Google Autonomous Car
Did you see the cool video of the gentleman that “drove” the Google Autonomous Car from his home to a few places (he is legally blind with 95% of his vision gone)? More recently Google-Supported Autonomous-Car Legislation Passes California Senate.
From the YouTube video:
We announced our self-driving car project in 2010 to make driving safer, more enjoyable, and more efficient. Having safely completed over 200,000 miles of computer-led driving, we wanted to share one of our favorite moments. Here’s Steve, who joined us for a special drive on a carefully programmed route to experience being behind the wheel in a whole new way. We organized this test as a technical experiment, but we think it’s also a promising look at what autonomous technology may one day deliver if rigorous technology and safety standards can be met.
Senator Alex Padilla mentioned, after the bill passed:
“Thousands of Californians tragically die in auto accidents each year,” Padilla said after the bill’s passage. “The vast majority of these collisions are due to human error. Through the use of computers, sensors and other systems, an autonomous vehicle can analyze the driving environment more quickly and accurately and can operate the vehicle more safely.”
Not only in California, but around the world would this technology be useful. I want one.
In fact it is conceivable that within 30 years more and more individuals will opt for this type of technology and will make use of it.
My son was a bit scared though, he wants to be able to drive a car!
While we’re still a long way from the autonomous cars as seen in the movie Minority Report – we’re slowly seeing the technology being developed and eventually will be using it. But not all the technology is science fiction we’ve already seen some of it in cars today, think self-parking cars and adaptive cruise control. A great article on Wired featured what the 2013 Ford Fusion would bring in Driver Assisted Technologies.
I mean – how cool would it be to get into your car, program where you would like to go and then sit back and have it take you there?
But on my way to work this morning, as I was turning right or left, or when the car door was open and you hear that irritating “bling-bling-bling” tone my son made his own sound effects – which got me thinking. Why not develop vehicles are are customizable? Much like Microsoft Windows where you can change the background of your screen, select custom themes and sounds. You should be able to pick the tone for turning right or left; if you leave your car door open and lights on select the tone you’d like. With the gap between vehicles and technology sufficiently closed, you could develop cars where the dash is one big wide LCD/PLASMA screen and you could configure what you would like to see on the screen. Something (sort of) like this… Toyota Fun-Vii.