With all the autonomous vehicle technology taking control away from human drivers, does this mean the end for traditional driving?
There is a heated debate around how much control should be given to onboard vehicle technology, and what humans can do if the system crashes.
Until these issues are resolved, it’s clear that fully autonomous vehicles won’t be taking over the road just yet – but the debate will continue to rage as the technology gets ever closer to becoming a reality.
Convenient, but dicey
Fully autonomous vehicles that let you sit back and relax while in transit may not be here yet, but they’re getting close. These cars will be connected to a central server, where they obtain information about where you need to go, how many other cars are on the road, the amount of traffic up ahead, the number of available parking spaces, and so on.
One thing we’ve learned about being on the Internet is that anything can be hacked, and this is one issue we face with high-tech cars. Data privacy issues point to hackers being able to take control of vehicles, opening up all sorts of dangers both with the control of the vehicle and with our data.
The end of driving as we know it
One of the reasons why many people like being in control of the car is well, being in control of their destiny and the feeling of independence. The feel of the steering wheel in your hands, the way the car responds to your every command, the way a key slides into the ignition, the whirr of the engine, the challenge of easing into a tiny parking space, the ability to slow down when you see something interesting, or simply just driving with no set destination in mind.
This will be taken away from drivers who actually love the whole driving experience.
Google’s prototype self-driving car has no steering wheel and no gas and brake pedals.
Everything is controlled by a computer, making this type of car almost unrecognizable from the ones we use today. For those who get a natural high by driving, autonomous driving tech would definitely take the fun out of the experience.
Advanced technology in cars may serve to reduce accidents, but it’s thought that humans may still need to be on stand by in case of a problem.
This is where the traditional and technological need to go hand in hand. If humans might be called upon in an emergency then they’ll have to be every bit as adept at the practical need to control a vehicle.
It will also be vital to learn the driving theory and – since you won’t always be needed – it’ll be important to keep on top of the rules of the road. Free online driving theory resources may well be in everyone’s bookmarks well into the future.
The new technologies being developed towards creating autonomous vehicles can render someof the traditional driving experience obsolete, but that’s still off into the future and, as we’ve seen, some of the traditional skills we pick up when learning to drive are likely to be here for years to come.