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Technology Hardware

New Honda Accord Drives Itself 398

pmenefee writes "Japanese car manufacturer Honda has launched a new self-driven car. Dubbed Honda Accord ADAS, the vehicle can change gears and steer itself around bends. While the auto-pilot function will currently only operate on motorways and dual carriageways, officials at Honda believe that future ADAS models will tackle all roads."
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New Honda Accord Drives Itself

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  • by Marxist Hacker 42 ( 638312 ) * <seebert42@gmail.com> on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @02:51PM (#14618167) Homepage Journal
    Well, not quite- nice to see that Honda could come out with an ADAS system barely a month after it becoming legal....
  • Sweet! (Score:5, Funny)

    by east coast ( 590680 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @02:51PM (#14618168)
    No more DUIs! There is a God!

    Bartender! Another shot!
    • Re:Sweet! (Score:3, Interesting)

      Not only that, but my grandma and all the other old people out there can let go of the wheel and save some lives. Just don't tell your grandma that she has this feature when she really doesn't have it. That might cause some more accidents.
    • Re:Sweet! (Score:4, Interesting)

      by voice_of_all_reason ( 926702 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @03:00PM (#14618292)
      They'll just charge you with whatever they charge people who pass out in their cars after realizing they're too drunk to drive.

      Most laws are worded that as long as you're physically able to start the car (possession of the keys), it's as bad as plowing through a bunch of little kids.
    • Re:Sweet! (Score:3, Interesting)

      It doesn't look like it'll make turns for you. Or even know when to take turns. In fact, it looks like you may have to dis-engage the system to turn or pass someone. And you still have to know the way home.

      That said, it seems like the #1 problem with drunk driving is staying in your lane and keeping the right speed.
      • And you still have to know the way home.

        I don't know the way home now! Seriously, I just moved to a new house in a new state. I have a Magellan Roadmate 700. If it were to quit working, I wouldn't be able to get home tonight.
      • Re:Sweet! (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Tony Hoyle ( 11698 ) <tmh@nodomain.org> on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @04:02PM (#14619035) Homepage
        The #1 problem with drunk driving is being able to react to hazards in a timely manner.

        Staying in lane is easy. Realizing that the truck in the junction ahead hasn't made eye contact and is about to pull out in front of you is harder.. and you can't automate that.
    • Re:Sweet! (Score:4, Funny)

      by dr_dank ( 472072 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @03:02PM (#14618310) Homepage Journal
      With Ethanol becoming more common in gasoline, your car can be DWI too!
    • Re:Sweet! (Score:3, Insightful)

      by mrseigen ( 518390 )
      Not in Canada -- our laws cover "operating a motor vehicle" under the influence. That includes lying down in a turned-off motorboat while slammed. I would imagine an autopiloted Honda is against the rules too, unfortunately.
      • In the US you can't just be pulled over because the officer suspects you are drunk. You actually have to commit an infraction.

        I supsect the common ones are:

        1) speeding
        2) not keeping a safe distance
        3) poor lane control
        4) out of date vehical tags/tail light out etc..
        5) failing to signal for a turn
        6) failing to stop at a stop light

        If the car can more or less take care of 1-3 then it does reduce your chances of getting caught.

        Unfortunately the US still has a culture where it's considered acceptable to drink and
    • Re:Sweet! (Score:5, Funny)

      by Golias ( 176380 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @03:22PM (#14618545)
      Now all I need is a Honda ASIMO to get out of the car and go in to the office to my job for me, and it's non-stop anime & World of Warcraft from then on. Woo-hoo!
  • by man_of_mr_e ( 217855 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @02:51PM (#14618173)
    Is this some kind of euro-test?
    • If you had seen the previous story, you'd know this system is only legal in England and Japan.
    • by east coast ( 590680 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @03:00PM (#14618294)
      Why is this modded as troll? I swear to God, some people are pretty thin skinned.

      I've often heard that the first step to wisdom is calling things by their correct name; if this bloke needs some clarification and isn't too proud to admit it should he be marked a troll? He's a hell of a lot better off than the idiots who think they know what it means when they don't.
      • I think you might be trolling, but just in case ... Ever heard of regional language variances? Ever consider the submitter used whatever words they're used to using? Or would you scream at me for writing "truck" in an online discussion with someone who is British and responds to me by using the word "lorry"?

