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Counter Argument: 3 Reasons We Need V2X

9/17/2013 01:25 PM EDT
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Max The Magnificent
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Re: Count matters
Max The Magnificent   9/18/2013 10:32:14 AM
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@vasanth kumar d: I agree with you -- the problem is that whenever someone is injured or dies due to a problem with the automatic system, the victim (or his/her family) will have a field day suing anyone who had anything to do with the creation of that system.

Bert22306
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Re: about fuel economy...?
Bert22306   9/18/2013 3:10:40 PM
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Luis, it used to be true that stick shifts got better fuel economy, in the days when automatics did not yet have lockup torque converters and only had 3 gears. But now, automatics do have lockup torque converters, which don't waste energy heating up the fluid when the car is going at mostly steady speeds, and they have up to 8 gears. Way more than a human can manage intelligently. Which gives automatics an advantage over sticks.

These days, in the US market anyway, car companies try to avoid selling stick shifts, because stick shifts make it more difficult to meet their fuel economy requirements. They have to add gizmos to urge the driver to shift to the correct gear, for instance. When stick shifts are sold, if you read interviews with automakers on this subject, it is purely to satisfy consumer demand. Brands like even Mercedes Benz have pretty much stopped selling sticks in the US.

Caleb Kraft
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Re: about fuel economy...?
Caleb Kraft   9/18/2013 3:35:36 PM
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This is a fantastic point! I have often wondered if it were still the case that sticks were better. Now I know!

junko.yoshida
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Re: about fuel economy...?
junko.yoshida   9/18/2013 5:35:48 PM
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Luis, since Bert covered your stick shift question, let me cover the other question -- why autonomous cars are good for fuel economy. As the automotive industry experts tell the story, here's what they have in store (see the diagram on page 2 of this article):

When cars need to pass through a number of traffic lights, the V2X infrastructure can inform drivers of a recommended driving speed, in order to reduce unnecessary acceleration or slowdown.


In a nutshell, the grand plan is to have smart infrastructure like V2X let you drive through a road with less frequent stops and goes. Sounds too good to be true? Yes, I agree.

junko.yoshida
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Re: Human Errors Are the Cause of Accidents Today
junko.yoshida   9/18/2013 5:41:35 PM
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@kinnar, we all fear that eventuality, don't we?

But not so fast. Currently, autonomous cars are NOT exactly defined as "driverless cars." I think that the assumption -- at least among regulators -- is to have a driver present in the driver's seat all time.

That, however, does not solve all the quandries you mentioned in your comment -- because it's not just machines' failures (which will happen) that we need to worry about, but we do wonder what if a human overrides a machine's decision (or vice versa), while the other car your may about to have an accident with didn't.

junko.yoshida
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Re: Count matters
junko.yoshida   9/18/2013 5:44:17 PM
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You have a point there, @vasanth.

There are in fact already "driver-less" transportation systems functioning well -- but they are limited to a certain rail or lane.

Autonomous cars are problematic because they can freely change lanes and they don't always drive on a "diamond" lane in a highway.

BarrySweezey
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Re: Pro-V2X argument
BarrySweezey   9/18/2013 11:27:40 PM
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"V2X can determine the vehicle's position relative to other vehicles, intersections, and infrastructure."  So can the car.

"V2X can coordinate movement and timing, particularly through dangerous intersections."  Seems like you give the infrastructure more credit for smarts that you're willing to give the car.  Herds, schools and flocks manage to turn on a dime without carrying transmitter-receivers.

"V2X can give a driver more visibility when cars are turning at a corner. It also offers the driver more information about what's happening a kilometer ahead."  Fine, but that's true for human drivers, too.

If self-driving cars prove themselves unable to compile a safety record better that humans', then they need v2x.  Otherwise, they don't.  It's an empirical question.

But if they turn out to require it, they'll take a lot longer to be realized and cost a lot more, so we should try like heck to see what they can do without it.

BarrySweezey
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Re: Pro-V2X argument
BarrySweezey   9/18/2013 11:39:00 PM
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I agree with your third and fourth paragraphs 100%.  And I think that'll be enough to make cars better drivers than people without v2x. 

Kinnar
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Re: Human Errors Are the Cause of Accidents Today
Kinnar   9/19/2013 4:31:17 AM
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That is quite right, the life is full of threats, via science and technology we are trying to cope-up with the threats and improve the possibilities of living, on the same path I am very much sure that these developments will be ultimately leading towards better road safety, but this was just a point in the discussion.

 

junko.yoshida
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Re: Pro-V2X argument
junko.yoshida   9/19/2013 6:34:39 AM
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@BarrySweezey, I think you just made a perfect argument where the U.S. automotive industry is heading to. Let's see how far "Google cars" or any other autonomous cars can get to reduce accidents -- before making too much commitment to building V2X infrastructure.

But as to what you wrote:

"V2X can give a driver more visibility when cars are turning at a corner. It also offers the driver more information about what's happening a kilometer ahead."  Fine, but that's true for human drivers, too. 


Well, unfortunately, not really. You can't see what's happening a kilometer ahead when you are driving a car. 

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