PaulScott wrote:Sorry I missed this thread earlier, but I am in complete agreement with the notion that these robot cars will supplant private ownership of vehicles. It might not be 100%, but it'll be a high percentage. The cost of owning a car is pretty high, and the danger human drivers cause is significant. Once these cars prove themselves, people will dump their cars in drives. The economics are just too compelling.
Nubo wrote:So far I simply can't figure out what's in this autonomous car Kool Aid. I used to hate my wife's Escort, and all IT did was try to choke me with its automatic seatbelts. Human desires are too strong, and real-world traffic is just too chaotic and the layers of technological dependencies taken as a whole are simply too tenuous, for automatic cars to ever become a predominant factor. At least until the entire infrastructure is redeveloped.
I do not want it, Sam-I-am!
PaulScott wrote:Nubo wrote:So far I simply can't figure out what's in this autonomous car Kool Aid.
...I do not want it, Sam-I-am!
I understand the reticence, but give it some time. Once you see the benefits, and once the insurance companies hike the rates of those who continue to operate their own vehicles, and once you see all your friends going this route, saving lots of money, getting work done on their commutes, etc., it'll be so compelling that most everyone will go that route...
edatoakrun wrote:Think about your "public" BEV's ability to instantly respond to the nearest "hails" and select and pick up other "riders" with similar routes to your own (should you choose) allowing you to share per mile costs, and save all of you time by utilizing the high-speed/HOV left lane on the freeway, where autonomous vehicles will (safely) assemble into 80-100 mph car-trains.
The New Autonomous Electric Nissan LEAF
Article by Paul Scott
Monday night’s email from Nissan inviting me to visit the El Toro Marine Base on Wednesday was too good to be true. Nissan was going to have the new autonomous car, an electric Nissan LEAF, available to drive. Whoops, I guess “drive” is the wrong word. I’ll be driven in it.
Of course I’d go...
The car in question was a converted 2012 LEAF...
The acceleration was smooth up to the posted speed limit (cameras captured the speed limit sign and the computer understood what it meant). The car tracked the white lines on the road perfectly. At one point, a human dummy was rolled quickly into the path of the car and the car took immediate evasive action. We ended by climbing onto a platform and viewing the car park itself. The rider got out of the car and the car drove itself down the row of cars, stopped while another car left a parking space, then it drove past that space and backed right into it – perfectly in one try. I asked why they had it back in and not from the front. I was told because it’s harder to back in and they wanted to show that they could do it perfectly the hard way.
All in all, this was an eye opening experience. Nissan announced that they will have autonomous cars in the market by 2020. That’s essentially six years, plenty of time to perfect the technology.
I’ve been following robot cars since reading this fascinating 6 part series in Forbes about 8 months ago. I’m convinced this technology will dominate vehicles inside of 30 years. Depending on global political circumstances, it could happen much sooner. Cost will be the primary driver. Electric robot cars are going to be extremely efficient. They’ll be programmed to hypermile. Many people will simply subscribe to a taxi/ride share program where a car is sent whenever you need it at a cost per mile less than owning your own car. And if you’re willing to carpool, it’ll cost much less.
You won’t need to maintain or wash a car, never take it to a gas station, never have to find parking, just get dropped off right at the front door and walk in. Keeping a car at home is expensive. If you have a garage, or a dedicated parking space, you pay a lot of money for it. If you could build a house without a garage or even driveway, you’d save money. If you could rent an apartment or buy a condo with no garage, it would cost you much less.
The cars will be much safer. Last year in the U.S., there were about 6 million crashes costing a staggering $160 billion! Car crashes are the top reason of death for four to 34 year olds, and 93% of accidents are due to human error, typically inattention. Most of that will go away when computers control the driving. You can text all you want, the computer doesn’t care.
I’m very pleased that the company I work for is a leader in this technology...
edatoakrun wrote:The acceleration was smooth up to the posted speed limit (cameras captured the speed limit sign and the computer understood what it meant).