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Transportation United States

Americans Still Deeply Skeptical About Driverless Cars, Says Poll (theverge.com) 275

A new poll was released today that basically repeats data we've seen in previous surveys: Americans still don't trust self-driving cars, and are nervous about the coming onslaught. The Verge reports: Asked how concerned they'd be to share the road with a driverless car, 31 percent said they'd be "very concerned," while 33 percent said "somewhat concerned," according to the poll which was just released by Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety. A majority (63 percent) said they would not support "mass exemptions" from federal motor vehicle safety standards for self-driving cars, and were not comfortable (75 percent) with automakers having the power to remotely disable vehicle controls, such as the steering wheel, and brake and gas pedals, when the autonomous vehicle is being operated by the computer. And people overwhelmingly support (75 percent) the U.S. Department of Transportation developing new standards related to driverless vehicles. The poll surveyed 1,005 adults between December 7-10th, 2017, with a margin of error of +/- 3.09 percent.

Americans Still Deeply Skeptical About Driverless Cars, Says Poll

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  • Well... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by jawtheshark ( 198669 ) * <slashdot&jawtheshark,com> on Friday January 12, 2018 @06:39PM (#55918665) Homepage Journal
    I'm not an American, but I'm wary too. Besides, I like driving. When the topic comes up, most people who welcome driverless cars seem to be those that hate driving or have to spend a lot of time in traffic jams.

    My main concern is not safety. I worry that driving will become cost prohibitive if driverless cars have a certain amount of adoption. Insurance companies will say "use driverless, or you pay X times more". That would relegate driving to the rich. Also, it would make current cars worthless overnight. Poorer people wouldn't be able to afford personal transportation at all any more, since there won't be enough second hand driverless cars. All in all a rather bleak future in my eyes.

    • Re:Well... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by JMZero ( 449047 ) on Friday January 12, 2018 @06:59PM (#55918769) Homepage

      I think you're right that "car ownership" would become less accessible over time, but I think "transportation by car" is likely to get very cheap. I think we'll see ubiquitous "Driverless Uber" style services pop up everywhere (in a variety of flavors), and that's how the non-wealthy get around (at least in urban settings).

      But I also think the transition will take a while, especially in rural areas - enough so that I don't think the transition will be too brutal for most people economically. If anything, some may benefit from cheaper human driven cars as they're essentially discarded. But yeah, further out in time it will definitely not be good for people who like driving - just as it's currently very expensive/awkward to maintain and use a horse drawn carriage.

      I think some people are jumping the gun a bit right now, but once driverless cars are reliable they're going to go from niche to everywhere very quickly.

    • Insurance companies will say "use driverless, or you pay X times more"

      There's no reason for insurance on manually-driven cars to go up. In fact, as the number of driverless cars on the road rises, and the roads become safer overall, it will go down.

      However, liability insurance on manually-operated cars will be infinitely higher than insurance on driverless cars, because the latter will be zero. More precisely, it will be paid by the manufacturer of the self-driving system, not the owner/driver of the car, because how can you be liable for accidents caused by the self-drivin

    • I'm sure they will be prying the steering wheel out of your cold dead hands because "I like driving" the same as they had to pry the stick shift out of everyone's cold dead hands, because that was real driving. It took a while but today most people don't even know how to use a clutch, never mind own one. It is not that hard to image one day, when the millennial's are old and grey, they will be telling their grand children what that round thing in their 2020 "classic car" does
    • Let me address this

      1) Roads are for infrastructure and tracks are for play driving. Your fun time should be done where I don't have to see it. It's like churches and stadiums. The civilized population supports people having these places because it keeps "those people" away from us at least for a few hours a week. When people say they like driving and that's a good excuse to not be forced into a far better world, it means you believe you put your play time in front of what is best for society. Consider that
  • by oldgraybeard ( 2939809 ) on Friday January 12, 2018 @06:42PM (#55918673)
    I will ride in them, when I verify they have no special liability protection! Being involved in IT and Sensors and such. I do not think the time it right! It will come in 10 -15 years. But it sure is not ready today.

    The only way they put these things on the road is with blanket complete liability protects from the GOV saying they are not responsible for anything bad that happens.

