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Would a self driving car world make it safe for cyclists?

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Would a self driving car world make it safe for cyclists?

Old 01-18-18, 11:45 AM
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I didn't know that Waymo has a test site in Michigan. Winter driving...

Michigan is Waymo’s winter wonderland


Hmm, this stuff might be ready for Iowa by 2020 as well!
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Old 01-18-18, 11:47 AM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
Any videos of a driverless car even attempting to be driven in a difficult traffic environment, let alone being reliably safe enough to drive in a big box store parking lot?
Did you watch the Drive.ai video of fully autonomous driving at night in the rain I posted above?
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Old 01-18-18, 11:49 AM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
Anybody on this list hailed a ride in a taxi without a driver yet? Know anybody, anywhere who has who was not an employee of the testing company in a test vehicle controlled or overseen by a test company "driver"?

Anybody? Anywhere?
Nope. Then again, I don't know anyone who has been to space, yet the technology is there and continually advancing. I don't think a single person on this thread has ever claimed that the technology is ubiquitous right now.

That said, as mentioned earlier, driverless buses are going into trial with real passengers in Ann Arbor this spring, so give me a few months and I'll let you know how it goes.

Originally Posted by genec
No, but that technology is coming with and from the development of AVs. Smarter cruise control for instance is a direct benefit of that tech. Emergency automatic braking is also another example (and it uses some form of "sight" technology which is very similar to that in the AVs)
Bingo. Incorporating them now is a way to prove out individual systems, reach a level of maturity, as well as increase safety for modern day drivers, before we reach completely autonomous vehicles and try to make everything work at once.

Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
Interesting article, thanks for the reference. The comments are interesting too, as well as the article's author apparently dropping Uber completely from the list of contenders in the contest for fielding viable autonomous vehicles capable of being used for transporting passengers. I didn't notice any reference to what organizations are expected to buy, own or operate the rental fleets upon completion of the testing phase by the producers of the AV vehicles or hardware/software.

Any idea on who is going to be using the steering wheel-less GM cars in 2019, or where or how they are going to be used? Presumably the plan is that they will be limited to some limited "geo restricted zone", and probably only for tests on a limited number of routes; perhaps you have some inside info on this secret plan.
I don't work on GM projects, so no, no clue on where they are going for this "secret plan" that is all over the internet. Not knowing allows me to speculate, though, which is much more fun than adhering to a NDA. My guess would be to their rideshare service Maven for employee use at a first step, just as with any new vehicle, much the same way as I am driving 2019 and 2020 model year vehicles right now. Jalopnik's reporting would seemingly back that up: https://jalopnik.com/here-s-how-gm-p...whe-1822021683

Yes, they will be limited in what they do and where they can go, simply because that is how testing and validation works. We have any number of traditional driver driven cars at work that are limited where they can be driven, because they have prototype systems that are not road legal. That doesn't mean the project is a failure, simply that they haven't met internal or regulatory signoff.
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Old 01-18-18, 11:50 AM
  #1129  
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Originally Posted by Ninety5rpm
I didn't know that Waymo has a test site in Michigan. Winter driving...

Michigan is Waymo’s winter wonderland


Hmm, this stuff might be ready for Iowa by 2020 as well!
But Iowa may not be ready for "this stuff." They have not passed any legislation to allow self driving cars... in that respect, ILTB may be right... he may never see a self driving car... in his state.
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Old 01-18-18, 11:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Ninety5rpm
Here's a video demonstrating five minutes of fully autonomous driving in busy traffic on a rainy night. This is almost a year old, and demonstrating technology from a company I've never heard of: Drive.ai
The video indicates that the vehicle was being driven (with a human at the wheel) exceptionally slow, as it didn't pass any moving cars at all, and all the other cars in the video pulled away from it as if it were standing still; it encountered nothing unusual or unexpected. Rain is immaterial other than when others' actions and reactions, especially pedestrians in crowded environments, are especially unpredictable. Again no video of the results of testing in a difficult environment.

