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Thread: Are driverless autonomous cars about to revolutionize transportation ?

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    Thumbs up Are driverless autonomous cars about to revolutionize transportation ?



    Google has been working on a self-driving car for a few years now, completing over 1 million km on US roads in five different states in the last two years. It has been reported that the Google car is safer than human drivers as the vehicle's camera sees everything in the slightest detail in a 360 degree angle and react within a fraction of a second to its environment, something that no human driver could ever dream of achieving. Besides this computerized driver never gets tired or distracted. 1.2 million people die on the road every year around the world. Self-driven cars could save those lives.

    Autonomous cars would also be able to adjust their speed according to GPS traffic data or even remote signals from other cars and traffic lights, which would enable them to drive optimally to reduce travel time and consumption (although by then we hope that all autonomous cars will be electric). Ideally, once most cars are computerized, traffic lights should all communicate together and lights change in function of the incoming traffic in various directions.

    In addition to accrued safety and speed, it would be much more relaxing to be chauffeured around than to actually have to drive. It would reduce stress, eliminate noise pollution from honking, and allow people to read, talk on the phone, nap, think, day-dream or whatever. Even better, driving licences wouldn't be required any more, and almost anyone who can't drive alone at present, be them teenagers, the very elderly or the disabled, could be taxied around in their own cars in all safety. That will bring about a true revolution in transportation.

    Google hasn't been the only company working on self-driven cars. Tesla, Nissan, Toyota, Volvo, Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Daimler and Ford and General Motors, among others, have all being working on projects of their own. Semi-autonomous cars with automatic steering, braking, lane guidance and parking are already on the market. The first fully autonomous cars are expected to make their entry in 2016 (Tesla) and 2018 (Google).

    In my opinion, autonomous cars will replace human-driven cars within 15 years' time, although IHS Automotive predicts that this won't happen until 2035. Obviously there are going to be differences of years or even decades between countries, and perhaps also between cities (where self-driven cars are far more advantageous) and the countryside.

    We could argue that governments should at some point ban human-driven cars as they would become a public safety concern. Not only are human drivers much more likely to cause accidents, but they also wouldn't be able to interact automatically with GPS and other wireless signals which will help the traffic to auto-regulate.

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    It would be a funny sight. Do you know how many people would be sleeping in their cars, lol. I can't stay awake unless I'm driving, and reading makes me car sick. I think as the population continues to increase a new system of driving will need to be invented. I see a new autonomous busing system taking over, and less reliance on personal driving in the future.

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    So, hopefully these automated cars are going to be able to recognize when pedestrians are about to step out into a crosswalk? Will automated cars recognize that people with service dogs may be particularly vulnerable to traffic and take extra care? And will these cars recognize what bicycle lanes are? Or are they only be programmed to interact with other vehicles? What about train tracks at level crossings? What about deer or moose crossing the road at night? That's something you really have to watch out for in some rural areas. And what about areas where there are lift bridges? Will the cars be designed to recognize the warning flashers that go off before a bridge starts to raise? All this stuff is programmable, but will the people who design these cars think of all the different situations a car could find itself in?

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    I have written a new article on autonomous cars. You can read it here:

    Driverless autonomous vehicles will change transportation much more than you might expect


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    I can see driverless cars working well in Japan, where there are no huge distances to cover and there's very little in the way of crime. Driverless cars might not work so well in countries like Canada, where people regularly travel hundreds of kilometres between cities, unless the cars can travel at speeds of 100 kilometres or more. And I'm not sure I'd like to have to rely on a car that uses Google Maps to negotiate back country roads accurately. I think the selfdriving car may be of more use in urban areas, as long as there's not a lot of crime. However, in large cities that have a high crime rate, such as Detroit in the U.S., it might be dangerous to travel in a driverless car at night if these cars really do reliably stop whenever someone steps out in front of them. However, I do think these cars will make quite a change for people living in relatively safe urban areas.

    It should be interesting to see what happens when one of these cars malfunctions. If a driverless car breaks down in the middle of the street, will it resist attempts to move it out of the main traffic lane, for example. It's going to be quite a fascinating change.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aberdeen View Post
    I can see driverless cars working well in Japan, where there are no huge distances to cover and there's very little in the way of crime. Driverless cars might not work so well in countries like Canada, where people regularly travel hundreds of kilometres between cities, unless the cars can travel at speeds of 100 kilometres or more.
    What do you mean that there are no huge distances to cover in Japan. The country is 2000 miles (3000 km) long. Countries with short distances would be Belgium, the Netherlands, Denmark, Switzerland, etc.

    The Google prototype will only reach 40 km/h, but future cars will go as fast as the speed limit (which could mean as fast as normal cars in Germany where some motorways have no speed limit).

