Junko, you're SUCH a rabble rouser, asking about the Oklahoma case I mean.
Aside from that, I agree with what Kuroyanagi-san has to say about autonomous vehicles. The way I read his comment, he wasn't skeptical about the concept itself, but rather that it could become reality without this "holy trinity" of man, car, and traffic environment (aka infrastructure). Couldn't agree more. Also the bit about sharing the road with human drivers. All very good points, and we have hashed them out on here as well, in the past.
I'm sure it is a topic that he doesn't want to discuss and his lawyers probably told him not to. As engineers, we have to build systems that have safe guards and fail safe conditions that will avoid issues that Toyota has seen.
The article mentions changes in fatalities per age category. Don't forget that during the same period Japan's demographics changed substantially. From a statistics point of view would it maybe be more relevant to look at "fatalities per 100,000 inhabitants" per age category (although every fatality is one too many).
Bert, I agree with you -- not about the rabble rouser bit, but about what Kuroyanagi-san said about autnomous car. He was rather candid, and straightforward. (That, of course, prompted me to check the boundry and pop the question!)
@daleste, in all honesty, in a conference like this in Japan (where a lot of embedded systems engineers including automotive guys attend), I had expected a topic like "fail safe conditions" as you mentioned would rise to the top, or at least to be discussed. But it hasn't so far.
It's almost eerly no other speakers want to discuss -- at keast publicly -- Oklahoma case in Japan.
That is strange that there would not be a sentiment to fix the problem. When I was working in automotive, we always had to perform an FMEA on our chip to help the automotive company to design in a fail safe or limp home mode for any failures that could occur in the system. I hope Toyota is doing this internally if they are not bringing it up in conferences.