A self-driving car, also known as the robo-car, autonomous car or driverless car is a vehicle that has the ability to sense its surroundings and can move with no human input.
Self-driving cars used to be the sort of thing that anyone had seen in science fiction movies. Whether they seem dangerous or exciting, they are just around the corner. They have driven over six million kilometres on public roads. Automated cars had already been developed by the likes of Lexus, BMW and Mercedes. Google has tested its automated technology in the wild, across the Atlantic. The creators of these robots have promised all the advantages of the current automobiles, without any drawback.
|Car Manufactures||Distance tested (in km)|
As per 2016 data, source: nextbigfuture.com
Experts believe these cars will completely replace us one day.
Do you think so?
Yes, you are thinking right, they react faster than any human driving the car, and they don’t get tired, diverted or even distracted by the surrounding.
They can’t even drive drunk. They won’t be able to speed, compete with their friends or get angry with each other, so they are a basically superior and smarter version of us. It would significantly reduce deaths and injuries from accidents. These cars can slam the brakes in less than a millisecond using its superhuman perception. Thus, we can assume our roads will be much safer in their hands. Oh! Sorry, tires.
You must be imagining the huge time you will be saving with the big part of the day being automated. You can continue the uncompleted work of your home in the car while going to an office and you don’t have to bother about driving. Cool, isn’t? Addition to that congestion on the road may be reduced as autonomous vehicle lend themselves to a lot more carpooling opportunities, and smart route planning. These cars can also travel in convoys, allowing for increased road capacity. So, you also must be thinking it will not be that late to work, if not obsessed to bed in the morning.
Apart from safer and quicker travel our daily lives can significantly change. We can be more productive if we have more time. Let imagine in a bit large perspective, considering larger autonomous vehicles, restaurants can become mobile, offering foods and also getting across the city. We can also travel while shopping. In general, combining commute and retail services can definitely change the game, while the e-commerce movement has already done it; robot cars will be one step further.
Are you also thinking about the negative effect?
Yes, there may be serious disadvantages. We would lose a lot of jobs. Although, the driverless car industry will offer a new job, they likely will not outweigh the loss of unemployed drivers.
Additionally, we will make ourselves become prey being watched by large companies and corporations even more than we already are. Computer operated cars will likely record both the passengers and the surroundings. Robot cabs would track their riders’ every movement, gathering even more information about the riders and data’s to sell to the highest bidder.
Maybe, there are better alternatives to our road problems like underground travelling or travelling through the sky. You can also imagine and suggest.
Article by Moumita Mazumdar
Inspired by Hashem Al Ghaili