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Transportation Idle

Idiot Leaves Driver's Seat In Self-Driving Infiniti, On the Highway 406

Posted by samzenpus
from the bad-idea dept.
cartechboy writes Self-driving cars are coming, that's nothing new. People are somewhat nervous about this technology, and that's also not news. But it appears self-driving cars are already here, and one idiot was dumb enough to climb out of the driver's seat while his car cruised down the highway. The car in question is a new Infiniti Q50, which has Active Lane Control and adaptive cruise control. Both of which essentially turn the Q50 into an autonomous vehicle while at highway speeds. While impressive, taking yourself out of a position where you can quickly and safely regain control of the car if needed is simply dumb. After watching the video, it's abundantly clear why people should be nervous about autonomous vehicles. It's not the cars and tech we need to worry about, it's idiots like this guy.
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Idiot Leaves Driver's Seat In Self-Driving Infiniti, On the Highway

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @07:07PM (#47618659)

    Hyundai did a similar stunt (though using professionals on closed road):

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xbjdmw8D9-Y

  • by Calibax (151875) * on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @07:18PM (#47618729)

    It's pretty clear that this is merely a failed attempt to win a Darwin Award. Perhaps he needs to try the same thing on a windy road.

  • Re:Huh? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Ichijo (607641) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @07:20PM (#47618743) Homepage Journal

    Anything that *almost* removes the need for you to be behind the wheel is an accident waiting to happen.

    Like Asiana 214, where the pilots didn't know how to fly the plane manually.

    Or like the way that, in the name of safety, we've removed trees from the sides of roads because drivers kept hitting them. Now drivers go even faster on those same roads and hit pedestrians who are no longer protected by the trees. How's that for progress?

  • Re:Huh? (Score:5, Informative)

    by fractoid (1076465) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @07:35PM (#47618855) Homepage

    what are the odds that you'll remain alert and aware of the surrounding traffic after the 100th commute where it proved completely unnecessary to do so?

    Spot on. It doesn't improve safety in any way shape or form. It's just a liability dodge. So far, vehicle manufacturers have been able to offload responsibility for crashes onto the drivers involved unless it's provable that the car was engineered wrongly.

    Fully autonomous vehicles are scary for manufacturers because they potentially shift all liability to the manufacturer. This is made worse by the fact that, while people are willing to accept "human error" from a human driver, they become outraged if a machine makes a mistake, even if the machine is 100x more reliable than a human. This is a mindset that will have to change as machines become more aware of their surroundings and start making higher level decisions.

  • Re:Huh? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Bonobo_Unknown (925651) on Wednesday August 06, 2014 @07:59PM (#47619021)
    In the olden days everyone was too drunk while driving to be scared of the steel spear waiting to impale them for their driving mistakes.
  • Re:Huh? (Score:5, Informative)

    by RogueyWon (735973) on Thursday August 07, 2014 @01:41AM (#47620557) Journal

    Actually, there are plenty of other reasons why we remove trees from the sides of roads. Dropped leaves (which can increase braking distances significantly), dropped branches, the chance of the tree falling onto the road during a storm, the risk of obscuring signage and, if the road is below the level of the terrain to either side of it, the chance of roots undermining the banks and causing a landslip.

    By and large, while it's never going to be economical or appropriate everywhere, you don't want trees close to major roads.

    I've worked in transportation for a good number of years and have been involved in this issue. I don't think "because drivers keep hitting them" ever came up as a reason.

    Oh, and it's even more important on the railway. People laugh at the thought on "leaves on the line" causing delays and assume it's just a bullshit excuse. It isn't. What leaves do to trains' ability to accelerate and brake is much, much worse than ice.

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