        If you don't know the word, look it up instead of bitching.
      • Of course, the second step to wisdom is realizing that names only serve to categorize that which is truly unique, and that categorization is the first step towards prejudice.
    • It's a road with separated lanes. Apparently called a divided highway in the US.
      They usually have two lanes on each side.
      • The other feature of it is that it usually has higher speed limits; 70 mph out of town, 40 mph in town, unless otherwise stated. But unlike motorways (=freeways), dual carriageways are open to traffic other than cars: bikes, tractors, horses, whatever.

        As a cyclist, I'm pretty worried about how safe these auto driving vehicles are; how optimised they are for things in the road. Its one thing to have a car that brakes if you are about to hit something, another to have the thing make steering decisions too. Al
    • by dr_dank ( 472072 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @03:08PM (#14618375) Homepage Journal
      A dual-carriageway is where those foppish dandies and their tin-lizzies really trip the light fantastic at breath-taking speeds of up to 25 miles-per-hour.

      It'll scare the horses out of their wits! Huzzah! 23 skidoo!
    • Any road in which the carriageway going one way is physically separated from the carriageway going the other way. Hence 'dual'. Sometimes there is a gap, sometimes there is a barrier. They typically have higher speed limits because there is no oncoming traffic.

      Not to be confused with a 'two-lane' road which has one carriageway divided into four (two in each direction).

      ...and no, it's not a euro-test. It's a brit-test. S'there, yankee ;-)

      Cheers, Justin.

      • So in America we would call it a "divided highway" or "divided road".
      • What the hell? You're from england? That's total crap.

        A dual carriageway is a road, seperated by *something* in the middle, that has 2 lanes going one way, and 2 lanes going the other. Unlike a motorway, they do not usually have a hardshoulder. The maximum speed limit on a dual carriageway, like a motorway, is 70mph, unless otherwise stated.

        Learner drivers aren't allowed on motorways, but they are allowed on dual carriageways. On a dual carriageway you are required to stay in the left hand land unless you n
        • It's not total crap; look it up in your highway code - there is such a thing, for example, as a three-lane dual-carriageway.

          You're right in what people colloquially refer to, though.
    • See my Sibling post: http://hardware.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=17589 4&cid=14618502 [slashdot.org]

      Keeping things simple Dual carrageway = Divided Highway & Motorway = Freeway. Thanks to The American's guide to speaking British.: http://www.effingpot.com/ [effingpot.com]
    • A road with effectively separate roads ("carriageways") for going in opposite directions, rather than just a white line between the lanes for going one way and the other.
    • About 25 lbs. *rimshot*
  • *SMASH* (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Khyron ( 8855 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @02:51PM (#14618177)
    Does this make anyone else think of the old Looney Toons cartoons where one character diverts another character's path of travel by painting a false line from the middle of the road to someplace else?
    • Exactly right- but to do it properly (and fool the system) you need TWO white lines- one for each side of the lane (which is why it's only currently legal on freeways and "two way carriageways" which I guess is an English way of saying a two lane road with a shoulder and painted lane markers).
    • Re:*SMASH* (Score:3, Insightful)

      by porcupine8 ( 816071 )
      That's not so funny - I've been on plenty of highways that were in various states of construction where there were multiple sets of lines - some leading into walls. It can be pretty nerve-wracking, hoping that everyone around you stays in the right lane.
    • Whilst here in Rhode Island there are many places where there are no road stripes because they've worn out and the state or municipality has no money to re-stripe.

      It'd be easier to navigate by curb than by stripes.
  • by killkillkill ( 884238 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @02:54PM (#14618208)
    Car drives you... err... you drive car...

    Okay, now I'm just confused

  • Obligatory (Score:5, Funny)

    by The Step Child ( 216708 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @02:54PM (#14618214) Homepage
    Lenny: Hey look, Homer's got one of those robot cars!


    Carl: Yeah, one of those American robot cars...
  • In Japan, cars drive you!

  • beep beep beep (Score:2, Insightful)

    by yapplejax ( 931268 )
    ADAS system will beep every 10 seconds to make sure you're paying attention

    You've got to be kidding. Who is going to drive (and I use the term loosely per the subject) a car that beeps at them every ten seconds?
    • I unplug that buzzer/beeper routinely upon buying a vehicle.

