Phollingsworth From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2004, 825 posts, RR: 4
Reply 1, posted (10 years 2 weeks 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 2468 times:
Quoting Henpol747 (Thread starter): Hi all, sorry if this is a dumb question but, why is the black box called black box when it is actually bright orange or red?
Because it is a "black box". That is stuff goes in, something is done to that stuff, which a typical person doesn't really know or comprehend, and stuff comes out. The black refers to the fact that it is sealed and "light" does not get in.
Typhaerion From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 619 posts, RR: 4
Reply 2, posted (10 years 2 weeks 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 2456 times:
Black box refers to any box whose contents are of a technical and not easily explained nature. Input goes into a black box and produces an output, but the internal workings are complicated enough to be a mystery to most.
Back when airplane black boxes were invented, the internal workings were highly advanced and therefore, earned the name 'black box' for the complex way the took and stored data in an indestructable manner.
The CVR and the DFDR are bight orange or red for visability after a crash.
Utapao From Thailand, joined Jul 2005, 645 posts, RR: 8
Reply 6, posted (10 years 2 weeks 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 2398 times:
I've always heard it goes back to the use of the phrase 'black box' years ago to mean a box full of gadgets.
I've also seen the following on various sites:
David Warren's original invention was housed in black bakelite so the British dubbed it the 'Black Box'.
The recorder was well received in England (where the name "Black Box" was coined by a journalist at a briefing) and also in Canada where the idea was seen as a potential addition to beacons being developed there.
Dr Warren continued to lead the project, developing the Flight Memory device to record more instruments with greater accuracy. This led to the first commercially produced flight-recorder - the Red Egg - which was manufactured by British firm of S. Davall & Son and captured a large part of the British and overseas market at that time.
I'm sure there are many on here with more technically accurate explanations.