Journal: What Should Google Auto Know About Driving?

What Should Google Auto Know About Driving?

Michael Banovsky By Michael Banovsky
August 6, 2015
25 comments

A report from The Guardian has made everything clear: Google Auto is a thing, and it means business. The subsidiary Google Auto has been licensed since 2014 in California as a carmaker.

The Google Car is conducting testing, as well as self-driving prototypes and StreetView projects under the larger Google umbrella. Even if its initiatives don’t lead to a car you or I may be able to buy, I thought it’d be helpful to share with Google Auto our expectations for driverless, autonomous, and future vehicles.

Me? I’d love to be able to pull up at a race track and have my car automatically whirl me around for a few laps using, say, Jenson Button’s preferred line. Moreover, could an autonomous-capable car somehow gently prod its driver to more quickly cover ground on a twisty road?

I, for one, think the next few decades may be a lot of fun. Safer fun, but fun.

Images Source: www.google.com

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Clayton Merchant
Clayton Merchant

My initial reaction to your question was ” I want them to know to stay off the roads with their robopods and leave the driving to real people”, but as I thought about it, I realized there is a segment of the population that should have these things, in fact they should be REQUIRED to have them. It’s the same idiots that I see every day behind the wheel yakking/texting on a phone or babysitting their children with in seat DVD players because they’re too busy talking/texting to actually parent, messing with infotainment systems and driving vehicles that are so… Read more »

Jono51
Jono51

“there is a segment of the population that should have these things, in fact they should be REQUIRED to have them”. In principle I agree. The problem is that not many of these people are going to nominate themselves – this means that someone else is going to have to do the requiring. Who will that be? Why lawmakers and bureaucrats of course, and we know we can trust them to do an excellent job, as always:) Absolutely agree that I can see no point in getting driven around by a robocar that thinks it’s Lewis Hamilton. And I also… Read more »

Steely
Steely

Laws are designed to cater for the lowest denomination, signs all over the place to warn the idiot, look out for this, watch for that, red light where there is ample vision, slow down! The current mix of driver aids and traffic management schemes are heading towards an interesting debate on liability, in the UK you can pass a test in a manual or automatic transmission car, if you pass in an auto that’s all you can drive, it could be argued that it is out of date, what about a car with autoparking, or even stability control, abs, distance… Read more »

Gavin Langier
Gavin Langier

I love driving and I love cars, most of which, I hate to admit, I’m never going to get the opportunity to drive. I work in sales and I criss-cross London all day. I often spend evenings and weekends catching up on work due to the amount of time I spend driving. If I was given the opportunity to work en-route, between appointments, as well as properly enjoying the view along the way, I’d take it. This doesn’t exclude me from still wanting to enjoyi driving myself when the mood takes me, on the right kind of road. What worries… Read more »

Jono51
Jono51

“You don’t have to buy one!” No, that might be right for the foreseeable future, and yes, it does sound sensible to allow people who don’t enjoy driving, or don’t have the necessary physical or mental capacity, the ability to let their car be their chauffeur. But wait a minute. Let’s assume that autonomous cars are safer – a lot safer – and let’s also reflect that the worst drivers might just happen to be the last people who will want an autonomous vehicle. The implications of this would be first that we will see tougher standards set for allowing… Read more »

jolocho
jolocho

“…we will see tougher standards set for allowing people to drive themselves, and secondly that any law breaking would be much more likely to result in loss of that privilege.”

That should be the case, self-driving cars or not. People treat driving like they’re sitting on a couch and would rather text/talk. Driving standards in the USA are considerably lax compared to the rest of the world.

Douglas Anderson
Douglas Anderson

Gack, spit, choke etc. Driving is about the experience even if it’s only a commute to work, these things leave me stone cold. I call them things because I don’t consider them real cars . I refer to the people who drive these hybrids and now driverless vehicles as members of the “anti destination” league. The folks that think these things are really going to make it safer on the roads are as wrong as the morons who persist in driving drunk , or texting . Not impressed with this fad at all , and IMHO it will pass and… Read more »

Kenyon Stewart
Kenyon Stewart

‘Driving is about the experience even if it’s only a commute to work, these things leave me stone cold. I call them things because I don’t consider them real cars . I refer to the people who drive these hybrids and now driverless vehicles as members of the “anti destination” league.’ For you and me and many others, yes much of the time driving is about the experience that these cars probably aren’t going to provide. But, we are car enthusiasts, not everyone is. We can’t expect that others must share the same passion about cars and driving that we… Read more »

Steely
Steely

It’s a short and simple post with huge implications for future generations, it’s bound to stir up emotions in the people that frequent a site like this. Petrolicious would have to change its slogan, “be transported tastefully”, it doesn’t have the same ring 😉
I can see the future articles now.. “Bill rooted his android car OS and installed the Formula 1 app, along with the Murray Walker voice pack, fitting a few extra battery packs for good measure, what mods have you installed?” Lol.

