far as to restrict the engine’s power output to prevent joyriding.

Recently, features such as coded immobilizers have been implemented in newer vehicles.
More sophisticated systems make ignition dependent on electronic devices, rather than the mechanical keyswitch.

A number of these systems, such as KeeLoq and Megamos Crypto have been demonstrated to be weak and vulnerable to cryptanalytic attacks

Ignition switches or locks are combined with security locking of the steering column or the gear lever (such as in Saab vehicles).
In the latter, the switch is between the seats, preventing damage to the driver’s knee in the event of a collision.

Keyless entry systems, which use either a door-mounted keypad or a remote control in place of a car key, have become a standard feature on most new cars. Some of them are handsfree.

Some high-tech automotive keys are billed as theft deterrents. Mercedes-Benz uses a key that, rather than have a cut metal piece to start the car, uses an encoded infrared beam that communicates with the car’s computer. If the codes match, the car can be started.

All these were just more complex versions of something we hold as a symbol of ownership, But this symbol will be a thing of the past, the smartphone will be taking over the communication with the car, using the security that is built into the phone it will be able to send a unique code directly to the ECU before teh vehcile can be started.

What you do when you lose your phone or it accidently gets dropped in your coffee when you are shopping will be the source of funny stories in the papers no doubt.

But another symbol of motoring is dying.

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