There is a considerable chance that the quest for driverless will end in a slaughterhouse. Too much wishful thinking and ditto engineering involved — the expert term for this is confirmation bias. The industry (incl. Silicon Valley) is collectively suffering from this, which is the consequence when you put single-minded electronic and AI engineers together. Billion dollar investments will need to be written off. Robotics experts have repeatedly warned that traffic is such a complicated ‘organism’ that it may take decades to make driverless satisfactory safe and functioning. Personally, I am baffled that elementary lessons about transit are being overlooked. When you move from A to B, some physical mode of transport is necessary, better make that “shrink to fit” then, particularly when you are adamant about realizing driverless. Better still, a passenger vehicle can be formatted in such a way that it benefits both autonomous operation as well as oversight. Let me illustrate:

But there is hope. UBER all of a sudden decided to move towards driverless scooters, after its failed attempts with autonomous Volvo XC90'sLet’s face it: cars becoming wider and heavier contradicts all efficiency notions, things like electric drive (for instance, the Jaguar i-Pace carries a 600 kg battery pack) and the overall trend of downsizing. Below from R to L: from PC to notebook, from brick-like gsm to smartphone, from SUV to Smart-Mobility ‘device’.

Identify how high-tech bypasses common sense to sell us a solution that frequently misses the point | country: Netherlands

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