    Just my 2 cents ;)
    • The only way they put these things on the road is with blanket complete liability protects from the GOV saying they are not responsible for anything bad that happens.

      Cite?

      Google has stated that it will take liability for cars using its self-driving systems. Several other companies working on them have said the same.

      • Thank You, I did not know any had accepted liability, but I have seen the GOV giving them exceptions to speed the development.

        But I see that they were restricting the states ability to pass restrictive laws I think. Autonomous car liability [wikipedia.org]

        I know it is coming, I just don't think we are as close as some think yet ;)

        Just my 2 cents ;)
        • I have seen the GOV giving them exceptions to speed the development.

          Liability exceptions? Cite? I've seen some states moving rapidly on allowing them on the roads, but that's all.

          • OK you say Cite? but provide none!

            Here is my response, provide the disclaimers, eulas, etc for the operators. Out in the open so we can all read them. If you get in to one of these vehicles what is your risk?

            Just asking my 2 cents ;)
      • The only way they put these things on the road is with blanket complete liability protects from the GOV saying they are not responsible for anything bad that happens.

        Cite?

        Google has stated that it will take liability for cars using its self-driving systems. Several other companies working on them have said the same.

        You know what that liability will look like? It'll be a 74-page EULA that will change without notice or consent, and will come with more loopholes than a sweater knitted by a one-armed gorilla.

        Let's see who takes full responsibility after an autonomous control network gets hacked, resulting in a mass steering wheel/gas pedal/brake pedal attack that kills thousands. Oh, that'll never happen? If you believe that, I have a unbreakable secure messaging app to sell you...

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Think I'm going to let Intel, Microsoft or Google drive me around at 100 km/h? HAHAHAAH

  • by I'm New Around Here ( 1154723 ) on Friday January 12, 2018 @06:45PM (#55918703)

    What if a gorilla walks across the road in front of you?

    • by Kjella ( 173770 )

      What if a gorilla walks across the road in front of you?

      You know, I've never been in that situation. Probably never will, unless I go driving in Africa or one escapes from a zoo somewhere. I kinda assume that I'd hit the brakes like if it was a elk or bear or bison or elephant or giraffe or gazelle or any other large animal on the road ahead of me, more on instinct than anything else. That's roughly what I do with cattle and sheep, anyway. Which is why I'm not really all that concerned, because the situation and response is so generic and pretty much universal.

      I

      • Let me mansplain this to you. A few days back there was a story that Google's image identification program had labelled a photo of a group of black men as 'gorillas'. Google make autonomous cars. Now, do you see the joke?

      • I don't see a computer going to those extremes, even if it'll prevent most "mundane" accidents.

        Actually, I was just watching something fairly recently (this story would be cooler if I could remember what, it was probably Autoline) and somebody was talking about their autonomous vehicle having recently been given the ability to rapidly switch lanes to avoid accidents. There is no reason why they can't make it go to the shoulder.

        As for the rest, I think that stuff is coming as well. The vehicle isn't going to decide to harm someone else to save you, but it might decide to harm you to save you from deat

  • The speeds are lower, the roads and boundaries are better defined. I wouldn't ride one on a twisty mountain road in Bolivia though.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by sn0wflake ( 592745 )
      I watched a news report where they tested out driver-less cars in Germany. All went well until they came upon some road construction. The sensors didn't seem to register the cones and signs that were set up, and the car wanted to drive through it into a hole that the construction crew had dug. The person observing the car had to interfere. Errors like these is a sure sign that autonomous cars are far away in the distant future.
  • When the tech is ready, it will go in to pilot less airliners first! No cockpit crew! Until I see that I know cars are not ready.

    Just my 2 cents ;)
    • Other than takeoff, it has been ready for a long time.

      https://www.wired.com/story/bo... [wired.com]

      Planes regularly fly and land with autopilot now (even in rough conditions).

      Planes are actually a simpler use case than automobiles.

      • Yes that is my point, I was USAF we have had autopilot for what 5 decades ;) Just my 2 cents ;)
      • Planes regularly fly and land with autopilot now (even in rough conditions) but have a pilot and copilot with hands on the controls throughout the landing process waiting to take over at a fraction of a second's notice in the event that something does not go exactly as expected, which is often the case.

