Re: Misapplied brilliance
John Miles 1,
It's because people can't see the future. The 747 was initially a failure, that probably came quite close to bankrupting Boeing. Because even if you come up with the correct technical solution for the future, that only counts if your customers also realise that you've got it, and give you the cash. Otherwise you go bust, and someone else buys your technology on the cheap and maybe tries again.
Look at the Comet. The future of civil aviation, and a brilliant plane. Far ahead of the competition. How were the designers to know that those big windows weren't a very good idea? We still don't have big windows on our planes today, because of those fatigue problems, and it's possible that any new future airliner (supersonic or not) will have no windows, to save weight and maintenance - and make the cabin bearable with screens instead.