Horse before the carriage? Auto Makers Seek Approval for Driverless Cars in States as Regulators, Insurers Weigh Liability (video)
Today’s Wall Street Journal has an interesting piece that covers the various efforts underway in the world of autonomous vehicles (aka driverless cars i lay people speak) and how manufacturers are working with legislators to introduce their products to the tech-hungry driving public at least in a few states across the country.. here is a video that accompanies that article.
What caught me by surprise is the sheer volume of activity and how certain people are that they will see autonomous vehicles on the roads in just a few short years.. As much as I would like to believe, full automation (Level 4) is still a decade away and we still have a lot of hurdles on the technology, policy and infrastructure side. As one of the interviewed researchers points out, there are many concerns that dog this challenge incl. the high cost of laser vision, the risk that radar and camera sensors won’t see properly in bad weather, and complex legal issues raised by giving control to a robot. Let’s hope we overcome these hurdles soon because we, as a society, are paying a heavy price in terms of human lives and hard earned treasure as we continue to drive with manual control (~33K people killed on American roads during 2012).