        Fixed that for you. That's pretty much like Tesla's Autopilot is (or is supposed to be when used properly) today. We do not live in a world where planes take off and land while pilots sit in the back and booze it up with the rest of the passengers as people are wanting to do with driverless cars.

        • by mysidia ( 191772 )

          We do not live in a world where planes take off and land while pilots sit in the back and booze it up with the rest of the passengers

          Of course not..... blazing through the 3-dimensional airspace with hundreds, perhaps thousands of lives at stake if a mechanical instrumentation failure occurs in flight and the one pilot is not there to compensate.

          I don't think there will EVER be a time when a human flight crew is not required to monitor the operation of passenger aircraft, but the things that can go wron

          • the things that can go wrong in air navigation are much more complicated than the things that can go wrong in 2-d ground navigation.

            I'm not sure if they're really more complicated or just different. One thing that's generally not an issue in the air is having to deal with yahoos doing unsafe and unexpected things around you, as is constantly the case on the road. And when things do get weird, there's generally a wider envelope for correction before you reach a full-blown catastrophe. As the signs say coming out of the airport, "you are now leaving the safety of flight. Please drive carefully..."

          • In the air (other than immediately on takeoff and landing) the nearest hard objects are thousands feet away. Not four feet or less like on the road. There's actually LESS room for error in driving vs flying.
        • by ceoyoyo ( 59147 )

          There are pilots there, but very rarely does anything go wrong. I remember reading an article several years ago about new requirements for a certain number of manual landings per year because pilots were getting out of practice.

          • There are pilots there, but very rarely does anything go wrong.

            Makes not a whit of difference -- the pilots are there for when things do go wrong -- and they do. A rational society will continue to require the same of automobiles.

            • A rational society will continue to require the same of automobiles.

              Wait, when are we getting this rational society?

  • by DatbeDank ( 4580343 ) on Friday January 12, 2018 @06:49PM (#55918719)

    I have a friend who works for an insurance company. They've noticed over the past year that there has been an increase in accidents. Doing further research into each accident, they've discovered that people have been over relying on driver assist features.

    One story he told me was about a guy who slammed his car into the rear of a late 1960s Thunderbird which was stopped at a light in his new BMW. He apparently had gotten so used to the automatic braking system that he just never bothered to hit the brake. This being the one time it just didn't work for some reason.

    Call me a Luddite, I don't care. I don't trust computers and I don't trust cars driven by them, especially in this post-NSA car hacking world.

  • by Rosco P. Coltrane ( 209368 ) on Friday January 12, 2018 @06:50PM (#55918721)

    I just don't want one that's powered by software from evil companies like Google. Since internet-free, advertising-free, non-privacy-invading driverless car software will never happen, I'll pass.

    • Highway robbery was supposed to be a medieval thing.

      After occupant controlled cars are banned it will be trivial to rob or do worse to people everywhere and anywhere by simply having of the offenders step on the path of the vehicle and then waiting for it the car to come to halt, the victims can't use the car to escape the situation and are caught in a location chosen by the attackers.
    • by antdude ( 79039 )

      I will wait for Knight Industries to release its own self driving cars. ;)

    • I just don't want one that's powered by software from evil companies like Google.

      ProTip: When using the navigation system, don't press "I'm feeling lucky",

  • Safer than humans (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Hadlock ( 143607 ) on Friday January 12, 2018 @06:50PM (#55918723) Homepage Journal

    I think most people haven't shared a street with them. I spent two years in the same city with these things, as a pedestrian, driver, and cyclist. They're infinitely patient with cyclists, hyper-paranoid about pedestrians wandering in to the street, like a parent is with their toddler.
     
    Two weeks around self driving cars and you pretty much immediately realize that humans are just sacks of meat piloting cars, is about the dumbest idea, and the pedestrian fatality statistics back that up.
     
    If I were to describe the "personality" of a self driving car, imagine a super chilled-out Mr. Rodgers paitent type, but he's also double-dosed on adderall and hyper alert for pedestrians, got 9 hours of sleep last night, good blood sugar, and his cell phone is on silent, locked in the trunk. And he has an IQ of 175 and can see in all directions and does not blink, and has a third eye that can see through shrubs and around cars.
     