      I can't imagine that they'll bother hiding this noise maker any better. Yes, I know the blasted thing has a function, which I'm pretty sure is to irritate me.

    • Re:beep beep beep (Score:4, Informative)

      by Buran ( 150348 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @03:07PM (#14618373)
      Then don't use the system! Devices that make it easier for drivers to not pay attention to what they're doing need to make sure that safety is addressed. The car won't beep if you don't turn the system on, or if you buy a car without it. I would want to know, if I'm not actively controlling the car, that the computer is working at doing that job and that the impression of being under control isn't false.

      Similarly, aircraft have indicators that let the pilots know that the autopilot is in control and what mode the autopilot is in. It's kind of important to know for sure that a vehicle that can and will kill you if it crashes is under control by either a human or an automation system.
    • Re:beep beep beep (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Delta Vel ( 756242 )
      I'm sure people will buy it because of the novelty and convenience factors, but how long is it going to take to tune out the beeping? I'm guessing about three minutes. I'll be staying FAR away from any of these cars I see on the roads. People already read the newspaper (I still can't believe that one), eat breakfast, and put on makeup while driving when they control the car's every move.
    • In Japan all cars (except those modded for use by government officals and yakuza) are required to sound a warning "ping" if the car goes over 110Km/h, 100Km/h being the limit on freeways. The sound is softer and nicer the more expensive the car.

      It isn't too hard to get used to it especially when the common traffic speed on Japanese freeeways tends to be around 120Km/h when it isn't 10Km/h.
  • The sweet thing about the new Honda Borg is that once you've keyed the lock the car will drive itself to your crib. And if the cops intervene, there'll be no one in it to arrest!
  • by ackthpt ( 218170 ) * on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @02:58PM (#14618273) Homepage Journal

    Aibo kept getting us lost when I was too drunk to drive.
  • This system looks at white lines in the rear view mirror.

    Isn't this likely to cause carnage the first time you hit
    a contraflow system.

  • point to note: ..the ADAS system will beep every 10 seconds to make sure you're paying attention, requiring you to touch the steering wheel to inform the car you're still in charge..

    so there goes the "fun", I have to tap it regularly not to make it feel deprived..

  • Albeit, they don't do such a good job of it [wreckedexotics.com]

    And yes, I do have a lot of time on my hands today (I think someone's stealing CPU cycles from my computer to help calculate Bill Gates' taxes...)
  • by confusion ( 14388 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @03:00PM (#14618290) Homepage
    Unfortunately, as self driving cars become more and more viable, we're going to run into a liability problem. Sure, the self driving cars can probably cut crashes and resulting deaths by some huge percent, but there will still be some that happen. Then, those crashes and deaths will be the responsibility of the car manufacturer who will get sued into oblivion.

    http://www.networkstrike.com/ [networkstrike.com]
    • I dunno, considering you still have complete control over the car at all times, I think the driver can still be held 100% responsible. Unless the car steers itself off a cliff...
    • Then, those crashes and deaths will be the responsibility of the car manufacturer who will get sued into oblivion.

      No, the manufacturers will just place a sticker over the car's doors at the dealership that say:

      "By breaking this seal, you agree to absolve Big Car Maker, Inc. of any and all liability for damages due to defective materials, bad programming, and improper maintenence of this vehicle. Please see the owner's manual for complete liability waiver."

      That ought to take care of it.
    • Do I have to say it? (Score:4, Interesting)

      by airship ( 242862 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @03:48PM (#14618873) Homepage
      If liability issues kill the implementation of self-driving cars, then it's time to kill all the lawyers.
      Personally, I would much rather have a robot driving a car than a teenager. Or an old person. Or a drunk. Or somebody on a cellphone. Or me, when I'm daydreaming, frankly. Who hasn't experienced that thing where you jerk alert and suddenly realize some part of your brain you're not even aware of has been driving for the last 45 minutes - on the freeway, at 75 mph - while the rest of your head has been somewhere else?
      There will still be wrecks, but I think we'll have fewer of 'em. I'll take my chances with the robots.
      Really, one HUGE problem in this country is that nobody understands risk assessment. It's the kind of ignorance that gave us the completely ineffective PATRIOT Act in response to 9/11.
      • by TFloore ( 27278 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @06:34PM (#14620825)
        There will still be wrecks, but I think we'll have fewer of 'em. I'll take my chances with the robots.