Kenyon Stewart
Kenyon Stewart

It’s hilarious how a very short and simple post can irritate people so much and bring out the paranoia. Google is experimenting with self-driving cars. They may or may not ever be available for sale. When they are, you don’t have to buy one. All facts… I’m 42 and have been a software engineer for about 20 years. I’d bet that within a few years, Google should be able to develop an autonomous car that can drive better than 90\% of the A-holes out on the roads today. If they can at least make them stay out of the left… Read more »

M Webb
M Webb

I am 62 years old. Back in grade school, a social studies teacher and I would talk cars after class. I have never forgotten one of the things he said which was (bear in mind this was in the late 60’s) If the automobile was invented in today’s world there is no way in hell the government would grant citizens that kind of freedom and mobility. Government has long hated the automobile and i have no doubt that their heavy hand will be involved in determining where you will be allowed to drive and when. throughout my life I have… Read more »

Frank Anigbo
Frank Anigbo

The whole self-driving car solution feels like trying to solve a complex problem with an even more complex problem. Might a better solution to road safety not be found in better planning of roads, cities, places of work zones — to optimize the efficiency of getting places without the risks associated with driving when you really don’t need to. While this may sound like the more expensive solution, consider that it relies on hack-proof and proven technology without any of the moral dilemmas an autonomous car will need to deal with when faced with the decision of swerving left to… Read more »

Steely
Steely

Keep them on special roads away from me!
The jeep “infotainment” system has already been hacked (details to be released online next month), the hacker was able to control the jeeps brakes and acceleration, leaving the driver only with the ability to steer.
Why is this even possible!

Steely
Steely

I meant to add..
imagine when some hacking group terrorist finds a Google car exploit and send them all on the rampage!
Christine for the Google generation 😉

Willam Giltzow
Willam Giltzow

I am looking forward to all of the people who do not want to drive, but must, adopting the autonomous car. Imagine if 50\% of the traffic you engage every day was using their signals, staying within the correct lane, and stopping at the stop signs. Not only will it be safer, but we who drive because we love it will have better road access. Plus, when my old bones are tired from a track day, telling the autonomous race hauler rig “home now” and relaxing for the 300 mile trailer pull sounds pretty sweet…

Wayne Mattson
Wayne Mattson

I don’t even know where to start here. How anybody thinks that self driving cars are a good idea is beyond me. Nothing electronic/digital built these days lasts very long and the way everything can be hacked into, it will just be a matter of time before we lose control of this garbage as well. I am so sick of how people think that just because something is over-hyped by the media it must be good and worth embracing. This is just another way for people to spend money that they don’t have on something they don’t need. When will… Read more »

JB21
JB21

I am actually all for the autonomous vehicles. If people can’t be bothered to drive, then they really shouldn’t. And since nobody wants to pay for public transport (as we know it), autonomous cars it is. And you know what? What’s gonna come out of this, the only logical outcome of this whole thing, is that you don’t buy them, they are like a taxi, just more convenient and more available. One option I really would like to see is a “drive like you stole it” mode, still in sync with other autonomous cars, that would be fun. Mr. Slinger,… Read more »

Nicolas Moss
Nicolas Moss

Some of those crashes have been where the Google car is rear-ended because it saw a threat and stopped suddenly. While I don’t dispute that its still the fault of the follower, it does seem similar to the change that was brought about by ABS deployment; once again, some cars are going to be stopping much faster than others, and if you are one of the others, you are going to have to increase your buffer zone.

Ryan Connolly
Ryan Connolly

Dear Google,

I’m not going to buy your Rubbermaid Fiat 500 Autobot edition.

Not so best wishes,
Ryan

Guitar Slinger
Guitar Slinger

These Three Things plus One ; 1) Why in the love of all things automotive is a story about autonomous cars showing up on a site ‘ supposedly ‘ dedicated to classic cars and the ‘ authentic ‘ experience of driving ? 2) What Google needs to know is that their autonomous shackles are not welcome seeing as how its sole intent is to connect us even further into the digital observation realm [ think about that ] stripping us of even more freedom than the digital realm has already taken from us … including right to privacy .. the… Read more »