Keep it simple

Automakers, eager to put exciting new electronic devices in vehicles, are asking federal regulators in Washington to relax 30-year-old rules that govern how controls are labeled and displayed.

Yes, new rules are overdue. The current rules were designed in a pre-computer age to make mechanical controls safe and easy to operate. But automakers should resist the temptation to dazzle auto shoppers with elaborate electronic displays. Not every driver grew up on Nintendo. Safe and intuitive controls still should be the automakers' top priority.

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