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      07-15-2016, 02:21 PM   #1
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Autonomous Cars? What do you think??

There's a lot of hype surrounding the self driving/autonomous vehicle movement as the future of transportation. I don't think that I would be the target market for this kind of vehicle, as I love being behind the wheel of my car.

Curious to know... what's the supposed rationale behind this big self-driving car push? A convenience thing? A safety thing? So we can spend that precious driving time instead updating our FB status, taking selfies and playing Pokémon thing??

Just curious to hear some of your guys' thoughts on the subject.

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      07-15-2016, 02:31 PM   #2
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For certain industries, it's a game changer. It's my opinion self-driving cars are the real reason behind Uber's enormous valuation. Think about it, their greatest "cost" or in their case, their greatest outflow of revenue is the drivers. If they can eliminate the drivers, think of what their margins will be!

Another area is trucking (big game for Volvo and MB), eliminate truckers and the cost savings that trickles through the economy will be great. UPS, DHL, FedEx will see huge profit gains too. Just think how much of the cost of goods we purchase have transportation fees baked in... it has to trickle down no?

People won't feel comfortable with self-driving taxis and trucks unless it's baked into passenger cars as well. It's a mental thing -- oh, my car has it and I sometimes use it so it's not bad.

Personally, I love driving yet there is ONE scenario I wouldn't mind engaging auto-pilot for and that's rush hour traffic. In that instance, I wouldn't mind letting the car do the bumper-to-bumper stuff and I could relax.

Now one thing to consider -- what if autopilot eliminated the pesky, irrational behaviors of other drivers? You know, the left-lane hugging, change lanes without signaling, right-on-red w/out full stop moves that have us all banging our heads on steering wheels?

That list could go on and on... but you get the idea
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      07-15-2016, 02:46 PM   #3
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I have a big problem with it, and that problem is this: when self-driving technology becomes reliable, widespread and proven, it will eventually be illegal to drive your own vehicle. You'll need a special license to drive without autopilot, assuming that it could even be switched off in everyday vehicles. Oh, I can hear it now. "You don't need to drive. Why would you need to drive? The car does it for you. The car is a better driver than you are. By driving your own car you put your life and everyone else's lives at risk."

Now, the main reason for me not wanting this is admittedly selfish; I like driving my own car. But what about police cars? Ambulances? What if your kid gets hurt and you need to break every traffic law to get them to the emergency room? Extreme examples, but examples nonetheless.
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      07-15-2016, 03:14 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Outlaw M3 View Post
For certain industries, it's a game changer. It's my opinion self-driving cars are the real reason behind Uber's enormous valuation. Think about it, their greatest "cost" or in their case, their greatest outflow of revenue is the drivers. If they can eliminate the drivers, think of what their margins will be!

Another area is trucking (big game for Volvo and MB), eliminate truckers and the cost savings that trickles through the economy will be great. UPS, DHL, FedEx will see huge profit gains too. Just think how much of the cost of goods we purchase have transportation fees baked in... it has to trickle down no?

People won't feel comfortable with self-driving taxis and trucks unless it's baked into passenger cars as well. It's a mental thing -- oh, my car has it and I sometimes use it so it's not bad.

Personally, I love driving yet there is ONE scenario I wouldn't mind engaging auto-pilot for and that's rush hour traffic. In that instance, I wouldn't mind letting the car do the bumper-to-bumper stuff and I could relax.

Now one thing to consider -- what if autopilot eliminated the pesky, irrational behaviors of other drivers? You know, the left-lane hugging, change lanes without signaling, right-on-red w/out full stop moves that have us all banging our heads on steering wheels?