    Compare to the sleep-deprived, over caffinated, underfed mother who is juggling three kid's schedules and probably running late to pick up johnny from swim class while answering a phone call and trying to remember if she needs to pick up groceries on the way home.

    • I think most people haven't shared a street with them. I spent two years in the same city with these things, as a pedestrian, driver, and cyclist. They're infinitely patient with cyclists, hyper-paranoid about pedestrians wandering in to the street, like a parent is with their toddler.

      You say that like it's a good thing, but I'd hate to be the driver behind it. They shouldn't be "hyper-paranoid" because then they are being unpredictable on the toad. They should just do exactly what a person would do in the same situation.

      • Re:Safer than humans (Score:5, Informative)

        by Hadlock ( 143607 ) on Friday January 12, 2018 @07:19PM (#55918907) Homepage Journal

        When I think hyper paranoid, I'm thinking of a very specific incident.
         
        I'm on castro street, which is the main resturaunt drag in Mountain View, about 6pm, peak hour. Getting ready to cross the street at the crosswalk to go to the train station. I'm standing on the sidewalk, about 2' from the curb, facing away from the street talking to them. We decide it's time to go, so I spin around on my heel so that I am facing towards the crosswalk/street. At this exact moment there's a break in traffic and the next car is one of the "cute" white waymo electric cars. I hear the tires chirp, and there's a surprised expression on the attendant's face. At this point the car has come to a complete stop, about 15-20' (one car length) ahead of the crosswalk. I hadn't started to walk in to the street/crosswalk yet, just spun in place.
         
        Now, this tells me a few things
        1. The car knew I was there. I've almost been run over IN that same crosswalk by inattentive drivers in the span of 18 months.
        2. The car was tracking my motion and making assumptions about my intent
        3. The car decided my motion passed a certain threshold and decided to take evasive action.
         
        Keep in mind this is a very busy intersection, it's a 3-way T car intersection, plus a crosswalk, and no less than four outdoor seating areas for resturaunts, plus rush hour sidewalk traffic. Easily 100+ people in a 50' radius around the car. I was partially obscured by no less than two other tall people on the sidewalk.
         
        But the car saw me moving what it thought was erratically, made the call and stopped, rather than risk slowly bumping in to me.
         
          That might seem unremarkable, but I've had two human-driven cars back in to me while walking through a parking lot, I've been turning left at a stop sign, and a (Very exhausted) hospital nurse came to a stop, then drove in to me in the intersection, I've had cars not see me in the crosswalk and drive in to me when their light turns green. I was a good 15' away in this instance and the car chose to stop rather than risk any contact with me. Yes, that's hyper-paranoid, but didn't delay anyone getting to their resturaunt, nobody was late getting home and more importantly nobody died that day (even if this would have been minor at worst).
         
        So yeah, I'm pretty happy with how they've designed these things, sure they're a bit more careful than the average human, but what I've seen at that intersection previously, humans are awful at piloting cars, especially when tired/hungry/distracted.

        • >But the car saw me moving what it thought was erratically, made the call and stopped

          This makes me think that once self driving cars become more common, some people (especially kids) are going to start to "mess with them" on purpose just for fun, which is going to cause annoyance and maybe even accidents.

          Imagine some kid discovering he can make an entire line of self-driving cars stop suddenly just by spinning around on the curb. You just KNOW he's going to abuse his newfound powers!

          • Imagine some kid discovering he can make an entire line of self-driving cars stop suddenly just by spinning around on the curb. You just KNOW he's going to abuse his newfound powers!

            And the software will be adjusted.

          • And then, one night when the kid is sleeping, he hears the sound of tires on the floor next to his bed...

            Let's just say, fully networked autonomous vehicles remember. And have lots of cameras. And can search Facebook with spare processor cycles.

          • This makes me think that once self driving cars become more common, some people (especially kids) are going to start to "mess with them" on purpose just for fun, which is going to cause annoyance and maybe even accidents.

            It might cause accidents, but only if a human driver is following them too close and runs into them. Not only will the following vehicle be watching for stuff like that, and not following too closely, but the vehicles will also be communicating about potential panic stops (and the actual panic stop) via V2V.

            It will also be made explicitly illegal, and the cops can use the time they used to use catching traffic violators busting people trolling AVs.

