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The funny thing is that he resigned, while people below him, that was following his orders, went to jail. Volkswagen's manager is resigning, and I hear they will name the people that is responsible for manipulating the tests. Wonder if the one that gave the orders will walk free?
They were caught by independent testers so I guess they thought the game was up. They were first caught out a few years back and did indeed blame it on a glitch, but the testers didn't give up and passed their finding onto the authorities and the pressure stayed. They will have simply looked at the source and found the offending code.
If they continued to deny it they'd only make things worse for themselves in the long run. Also I think the CEO's contract was coming to an end anyway? He probably thought he'd fess up then resign. Which he has done. I'm sure he'll find another equally well paying job at an equal position in some other company though. He probably starts on Monday.
Also I think the same issue effects European cars too.
A car's ECU is no different from a PC...the code is stored on a ROM and you download the contents of the ROM and disassemble it. People have been doing this with car ECUs for years. I think it's "harder" in the US due to local laws, but in the UK you can't patent software and there is no protection against decompilation. Ultimately the US government will have the power to demand the source if independent testers couldn't access it itself, so VW will have known the gig was up.
The same reason politicians "come clean" about their peccadillos - they had already been caught and a newspaper was threatening to expose them. As soon as they were phoned up with "we are going to run this story - do you have any comments?" they decided to become all honest.
(There's a smokescreen metaphor somewhere but I can't make it work myself)
They should have stuck to it. How many of us have had test code end up in our product by mistake? Its very easy, stick to the story, destroy some paperwork, lose some emails, and its all taken care of.
Works for the US govt, and the global warming scammers!
You WANT them to lie and cheat and steal? Sorry, but your moral/ethical compass seems to be a little stuck.
IMHO, I think it's better for the company to fess up and take their medicine. They need to fix their reputation. Even if they cover stuff up and avoid prosecution, people will find out via rumors, media, etc. if the company is shady or not. I give them kudos for cowboying up and cleaning up their mess. Or at least starting to.
Well, actually I'd prefer a dishonest company to a dumb one. One can be dishonest at times but if he's dumb he's always dumb.
After all they didn't cheat the customers but the insensate regulations of an abusive organizations, which goes as far as defining the acceptable range of curvatures of bananas. The things I care in buying a car are:
Those are the things YOU care about in buying a car. But some people do include environmental issues in their decision. Those are the people who have been cheated. They advertised a car that had a certain feature, and it didn't really have that feature.