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Question by Caretaker: What is the origin of the term “Black Box” in aviation.?
Black Box is common but what was the distinction between equipment performing the same function and the “Black Box”. I’ve got an idea but I would appreciate input because I would like to know.
Answer by Techwing
Black box is a generic term for anything that provides documented output and accepts documented input but the internal functioning of which is undocumented or unknown. It is also used at times to designate a device the internal functioning of which is simply unimportant or unnecessary to understand. It’s not strictly an aviation term.
The term has been borrowed to refer to flight data recorders of various types, even though these devices are typically actually painted a bright orange or other highly visible color in order to make them easier to spot in wreckage.
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