I think the question is 'is it innovation for innovation sake?'. Is it game-changing, forget life changing? ;) I am reminded of 'Modern Times' where there is an automatic 'food feeding' machine to cut down lunch time and increase productivity :))
If it keep someone from bumping into my car or my person while they're parking, then I fine with people becoming dependent on it. At least until a robotic brain parks the car.
It is amazing to think of all of the skills we've done away with over the last century. Most of us have become so very far from self-sufficient that the skills we lose due to automated assists in cars and other products really won't impact our quality of life.
I drove a car in Japan with such features in 2008! I have to confess that it's very cool to see on screen and it makes reverse parking a doddle. That said, I still enjoy the challenge of parking into tight spots armed with nothing but my driving skills :-)
My worry is that we become so dependent on these technologies that we lose the "skill" of manual driving altogether! Let's hope driving examinations will keep up the standards.... or have separate grades of driving licences depending on which class of cars you drive.
I think that a collision assistance and estimation would be valuable using a 3D system perhaps based on vision. For parking it is helpful although the distortion from cameras is tough - again, some kind for visual warning with distances would be more useful than just pretty pictures.
Regarding technology in the car - my 23 year old metro got better mileage than a Prius although the Prius is more comfortable - still, with EFI and the benefit of 20 years of microprocessors and controls as well as other technologies a Prius should do better...I guess the biggest change we can see in looking at cars from 20 years ago vs today is about 40% more horsepower per displacement - 600hp sedans and 200hp+ is considered under powered by some people??? I think the technology we need to work on most are ones which will educate consumers to buy cars and devices using a bit more reason and a little less testosterone. Sorry for the rant....
I was talking to friends the other day and we were thinking that there haven't been many advances in technology lately.
I guess it's like every other improvement in life: we know how to till land, that doesn't mean we'll stop at using horses. All improvements give way to applied research which may one day find an even better application, so when strong technology leaders go on and leap to another type of assistance, I say they shouldn't be criticized.
I do agree with the fact that driving has been around for a while, but we've introduced automatic gear shifting and we don't have to have wrestler biceps to turn the wheel nowadays. There are some things which are really useful for professional drivers nowadays...
Do we really need such advanced technology for parking a car? I agree parking a car is not as easy as popping peanuts into ones mouth but it's no rocket science either. C'mon, people have been parking their cars for more than a century now with needing any artificial aid. Some help like a a reversing camera for big vehicles is reasonable but 360 deg for parking, a big joke if they expect anyone to pay for it.