Presumably taxi rides of the future will require more variation than leisurely trips down uncrowded suburban boulevards.
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Old 01-18-18, 11:52 AM
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Originally Posted by genec
But Iowa may not be ready for "this stuff." They have not passed any legislation to allow self driving cars... in that respect, ILTB may be right... he may never see a self driving car... in his state.
Have you ridden in one, Mr. Ready?
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Old 01-18-18, 11:54 AM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
The video indicates that the vehicle was being driven (with a human at the wheel) exceptionally slow, as it didn't pass any moving cars at all, and all the other cars in the video pulled away from it as if it were standing still; it encountered nothing unusual or unexpected. Rain is immaterial other than when others' actions and reactions, especially pedestrians in crowded environments, are especially unpredictable. Again no video of the results of testing in a difficult environment.

Presumably taxi rides of the future will require more variation than leisurely trips down uncrowded suburban boulevards.
Wow, so the AV was the only car moving at the speed limit eh? Hmmmm gets right back to the question posed by the OP... As a reminder...

"Would a self driving car World make it safe for cyclists?"

Again, the only real response to that is: If the cars follow all the rules of the road, then yes.
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Old 01-18-18, 11:56 AM
  #1133  
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
Have you ridden in one, Mr. Ready?
Nope.

Haven't ridden in an Uber or Waymo or Lyft either... I tend toward public transit when I am not biking or hauling a trailer.

I don't even have any ride share apps on my phone.

Oh, and I've never been to Iowa either.
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Old 01-18-18, 12:00 PM
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Originally Posted by genec
But Iowa may not be ready for "this stuff." They have not passed any legislation to allow self driving cars... in that respect, ILTB may be right... he may never see a self driving car... in his state.
There are two kinds of states. Those that have passed legislation to approve AV cars, and those that are one bill from doing so.
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Old 01-18-18, 12:02 PM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk
Yes, they will be limited in what they do and where they can go, simply because that is how testing and validation works.
Another possibility is that these vehicles do not have the capability to do anything else but travel on very limited and specially selected routes in tests.

Another factor may be a specific objective to show them in the best possible light and not exposing them to the trials and tribulations that drivers in difficult traffic environments see every day on their travels. At least prior to getting highly sought legal approvals from government officials driving them on all public streets, these PR videos seem to be a concerted effort to not encounter any traffic situation that might produce bad PR due to not necessarily being as "safe" as promised.

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Old 01-18-18, 12:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Ninety5rpm
There are two kinds of states. Those that have passed legislation to approve AV cars, and those that are one bill from doing so.
The stretch of Interstate 380 between Iowa City and Cedar Rapids is poised to be the very first in the state to be fully mapped out for eventual autonomous vehicle traffic.

The Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT) has entered into a multiphase project with Chicago’s HERE company to collect the data and develop the platform needed to guide autonomous vehicles, according to a Monday announcement from HERE.
Iowa Agrees to Transform Highway Corridor into Autonomous Vehicle Test Site

This is from October of 2016.

BTW in searching for this, I came across the comments of an Iowa farmer discussing his self driving tractor... and how it is "no big deal."
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Old 01-18-18, 12:09 PM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
The video indicates that the vehicle was being driven (with a human at the wheel) exceptionally slow, as it didn't pass any moving cars at all, and all the other cars in the video pulled away from it as if it were standing still; it encountered nothing unusual or unexpected. Rain is immaterial other than when others' actions and reactions, especially pedestrians in crowded environments, are especially unpredictable. Again no video of the results of testing in a difficult environment.

Presumably taxi rides of the future will require more variation than leisurely trips down uncrowded suburban boulevards.
I see it passing other cars at these points: 0:18, 1:03, 2:52, 3:33.
Passing bikes at 2:56, 3:20,


It makes a lot of turns and slows for those turns, of course, and that's when it's usually passed.
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Old 01-18-18, 12:10 PM
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Originally Posted by genec
Wow, so the AV was the only car moving at the speed limit eh? Hmmmm
How do you know that?
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Old 01-18-18, 12:14 PM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
Another possibility is that these vehicles do not have the capability to do anything else but travel on very limited and specially selected routes in tests.

