Ready to turnover driving fun to Google before they take it?
Given how nanny government thinks, and insurance companies think, it won't be long before your right to actually drive yourself will be taken from you. Remember - driving is a privilege says the government. And it is a privilege that will be withdrawn in the next 20 yrs.
Nevada has licensed Google to test its prototype driverless car on public roads. Assuming the technology eventually becomes commercially viable, how would a car that drives itself change the way we drive - and what might stay the same?
The state has approved the US's first self-driven vehicle licence, meaning that a Toyota Prius modified by search firm Google will be the first to hit the highway.
Google's car adheres strictly to the speed limit and follows the rules of the road, says Tom Jacobs, a spokesman for the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles, who has also ridden in the Google car.
"When the car is on self-driving mode, it doesn't speed, it doesn't cut you off, it doesn't tailgate."
But these new rules won't apply to the rich and famous:
Driving a high-profile passenger demands a lot more than just keeping the car on the road from beginning to end, says Tony Scotti, a trainer of security drivers.
In addition to piloting the vehicle safely, security drivers must survey the road and the beginning and end points for potential hazards or security threats, be able to summon authorities and back-up, and know where the local hospital is, he says.
"A professional security driver knows the signs that things aren't good and can go to hell in a hand basket," he says. "I don't see that the car, computer or otherwise, could figure that out."
Also, he says, kidnapping insurance policies held by many high-level corporate executives require a trained security driver.
Another effect will be a drastic reduction in insurance premiums, according to a piece in Insurance and Technology. If driverless cars greatly reduce the number and severity of automobile accidents, then the cost of auto insurance will drop as well. There will also be a reduction in health care costs as the numbers of mangled drivers and passengers who have to go to the emergency room are reduced as well.
It will be the safety fanatics in government and insurance industry that will end your driving your own car.
Theoretically, if this was to happen, I wonder how the computer cars will do when the general population maintains them as horribly as they do with current vehicles on the road. And won't the virus authors have fun with a computer driven car?
"In addition to piloting the vehicle safely, security drivers must survey the road and the beginning and end points for potential hazards or security threats, be able to summon authorities and back-up, and know where the local hospital is, he says."
That will come with time. Heck probably already secret defense projects doing most of that now in testing.
For just driving the car there are more projects out there than just Google doing it. For sheer speed Audi sent an autonomous car up Pikes peak.
»www.topspeed.com/cars/audi/2010-···542.html Audis Autonomous TTS Pikes Peak car has completed the climb to the 14,110-foot Pike Peak summit this September. The project was made possible through collaboration between Audi, Stanford University, the Volkswagen Group Electronics Research Lab in Palo Alto, California, and Oracle. The self-driving vehicle completed the course in 27 minutes, reaching a top speed of 45mph. While that isnt going to worry the likes Rhys Millen and Monster Tajima, what is impressive is that race organizers estimate that a TTS with a pro driver at the wheel will take around 17 minutes to complete the arduous course not bad for a robot.
I'd be glad to hand over the drudgery of daily driving to a computer. I'm surprised it hasn't been done sooner. I am a "professional" driver, so to speak, because driving is a part of my job (I even have the license to prove it ). I could get a lot of stuff accomplished during this wasted windshield time. I can't imagine this ever working well on local roads though. Are these systems good enough to see dips and potholes? Dead animals? Broken glass and other road FOD? Road construction zones would be interesting as well. -- ...because I care.
Self driver cars will hurt the airline industry, so it will be long time before they are allowed. It is just like the oil industry buying every patent they can for electric cars, hydrogen cars, and batteries.
If I could sleep in my car and wake up 1,000 miles away, then no more paying for expensive plane tickets for me. -- ...brought to you by Carl's Jr.