We have decided to take a little respite from politics today and discuss the idiotic common belief that "driverless" automobiles will soon put taxis (and semi trucks and Ubers etc.) out of business.
Those who subscribe to this lunacy state that "Autonomous vehicles" will "eliminate human error" in driving. But unless God Himself is doing the programming, it's being done by error prone humans. Which means that far from being eliminated, human error will be coded in permanently.
And, let's not forget how much information a driver is bombarded with in the course of operating a motor vehicle. Consider that some of it may not be immediately relevant to the task at hand (like a girl in a thong bikini walking down the road) but may immediately become relevant (such as when said girl suddenly runs across the street to greet her similarly bird brained boyfriend). A computer won't recognize the threat before it becomes a threat. A human driver will realize that the girl has a nice butt, but also realize that teen ditzes do stupid stuff and will be prepared for just such an event. And all this information will be running in the background of a human driver's attention span; along with other signs of possible trouble (such as a car sitting at a cross street waiting to enter the stream of traffic. The human's visual "sensors" - his eyes - are able to pick up multiple visual inputs at once; such as how fast approaching and same direction traffic is moving AND if the car on the cross street's wheels are rotating; not to mention the aforementioned bikini-clad lass.) And when any of it becomes indicative of a possible impending emergency, the human brain can come up with possible avoidance scenarios BEFORE they are needed and modify them mid crisis as new information is received. This involves the receiving and processing of multiple thousands of bits of information in a thousandth of a second. To attain that level of processing would require three Cray "Supercomputers" linked together. These supercomputers are each the size of a small broom closet and must be constantly cooled; which begs the question: Where do you put the passenger?
On top of all of this, we don't believe the geniuses who are trying to foist these "autonomous cars" off on the public will EVER convince people to let some robot take the wheel of a vehicle they are riding in. We want to go where we want to go when we want to go there, and we like to have control.
There are some people who are so stupid they actually want these "self driving autos". We met one of them the other day. Her reason for wanting this technology?
Quote: "I don't like to have to think about what I'm doing"
No, unfortunately that is a real quote from a real Millennial ditz, who will probably wind up with 2016's "Idiot of the Year" prize in this blog.
Back in the 1960s we were supposed to have "flying cars" by now. We don't. and we won't.
Like "flying cars". "self driving" cars are a self-gratification fantasy for this age. Even if they existed, they would cost as much as an F22 Raptor fighter jet. Self Driving Cars? Not in the lifetime of anyone living today. Get serious, folks.