Interesting article from the Guardian (UK). Apologies if this has already been posted:
Interesting article from the Guardian (UK). Apologies if this has already been posted:
Yes, if all works right, the computer might be better, more courteous drivers than humans tend to be. But how they treat cyclists will only be as good as the sensing systems, and the algorithms that analyze the data and make decisions.
Overall, it's promising, but I'm a wait and see guy.
OMG Now the threat of driverless cars mowing down innocent bicyclists! Is there no end to the irrational fear/paranoia? Perhaps a road rage suffering driver could find a undetectable way to override the computer and mow down a couple of irritating bicyclists and blame the computer? Just plain ...... well you fill in the words here.
Chris , you totally missed my point. My point is that no matter what the situation, you seem to see danger and malice lurking around every bend in the road, be it a human driver or not. Clearly, any driverless system would have a safety systems to prevent the car from plowing over every unexpected thing that happens to be in the road. Yet in over 40 years of cycling, I have yet to be run over by a car, I have yet to be attacked by hooligans, I have fallen without a helmet and have suffered no brain injury. Yet you persist in claiming danger and malice lurk everywhere. And I have cycled in in the midwest, and both coasts, and the pacific northwest.
I mean really, driver lesss cars providing a even bigger excuse for drivers to kill cyclists without consequence?? Really are you that afraid? Do you actually believe that crap?
Now we need to come out with driverless bicycles. :thumb:
Chris, the tech to avoid cyclists is already in place -- Volvo advertises it, and similar systems are under the Nissan/Infiniti umbrella. Sync'ing with traffic signals is irrelevant as it applies to 'road obstacles'.
The advantages: ROAD RAGE NO MORE.
TRAFFIC LAWS FOLLOWED.
TEXTING WHILE DRIVING NO LONGER AN ISSUE.
CAR-POOLING EASIER TO FACILITATE.
The disadvantages: VULNERABILITY TO HACKING.
KNOWN ERRATIC NATURE OF ELECTRONICS.
FURTHER DE-PERSONALIZATION OF SOCIETY.
"CONTROL FREAKS" ACTUALLY *FREAK*!
Blake, the day bikes become automated is the day I quit riding. I'll learn rollerblading first!
I guess I just don't see much downside relative to where we are today. Even if the self-driving cars are imperfect (as are our current drivers), at least they are likely to improve with time, as opposed to the current crop of motorists. Sometimes the devil you know is soooo bad you just have to take a chance on the devil you don't know.
As pointed out above, some of the features are ready, and hopefully will be rolled out piecemeal sooner rather than later.
One that I'd like to see released ASAP is the traffic/bicycle detectors that interlock the doors to prevent opening a door into traffic. This could make dooring impossible, and wouldn't otherwise affect the car.
Another feature that's already rolling out are various possible crash detectors and predictors. These can greatly reduce the chances of getting hit from behind by an inattentive driver, or one who doesn't see you because of conditions, such as a low sun directly in the driver's eyes.
Regardless if what happens with integrated self driving, or when it happens, early rollout of partial systems is good for bicycle riders.
I read in Popular Science that flying cars are the next greatest thing. Oh wait, that was a 50 year old magazine. Maybe next year, eh?
One of the biggest problems today is impatience - like that displayed by Chris. If it's not perfect right away, or has any failing, it is invalid and useless.
This sounds like a potentially great technology that can save lives - I'm looking forward to seeing how it works. I'm a lousy driver - I hate doing it and I avoid it...this could be very useful for me. I might even drive again. I love the comment about the door sensor - that could be a fantastic tool. The legal side will get sorted out in the courts, but driving and equipment responsibility will undoubtedly remain largely with the operator.
Why does all this business of "driverless" cars bring to mind the "fully-automated, computer-flown" aircraft that one of the major manufacturers tried some years back? If I remember correctly, it killed about seven people on its first pilotless flight.
If, and that is a big "if", the software is perfected and includes bicyclist and pedestrian avoidance, is protected against hacking, and if the hardware is hardened against electronic interference, it might turn out to be the best thing since sliced bread and canned beer. I would want to see extensive testing done, preferably by a third, disinterested party, before this technology is turned loose on the streets.
Call me paranoid, but this scares the hell out of me. Do any of you truly relish the thought of a car that isn't under human control coming up behind you? I sure as hell don't. Too bad the post-peak driving dropoff isn't steeper. At least trends in the younger folks (more affinity with city living, less desire for driving) are encouraging.
Put more simply: it doesn't much matter where the ultimate responsibility lies because there are are too many irresponsible drivers. What really matters is the number of innocents being injured or killed.
Why don't they just build an automatic braking system into existing cars that makes it almost impossible to hit something with a car that is right in front of you? That would be a relatively simple thing to build and program just program for progressively lower speed the closer the object in front without the brakes being applied and the more drastic the situation is (closing speed and range) the harder the brakes get applied when they do get applied. Wouldn't be a complete solution since an operator could still drive the car as fast as possible and then turn into what they were trying to hit/run-down at the last moment but it would be an excellent way to prevent so many incidents involving people hitting things with cars that are right in front of them.
Basically I would love if when the texting idiot driver looking at their device and not even looking where they are going and are about to plow into someone or something right in front of them the brakes get slammed on hard enough for their face to fly forward and bounce off the steering wheel inside the car leaving some appropriate assorted bumps, bruises, and lacerations. Do that enough times and maybe with enough good bounces the loose wires inside their heads will get lined up properly for them to actually pay attention and treat their vehicle as the dangerous machine it is with the proper respect and due care accordingly and cease and desist in the criminal reckless endangerment of the lives, health, and property of other innocent people around them.
Most two legged trash that don't give a hoot about anyone else still care about themselves and if the only way to deal with the situation is make it such that they get they get their face banged up by it bouncing off the steering wheel when the automatic emergency collision braking system kicks in ~ then so be it. Not to mention that it would personally give me great pleasure to see their faces beat up by bounding on the steering wheel when the brakes kick in rather then seeing innocent people being turned into hamburger on their hoods and front bumpers.
#1 killer of young kids through adults in their 30s, I'll continue to call the distracted driving that is absolutely a large contributor to those statistics a pandemic. Feel free to suggest a more appropriate term.
As to the why? I think it's obvious - car makers are courting to drivers who want to be distracted. All their pushing for all these hands-free devices and touchscreens are a clear reflection of this. There's a good reason for having tactile controls - you don't have to look at them. The emphasis clearly is not about safety for car makers - just look at all the crazy **** you see promoted in car commercials. Aggressive driving, even in the middle of large cities. Cars playing football! Cars playing duck duck goose! It would be just stupid if people didn't actually drive that way. It's about power, comfort, and convenience, and always has been. I've seen two commercials lately where people who were almost plowed into by inattentive drivers appear happy that the two-ton machines that nearly ended their lives had some new technology that averted disaster. If it were me, or my kid, I'd give those drivers hell regardless. I'm supposed to appreciate that your car has a sensor that lets you look away even more? The hell with that.
FWIW, even the autonomous cars that are in testing now are fully able to recognize pedestrians and cyclists. They use LIDAR and RADAR both I think. The Google cars have driven something like a million or two miles and the only incident they've been involved with was when some other driver hit one. VW and Mercedes both have cars that can navigate European cities which certainly have plenty of cyclists for hours on end without any issues.
I would ride on the road with autonomous vehicles over human drivers gladly.