I could also see a time of automated lanes only, then walled-off automated lanes and eventually specific roads/highways for automated cars only. It's quite possible that after that point, non-automated cars would be banned from public roads, but that won't be for some time, perhaps not our lifetimes, especially if you're my age or older. (I'm in my 40s)
Originally Posted by Boyz in da Park
I think everyone needs to read about the limitations of gps. Its accurate to feet, not inches, and highly susceptible to interference from cloud cover. Cars ” knowing” where they are based on gps is unrealistic, and we can't even get decent cell coverage in most of the us. 20 years? Keep dreaming.
That being said, you know the first thriller made after these cars go mainstream is something about solar flares and world wide auto apocalypse where the saviors of the world are the texers who kept their beloved, manual drive, gas powered dubs. :-)
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And I definitely agree with the second paragraph, I didn't even think about that, but if automated cars truly are our future then I could see that being the path we'll take. Hopefully not for a few more decades, maybe half a century or so. I don't want to be on here in 40 years talking about the good ol' days when people actually drove cars and explaining to my grandkids what a manual transmission was (though that will happen anyways).
The rest of the time though, I want to drive my fun car. I want to take it around twisty bends and mountain passes, want to floor it around the area and hear it as it climbs to 8,000 RPM.
I really think that highways is where this technology will be most useful and best implemented.
Also consider that newer automated vehicles may be able to perform better than older automated vehicles. Maybe that has to do with following distance, networking, car pooling, etc. It stands to reason that newer vehicles will be better, and they'll fit into the network differently than older vehicles. Good standards and regulations would give designers of vehicles and roadways a clearcut way to manage the various generations of vehicles on the roads.
As far as hitting a child, that decision can absolutely be made by computers. It theoretically should be able to do a better job of it too. For example, while you might allow yourself to hit a vehicle head on, a computer might realize that that vehicle is a tanker truck that will likely result in a fiery disaster that will take out the day care that's alongside that section of road in addition to killing the kid you wanted to avoid. That's a wild example, but I'm sure we all know people that have swerved to avoid an accident, only to come out with an accident that's even worse. So people make bad decisions too. Also, as you said, computers react faster, so that's a factor that can give the automated vehicle the edge in minimizing the damage of a bad situation.
I would think that automated vehicles would have a manual override for a long time, so you'll be able to swerve and brake as you wish.
Watch this video that demonstrates and explains the Google car's tech. How it handles real traffic and performs precision driving.
For anyone that doubts the car's sensors, the laser guidance system is way better than any human or animal vision.
Today, we have people that can barely get the car out of their driveways driving around town and the average driver could barely drive straight.
I think the biggest problem isn't about the performance of computer cars, it's how can they co-exist with human drivers. How does an auto-car handle someone running the red light or driving the wrong way and perform evasive avoidance without endangering other cars.
Sure we're achieving more MIPs, but we're doing so by adding more processor cores in parallel, not by doubling processing speed. Core clock speed and transistor counts aren't doing the old doubling thing anymore.
I was just thinking about exactly this when I was stuck in traffic yesterday.
Like Maximum Bob, I was thinking in about 20 years, we will all be just chillaxing in cars while our cars' super-duper cruise controls will take care all of the speed and turns.
We just have to select a route and make any impromptu changes.
Bring on the auto cars. I bet they all have a self preserve , accident avoidance as a priority. So when I come along in my vintage car and cut in , they will brake to avoid, I win.
2004 Passat 4Mo, 1.8T, stick
past: '96 Audi S6, forced to sell, F. U. nh emissions
'87 VW Quantum syncro wagon, got me into quattro
'85 VW GTI , 17 yrs and 280k miles, rusted away
Accidents can never be entirely eliminated; there will always be someone who comes out on the short end of the stick no matter what because you're playing the odds. The question is, how much would having automated cars reduce the overall rate of accidents (the odds), even during the transition period when some people will have them and others will still be driving themselves? I would think it would be quite a bit. After all, even the best of us don't have continuous 360-degree vision.
I'm well aware that what is actually doubling is the amount of transistors that can be fitted on a single chip; as I said, MIPS are going up and up, but processing speed is not.
If "processor speed" were what doubled every two years, I'd have my 20 GHz chip. I don't. It isn't. Instead I have a nice quad-core 4.x GHz chip. Which is nice too.