The Risk of Google’s ‘Human-Proof’ Self Driving Cars
Unvetted Technology and Tomorrow’s Risks.
Doubtless, you read about Google and Tesla’s plans for the self-driving car. Every car company is jumping on the bandwagon to make their own version of the SDC. Consumers seem ready for the change, as do some of the ride-sharing apps, such as Uber and Lyft (although they each have their own problems).
The landscape is looking weirder and weirder as the years go on. For every promise the self-driving car brings, it also raises dozens of questions. For drivers concerned about safety and privacy, they may wish to wait.
Take Google’s newest effort to build the first ‘human proof’ self-driving car, reported on their site. The project, now named Wayne is a dangerous precedent. There are no clear checks and balances for such a project. Wired reported on the new effort by the company. This includes a self-driving minivan. While the project is filled with flash, it is unclear how much substance is there. Google’s grand plans could be no more than a pipe dream.
Where to Next?
However, what is less clear is the result on the consumer. While the projects promise a utopian dream, there’s less than meets the eye. The self-driving car is still years away. It is also an expensive project. We still don’t know all of the dangers of the SDC. Who is responsible when the SDC is involved in a fatal car accident? Will Google take the blame for the crash? How will insurance companies handle such a claim?
State, local, and federal regulators rightly worry about answers to these questions. When will Google have the means to prove safety? After some major accidents? Will they follow the same procedures as traditional car makers? All of these questions need answers before making the leap of faith into SDCs. It’s the responsible thing to do.