        I agree that a computer doesn't get distracted or tired. It does require proper maintenance, but then so do your brakes.

        We are in the unfortunate time right now, where the systems are only useful under limited real-world conditions, basically in good weather on highways with no construction. That's still a big chunk of driving miles, and I'd love to be able to use something like this while I'm doing highway driving in good weather on interstates with no construction. (There must be a couple of miles of interstate not under construction somewhere near here... right?) And this system, due to using radar for speed control, is probably safe for night driving too. That's really cool.

        But right now, the systems are good for "closed track" driving with other well-behaved cars. It doesn't know street signs, so handling the 4-way Stop intersection would be a bit of a problem. Ditto with traffic lights. Give it another 10 years, and those will become solved problems too.

        Then you have to be able to handle kids running into the road in front of you when the ball rolls down the driveway. That's harder.

        I'm not bashing these things. I like them. I want them. Really... I drive a Ford F-150, and when Ford did a recall on the old-tech cruise control, I found just how much I use the cruise control as a crutch. They disabled my cruise control for 4 months, while they worked on fixing the problem and distributing parts to the service centers. Try driving 400 miles without cruise control sometime, it's amazing how tired my leg got, just keeping steady pressure on the gas pedal for 7 hours. Ouch.

        But these things are still at a point that they require an alert attentive driver watching things. Just like... regular cruise control. Wow. When a car on normal cruise control plows into another vehicle, that is the driver's fault, not the car maker's (assuming that the cruise control did not refuse to disengage). If one of these new-tech cruise controls does the same thing... that is still the driver's fault, and not the car maker's.

        But I'm sure a jury would still be happy to award a "Oh, we feel bad for you" award of a few tens of millions of dollars to the family of the first person killed by one of these.
      • Are you crazy? (Score:3, Insightful)

        Personally, I would much rather have a robot driving a car than a teenager. Or an old person. Or a drunk. Or somebody on a cellphone. Or me, when I'm daydreaming, frankly.

        I read things like this here occasionally and the only way I can make sense of it is by figuring the writer has read too many science fiction books.

        There's simply no evidence that computers are capable of handling the number of variables in play when driving on busy roads with people, and I don't see how they ever will on their current dev
    • That was my thought, too. The only way this becomes viable for any significant amount of control is if they're exempted from liability by law, and then some dumb-ass middle manager cuts testing short to get the software into the new 2009's on time, a few families die, and there's no way to punish them for it.

      But my main concern is that this only serves to let people use one hand for their cell phone and one for their coffee (I'm sure you can tap their dead man switch with the back of your hand), and then w
    • I'm sure I could sue my friend too if I was a passenger when he crashed. But somehow, it seems to usually fall on the insurance company to pay the medical bills, and all they care about is that the safest driver is behind the wheel. I imagine that if there is a genuine reduction in crashes, insurance companies will provide incentives to cover these types of vehicles instead of more unreliable human drivers.
  • So we're one step closer to AI cars. I'm still gonna want my archaic internal combustion vehicle, but when do Lorna and Lisa show up? I'm all for that part of things.
  • How hard would it be to make a robot car freeway? City and country streets would have too much ambiguity for a computer to make sense of, with the sidewalks and ditches and lamposts, etc. but I think the controlled environment of the freeway would be ideal.

    Here's what I'm thinking:
    • Cars have a sonar system for basic navigation. Assume that all roadways have a "gentle" curve path that you can follow if you maintain proper speeds.
    • Cars have a light-sensor system that detects special reflectors on the r
  • So how long until Toyota releases a Camry that can play a trumpet?
  • This has more to do with auto safety in general, but I think it was a Times story in which I read that a trained, unpanicked foot can outperform antilock breaks. The average person, however, much different story of course. I, Robot is correct in predicting that Will Smith can engage a manual override.
    • Threshhold-braking, as it is known, is applying the brakes just hard enough so the wheels are just about to lock up. That is much more effective (just look at the difference between the coefficients for rolling vs. sliding friction) than repeatedly locking up/disengaging the brakes (which is all anti-lock does) or locking them up solid (like most panicked drivers do).
    • Fighter jets already do most of the flying themselves, and require little input from the pilot. I'd argue that controlling a fighter jet is significantly harder than controlling a car.