          • by Hadlock ( 143607 )

            Every other year there's some news article about kids throwing cinder blocks off an interstate overpass and killing someone. It's sad, and it happens, but thankfully given that there's ~80 million minors in the US, it's almost a rounding error in the general population.

            Castro street is mostly one lane in each direction, with bike lane on either side for most of it. What is funny is that the cars, even though they know they have right of way in the car lane, and I am cycling in the bike lane, will cr

    • All that makes sense as far as it goes, but the safety of the autonomous driver isn't the only factor (or even close to it). Another huge issue is how well it fits into the flow of surrounding traffic, and how surrounding drivers respond to it. You can argue all you want that the grandmother driving 40mph in the middle lane of a 6-lane interstate highway is herself a very careful, safe driver (and you'd be right, in a vacuum), but that sort of disturbance creates a cloud of chaos around it that can persis

  • by eepok ( 545733 ) on Friday January 12, 2018 @06:50PM (#55918727) Homepage
    Seriously. How many are on the roads in NON-TESTING situations? Have you seen the testing reports? GM reports every collision they have with their autonomous vehicles in California to the state. (https://www.dmv.ca.gov/portal/dmv/detail/vr/autonomous/autonomousveh_ol316+) The others?

    Do you know how your state would handle a collision involving a driverless vehicle? Who, as a person or corporation, is liable for damages if the driverless vehicle broke the law in does damage to something/someone?

    Step away from the hype and futurism, let the researchers research, the engineers engineer, and tell the marketers to calm down because all the non-research oriented VC is in cryptocurrency right now. Autonomous vehicles will be here eventually, but if we can't even get automatic braking, dynamic cruise control, and lane assist all modern vehicles, then we're nowhere near having 100% autonomous vehicles on the road in any significant number.
    • Who, as a person or corporation, is liable for damages if the driverless vehicle broke the law in does damage to something/someone?

      The only sensible answer to this question is "the company that made the self-driving system". Google has stated that it plans to accept that liability, as have Volvo and several others.

    • I've just spent the last hour looking through those reports. All of the accidents as far as I can tell where caused by human error on the part of other drivers.

      When the Cruise AV decelerated to merge into the left lane, the driver of the Honda Accord-who appears to have been distracted, looking at a person standing on the sidewalk-failed to notice and rear-ended the Cruise AV.

      The signal changed, giving the vehicles a green left-tum arrow. The Cruise AV began making the tum and was then rear-ended by the Volvo

      The Waymo AV was rear-ended by a Toyota Camry while slowly creeping forward with traffic at the red light. The Waymo AV was travelling around 1 MPH at the time of collision, the Camry was travelling around 7 MPH at moment of collision

      While passing through the intersection at 11thStreet, the Cruise AV followed the lane markings, which shift to the left as the road transitions to a one-way street starting east of 11th Street. All lanes on Folsom Street shift left that that intersection and are clearly marked. A Toyota Camry traveling behind and to the left of the Cruise AV, and gaining on the Cruise AV, did not shift left with its lane and instead crossed over its lane boundary and lightly swiped the side of the Cruise AV.

      Really all you are proving is that humans shouldn't be allowed to drive.

  • The roads are sheer ice out there right now. I wouldn't trust a human driver let alone an automated one. Something tells me the folks in Mountain View California haven't tested their cars in weather like this.
    • The roads are sheer ice out there right now. I wouldn't trust a human driver let alone an automated one. Something tells me the folks in Mountain View California haven't tested their cars in weather like this.

      The problem is not the ice. The car is better at dealing with that than you are. The problem is seeing. Your eyes, for all their faults, are pretty amazing things when backed up by your brain, for which similar statements might be made. The car is better than you are at sensing what it is doing, when a wheel is slipping, and the like, but it's not quite as good at making sense of extremely low-quality input. People are testing autonomous vehicles in poor weather now, but you're right that none of them are r

  • Unproven tech, several thousand pounds of steel. No shit Sherlock we don't trust them.
    • 34% of the people polled is not concerned about sharing the road with self-driving vehicles.

      The results of the poll are actually superpositive, given that the technology is very much in its infancy. If anything, it is a display of an inflated sense of trust in, rather than a 'deeply skeptical' view of self-driving vehicles.