Another factor may be a specific objective to show them in the best possible light and not exposing them to the trials and tribulations that drivers in difficult traffic environments see every day on their travels. At least prior to getting highly sought legal approvals from government officials driving them on all public streets, these PR videos seem to be a concerted effort to not encounter any traffic situation that might produce bad PR due to not necessarily being as "safe" as promised.
With all of the dashcam and bike video out there it's amazing no one has captured much if any problematic behavior of these AVs, given how much you seem to believe it must be happening.

We do know this: when glitches do happen, we hear about it, whether someone backs into one in Vegas, a Tesla slams into a truck and kills its driver, or it fails to enter a bike lane properly when turning right in San Francisco. And yet despite all the autonomous driving happening, and so much 3rd party "observing" and social media "reporting" these days, there is very little evidence of such problems.

Why do you think that is?
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Old 01-18-18, 12:19 PM
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Uber says it will have driverless cars picking up passengers next year. LIke I keep saying, I expect to have my first driverless ride before 2020.

Uber to begin using autonomous vehicles
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Old 01-18-18, 12:25 PM
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Some skeptics think the laws and regulations are a significant hurdle, but I think the lawmakers and regulators are eager to make this work. Government always works slowly; luckily this revolution does not require much from them.


"The U.S. Department of Transportation is expected to release new guidelines on self-driving vehicles in 2018 and many lawmakers hope those guidelines incorporate a balance between innovation and safety."

Lawmakers play catch-up when it comes autonomous vehicles
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Old 01-18-18, 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Ninety5rpm
Some skeptics think the laws and regulations are a significant hurdle, but I think the lawmakers and regulators are eager to make this work. Government always works slowly; luckily this revolution does not require much from them.
When those in charge of the laws have constituents like ILTB, you are far more optimistic than I.

Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
Another possibility is that these vehicles do not have the capability to do anything else but travel on very limited and specially selected routes in tests.
...
Another possibility is that you are simply ignoring reality, and willfully choosing to remain in your perception bubble. I have had to do nothing more than type in "autonomous vehicles" to Google to give you information refuting any point you've made. Here's California's log of incidents involving AVs, which is legally mandated there as conditions of receiving test approval: https://www.dmv.ca.gov/portal/dmv/de...mousveh_ol316+. You'll notice in nearly every one, the human driver of the other vehicle was to blame, not the AV.

Another possibility is that you still want to equate specially selected routes as driving one road and learning it well to fool the system, when in reality it means they are driven on urban upkept paved roads which are properly signed and marked, i.e., where 90% of people do their daily driving and 99.9% of ridesharing/taxis are at.

Another possibility is many states are going to have folks in charge just like you, to whom no amount of data will ever be considered sufficient. You've already set up a loop where the technology is obviously a failure because it is not in use, and with which you will never agree to it being in use because no amount of data (that can;t be obtained) will convince you to allow it.
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Old 01-18-18, 01:15 PM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk
When those in charge of the laws have constituents like ILTB, you are far more optimistic than I.
So far the resistance of the skeptics has been ineffective as far as I can tell, and their numbers can only be falling.
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Old 01-18-18, 01:18 PM
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I do find it cute the number of people advocating for cars in the A&S forum. It's an interesting change.
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Old 01-18-18, 01:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Ninety5rpm
So far the resistance of the skeptics has been ineffective as far as I can tell, and their numbers can only be falling.
I do hope you are right

In any case, it would be interesting to see how the Feds would look at the issue, as states generally have limited powers restricting legal vehicles from transiting through their states. I don't need a CA emission spec vehicle to drive into CA, for example, even if I may not be able to buy or register on there. Not sure if Iowa could tell a Michigan plated AV that it couldn't drive I80.
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Old 01-18-18, 01:28 PM
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I don't question that self driving cars are coming. I question the time frames bandied about, the assumption they'll decrease the number of cars on the road, and the assumptions that self driving cars will be a long term benefit to cyclists. I've noted political pressures that could come to bear by the majority who will use driverless cars to get roads limited to only driverless cars, the added numbers who will now be able to drive that can't get a license now (young, elderly, blind, drunks), etc. Hosts of issues that could harm cycling even if the car itself doesn't.


