August 1, 2015

Google’s Self Driving Cars Unveiled

As unsettling as I imagine it would feel to sit in a car without a steering wheel and without a break pedal only to have it zoom off taking corners like Schumacher, have you ever taken a moment to appreciate what the future of driving will actually mean for you?

What would you do with all of that extra time? Will DUIs become a thing of the past? Will traffic lights become obsolete? What about traffic police? Will seats need to face forward? Will cars remain the same size? Will motorcycles be banned? Would you even need to be inside the car, really?

Here’s a ‘for instance’ for you…

You order groceries and pay for them online. You tell your dry cleaners (via their site or app) to expect a drop-off. You tell the Gar (…get it? Google car? No? Okay, I’ll keep working on it…) where to go and off it goes! The grocery people deposit the goods in the back seat (this would all be automated of course). The dry cleaners pick up the clothes from the trunk. Voilà! Before you know it, your little 4-wheeled friend has returned bearing all you need, sans your smellies.

There is no steering wheel, no accelerator pedal, no brake pedal – software and sensors replace all of those.

Google’s focus is safety – thank God for that! The cars don’t have many (read: any) conveniences, other than two seats,  seat belts and steering wheel mounted audio controls. Erm… have you been paying attention? There is no steering wheel! *chuckles* Man, I’m good!

The top speed, for now, is 25 mph (40 kmh) and the super smart sensors can detect practically anything up to 2 football fields (182 meters) ahead, in all directions.

Don’t get too excited as only a very lucky few will get to experience this thrill in the near future. Where is that gonna happen? Yep, you guessed it… Cali!

Reviews so far?

“You sit, relax, you don’t need to do nothing. It knows when it needs to stop, it knows when it needs to go.” – Annie

“If I had a self-driving car, I can spend more time hanging out with my kids.” – Janet

Only one question remains…

What would you do with all of that extra time?