Photograph: This is the first aircraft to fly with Fly-By-Wire flight control system.
In 1972 first ever Digital Fly-By-Wire (DFBW) concept was tested by NASA on a modified F-8 Crusader at the Flight Research Center, Edwards, CA
The DFBW system used an electronic flight-control system coupled with a digital computer to replace conventional mechanical flight controls. It was the forerunner of the fly-by-wire flight control systems now used on today’s military and civil aircraft.
Fly-by wire system reduced and some cases eliminated bundles of wires and cables that used to control the flight controls.
Aircraft became more maneuverable because computers could command more frequent adjustments than a human pilot and designers could do away with features that made the plane more stable and thus harder to maneuver.
For airliners, computerized flight control could also ensure a smoother ride than a human pilot alone could provide.
Finally, digital fly-by-wire was more efficient because it was lighter and took up less volume than hydraulic controls and thus either reduced the fuel required to fly with the extra weight and/or permitted carrying more passengers or cargo. It also required less maintenance than older systems.