Self-learning skills

Driving home just now I noticed something. When I’m straightening out of a turn, I’ll loosen my grip on the steering wheel and let the wheel spin freely just enough to bring the tires back to straight, then tighten my grip again. It seems like an obvious and efficient way to allow the laws of physics to straighten out the vehicle, but I have no memory of ever actually being taught to do this, either by my parents or my Driver’s Ed teacher.

So here’s my question. Does everyone do this? And if so, were you taught to do this, or does every driver figure this out independently through the daily act of driving a car?

I’m fascinated by the idea that user interfaces can be self-teaching, rather than “intuitive.” Not something that you can pick up and instantly feel a natural master of, which is what intuitive usually implies, but rather something that teaches you how to use it by using it.

3 thoughts on “Self-learning skills”

  1. When I learned to drive my dad taught me to let the wheel slip through my fingers. My driving instructor was really annoyed about it because he said I’d fail my driving test if I did that. So, I did what I was told by the instructor until I passed my test. Years later I heard that driving instructors were now telling their students to let the wheel slip through their fingers. Same with changing from 1st to 3rd gear, missing out 2nd. It used to be forbidden but now it is taught. I guess bad habits become the norm and accepted eventually.

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