Since posting this thread the other day, another installment has been added.
One paragraph I find particularly on point to what interests members here:
I remember years ago when I worked at one of the busier facilities and there was testing going on for a very early version of Runway Status Warning Lights or some such thing. An engineer asked me what my cutoff was for crossing an inbound aircraft with an aircraft on final. Told him that it depended on a number of factors – who’s on final, what type aircraft, speed, position – who’s waiting to cross, what type aircraft, moving or having to break inertia from a dead stop – do I know the pilot or carrier – winds, runway and taxiway conditions, etc.? XYZ carrier needs lots of room, ABC moves on a dime, etc. Engineer replies, “I can’t program that!” I responded, “I know that.”
I think everybody here knows and appreciates that air traffic control is an art. It's the art
of the controller that makes for fascinating listening. It's the art that makes the system run. Whatever else automation can do, it can't do art.