  • The biggest advantage of autonomous cars is that road carrying capacity goes way way up... which not only increases overall transportation efficiency but will require less lanes and less real estate, which is a huge cost driver in metro areas. I envision someday soon that certain roads in and out of congested urban areas will be autonomous cars only for certain hours of the day.

    • I imagine they'll start using the carpool lanes first. Which will be annoying because I like to go at least 75 when possible.

    • by arth1 ( 260657 )

      The biggest advantage of autonomous cars is that road carrying capacity goes way way up... which not only increases overall transportation efficiency

      No, that does not follow.
      If the average speed per vehicle goes down, transportation efficiency goes down, not up, no matter how many cars you can pack on the road. You can't put one person in two cars to make him go twice as fast.

      All indications so far is that the average speed goes down for automatic cars; not only the driving speed, but the amount of stops. Which delays other cars too.

      • All indications so far is that the average speed goes down for automatic cars; not only the driving speed, but the amount of stops. Which delays other cars too.

        When we have lots of AVs with V2V then we will be able to do platooning, and then you will be able to put more vehicles on the road even if they are going slower because they will be closer together.

        I watched an interview with Bob Lutz a while back where he proposed that the future of the automobile is a bunch of self-driving minivans with legally mandated shape/size envelopes to maximize platooning efficiency, where the only real differences between different marques are minor styling cues and the quality

        • by arth1 ( 260657 )

          When we have lots of AVs with V2V then we will be able to do platooning, and then you will be able to put more vehicles on the road even if they are going slower because they will be closer together.

          Yes, and that will be useful for freight, but not people, because as I said, you can't put a person in two cars to make him go faster.

          • Yes, and that will be useful for freight, but not people, because as I said, you can't put a person in two cars to make him go faster.

            if you improve throughput then you reduce SNAFUs and then people will arrive at their destination in less time. Take the traffic around LA for example. If it were all moving smoothly then it might actually get somewhere. And if you use V2I to manage traffic, you can use all that V2V hardware to determine how to run traffic lights (for example) in order to clear out blockages as they begin to form.

  • I can't wait for driverless cars. Not only am I lazy, I'm a geek.
    Sadly, there's not many geeks left on Slashdot.

    • I can't wait for driverless cars. Not only am I lazy, I'm a geek.
      Sadly, there's not many geeks left on Slashdot.

      But not a car geek, I'm guessing. I think that the technology for self-driving cars is cool. But... I don't see it being perfected for another 20 years. Even then, I, personally, will still need a regular SUV. Why? because I like camping, hiking, and boating (requires towing). Most of which occurs off the beaten path, areas where self-driving cars would be literally stuck in the mud. Beyond that, I actually like driving...

      Besides, if you are a true geek you would be more interested in working from h

  • heading to -14 (temp not wind chill) the roads are snow covered with random slick spots and banks from plowing ;) Driver less cars right!

    They will only do it with absolute liability protections from the deaths.

    Just my 2 cents ;)
    • What about the human makes it better than the car? Humans can't see the IR spectrum, Ice would stick out far ahead of the car actually getting there

      • by ceoyoyo ( 59147 )

        Ice and snow seem to be the favourite human conceit. I just came back from my home town, a place that makes the OP's -14 look like the tropics. Dunning-Kruger is even stronger in the winter.

  • With the exception of a handful of cars driving about, this is an unproven technology. So when one here about Telsa "autopilot" plowing into the side of a truck without even slowing down, it gives one pause. I agree that they aren't the same technology but this isn't about tech savvy people. Consumer technology has become "fuck the customers, they're our beta testers" so more than a few people are concerned about the possibility of cars suddenly veering and shoving them off the road or driving off a brid

    • Agreed. There are too many variables. Our roads aren't uniform. Some roads are unmarked full of potholes, uneven surfaces. There's no reliable way to delimit boundaries mid-lane and at road edge.

      How about the vulnerabilities with respect to other vehicles on the road, weather, light distractions... it goes on.

      Add to that the impossibility for software to recognize infinite variables related to image recognition and other unique and changing parameters and we have a recipe for disaster.