Denser cities and trains are a better solution. Additional Urban sprawl with larger roads, larger intersections, and endless suburban roundabouts to optimize automonous car traffic over stop signs and lights, higher speed limits on all roads, and relegating bikes to paths and bike lanes only might be the result of driverless cars.


In 20 years it will be great to get into my car, tell it where to take me and tune out on my phone. If the car hits a cyclist it won't be my fault because I won't even have a steering wheel. We can automatically assume any accident was their fault.
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Old 01-18-18, 01:31 PM
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I will go so far and state that I believe once AV vehicles have "proven" themselves as safer or as good, as a "good" human driver, the sales of non-AV vehicles will dwindle, may even start to be mandated not safe to use on public roads... JMO Lets say in about 10 to 15 years from now...
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Old 01-18-18, 01:45 PM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
How do you know that?
Because human drivers do not tend to hold to the speed limit. Sure, some do; but just try driving at or slightly below the speed limit on any arterial road and see how often you are passed. It will be a lot.

The "limit" for a lot of drivers is how fast the guy in front of them is driving.

From the Autopia Unintended Consequences Department comes this dispatch from Tippecanoe County, Indiana, where researchers at Purdue University say the majority of drivers have no problem going 5, 10 or even 20 mph over the speed limit and see no risk in doing so.

The study of 988 drivers in that county, where Purdue is located, found few people have any respect for speed limits, which they consider nothing more than vague guidelines they can ignore.
https://www.wired.com/2008/11/the-boy-who-cri/

A new survey of drivers has found that nearly half said speeding is a problem and one in five admitted, “I try to get where I am going as fast as I can.”
https://www.forbes.com/sites/tanyamo.../#1f87df9d378a

Oh and this should give you a bit of pause...
The majority of Americans consider themselves to be good drivers but a new study reveals their candor tells a different – and dangerous – story.

American drivers believe their own driving knowledge, ability and safe driving habits are well above other drivers on the road. Nearly two-thirds (64 percent) of American drivers rate themselves as "excellent" or "very good" drivers. American drivers' positive self-rating is more than twice as high as the rating they give to their own close friends (29 percent "excellent" or "very good") and also other people their age (22 percent).
  • Eighty-nine percent say they've driven faster than the posted speed limit, and 40 percent say they've driven more than 20 miles per hour over the limit.
  • Men are more likely to speed than women (48 percent versus 30 percent).
https://www.prnewswire.com/news-rele...126563103.html

Yeah yeah... more "unreliable studies," eh? OK go out onto your local arterial road (not a quiet residential street) and try it yourself. Drive at or just slightly below the posted limit... and see if you don't find yourself passed often.
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Old 01-18-18, 01:47 PM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk
I do hope you are right

In any case, it would be interesting to see how the Feds would look at the issue, as states generally have limited powers restricting legal vehicles from transiting through their states. I don't need a CA emission spec vehicle to drive into CA, for example, even if I may not be able to buy or register on there. Not sure if Iowa could tell a Michigan plated AV that it couldn't drive I80.
Very interesting!
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Old 01-18-18, 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by InOmaha
I do find it cute the number of people advocating for cars in the A&S forum. It's an interesting change.
Read the OP statement... what these folks are advocating for is for law abiding vehicles.

Get humans to obey the rules of the road and no one would advocate for AVs.

Since human motorists manage to kill close to 40,000 fellow humans a year... perhaps there is a better solution.
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