Have you ever wondered about autonomous cars? Who is responsible if the self-driving car causes an accident? Are passengers liable? Is the manufacturer liable?
Are you willing to trust a computer to drive you around? Would you be able to sleep in a self -driven car while it is in motion? Is the person in the car, the driver? Autopilot in an aircraft is able to respond much quicker than a human but an aircraft isn’t subject to crosswalks or intersections.
Have you ever been on the freeway buzzing along only a few feet away from the car in front of you? Take a drive in California on the freeway at rush hour. If traffic is moving, everyone is driving above the speed limit just a few feet away from the car in front. It is a synchronous event. It is almost like fighter planes flying in formation. Everyone has their slot and must stay in sych with their neighbors for traffic to move efficiently.
How will self-driven cars operate in high speed close quarters? If you want to poke along, you will probably cause an accident. If the self-driven cars are in sync with the cars around them, will a human driven car be the odd one? Will self-driven cars “know” how to recognize and adjust to a human driven neighbor?
Think about a 4 way stop intersection. You can look at the other driver and usually get an indication if they plan to be courteous or make their own rules. Everyone checks their neighbor to determine if it is safe to proceed. Will autonomous vehicles and human drivers be able to coexist?
How would you feel if your autonomous car runs over a pedestrian? If a person is injured, it doesn’t help to know who was at fault. Wouldn’t you rather just wait before crossing the street if you knew that you would be injured? Medical technology does wonderful things but it makes more sense to avoid injury.
Have you ever noticed how many people are glued to their cell phones walking city streets? The most important thing to them appears to be the cell phone. It doesn’t matter that they are crossing traffic against the traffic lights. They just walk out in traffic and don’t pay any attention to cars around them. Do we need to put an app on the cell phone that tells people when to walk? It is amazing that there aren’t more pedestrians run over.
Autonomous cars will become the majority when they are accepted by the majority. Will human driven cars become the problem? We might discover that the safest environment will be controlled by computer. Are you willing to become a passenger?