My own personal Batmobile? SCORE!December 9, 2009
Technology fascinates me. I can stare at a cell phone for hours and wonder how I can be in CT and hear my mom in NY clear as a bell (most of the time, anyway). How is it that I can press a few buttons on a computer and have a piece of paper spit out of a printer with exactly what I wanted it to say? Any don’t even get me started on the Internet – mind boggling!
Automobiles are already pretty sophisticated bits of technology. They have on-board computer systems that do everything from moving your windows up and down to helping you regulate the temperature in your car. Cruise control allows you to set a speed and have the car maintain it so you don’t have to press the gas pedal. It’s already like having the car drive itself.
But what will happen when the car really does drive itself? In this Wired article, the author talks about how autonomous cars could be coming out way in the relatively near future. There may come a time when I can ask my car to meet me where I am and then drive me to my destination, Batmobile style. That would be pretty nifty.
Cars are already so tech packed with GPS devices, self-parking systems and satellite radio. Auto-driving would be great for avoiding things such as speeding, DUI/DWIs, tired driving, road rage, and so on. It would probably cut down significantly on accidents and save people money on gasoline that they wouldn’t waste by speeding. Airplanes have already shown how effective autopilot can be. Even so, there are definite negatives to this whole concept.
What about truck drivers who deliver various types of cargo over long distances? They would be out of a job. Taking a road trip would be far less exciting if you weren’t able to easily hop off the highway to check out some random sight like the world’s largest ball of twine or something like that. Then there is that sense of pride that a 16- or 17-year-old driver gets when they pass the road test and get their driver’s license. People wouldn’t really need a license anymore if they aren’t driving, and that is such a right of passage in American society.
Would you feel better if your car drove itself? Or do you like being in control of your own vehicle?