    And I'm not sure I'd like to have to rely on a car that uses Google Maps to negotiate back country roads accurately. I think the selfdriving car may be of more use in urban areas, as long as there's not a lot of crime. However, in large cities that have a high crime rate, such as Detroit in the U.S., it might be dangerous to travel in a driverless car at night if these cars really do reliably stop whenever someone steps out in front of them. However, I do think these cars will make quite a change for people living in relatively safe urban areas.
    I didn't think about crime rate and car-jacking. It's hard to imagine someone stealing an autonomous car since it can be traced so easily and even brought back remotely. What's more thieves wouldn't be able to drive off quickly and the car would still stop for pedestrian, which makes getting it back all the easier. With advanced security you could even lock the thieves in the car.

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    Lots of fun driverless cars they can be hacked same with homes connected to the Internet. Not a smart move.

    http://money.cnn.com/2014/06/01/tech...ack/index.html

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maciamo View Post
    What do you mean that there are no huge distances to cover in Japan. The country is 2000 miles (3000 km) long. Countries with short distances would be Belgium, the Netherlands, Denmark, Switzerland, etc.

    The Google prototype will only reach 40 km/h, but future cars will go as fast as the speed limit (which could mean as fast as normal cars in Germany where some motorways have no speed limit).



    I didn't think about crime rate and car-jacking. It's hard to imagine someone stealing an autonomous car since it can be traced so easily and even brought back remotely. What's more thieves wouldn't be able to drive off quickly and the car would still stop for pedestrian, which makes getting it back all the easier. With advanced security you could even lock the thieves in the car.
    Japan has less than 4% of the land mass of Canada, and almost four times as many people, so I do tend to think of it as a small and crowded country, so I do see Japan as a good country for the automated car. However, it's true that some European countries are even smaller, and I agree that the countries you mentioned would also be very suitable for driverless cars. One probably doesn't find many unpaved logging roads in Belgium.

    As far as crime is concerned, American criminals seem to have lots of guns and be more interested in crimes against persons than auto theft. When travelling through some parts of the U.S., one is advised to avoid certain areas at night even when driving a conventional vehicle. I suspect the advice would be much more necessary when driving a vehicle that automatically stops whenever someone steps out in front of it. There are certain places in the world, and not just in the U.S., where if I was driving at night and someone stepped out in front of my car, I'd want to be able to run them down, and one can't do that with an automated vehicle.

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    I remember when I questioned a gasket saLesman who mentioned that they were supplying the gaskets for Ford Motor Company. He didn't like them as they wanted the cheapest price for quantity discounts. All wholesalers and grocery chains do that. So the car companies use all the cheap 8086 chips in their systems as they are probably now produced as commodities say $5 for 1,000 pieces. Ha ha, so much for security. Great for kidnapping. No guns. Just get the car 'guided' to a warehouse in the rundown section of town and fog up the windows. Great, those autonomous have no driving wheels.

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    Quote Originally Posted by oriental View Post
    I remember when I questioned a gasket saLesman who mentioned that they were supplying the gaskets for Ford Motor Company. He didn't like them as they wanted the cheapest price for quantity discounts. All wholesalers and grocery chains do that. So the car companies use all the cheap 8086 chips in their systems as they are probably now produced as commodities say $5 for 1,000 pieces. Ha ha, so much for security. Great for kidnapping. No guns. Just get the car 'guided' to a warehouse in the rundown section of town and fog up the windows. Great, those autonomous have no driving wheels.
    I'm sure first automatic cars will be with hybrid control. Humans will be able to take over steering at will. In another 20-30 years when all cars will have ability to drive by themselves and people will get used to them, the human control will be deemed unsafe and forbidden.
    Be wary of people who tend to glorify the past, underestimate the present, and demonize the future.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aberdeen View Post
    Japan has less than 4% of the land mass of Canada, and almost four times as many people, so I do tend to think of it as a small and crowded country, so I do see Japan as a good country for the automated car.
    That's irrelevant. Japan and Canada have about the same length of public roads: 1,408,800 for Canada and 1,192,972 for Japan. That is more than any European country or even Australia.

    However, it's true that some European countries are even smaller, and I agree that the countries you mentioned would also be very suitable for driverless cars.
    Even smaller ? In Europe, only Russia, Ukraine, France and Spain are larger than Japan. The other 43 countries are all smaller, and usually much smaller (over 10x) than Japan.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LeBrok View Post
    I'm sure first automatic cars will be with hybrid control. Humans will be able to take over steering at will. In another 20-30 years when all cars will have ability to drive by themselves and people will get used to them, the human control will be deemed unsafe and forbidden.
    I agree. And there won't be any need to steal cars as there will be plenty of shared public cars roaming the streets.

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    NSA can remotely turn on your Phone

    http://money.cnn.com/2014/06/06/tech...l?iid=HP_River

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    Modern cars are now more hackable:

    http://money.cnn.com/2014/08/01/tech...l?iid=HP_River

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