Tuesday, March 18, 2014

I don't know why this cracks me up so hard...

...but it does:



Self-driving cars are closer than you think, at least technologically, but there's a sociological canyon of Evel Knievel proportions to jump between here and there.

The whole thing makes me want to go hug a manual transmission.
.

19 comments:

PhilaBOR said...

The robot running away...I thinking it's breaking the fourth law.

Borepatch said...

Well I'll never have one of the damn things. Don't trust the security in the computer systems, not even a little bit.

Since I enjoy driving, the upsides of one of these things is low, and the potential downside is very large.

TXGunGeek said...

Three letters,

CVT

Tam said...

Two words:

Paint. Drying. ;)

I'm Charlie said...

Well the flip side is what automated driving would mean for people such as my wife who has Epilepsy and has not driven in almost ten years. This would give her back a freedom of choice few of us could imagine doing with out for a week much less ten years.

Scott J said...

"Paint. Drying. ;)"

They're not just called slushboxes because of the torque converter :)

Not speaking strictly of CVTs either.

Trevor Montroy said...

I will cling to my M/T horseless carriages as much as I cling to my pistols.

Leatherwing said...

I wouldn't trust a self driving or self parking car, if it was an isolated system within the vehicle (test software for a living. Everyday I see the things that programmers forgot to think about.).

But today everyone is infatuated with the internet of things, so your ride will be connected to the internet. No way that will be a target for some East European hacker (and with all the cameras on board, your hacked car will film it's own youtube fail video).

Scott J said...

"I will cling to my M/T horseless carriages as much as I cling to my pistols."

I have a 1985 CJ-7 that I rescued as a rust bucket from upstate NY and 13 years later it's still a rust bucket (I plan to get it a new tub........someday).

I sometimes think of trading the CJ for a used TJ since the latter would be so much more comfortable.

But then I recall the CJ has a carburetor and a bypassed computer and decide to hang onto it for its simplicity.

Ed Jones said...

I have a 1952 Ford 8N tractor just in case I need to drive to town after the electromagnetic pulse.

Windy Wilson said...

With self-driving cars, in the future, will manual transmissions become as anachronistic as a manual advancement/retarding of the spark? I mean, I really miss my sport sedan with the manual transmission,but I'm knowing fewer and fewer people who know what to do when confronted with three pedals under the steering wheel.

Nick said...

If the car is driving itself with minimal input from me and only during certain operations, then I shouldn’t be responsible for accidents during automated operation. The insurance company is going to give me a big discount since the manufacturer is responsible for the driving ability of the vehicle, right?

RevolverRob said...

I am actually getting rid of my 2010 modern comforts of home vehicle and keeping only my 1963 gas guzzler. I've already decided to not buy anything newer than 1975 in the future. In fact, I'm even thinking of installing a faraday cage in the trunk for hauling any electronics too...

Big Brother is getting pretty creeptastic these days and this is just another manifestation of that. I have no doubt in fifteen years when the autonomous cars arrive on the streets near you in earnest, I will have to pay a luxury tax to drive myself. Pretty soon, I feel like Demolition Man won't be fiction...

-Rob

Ken said...

Next car is having a stick. So say we all. I would like a break from pumping sludge (Dad always called what you call a slushbox a sludge pump) while I'm young enough to enjoy it.

As for the sociological gulf, I am minded to agree, though Big Ag has been testing unmanned ground and aerial crop protection application rigs, and I think driverless ground rigs may have even gone commercial (it was getting close around the time I left full-time employ in the trade press). I had figured the specter of some high-boy charging through the subdevelopment (that was a soybean field until three years ago) with a load of glyphosate might be a PR heartburn the industry wouldn't want to tackle.

Potential upside is, human operators are prone to make mistakes too in those 20-hour days at field-prep, planting, and harvest.

Windy Wilson said...

Nick, "I wasn't driving it, I was merely a passenger!"
Yes, the issue of liability is as yet unasked, let alone answered.

This might be a good question for a moot court project in first year law school.
Hmmm.

NotClauswitz said...

If you think drivers are rude and careless now, just wait!

Kristophr said...

How much do you want to bet the nannyists try to make manual driving unlawful later this century?

Brian J. said...

For further amusement, read the comments on YouTube, where all the pro-technologists get up in high dudgeon about the Luddites and insurance companies trying to scare people about the future, man.

Windy Wilson said...

RevolverRob, you might want to go one year earlier. 1975 was the first year for catalytic converters, and I remember looking under the hood of my dad's 1975 Oldsmobile. There was lots of vacuum tubing and everything was tight, but I could still find the air cleaner, the oil filler and the distributor and spark plug cables. To change spark plugs, you really really wanted a cold engine.
The 1974's were much simpler to maintain.