That list could go on and on... but you get the idea
Thanks for the comments

I totally get the first BOLDED area above. Completely makes sense. However the second bolded area regarding passenger cars is the one that I understand but think can be solved by addressing one major root causes: inattentive drivers (usually attributed to texting, doing makeup, kids in the car or just generally absent mindedness). Curious to see what it would look like to employ more stringent ongoing license testing requirements (such as requiring a special license endorsement to use the left lane) and more enforceable laws around these areas would help address this inattentiveness?? Those are just two quick ideas, albeit not perfect, but they sure as hell seem like they would be 1,000 times easier to implement than the complexities of autonomous vehicles being the solution.



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Originally Posted by PINeely View Post
I have a big problem with it, and that problem is this: when self-driving technology becomes reliable, widespread and proven, it will eventually be illegal to drive your own vehicle. You'll need a special license to drive without autopilot, assuming that it could even be switched off in everyday vehicles. Oh, I can hear it now. "You don't need to drive. Why would you need to drive? The car does it for you. The car is a better driver than you are. By driving your own car you put your life and everyone else's lives at risk."

Now, the main reason for me not wanting this is admittedly selfish; I like driving my own car. But what about police cars? Ambulances? What if your kid gets hurt and you need to break every traffic law to get them to the emergency room? Extreme examples, but examples nonetheless.
Agreed, and I think that the biggest fear is the taking away of our freedom (to drive). In reality I don't think that this would ever be the reality (I hope), but it would be more of hybrid of the two... still allowing regular vehicles and then perhaps a lane for self-driving vehicles.
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      07-15-2016, 03:18 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Outlaw M3 View Post
For certain industries, it's a game changer. It's my opinion self-driving cars are the real reason behind Uber's enormous valuation. Think about it, their greatest "cost" or in their case, their greatest outflow of revenue is the drivers. If they can eliminate the drivers, think of what their margins will be!

Another area is trucking (big game for Volvo and MB), eliminate truckers and the cost savings that trickles through the economy will be great. UPS, DHL, FedEx will see huge profit gains too. Just think how much of the cost of goods we purchase have transportation fees baked in... it has to trickle down no?

People won't feel comfortable with self-driving taxis and trucks unless it's baked into passenger cars as well. It's a mental thing -- oh, my car has it and I sometimes use it so it's not bad.

Personally, I love driving yet there is ONE scenario I wouldn't mind engaging auto-pilot for and that's rush hour traffic. In that instance, I wouldn't mind letting the car do the bumper-to-bumper stuff and I could relax.

Now one thing to consider -- what if autopilot eliminated the pesky, irrational behaviors of other drivers? You know, the left-lane hugging, change lanes without signaling, right-on-red w/out full stop moves that have us all banging our heads on steering wheels?

That list could go on and on... but you get the idea
Agree. If you got rid of the driver in Uber, price would drop like a rock and the reason to own multiple cars, maybe any car, would be small (maybe just because you want to own one). You summon a car, it shows up and drops you off at the front door of the place you are going and leaves. I drive a lot for work over multiple states and instead of working late at night I get the work done as the car drives.

Then as you said, get rid of most of the people that don't want to drive and really aren't very good at it and it might make things better for the rest that are still driving. Would be awesome to have virtually everyone on the highway passing and moving to the right.

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Originally Posted by PINeely View Post
I have a big problem with it, and that problem is this: when self-driving technology becomes reliable, widespread and proven, it will eventually be illegal to drive your own vehicle. You'll need a special license to drive without autopilot, assuming that it could even be switched off in everyday vehicles. Oh, I can hear it now. "You don't need to drive. Why would you need to drive? The car does it for you. The car is a better driver than you are. By driving your own car you put your life and everyone else's lives at risk."

Now, the main reason for me not wanting this is admittedly selfish; I like driving my own car. But what about police cars? Ambulances? What if your kid gets hurt and you need to break every traffic law to get them to the emergency room? Extreme examples, but examples nonetheless.
Only way this works is when really close 100% of the cars have it, considering not one has it now, the average car is about 10 years old, this is way in the future. Then the question of it really being a benefit to ban the 3% becomes questionable when virtually no one wants to drive. Then we have never banned a car as long as it met the requirements when it was built.

