20 years ago if you asked anyone that cars could drive themselves you would get an answer back saying ya right, did you go back to the future Marty? Well we’re in the future now, with Tesla Google and others leading the way. The first thing is designers stop believing that no one needs security. There has been way to many security breaches with many new designs (Hackers Take Over a Tesla Model S Car, Researcher says he can hack GM’s OnStar app, open vehicle, start engine) and when developing new concepts designers must take precautions before letting it out onto the public (Tesla driver killed in crash with Autopilot active, NHTSA investigating).
Moving forward all we can say is what an age we live in. Cars that can almost drive themselves by sensory overload with updated software that are made by programers. We say almost drive because you still need a person in the driver seat in order to correct for environments that were never dreamed to handle yet. Right now you need a road with proper paint outlining the divisions of the road clearly and correctly. We don’t know about you, but around us there are many examples of road paint that could use a fresh covering before any amount of sensors could be used. Well the good news it’s not the only way of self driving a car, the sensors also use what is going around itself when in motion (like cars passing you or cars stopped up ahead for breaking).
After looking from examples of customers who own Tesla Cars using their Autopilot features we are truly impressed (Examples of Customers Testing their Tesla Autopilot Features). Think about it, your on a straight lane (say a highway) and up ahead it curves (due to terrain) maybe 10-30 degrees to the right, this is no problem for a human driving but for a computer it’s very amazing the car stays in the lane while following the curve and keeping the speed if the car ahead stays far enough away. Another example is the lane changes, according to the videos all the driver needs to do is set the direction on which lane to go to and the car does the rest. Again for a human this is a no-brainier but for a self-driving car we think it’s amazing. In the start of the process of self driving cars it will be strange to give control over to software when moving, we see this as a necessary step in order to start trusting the software. Again it will feel very strange.
With the average amount of cars on the road today (that increases annually) it causes more and more distractions to the driver of today. Having a car that can see the blind spots before any issues can result is always a great idea. With drive assist it can free up some (if not more) distractions for the driver and thus make it hopefully safer for the general public and easer for the driver to handle other problems that may arrive quicker.
Things to consider are added road hazards that are not always there. Examples could include is road maintenance or an accident on the road. How does the automatic car of today handle this? Right now it can recognize speed signs, why not road hazards? Another cause is the intersections of today, from stop signs (3 or more) to Traffic Light intersections not forgetting road crosswalks. From what we could gather the sensors can recognize the stop signs and traffic lights but do not know how to handle the order of the intersection with other cars yet (hopefully there are no pedestrian traffic in the intersection). As human drivers we are thought how to obey traffic lights and stop sign intersections with the addition of pedestrians, also what to do in case two cars enter the same intersection at the same time. Maybe we should have a driving school for the automatic car?
All in all we believe we are heading in the right direction for safety and security along with fixes for traffic congestion and pollution control for future needs. There is still a lot of work to be done (with a lot more testing needed) but from what we have seen already again we are impressed! Maybe the next car we acquire will be with automatic driving installed with no fear of any accidents to look forward to (and also with less money going to insurance, wouldn’t that be nice?).