Dear Crabby, Would You ever use a Self-driving Car?

Dear Crabby, Would You Ever Use a Self-Driving Car?

Just wondering, E.Z. Ryder

 

Good question E.Z. I’ve wondered that about myself too.

To my knowledge, there are two companies making headway with this idea of driverless cars, Google and Tesla. I like to drive myself, I don’t like valet parking, taxis, or public transportation. But I can see the advantage as well. Google, who already knows everything about me due to my Internet searches, would be a wonderful chauffeur. I imagine getting in the car and it taking me where I need to go without me even thinking about it. Doctor’s appointment – it knows, Hollywood Market – it knows, Mrs. Crabby’s Birthday – it knows. My car would tell me what day it is, what I need to buy, where I need to go, and who I need to shop for. And since Google knows Mrs. Crabby’s online searches as well, it would tell me what to buy her. I can see driverless cars leading to a hands-free life, and maybe a brain-free life.

Dear Crabby Gives AdviceBut are they safer than people driving. Still needs to be proven I think. There’s that human factor that machines just cannot imitate yet – that’s both good and bad – which makes me nervous to try. Now, I understand that many of the test vehicles sill have the driver in the driver’s seat with all the controls at his or her ready. But in the long-term, they want completely autonomous vehicles. One day, Uber and taxies will be autonomous cars.

You can read my thoughts about that in my column Dear Crabby, Is Uber Safe?

Some issues with test vehicles have been reported, such as a pedestrian standing on the side of the road and moving at the last second into traffic – autonomous cars react too slowly, but so do some human drivers – because the system doesn’t know that non-moving thing is a person until it moves.

For those of you who are old like me may remember the days when elevators had operators. People freaked out when they took the operators away and made the elevators self-operated.

The advances we’re making are the cool thing. Regardless of how you feel about driverless cars, we’re getting all kinds of safety gadgets. Sensors, blind spot warnings, and alerts help us now drive with more information and in a safer way. We’re really just adding to things like cruise control, foot on break before you shift gears, and back-up cameras.

Me, I’ll take all the gadgets, but I still want to drive my car – look out world – Crabby’s got errands to run.

 

Sincerely, Dear Crabby

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About Dear Crabby

Stuck in a rut? Need some biased advice from a crabby old baby-boomer? Read regularly by thousands and loved by some, Dear Crabby answers questions weekly to life's challenges. Send him a note at DearCrabby@rochestermedia.com.

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