Re: Airliner Windows

Date:         06 Sep 97 02:55:08 
From:         Paul Raveling <>
Organization: Oracle
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Ken Jongsma wrote:
> "M. Yan Chin" <> wrote:
> >Is there a technical reason why all airliners seem to have the same
> >small windows?  Larger ones seem like such an obvious thing to do to
> >enhance passenger comfort.

Window sizing involves a tradeoff between human values
and cost, with cost mainly following from structural
needs in a pressurized fuselage.  In my opinion, Douglas
made a better choice on this tradeoff with the DC-8
than any manufacturer (including itself) has since then.
I tend to take the side of human values a lot, especially
for products intended specifically to directly benefit
humans -- passengers, in this case.

> Along the same lines, why are the windows set so low in the fuselage?
> I am 6' and find that the top of the window is about shoulder high,
> making it very hard to look out without sliding down in the seat!

My guess is that the either the manufacturers or the
airlines employ professional sadists as ergonomic experts.
Take puny windows at armpit level, add seats designed
to destroy human spines, throw in seat pitch that produces
risk of a broken nose on a good sneeze, top it off with
the insult of a sumptuous meal of peanuts.

It has to be sadism.  Just look at late model Amtrak
equipment for examples of how sane engineers design for
human passengers.

    OK, I won't blame Boeing for peanuts, it's the
    airlines who've opted for peanuts instead of REAL
    food, such as chocolate.

Paul Raveling				Oracle Gateway Architecture			(415) 506-8393

The statements and opinions expressed here are my own and
do not necessarily represent those of Oracle Corporation.  --  Oracle policy