      It blows me away t

  • The features most new cars have is better than most humans. I *wish* a good portion of the old people around here had auto stop. Florida would rejoice that a good portion of their population wasn't behind the wheel.

    ISO26262 is no small certification. There's a reason my RTOS and compiler cost tens of thousands of dollars.

    It's the same stuff Aviation / Defense has been using for a while: https://www.ghs.com/AerospaceD... [ghs.com]

  • The real question is, are they more or less skeptical about driverless cars or cars controlled by other drivers?

    I know which one I want following me on the highway: the driverless car, not the texting tailgating person who is late and frustrated.

    • I know which one I want following me on the highway: the driverless car, not the texting tailgating person who is late and frustrated.

      How's about you just get out of the way? I pull over to let people pass at the slightest provocation, both because I don't actually want them back there where I have to think about them, and because that's what I'd want them to do. It's not rocket surgery. Get out of the goddamned way.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    A key use case for autonomous vehicles is to allow people who can't (or shouldn't!) drive themselves to once again have mobility. Think senior citizens. Seniors vote early and often. This is going to be approved sooner then you think. I bet it starts in Florida or Arizona -- states that have large and vocal retiree populations. Once it starts, it will be very difficult to stop it from spreading to other states. No politician wants to tell grandma that she must be stuck at home.

  • Some will undoubtedly die from this technological punchline foisted upon the unsuspecting masses, but the biggest, broadest hassle I see are these things being completely befuddled by the irregular, but everyday, happenings on our roads which humans don't even have to think twice about to handle. Traffic will be choked by the most minor of occurrences. Pay close attention to your commutes and you will see what I mean. Just today, my folks saw sleeves of Styrofoam coffee cups being blown about the freeway
  • Most people are probably okay drivers. They keep their eyes on the road, don't drink or cell phone or text while driving, drive mostly courteously and intelligently. I commute through heavy traffic every day and that's what I see.

    HOWEVER: There's that core of imbeciles who can't get insurance because their driving records are so terrible - they're the ones most likely to wind up killing someone. I see a smaller group of people driving like idiots. (for example: during a snow/ice storm in Maryland one night,

    • Most people are probably okay drivers most of the time

      Fixed that for you. Human driving ability is not constant, a guy can be totally ok driver one day and piss drunk the next, fiddle with his cellphone at completely the wrong time etc, a robot at least performs consistently. Its not your regular driving that kills you, its your worst moments that do and everyone has them every now and then.

  • The questions in this poll are slanted to make people feel negatively about autonomous cars. They talk about removing control and reducing safety standards, things that people are unlikely to agree with. They got their intended result.

    This doesn't actually say much about overall public opinion on the cars.

    • But that is in fact what they are doing, so.. what are they supposed to say? Would you be driven in a car by a clown with purple hair?
  • http://www.detroitnews.com/story/business/autos/general-motors/2018/01/12/gm-driverless-car-fleet-cruise-av/109381232/

    Yeah they are not keen on it. It's going to be interesting, that's for sure.
  • I'm with the very concerned crowd.

    However, after seeing three vehicles run red lights in one day last week, I'm starting to reconsider. I mean the lights were clearly red because the cross traffic where I was sitting had a green light. It had been green for at least 2 seconds. Normally I accelerate as soon as the light turns green, but not any more. Now I look both ways before I venture into the intersection.

    There seems to be a real breakdown of respect for rules of the highway occurring in my area. It's ge

    • Now I look both ways before I venture into the intersection.

      My favorite thing is intersections with 4-way stop signs. Drivers seem to be having a whole lot of trouble with the "left turn always yields" rule. For years now, about every other time I go out I see someone fail at this, and I try not to go out too often.

    • From what I hear, Google cars don't have any trouble running red lights.
  • What happens when the same kinds of people who now derank search results and ban links get into car data?
    Attend the wrong political meeting and their car has terms of service issues?
    Use the wrong words in their car and get locked out?
    Look at the wrong web sites and their car wont start?
  • I've never heard a good argument for driverless cars that doesn't involve driver cars. Why do we need cars at all? By which I mean a transportation system that's based on individual and widespread ownership and use of vehicles for one or two people. What problem will driverless cars solve?

Slowly and surely the unix crept up on the Nintendo user ...

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