TLDR synopsis: Autopilot is addictive and when used as intended increases safety while reducing workload and stress.....but you already knew that (unless you don't have it). So, I've had my Model 3 since mid April and just ticked over 10,000 miles. From the very moment Autopilot was done calibrating I've always engaged it (or TACC) as soon as the system showed as ready with either the gray steering wheel icon or gray circled speed limit. I'm not talking about something I've done occasionally or waited for the times it might come in handy, I'm talking about engaging the system literally within the first second of it being available for well over 95% of all driving. I've found the spots on my daily commute where it's not perfect and where I know it will disengage every time. I've also learned when and where to disengage or manually control the steering or speed in order to drive smoother then re-engage the system within seconds once past those areas. For instance slowing well before a red light or at that spot where the freeway lanes split and it's not quite sure which one to take. The point being that I've learned how and when to use the system to it's full potential and when to expect that it will not be perfect. Initially this was more experimentation and really learning the systems capabilities and limitations but it turned into and entirely different way to drive the car than I could of ever imagined. Why does this matter and why did I decide to post all of this, well, now it's time for "the rest of the story"........ A few days ago I received that most coveted of all Tesla gifts, the magical "Software update ready" notification on my Tesla app. Being that it was 4am and I was barley awake of course had no bearing on what to do next. I jumped out of bed, headed straight to the garage and started the update. Hoping for Version 9 but knowing that was probably not the case I was still like a kid on Christmas morning, hoping and waiting for whatever magical new treats Elon had placed under the tree. Well, things didn't go as planned and when I hopped in the car to leave for work the screen said "Software updated failed, contact Tesla Service". At first I wondered if I could even drive the car or what kind of problems I might have but that didn't stop me and I was happy to see Reverse selected when I shifted upwards on the stock. However, as you've probably guessed Autopilot and TACC were no longer working. I called Tesla service right away and they said the updated failed at point where the autopilot software installs, plus they told me it was a known issue but I think they've been conditioned to tell everyone that for every issue (like it makes us feel better about not being the only one). They said they would push an update to the car but it would take between 1 and 4 days to get it done. For 2 long days I had to drive my car completely in the old fashioned method of full manual control and a few things really struck me. First off the fact that I had become so totally dependent on Autopilot assisting me with lane control and keeping speed that it was really annoying to have to go back to doing those things myself. It felt so distracting and frankly unsafe once the car didn't "have my back" so to speak. I always maintain my awareness while using the Autopilot system but I've very quickly come to rely on it for taking the load off and allowing me to concentrate more on the big picture of what's around. Now that I was back to concentrating on the small stuff like speed and maintaining the car in the lane it was much less relaxing and I didn't have the same level of concentration or awareness of other traffic and surroundings. It really made driving much more of a task and much less enjoyable. I recently attended a Tesla Club meeting where I heard several drivers comment that they rarely use Autopilot because one time it didn't work right or because the warnings to keep your hands on the wheel come far too often now. I guess I wanted to post this for those of you out there in that camp. If you've decided not to trust the system I FULLY AGREE with you, you SHOULDN'T "Trust" it! However, that does not mean you shouldn't use it. I don't trust (or expect) an old fashioned cruise control to keep the car from running into a fire truck that's stopped on the freeway and I certainly don't trust (or expect) Autopilot to do that either. What I would suggest though is use the system as much as possible and learn what it can and can't do. Use it for everything it's worth and in every way you can to make your drive safer and more relaxing. Use it to concentrate on what it's best at so you can concentrate more on everything else. Once you do it will not take very long until you are addicted like me and can't live without it!........or, maybe you just really want to keep driving this spaceship like it's still a horse and buggy, I don't know, it's up to you. I'm sure some people will never trust the system or maybe just prefer to drive themselves. For me, I'll never go back now that I know the difference and I'm not sure I would of realized that had it not been for those 2 days...... If you've made it this far I'll lend a little more perspective as to why I might be more inclined to push this system to it's limits than what most people would be willing to try. This is not to persuade you against doing so but just to give you a further understanding of where I'm coming from with all of this. For the last 3 decades I've made my living by controlling complex machinery in some very high stress and high workload multitasking environments. What does all that mean, well hand flying helicopters using Night Vision Goggles in mountainous terrain and bad weather for a start. That's akin to driving 100+ MPH while blindfolded and attempting not to hit what you can't see (okay maybe not that bad but you get the idea). I've flown all sorts of helicopters and airplanes for many years and the vast majority of my 7000+ hours of flight time has been without the aid of any type of autopilot system. I say all of this because I'm very used to operating machinery at it's limit and mine. Having a system in a car that, on occasion may swerve a little or phantom brake when it doesn't need to doesn't really bother me. I just take control when needed and I never feel like the car "tried to kill me" or take it personally. It's just a machine, doing the best it can do with the brain it's got. It may not be for everyone to push the limits of the system the way I do but it's also not BEYOND ANYONE either. If you really want to get the most out of this car and what it can do, let it do it's thing and gradually increase your own comfort level. Keep a good cushion of space in front, behind, all around and also maintain your awareness while you let the Autopilot take some of the load off. The more you use it the more you will want to, it just takes a little time to get there. Overall I think that Autopilot is the bleeding edge of technology and yes, of course there is room for improvement. However it truly is a great feature that makes driving much more safe, relaxing and I've come to be a firm believer in using it at all times. I'm sure there are others here who might feel just as strongly against using it all the time but that's one reason why I started this post. What's your thoughts?????