My father in law and I still take out his Model A's (roughly late 1920's), we are welcome to drive them up to the speed limit (reality is to their top speed), they have no seat belts, horrible brakes, horrible tires, no air bags, no crash protection, no traction control, etc. If someone pulls in front of us we will hit them and the odds of being killed are massively greater than with a current car, and the modern car would go around the car or stop. The safest thing for us and the people around us would be to ban these cars but it has never even been considered. If we run into someone because we can't get around them or stop but we weren't drunk, driving too fast, etc. we might get a ticket but can probably take out a different Model T tomorrow.
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      07-15-2016, 03:56 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by David70 View Post
Only way this works is when really close 100% of the cars have it, considering not one has it now, the average car is about 10 years old, this is way in the future. Then the question of it really being a benefit to ban the 3% becomes questionable when virtually no one wants to drive. Then we have never banned a car as long as it met the requirements when it was built.

My father in law and I still take out his Model T's, we are welcome to drive them up to the speed limit (reality is to their top speed), they have no seat belts, horrible brakes, horrible tires, no air bags, no crash protection, no traction control, etc. If someone pulls in front of us we will hit them and the odds of being killed are massively greater than with a current car, and the modern car would go around the car or stop. The safest thing for us and the people around us would be to ban these cars but it has never even been considered. If we run into someone because we can't get around them or stop but we weren't drunk, driving too fast, etc. we might get a ticket but can probably take out a different Model T tomorrow.
I feel like this is a matter of two eras. Before self-driving technology there was always a driver in the car, and therefore room for driver error. I think this makes driving older cars and accidents in older cars a bit more understandable/explainable to most people. If two cars collide right now at least one of the vehicles was driving improperly. The Model T example assumes that the Model T and the other cars on the road have human drivers. Eventually people will point and say "that other car wouldn't have pulled out in front if it were autonomous." With the advent of self-driving technology there should be NO error (in theory). So if we ever get to the point where cars can reliably drive themselves 99.99999% of the time, but your average driver can only drive safely 95% of the time, people will try to close that gap.

You raise an excellent point with older cars. This is a LONG way down the road, mostly due to older cars hanging around. You can't just ban the vehicles we all currently have and then insist that everyone buy an autonomous vehicle. Most people would go broke overnight either because they couldn't afford the switch or could no longer get to work.

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      07-15-2016, 04:25 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by sirdaft1 View Post
So we can spend that precious driving time instead updating our FB status, taking selfies and playing Pokémon thing??
Exactly!

And I cant wait until most cars have autonomous driving mode.
Not for myself (petrolhead) but for all those numbnuts behind the wheel that are either holding everything up, cutting you off without using indicators, not paying attention (to the road I mean not FB) etc etc.
They will massively use autonomous driving which means you can better enforce right of way and get a move on. An autonomous car will pay attention (at least if it isnt a Tesla....)) and not enforce its way into your drive lane (here we dont have keep your lane) etc etc. That would make the manufacturer responsible I think...
Now (here in europe at least) when you come to a crossing and you have right of way a car will try to cut you off when he can fit his car in the gap, expecting you to brake, but I think an autonomous car wont ever do that if it functions properly (you dont have to brake but you dont want to injure yourself or your car....)

On the other hand, if an autonomous car can miss something as large as a trailertruck...what happens to pedestrians and cyclists?

I will keep my hands on the wheel though. I like the feeling of control and enjoy driving (I'm in the MT camp, striving for the most amount of control over machinery)
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      07-15-2016, 04:30 PM   #8
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Exactly!

And I cant wait until most cars have autonomous driving mode.
Not for myself (petrolhead) but for all those numbnuts behind the wheel that are either holding everything up, cutting you off without using indicators, not paying attention (to the road I mean not FB) etc etc.
They will massively use autonomous driving which means you can better enforce right of way and get a move on. An autonomous car will pay attention (at least if it isnt a Tesla....)) and not enforce its way into your drive lane (here we dont have keep your lane) etc etc. That would make the manufacturer responsible I think...
Now (here in europe at least) when you come to a crossing and you have right of way a car will try to cut you off when he can fit his car in the gap, expecting you to brake, but I think an autonomous car wont ever do that if it functions properly (you dont have to brake but you dont want to injure yourself or your car....)

