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Googleís New Car to Change Self-Driving Debate

From a personal luxury to a tool serving the social good
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betajet
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CEO
Re: Right direction
betajet   5/28/2014 3:34:43 PM
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elizabethsimon wrote: It would be especially nice for some place like Los Angeles where the public transit is practically non-existant...

Los Angeles has come a long way since Who Framed Roger Rabbit was released in 1988.  Two heavy rail, four light rail, and two bus rapid transit according to Wikipedia.  It doesn't yet go everywhere like the Red Cars, but it's a start (and faster!)

Bert22306
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CEO
Re: Right direction
Bert22306   5/28/2014 3:29:42 PM
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I totally agree. To me, what is the significant new twist on the Google car is the restriction in its applicability. The altruistic message has nothing to do with anything, just a sales gimmick. But when it's presented as a transportation pod that will autonomously travel on a well known set of streets in the community only, suddenly the whole project sounds feasible because bounded.

For instance, even if on-board sensors don't prove adequate, even in such restricted and well-known routes, Google might hope to be able to afford putting in the infrastructure comms necessary. So the whole project sounds plausible now.

junko.yoshida
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Blogger
Fear of "Machine"
junko.yoshida   5/28/2014 3:19:01 PM
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Not many people have raised this question, but I think human behings' fundamental fear for "machines" is something very real. 

Sure people say that they look forward to autnomous cars, but in reality, the biggest enemy for those who make self-driving cars will be us, the drivers. 

Carmakers should never underestimate our fear for machines.

elizabethsimon
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CEO
Re: The market is already ere
elizabethsimon   5/28/2014 3:15:53 PM
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I could see this also appealing to the people who are using Zip cars and other similar vechicle sharing programs instead of owning their own car. Would be really convienet if the car could just drive up to your residence when you requested it and then trundled off to find it's own parking place when you're done.

junko.yoshida
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Blogger
Re: Right direction
junko.yoshida   5/28/2014 3:14:41 PM
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Voila, Susan. Cab drivers should be very afraid. 

rdk314
User Rank
Freelancer
Re: The market is already here
rdk314   5/28/2014 3:14:00 PM
I completely agree.  And also on the opposite end of the age spectrum.  Ever wait up on a Friday or Saturday night for your teenager to come home with the family car?  That time has just past fortunately for me, but in retrospect, I would have gladly handed over the money for the peace of mind and avoiding endless debates about being "soooo unfair!".

junko.yoshida
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Blogger
Re: Automotive industry's answer
junko.yoshida   5/28/2014 3:13:21 PM
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@tpfj, interesting that you mention this...

Because I see traditional automotive companies are after the self-driving car from a whole different perspective. They position the self-driving car as the ultimate super duper ADAS machine.

In contrast, Google, which has got nothing to lose (because it ain't a car company), frames the self-driving car issue NOT as an ultimate driving machine but a whole new category of transportation vehicle.

They are calling it the same -- "self-driving car" -- but they are meaning two very different things. 

 

Susan Rambo
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Blogger
Re: Right direction
Susan Rambo   5/28/2014 3:09:49 PM
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@elizabethsimon: "Car rental folks should get on board with this." 
Yes, but taxi drivers not so much.
 


elizabethsimon
User Rank
CEO
Re: Right direction
elizabethsimon   5/28/2014 3:04:22 PM
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I'd love to be able to arrive at the airport and rent something like this to get around. It would be especially nice for some place like Los Angeles where the public transit is practically non-existant and a taxi ride to the next town is likely to cost more than renting a car. It'll be a while before they have the bugs worked out and the regulations in place for this though.

Car rental folks should get on board with this.

DesertData
User Rank
Freelancer
Re: re-framing Re-Designing
DesertData   5/28/2014 2:50:49 PM
I have seen this LASER device on top of the vehicle, and think that it falls far short of what it is wanting or supposed to do. 

Instead of the "Bubble-Gum" machine on top, they should have pulse coded LASERs surounding the car horizontally, and then some on top to check for low clearances.  Then use the available Radar sensors (Front & Back) to judge distance between other vehicles, and GPS for positionning the vehicle. 

Why did they settle for such a silly device as they did, when better technology is already in use on standard cars today? 

I don't argue that having a self automation vehicle is a good thing to have, and there are some foundations that might be in a possition to institute them into a transit program in some cities. 

But, Google needs to find some new blood for their mix of "Techies" to start thinking further than where they are right now.  I think their technology for this auto is in a stale-mate, and won't go into production untill they get rid of the LASER scanner on the roof.  Somebody there must have a personal interest or agenda for keeping that rediculus thing.

Just some of my musings over it.  I would like to see them in production, but make it realistically functional, and safe for the passengers.

 

 

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