If only self-driven cars could honk, swear and project a middle finger. They then might get the respect they need to make it on the road.
Alas, aggressive driving and road rage are all too human, and self-driven cars aren’t ready to compete against everyday motorists. That’s what Google is finding in its high-tech work to create driverless cars.
For example when a self-driven vehicle has slowed to allow a pedestrian to cross, the Google car has gotten rear-ended by a human behind the wheel in a standard automobile, The New York Times reports. The Google cars are programmed to follow the law; human drivers, not so much.
That makes four-way stops challenging for self-driven cars because people who are behind the wheel rarely come to a full stop, and forget about the courtesy of yielding. Programmers for the high-tech, self-driven vehicles will have to find a way to write code into the cars for human emotions so that the Google cars can function as long as people are still behind the wheel.
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That programming may have to stay in place at least a couple of decades because people today keep their cars an average now of 11 years. After all of the human driven cars are off the road, then the self-driven cars can go back to being robotic, polite and predictable.