Old 9th Dec 2018, 01:11
  #47 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Everett, WA
Age: 63
Posts: 2,038
Originally Posted by Mechta View Post
There are a few scenarios which should be made more entertaining with an autonomous car:
  • Launching a boat.
  • Parking, say, a glider trailer, between two others.
  • Entering a car park with a height restrictor with a couple of bicycles on the roof.
  • Travelling around and parking in the typical boggy field which constitutes a car park at festivals, airshows etc.
  • Getting up on wheel ramps.
Ford already has a 'backing assist' available on their pickup trucks that can do a better job of those first two than many human drivers. Eventually you'll see sensor equipped trailers that talk to the vehicle to tell it where the trailer needs to go - at which time they'll be able to equal even the best human driver (and they won't need a spotter to tell them where to go). For the third one, the sensors at the car park will warn the vehicle that it's too tall - which would be a dramatic improvement over today's idiot drivers who regularly smack car park roofs (and overpasses) when they neglect to check clearances.
Many of you are making the common error of basing the future on current technology, not what's going to be developed by clever people. How many people predicted 30 years ago what cell phones have morphed into? I recently took delivery of a new BMW - I passed on getting any of the optional driver's aids, but it still has impressive capabilities to tell me if I'm messing up (a few of which I'm not even sure how it does it - and my expertise is in control systems!)
After decades of steadily improving road safety, the accident and death rates have started going back up due to distracted drivers paying attention to their phone instead of the road.
We're just scratching the surface of what autonomous vehicles will be able to do. Soon we'll have vehicles talking to each other - doing things like warning that the leading car is slowing or turning, or that there is some sort of problem ahead. When you have a group of vehicles talking to each other, they'll be able to do things such as follow much more closely since they don't need to account for reaction times - and the traffic carrying capacity of the major roads will increase dramatically.
It's going to take a while for the infrastructure catch up, but I foresee a future where non-autonomous vehicles will be considered a hazard and will be banned from major roads.
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