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Discussion Starter #1
Hi there,

I have just read about this in the UK and wondered if this or anything similar has happened in the US?

A driver was in his Tesla on the motorway ( highway / freeway / interstate? ) and was caught not being in the drivers seat and was in the passenger seat. It seems he turned on the autopilot mode and then climbed into the passenger seat. I guess the car has no systems in place to detect if the driver is still in the drivers seat.

From what I understand, the autopilot mode is some sort of lane control mode and it will keep the vehicle in its lane and control its steering and speed accordingly. This is not a fully autonomous mode which can drive anywhere through traffic lights, roundabouts, junctions, etc. And you need to keep your hands on the steering wheel and pay attention to what is going on.

He got an 18 month ban on his drivers license, a £1800 ( $2470 ) fine and has to do 100 hours of community service. And rightly so. And his insurance will be sky high when he can drive again.

I remember the famous story about someone engaging the cruise control on their motor home and then got into the back. And they sued and won? Not sure how true this story is or if it is just a story. This is totally crazy as the cruise control just controls the speed and nothing else. But I guess they could argue it does not make it clear ( back then ) that you could not do this. I imagine car owners books now explicitly state this?

Don't get me wrong, I am not against the development of these systems as this will be the future of driving for future generations. But it does worry me how this makes people drive their cars and not use common sense. For some time now we have had systems on cars to check blind spots, automatically brake if you are about to crash into something and other such things. I worry that these drivers aids will make people drive less carefully as they will assume these systems will just take care of it. Or they might drive another car without these systems, and forget to check things themselves.

Jeremy.
 

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I don't know if that is true.
It seems these high tech companys always forget about the human factor.
It is simple math. Smart machines will ALWAYS be defeated by stupid humans.
On a side note.
A test/self automated car with a destracted driver, did run over and kill a woman on her bicycle.

Skynet will become self aware. lol.
 

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Not soon enough, unfortunately........
 

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I don't know if that is true.
It seems these high tech companys always forget about the human factor.
It is simple math. Smart machines will ALWAYS be defeated by stupid humans.
On a side note.
A test/self automated car with a destracted driver, did run over and kill a woman on her bicycle.

Skynet will become self aware. lol.
That is true, and the accident happened a few weeks ago in Tempe AZ. The woman was walking her bike across the street, and not in a crosswalk, but the car should have detected her and stopped. The inside camera of the vehicle shows the driver looking down up to the point of when the vehicle hit the woman, and when it was too late he looks up.
 

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That is true, and the accident happened a few weeks ago in Tempe AZ. The woman was walking her bike across the street, and not in a crosswalk, but the car should have detected her and stopped. The inside camera of the vehicle shows the driver looking down up to the point of when the vehicle hit the woman, and when it was too late he looks up.
This was an uber experimental self driving car. There is always a driver in the car and supposed to be paying attention. If you look at video, he was not. Uber has halted it testing indefinitely. Lady was dressed in dark colors at night but the car is supposed to pick up dark objects. They don't know what happened so far. Tesla semi auto has also had a few fatal accidents. But tesla is marketing it as driver assist right now (though thought to be target of self drivng). The uber is supposed to be a test of complete non-driver. A lot of this testing is happening here in Ann Arbor as UMICH has set up a self driving track on campus. They have a semi automated dominos pizza car. They are going to have an automated student bus in next year. And closeby there is supposed to be another self driving track that the automakers are going to share in the next year.
 

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Well, at least he didn't flip off a traffic camera. You get 8 months in jail for that.
 

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I could not have a self driving car unless it drove perfectly and I can't even run cruise control out on the free ways. I get bored, mind wanders and I start to drift off if I don't keep my attention focused on what I'm doing which in this case would be driving the vehicle safely.

I am inclined to believe that "self driving" will come and go until or unless the vehicle is totally taken away from the control of the human entirely and for most people that won't be willingly. To do this will also require a complete redesign of our road systems.
 

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I don't see autonomous cars unless they have a dedicated hwy. Too many variables to deal with (sense and program) in the system for now.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Lots of great replies.

I am not really interested in a fully autonomous car, or even one with some sort of lane control mode. I like being involved with the driving experience.

And like what was mentioned already, I do not even use my cruise control. I have had several cars now with it and it just feels weird to me. Driving along with both feet on the floor. I feel using the accelerator ( sorry gas ) pedal keeps me more involved with the driving and keeping me alert of what is going on around me. I feel the less people are doing, the less they would take in around them. So a car with lane control where you are advised to keep your hands on the steering wheel just in case, to me will mean the driver will barely notice what is going on around them, as the car is now driving. And you can bet they will not keep their hands on the steering wheel anyway.

To me a fully autonomous car, is a car that you do not have to sit in the drivers seat. Maybe it does not even have a drivers seat. You would not need to have a drivers license or know how to drive.
 

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Personally I don’t think fully autonomous will ever happen, it will have to be 100% perfect 100% of the time, and that’s impossible. If it’s not 100% the company’s will be sued out of business by the few accidents that do happen.