On the other hand, if an autonomous car can miss something as large as a trailertruck...what happens to pedestrians and cyclists?
You make a great case for AV's! I've been in the camp that at least 40% (that's lowballing it!) of drivers should not be driving on the road because of their inattentiveness and the flat out danger they impose on others. If we can just get it so those jokers are sold on AV, so that you and I don't have to deal with their crap driving... I'm sold.
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      07-15-2016, 04:40 PM   #9
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Exactly.
And you can apply that also for EV's. The less gas they use, the more there is for us. And prices may even drop or rise less quickly (gas price is supply and demand)

The only thing I dont like is that the EV crowd think you're 100% antisocial if you like ICE's
I dont like any group thinking the other group is some kind of outcast.
As for the AV crowd, they're too busy texting/FB/whatever to look up from their screen and make their mind up if you're outcast or not...

The real threat is government regulations. If most people drive EV's they might decide that ICE cars become illegal. Because they think its not necessary (even though only petrolheads will drive them by that time thus enviromental impact will be way less by that time)
(this can be applied for AV's too of course)
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      07-15-2016, 04:43 PM   #10
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People are lazy or dont know/like to drive. That what is driving it
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      07-15-2016, 04:53 PM   #11
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Is there a setting for drive like Rossi to get home or just pussy versions where everyone obeys laws? Id use it for long trips across country for a nap, but I love driving too much to use it anything beyond that.

Plus could you imagine the massacre of the transition between autonomous and man directed driving? It would be atrocious. How alert is an autonomous car going to be of someone suddenly swerves into their lane without a ton of sensors? It's a great idea, but we are far far far from making it practical to the public.
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      07-15-2016, 05:02 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Axius View Post
Is there a setting for drive like Rossi to get home or just pussy versions where everyone obeys laws? Id use it for long trips across country for a nap, but I love driving too much to use it anything beyond that.

Plus could you imagine the massacre of the transition between autonomous and man directed driving? It would be atrocious. How alert is an autonomous car going to be of someone suddenly swerves into their lane without a ton of sensors? It's a great idea, but we are far far far from making it practical to the public.
There was that one guy in a Tesla that plowed through an 18 wheeler while he was watching a movie and letting his car drive him...

The technology isnt there yet imo, but it is getting close. The problem is always going to be the human drivers mixed with the autonomous drivers. Only way it works is if everyone has one and normal cars are gone. And im sure these things arent going to be cheap enough for everyone to afford, and I dont see normal cars being outlawed and destroyed anytime soon.
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      07-15-2016, 05:06 PM   #13
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Uber isn't shy about the fact they want to use autonomous vehicles negating the need for drivers, thereby significantly cutting costs. This is only part of their master plan. They have also stated their dream is private vehicle ownership should no longer exist, with every vehicle on the road being an Uber vehicle that people summon when they need transportation.

I would be okay with autonomous vehicles on the road for those who don't want to drive, or can't pass their driving test which should be more stringent anyway, allowing the rest of us to enjoy our privilege of driving. Like others have stated, I fear at some point autonomous driving will be forced upon us in the name of safety and efficiency.

