by Mike Masnick
Fri, Aug 5th 2011 1:49pm
There's a bunch of talk today over the news that one of Google's self-driving autonomous vehicles apparently got into a minor fender bender. Google was quick to point out that it was actually under human control at the time, so really there's not much of a story here. However, since it's leading to a variety of discussions about how "scary" autonomous vehicles are, why don't we just get an important point out of the way: there's no way that autonomous vehicles will have a perfect track record and never, ever get into an accident. They will crash. It's just a matter of time. The real question is not whether or not they will crash, but whether or not the likelihood of getting into an accident (or the likelihood of the seriousness of any such accident) is significantly higher or lower than with a human at the controls. I'm certainly not confident in the state of the art today to be safer, but I find it likely that it won't be long until such vehicles have a much higher probability of getting you to your destination safely than a human-driven vehicle.
If you liked this post, you may also be interested in...
- Supreme Court Won't Hear Oracle v. Google Case, Leaving APIs Copyrightable And Innovation At Risk
- Breaking: Self-Driving Cars Avoid Accident, Do Exactly What They Were Programmed To Do
- Researcher Headed To Australian Supreme Court In Attempt To Hold Google Responsible For Posts At Ripoff Reports [Updated]
- Should Your Self-Driving Car Be Programmed To Kill You If It Means Saving A Dozen Other Lives?
- Nokia CEO: We Have To Get Rid Of Net Neutrality, Otherwise Self-Driving Cars Will Keep On Crashing Into Each Other