      You hit it on the head, though... a human can never be guaranteed to be unpanicked in all situations. The computer never panicks. As long as the computer is well programmed and has sufficient failsafes, it will be more reliable than a human. It's all going to come down to the programming.
  • Things will start to get expensive the first time one of these things is involved in a fatal accident that involves the death of an attractive young family. Software fails, and the complexity of a real-world driving system will almost certainly lead to catastrophic failure at some point.

    1. How on Earth would it cope with extremely snowy and icy conditions? Heavy rain? Fog? Radar and imaging will have a heck of a time in less than perfect environments.
    2. Accident avoidance becomes a huge isse with an aut

    • I call it "electricity". I could distribute this magical, obedient workhorse of a technology using something called "Direct Current", which is fairly safe to be around, but transmission losses are incredible. I'm going to use something called "Alternating Current", which will kill you (if you pass enough current, that is).

      Imagine the lawsuits! Somewhere, somebody's gonna get electrocuted; imagine the liability lawsuits against the deep pockets of the companies responsible for implementing this obviously

  • I have something like this. I walk a couple of blocks to my special "garage" and swipe a special mag-stripe card. I wait a couple of minutes and my self-driving car comes along. The doors open, I get in, and when I reach another special "garage" near my destination, the doors open and I get out of my self-driving car. It's no more than $2 per use and other than some taxes, I didn't pay anything up front.
  • Not quite yet... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by RyoShin ( 610051 ) <(tukaro) (at) (gmail.com)> on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @03:27PM (#14618608) Homepage Journal
    I'm redminded of the movie The 6th Day (starring the Governator), where in one scene Ahnold and whoever was co-starring were sitting in a truck, looking at each other and talking while the car drove. When they got close to their destination, the car beeped and informed them that it would be returning to manual in 10... 9...

    The car also had built in GPS with maps, and seemed to be able to drive itself anywhere, though not from the exact beginning to the exact end (it relied on humans for such things as parking.)

    Does this new Honda have any of this? Being able to have the car hold your position is helpful, especially because it will allow you to pay greater attention to other driving matters, such as cars surrounding you and judging your next turn off (though, at least in America, it will just allow Soccer Mom's to apply more make-up, sigh.)

    Can the Honda steer around cars that are going too slow? Say it's set to a +/-10 mile variance; if a car in front of you is going 10 miles slower than you want to go (or the speed limit allows, depending on how its set up), will the car automatically work around it? What if a car is coming up behind you too fast; will it move over to let the other car pass?

    Can it navigate itself off of highways? We already have GPS-enabled systems that inform you when a turn or exit is coming up that you need to take; how well could they integrate that into the car steering itself?

    What happens if the road lines dissappear or become unreadable, be it from construction or wear? Does it hold a straight course, alerting you right away? Does it slow down? Or is it looking far enough ahead that it would have enough time to alert you to resume manual control?

    Does it merely watch the road, or does it calculate the shape? What if a car changes lanes in front of you, blocking the camera from seeing the lines, and right after the road goes straight after being a curve? What will the car do? Will it have enough data to know the road it about to straighten?

    I love the idea of a car driving itself, if only because that means less asshats on the road (their car, unmodded, will certainly respect road rules and common decency, even if its owner doesn't.) However, there are a lot of questions I have before I feel safe driving in one of these. Also, I'm sure someone will figure out within a month how to clip something onto the steering wheel to make it think that someone is touching it. (Or, the stupid parents will just tell their kid in the passenger to reach over and touch the steering wheel, while said stupid parent goes on talking on a cell or grroming his/herself or whatever.)

    And heaven help us if it runs Windows.
  • That I can get in the car and it drives me to where I'm going. Luxury. But this is almost like a false sense of security. The car does just enough to lull the driver into thinking it's got it under control.

    Either go all the way with the concept or stick with driver assist options. And we're going to need to give the auto pilot developers some type of insurance or immunity early on or no one will want to risk the liability issues of self-driving cars.

    There will be bugs and some of those bugs will tur

  • Scary Scary World (Score:3, Insightful)

    by TheSkepticalOptimist ( 898384 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @03:29PM (#14618633)
    I really don't think the future is in self driven cars.