On a related though slightly off topic note, I really do wonder how society will adapt to the rapid loss of jobs brought on by automation. I know that it is usually said with the progression of technology, new jobs are created to support said technology which typically requires higher education. If all of the low skill and menial jobs are eventually replaced by automation, what will that low skill workforce do to support themselves? They won't all have the ability to transition into higher skilled positions.
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      07-15-2016, 06:36 PM   #14
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People are lazy or dont know/like to drive. That what is driving it
Question is, why don't these people just order an Uber/taxi or take a train right now? Why the need for an autonomous vehicle when this exact pain point can be solved right this second?
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      07-15-2016, 06:55 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sirdaft1 View Post
Question is, why don't these people just order an Uber/taxi or take a train right now? Why the need for an autonomous vehicle when this exact pain point can be solved right this second?
Not sure about others, but here in Jackson MS you have to have a car or know someone who does. The city is too small to have a large public transportation infrastructure (we have one bus route and just a handful of taxis) but everything is spread out so you have to drive pretty much every where you go. We do have Uber but only in the downtown/metro area.
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      07-15-2016, 07:11 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by sirdaft1 View Post
Question is, why don't these people just order an Uber/taxi or take a train right now? Why the need for an autonomous vehicle when this exact pain point can be solved right this second?
I think that your own car is also quicker, cheaper, easier.
Public transport isnt door2door.
Uber is illegal where I live btw. both the (private) drivers and the company dont have a permit to commerically transport people. They risk pretty steep fines. They are working on a law and implementation to make it easier for Uber.
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      07-16-2016, 02:24 AM   #17
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for me its cheaper and easier, time saving to drive. In cities like NY its different story, they dont and wont own cars - no parking's , good transportation etc.
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      07-16-2016, 06:19 AM   #18
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I want the car to drive me once I get to the freeway, which is filled with idiots and maniacs.

I want getting to and from the freeway to be in 100% my hands. Because that's where the fun is.
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      07-16-2016, 08:58 AM   #19
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It seems dangerous look what happened in France.
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      07-17-2016, 09:35 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sirdaft1 View Post
Thanks for the comments

I totally get the first BOLDED area above. Completely makes sense. However the second bolded area regarding passenger cars is the one that I understand but think can be solved by addressing one major root causes: inattentive drivers (usually attributed to texting, doing makeup, kids in the car or just generally absent mindedness). Curious to see what it would look like to employ more stringent ongoing license testing requirements (such as requiring a special license endorsement to use the left lane) and more enforceable laws around these areas would help address this inattentiveness?? Those are just two quick ideas, albeit not perfect, but they sure as hell seem like they would be 1,000 times easier to implement than the complexities of autonomous vehicles being the solution.
I like the idea of ongoing license testing requirements. I've often said we'd have better drivers if there was a requirement for periodic "re-testing". I'd say written test every 5 years and driving test every 10 years just to put a stake in the ground so to speak.

Laws change, technology intrudes and driving etiquette evolves so a more knowledgeable driving community, the better for all of us. I'd even say that this shouldn't be a law but an option from insurance companies. If you do this testing, your rates are lower by X%. They're already doing this with the plugin "nanny" - why not do it with testing too? Testing = 10%, plugin nanny = 20%....I don't want big brother (govt) or big sister (insurance) over my shoulder.

And this online "defensive driving" stuff, it's a joke. Something like Skip Barber's Driving School (http://skipbarber.com/driving-schools-basic/) or anything like this is more practical. My kids will be attending one of these than what the high school offers....

Perhaps even an age requirement -- over 65, driving test every 5 years. Please let's not be politically correct and say it's age discrimination. My father is 81 and averages 2 "oops" per year for the past 5 years. If he drives, it's 1 or 2x a month now because it's out of control and he's finally realized it.
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      07-18-2016, 09:33 AM   #21
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Everyone is underestimating the how far the technology still has to go because no government is going to introduce this until it is fool proof.

The last 5% of development will take longer than the first 95%.

We are 20 years away, minimum.
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      07-18-2016, 01:48 PM   #22
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autonomous cars are the future. It doesn't mean 100% of the locations will have autonomous cars...but especially in urban congested areas, it's the only option to have a car in a city.

Many people don't understand the concept on why we need it...here's a fantastic article on the chief google lead on their project and his vision (btw, he's a car guy, so he's not trying to get rid of cars):

http://www.roadandtrack.com/car-cult...ik-google-car/
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