quote: But what is desirable to pilots is not neccessarily desirable to the corporation buying the planes.We have to realize that automation will only increase in the future, and that (whether or not the 787 is truly safer than the A380) it will eventually lead to a near-total elimination of pilot error.
quote: No, an efficient engine is-- by definition-- one that maximizes the thrust/fuel consumption ratio. I realize that one common way of doing this is to run the engine closer to design specs, but there are others. With advanced technology and materials, a higher-efficiency engine CAN also be safer, and run with more overhead on tolerances.
quote: Actually, it was Boeing who started this trend .... and was one of the main reasons for Boeing's success in the mid 1980's.