Re: Car analogy, software emulation
I suspect that some point, the airlines would like "pilots" that are basically meatbag window dressing. Hire basically a computer operator who has no knowledge of the guts and mechanics of flying.
That's true of any and all professions that require skilled (read: well-paid rather than minimum wage-slaves) staff.
IT have been doing it, trying to 'dumb-down' systems so that organisations don't need highly technical, expensive, staff to set stuff up, configure it, tune it, keep it running smoothly. They'd rather have a room full of unskilled staff following flow-charts and panicking when the task goes off-script.
Airlines have done it over time, at one time aircraft required a flight engineer(s) in addition to pilot/copilot to manage and monitor all the complicated systems that go into making an aircraft fly. They've managed to get rid of those by having more automation. Next on the chopping block will be getting rid of one of the pilots. That is, making the system 100% automated, thus only needing a single pilot to deal with emergencies, who could also be the chief steward for the flight as most of the time they won't be needed in the cockpit at all for the entire flight.
Hospitals are trying to reduce the number of doctors and nurses needed per patient, by using computer expert systems to help with diagnosis.
Factories try for more automation to get reduce even the minimum wage-level staff they need.
It is all about cutting costs. And the most obvious cost to cut is the meatbags that require wages, and breaks, food, sanitary facilities, moan and whine to management or unions, complain and take the company to court when they get underpaid or other payroll shenanigans, can be whistle blowers to expose unethical (if not downright illegal) business activities, etc.