    While science fiction, and apparently car companies, suggest that this is a possibility, here are two reasons why this will never happen:

    1) All or Nothing. Either ALL cars on the road are self driven, or none are. The moment you get a human interacting with computer driven cars, all chaos will result. No computer system, radar system, and automated response system can anticipate a drunk human driver swerving across 6 lanes of traffic at 100 mph in order to make an exit.

    2) Too many degrees of freedom. The car has too many degrees of freedom that affect safety. Tire wear, engine wear, body wear, road conditions, weather conditions and unexpected obstacles like rocks, tree branches, other debris, animals, or other people act against the safe driving of a vehicle. A computer can't take all these degrees of freedom into account. An auto driven car with lousy tires, paired with poor weather and icy roads won't be able to swerve in time to avoid a deer that suddenly dashes out on the road. A human might see the deer emerging from the woods long before it dashes out on the road, a human knows what to do when seeing a deer approach the road. A computer might interpret the deer as a stationary obstacle on the side of the road and take no precautions like slowing down to avoid hitting it if it suddenly moves.

    Auto driven cars only work in a few carefully controlled conditions, not in real life. Perhaps an automated highway system is the only application for automated cars, one that prevents external influence like weather and animals and other humans, but it would require billions in infrastructure changes to make highways safe and usable as automated freeways.

    The concept just isn't practical. I for one will stop driving if I had to use or contend with computer driven vehicles. While humans are infinitely capable of bad driving, knowing I can react to whatever some brain dead human driver can throw at me makes me feel safe as opposed to allowing a computer to decide how to react to unexpected (and unprogrammed for) conditions.
    • by yeremein ( 678037 )
      While science fiction, and apparently car companies, suggest that this is a possibility, here are two reasons why this will never happen:

      I can think of at least one more: liability.
  • When they do this overhaul I wonder what the new road system will look like.

    You could probably fit A LOT of cars on the road and through intersections if you only had to mathematically ensure they didn't collide.
  • "the Lane Keep Assist System keeps you headed in the right direction by using a camera on the rear-view mirror to watch the white lines and turn accordingly."

    Let's hope that after the UK trial they remember to switch mirrors...
  • by syntap ( 242090 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @03:34PM (#14618699)
    Finally, SOMEONE is driving when I'm on the phone.
  • from the article: "Honda was quick to point out that their system isn't exactly set up for you to take a nap, since the ADAS system will beep every 10 seconds to make sure you're paying attention, requiring you to touch the steering wheel to inform the car you're still in charge..."

    So what if you do, for whatever reason, neglect to touch the steering wheel every ten seconds? After beeping for ten minutes does it just shut itself off and send your car carreening over a cliff? slam on the brakes in the midd
  • by syntap ( 242090 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @03:40PM (#14618764)
    Here's a guy who may be in the market for this thing... no longer a need to keep hands on the wheel. http://www.breitbart.com/news/2006/01/31/D8FFUHC01 .html [breitbart.com]
  • This is great, just buy a few acres of land, build an enclosed planned community and reside in a house in the center of it.

    Then, buy a bunch of these Honda ADAS, set them loose and...Voila!
    Your very own Twilight Zone isolation nightmare!
  • so can it... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by SuperBanana ( 662181 ) on Wednesday February 01, 2006 @03:42PM (#14618788)

    Can it read signs? Judge weather conditions and drive appropriately? Respond appropriately if the vehicle gets out of control (say, crosses a patch of ice?), or if something unexpected happens?

    Well, neither can most of the people on the road today.

    Here's a shocker: let's give people a better education in how to drive, than spend billions on cars that "drive themselves".

    Amazingly, it pays off in the long run, because parents have to teach their children how to drive (in many cases). The overall work needed to "educate" society in how to drive, drops over time. Eventually, we become less of a danger to ourselves on the roads, so that having 9 airbags instead of 2 doesn't become quite an issue.

    Of course, it'd also be nice if highschools spent a few days in physics class on how physics affects cars (ie, basic vehicle dynamics.) Then again, that'd acknowledge a need to teach students real-world, useful information in school, instead of theoretical skills. When was the last time you saw "how to figure out if you're getting ripped a new one on your home mortgage" on a math teacher's curriculum?

  • Many of the roads here don't have any lines. They got too frigging lazy after shifting everything around during the Big Dig.

Things are not as simple as they seems at first. - Edward Thorp