Self-driving cars Are we the last generation of drivers?




Autonomous cars speak to the imagination. One seems fantastic, sleeping to work and car ownership to auto-on-demand, but the other seems an horror to surrender control over a device. The technique seems to be ready for it; the hardware exists, the software is largely optimized and since 2010 semi-autonomous cars have covered tens of millions of kilometers, which form a huge dataset for a self-learning neural network.

Apart from technology, there are also social reasons why self-driving cars would be a huge improvement. Firstly, we could use cars much more efficiently than we do now. At present they stand still 96 percent of the time and are therefore only 4 percent of the time in use. You drive to work in the morning, park there, work and drive back in the evening, after which he is waiting the whole evening and night on the street or in the garage for the next ride. In as many as 85 percent of the traveling cars there is only one person; the other seats are empty. So we move with vehicles that are ten to twenty times as heavy as we are, which is extremely inefficient. In addition, most of them drive on the same route day-in-day-out, on average fifty minutes a day. Can not that time be spent more efficiently?

Mercedes F015

Secondly, there are more than 1.2 million traffic casualties per year worldwide. We have become so accustomed to it that we no longer look up to it. Although the numbers are decreasing, there are 1.6 deaths and 59 injuries every day in the Netherlands. Worldwide this amounts to an hourly Boeing 737 with average occupancy that crashes, all year round. Or ten Hiroshima atomic bombs on cities, every year again. Worse still, about 90 percent of the accidents have a human cause and could in fact have been prevented. Can a computer not be better?

Thirdly, autonomous cars would lead to more freedom for certain groups of people. For example, elderly people who can no longer ride well. They become more mobile again and can travel much more easily, outside public transport. The same applies to people without a driving license, children and disabled people. Could you also take a beer in the hand behind the wheel?

Although self-driving cars without drivers drive around in parts of the world, there are a few serious bottlenecks that impede a rapid breakthrough. In this article we will discuss which ones are, what is already possible and what gradations there are, what kind of hardware and software is used and what the future of cars without a wheel might look like.


In: A Technology & Gadgets Asked By: [23633 Red Star Level]

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