[nfbmi-talk] More on self-driven cars.

Fred Olver goodfolks at charter.net
Fri Feb 8 12:55:16 CST 2013


I hope Google is right.  

Autonomous cars face hurdles before wide use 
By Angela Greiling Keane Bloomberg News Google sees self-driving cars as being available to consumers in three
to five years. Regulators and the insurance industry aren't so sure it can happen that quickly. Software and electronic sensors couldn't fail and would
have to anticipate and react like a human. States may have to decide how to license machines rather than people. Insurance companies have to reassess how
to assign fault after accidents. Safety standards have to be rewritten to focus on electronics along with mechanics. The improvement can be such that we
can make cars that drive safer than people do," Anthony Levandowski, product manager for Google's self-driving car technology, told a Society of Automotive
Engineers meeting in Washington last week. We expect to release the technology in the next five years. In what form it gets released is still to be determined.
U.S. auto-safety regulators are eager to reap the safety benefits that may come from taking human error out of driving. About 33,000 people die annually
in traffic crashes in the U.S., a number that is falling yet almost equal to the number of people who commit suicide each year. David Strickland, head
of the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, used an analogy to "The Jetsons," a 1960s animated TV comedy featuring gadgets including a
flying car that folded into a briefcase. It's going to make a huge difference in reducing crashes overall," Strickland said. While crash-avoidance systems
that can alert a driver or apply brakes in advance of a wreck are coming to cars now, autonomous vehicles "are a long way off," he said. 
Fred Olver


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