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Government To Require Vehicle-to-vehicle Communication 390

An anonymous reader writes "For decades, the focus of auto safety has primarily been on surviving the traumatic impact of crashes through features like air bags and seat belts. But now the focus has shifted to avoiding crashes by developing technology to make future vehicles 'smart' enough to detect and respond to threats, such as an oncoming vehicle. The technology, known as 'vehicle-to-vehicle,' or "V2V," lets cars 'talk' to each other and exchange safety data, such as speed and position. If a nearby car abruptly changes lanes and moves into another car's blind spot, the car would be alerted. Federal transportation officials did not announce when the new regulations would go into effect but said they hope to propose the new V2V rules before President Barack Obama leaves office in January 2017." Combine this with remote kill-switches or pulse guns, Amber-alert scrolling signs, proliferating cameras, automatic plate recognition and unstoppable text messages from on high for some not-so-distant driving dystopia.
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Government To Require Vehicle-to-vehicle Communication

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  • To require? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bigfinger76 ( 2923613 ) on Tuesday February 04, 2014 @01:26PM (#46151215)
    "To require" and "to propose" are two different things.
  • security? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by gtall ( 79522 ) on Tuesday February 04, 2014 @01:27PM (#46151225)

    Unless they also mandate good levels of security for these systems, it will end in tears.

  • by jabberwock ( 10206 ) on Tuesday February 04, 2014 @01:38PM (#46151403) Homepage
    If you want to drive -- if that's really your thing, your passion, your hobby -- I'm sure there will always be a place you can go and do that.

    Societally, I'm glad to have us focusing on improving safety and efficiency of transportation.

    Think past the automobile era.

  • Automated driving (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Salgat ( 1098063 ) on Tuesday February 04, 2014 @01:45PM (#46151515)
    In the context of automated driving this pairs beautifully. The future is very much having computers drive us, it simply is more efficient and much safer. Giving them extra tools to enhance safety is great considering we aren't concerned about being liable for what the computer decides to do (since that is the liability of the manufacturer).
  • Re:Not a good idea (Score:5, Insightful)

    by gstoddart ( 321705 ) on Tuesday February 04, 2014 @01:48PM (#46151555) Homepage

    We need to stop coddling people and let them find out the hard way why rules of the road and safe driving methods exist.

    So when someone who is obeying the rules of the road gets killed by some idiot who isn't, are you suggesting your right to be a moron extends to the point where you could cause harm to someone else?

    Your 'right' to drive how you see fit ends where the potential for you to damage me begins.

    Your right of free expression ends at my nose. And your right to drive like an asshole ends at the point where there are other people on the road who could harmed by your stupidity.

    You want an unrestricted right to drive that way? Drive on your own damned property. Once you're out on public roads with other people, you do NOT have the right to just drive however you like.

  • Re:Dystopia myopia (Score:0, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 04, 2014 @03:17PM (#46153045)

    30,000 die annually in the US due to unimpaired car accidents. The population of the US is approximately 300 million. Your chances of dying in any given year in this manner are 1 in 10000, so it doesn't seem like great odds. But theoretically, you'd have to drive for 10,000 years before you were really playing with death. I'm sure something else is going to catch up to you by then.

    But most people don't spend every day driving. So let's find out your chances of dying on those days when you are driving. This statistic averages out to 82.19 deaths per day, nationwide. Your chances of dying on any given day from an unimpaired car accident is 1 in 3650079. At this rate, you could expect to die in this manner within 3650079 days of driving. That's 10,000 years, give or take a rounding error. Yes, there's a reason this matches the calculation from the preceding paragraph.

    But you don't drive all day, usually. You only drive for a few hours each day. This statistic averages out to 3.42 deaths per hour, nationwide. Your chances of dying for any given hour of driving is 1 in 87,719,298. So, theoretically, you should have to drive 87,719,298 hours before you will die in this manner. That's 3,654,970 days (which is really close to 3,650,079 and we've seen that somewhere before...), which is 10013 years.

    So put it in perspective. 30,000 people isn't really that many. A once-in-ten-thousand-years chance of dying in this manner is not worth getting worked up over. And that goes especially for those that take pride in their driving skill and ability. If this technology could prevent a fraction of these unlikely deaths, what does it cost? If it costs my freedom, liberty, or the utility of driving my vehicle for my own reasons, then it's not worth it. The government is incompetent at pretty much everything. They need to stay the hell out of my car. I'd rather take my chances on the open road, seeing as those odds aren't as bad as Chicken Little would like you to believe.

  • by Ravaldy ( 2621787 ) on Tuesday February 04, 2014 @04:07PM (#46153737)

    Maybe but I'll tell you what. I'd love my car to be able to tell me there's an accident ahead. I just had to wait 3 hours due to a 50 car pileup. It wasn't pretty. According to the fireman I spoke to, it started with only 2 cars, quickly turned ugly as more cars arrived at high speed no knowing about the stoppage ahead due to limited visibility. Luckilly, I don't think anybody died but 10 rigs were left on the side of the road overnight along with many cars. It could have been much worst.

    One could say slow down but you and me both know it's not going to happen. "Human nature". When you can't change the driver you put measured in place to protect the drivers. In this case communication between vehicles could enable notifications to avoid crazy accidents like the one I witnessed.

    As for your comment about drivers paying attention. I though I read something about Android developing technology to prevent the use of the phone while driving unless commands are performed via voice. Would be cool if someone linked the article.

  • Re:To require? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by SolitaryMan ( 538416 ) on Tuesday February 04, 2014 @05:12PM (#46154705) Homepage Journal
    Insurance companies will tax you instead.
  • Re:To require? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by OhPlz ( 168413 ) on Tuesday February 04, 2014 @05:19PM (#46154821)

    The interstate commerce clause is a dangerous tool. Nearly anything can be dragged over a state border, and nearly anything could be labelled as commerce. There are people that dislike the AHA because they have insurance offered only within their state and see only doctors within their state. There's not always an interstate component.

    The same could be argued of vehicles, although the practicality of selling vehicles targeting specific state requirements could be onerous. Although CARB comes to mind. There are also states which are trying to prevent Tesla from selling over the Internet because state laws forbid it. The union only works if such dangerous tools are used sparingly and for good reason. Highway safety may be a good reason, but if the requirements harm motorists financially, those motorists may reconsider how worthy a reason it truly is.

    Frankly, I can't imagine a two way communication mechanism that wouldn't be ripe for abuse. The collision avoidance features already on the market could probably be exploited to cause the vehicles to panic stop unexpectedly. The feds should let the market do its thing and if these features prove themselves and can be made affordable, perhaps then we make requirements. This reminds me of the ever increasing mileage requirements the feds come up with. Industry tends to miss them because the science isn't there yet, at least for the types of vehicles Americans want or need. Not many Americans would be in favor of Uncle Sam deciding what kind of motor vehicle they can have. So what good are requirements that can't be met?

Statistics are no substitute for judgement. -- Henry Clay