July 7, 2013

THEY CAN'T COST MORE...:

Horseless Carriages to Driverless Cars (L. GORDON CROVITZ, 7/07/13, WSJ)

The largely self-driving car is no longer just a vision, thanks to rapid advances in lasers, radar, GPS and mapping databases. If it weren't for fear among innovators of getting too far ahead of U.S. laws and regulations, there would already be cars on the road doing almost as much driving as humans. [..]

Volvo offers a feature for cars to parallel-park themselves after the driver gets out. Mercedes is offering a "steering assist" system that automatically handles highway lane changes and passing of slower vehicles. Audi is developing a "traffic jam" feature for cars to drive themselves in traffic up to 40 miles per hour.

Human-driven cars are dangerous, too. More than a million people world-wide die each year in traffic. Car accidents are the top killer of American teenagers, and texting and other distractions make humans more careless drivers.

The Google StreetView database has already been largely completed. Google co-founder Sergey Brin has predicted self-driving cars will be a technical reality within five years. Costs will need to decline for special equipment such as "lidar," which uses lasers and pulses of light to detect objects, to make them affordable.

...than the 34,000 people a year human-driven cars kill.

Posted by at July 7, 2013 6:50 PM
  

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