As a shift worker who has totaled 2 trucks since 2014 driving, and sleeping, on the way home after working midnights, I tell people I’m gonna but a fully autonomous mini van and put a bed in the back.... I’m half joking.
 

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So how would towing work with an autonomous car? Or driving on dirt roads or trails?
 

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Personally I don’t think fully autonomous will ever happen, it will have to be 100% perfect 100% of the time, and that’s impossible. If it’s not 100% the company’s will be sued out of business by the few accidents that do happen.

It doesn't need to be 100% reliable, it just needs to be *better* than human drivers. If autonomous vehicles reduced traffic deaths by 90% (easily attainable with further refinement and automation), the media would still be screaming about the remaining 10% of humans killed by these soul less killing machines.

Let it be known that the woman on the bike was in the wrong. If a human driver had struck the woman on the bike, he would not even have been charged. Given the circumstances, it's quite likely even a human driver would not have seen her under those circumstances, and it's possible that in the future, car sensors will also see objects in infrared and pick up pedestrians where a human couldn't.

John
 

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It doesn't need to be 100% reliable, it just needs to be *better* than human drivers. If autonomous vehicles reduced traffic deaths by 90% (easily attainable with further refinement and automation), the media would still be screaming about the remaining 10% of humans killed by these soul less killing machines.

Let it be known that the woman on the bike was in the wrong. If a human driver had struck the woman on the bike, he would not even have been charged. Given the circumstances, it's quite likely even a human driver would not have seen her under those circumstances, and it's possible that in the future, car sensors will also see objects in infrared and pick up pedestrians where a human couldn't.

John
I'm glad I'm not the only one that had that thought. It's just like the kid that got stuck in the pool a couple weeks back. If he hadn't moved the grate off the vacuum, he wouldn't have gotten stuck there, but obviously it's someone else's fault.
 

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It doesn't need to be 100% reliable, it just needs to be *better* than human drivers. If autonomous vehicles reduced traffic deaths by 90% (easily attainable with further refinement and automation), the media would still be screaming about the remaining 10% of humans killed by these soul less killing machines.

I sincerely hope your right, but with 30,000ish traffic fatalities a year, then a 90% reduction would still be 3,000. If half of those sue, that’s 1500 very expensive lawsuits every year.. and that’s not counting accidents that leave people disabled and maimed, it’s just fatalities.

I may well be wrong, I hope I am, but with ambulance chasing lawyers like we have in this (not that they all are) country... it’s just hard for me to see it being successful.

They had just better have the technology dang near perfected when it rolls out. One thing is for sure, time will tell.
 

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I may well be wrong, I hope I am, but with ambulance chasing lawyers like we have in this (not that they all are) country... it’s just hard for me to see it being successful.
You're not wrong. I quickly read your post and actually combined two answers into one. I tried to go back and edit my response, but it was too late to do so.

1) Yes, absolutely, even if autonomous cars reduced the death rate by 90%, the 10 percent left would cause an outcry and likely doom the whole idea, that is until humans begin to understand statistics in a meaningful, not emotional way. It's far better to have 30000 people die by human hands than 3000 by those soulless evil machines.

2)As far as autonomous cars being a success in a meaningful way, they don't need to be 100%, just better than what we have now. Anything that reduces traffic related injuries and deaths is successful regardless of the knee-jerk emotionalism that will inevitably make it's way into the discussion.

John
 

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Will vehicles that aren't autonomous be allowed on the same roads? It'll be like a super GPS?
You enter where you want to go and it takes control right? Good luck!

So anyone using that route cannot change their mind. No going for a Sunday ride.No construction or detours allowed.

Why not have all public transportation like subways? Walk to the subway like in NYC.

I know, I'm negative, against change! We'll have all stepford vehicles with stepford passengers!
 

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Will vehicles that aren't autonomous be allowed on the same roads? It'll be like a super GPS?
You enter where you want to go and it takes control right? Good luck!
I'm looking forward to it.... not for me, for everyone else.

To be honest, I've gotten to the point that I hate driving. I'm tired of being 12 cars back at a traffic light and having to sit through it three times because when the light turns, nothing happens. Then the first car goes and nothing happens. The second driver realizes (maybe by horn) that the first car left, then they leave. But I guess watching Facebook videos or responding to same on a cell phone is more important than driving. By the time the third car starts moving the automatic traffic flow computer assumes there's no more cars and goes back to red.

Rinse and repeat.. and repeat... and repeat..

Plus, we've got people who don't know how to pick a lane... any lane thank you. Traffic lights and signs have become more of a suggestion than a directive, and we've got left lane righteous rulers who back up highways to enforce the speed limit..

Yep, looking forward to mass integration of autonomous cars.



So anyone using that route cannot change their mind. No going for a Sunday ride.No construction or detours allowed.
Unless chronic impaired drivers will be forced to use them by law, the autonomous feature is optional.

John
 
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