Re: Robo Car--IT'S HERE!!!
- From: "Ken from Chicago" <kwicker1b_nospam@xxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Sun, 9 Jul 2006 07:18:08 -0500
"J. Clarke" <jclarke.usenet@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote in message
J Moreno wrote:
J. Clarke <jclarke.usenet@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
[Konrad, Ken, SeaWasp and myself are all from rasfw]
Ken from Chicago wrote:
"Konrad Gaertner" <kgaertner@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote
Sea Wasp wrote:
It's a nice concept demo. There's a long, long, difficult
(no pun intended) ahead. Smart video and navigation is a very hard
problem. The ultimate test of course is putting the automatic car
on the road with a bunch of human drivers (some people I've talked
to have assumed all the cars on the road are automated, which
allows them to take liberties with the behavior of the system that
you cannot do with human drivers).
Yeah, that's a bad assumption. Extremely unlikely to be the case.
I wonder if the system could be setup in such a way that the
are incremental as more cars are connected to the system.
I think the first major step will be mutually exclusive road
systems: one for manual driving only, one for auto driving only.
And of course, early cars will be capable of both.
Exclusive road systems are impossible as a first step -- it's a catch 22
situation (I don't say chicken and the egg, as it's obvious which came
first), no cars designed to drive on roads that don't exist, no roads
designed for cars that don't exist.
The problem there is people don't just travel to work. Weekend traffic
is up in Chicago and I imagine every other urban, suburban and exurban
center. While I think automated-only roads might be a bit expensive,
automated-only lanes, perhaps the left lane, might be more amenable to
communities--and their collective wallets.
If the automation is only usable in the HOV lane then it is not useful.
There is no problem that it solves.
Sure it is. Long distance travel. The trucking industry would love to
be able to have drivers drive more than 10 hour stretches, which would
be possible if there were streches of several hundred miles where the
driver could sleep.
But there are no 700 mile stretches of road with HOV lanes. Either a lane
each way on a four-lane would have to be closed to other traffic or a
lane each way would have to be built.
Speaking of which -- long distance travel is IMO likely to be the killer
app that starts the ball rolling. Forget about driving downtown, while
a lot of time is spent doing that, you don't really get much of an
advantage by turning the car over to a computer while doing urban
driving. Other than than the safety issue, for most people there's no
real attraction to being driven instead of driving.
Long distance travel on the other hand, greatly benefits by having
another driver -- whether its a driving 2-3 hours or more (120+ miles)
to get to work, a couple of hundred miles to the beach or 1500 miles to
visit relatives, being able to do so while NOT focusing on what's
happening around you, makes the trip much more enjoyable.
The trouble is that long distance travel means going through urban
which means that your system has to be able to handle that.
Segregated lanes would only be an early option until robocars are accepted
and trusted on more and more lanes until eventually they on all side and
Besides many interstate highways are designed to go AROUND urban centers.
Sure in the decades since being originally built many of said centers have
grown to encompass those detours and in the worst-case scenarious, the
robocar switches back to manual mode--early on until they gain public trust.
Of course the seats would have to redesigned to be more comfortable.
You've never owned a '66 Lincoln have you?
That was back when human comfort and not so much automotive aerodynamics
were emphasized. But they were weird hippies back in the 60s with their
loony ideals. Course, once humans have the option of relaxing is a major
option in robocars people will be more concerned about comfort then.
to email, dial "usenet" and validate
(was jclarke at eye bee em dot net)
-- Ken from Chicago
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