Sunday, October 10, 2010
MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. — Anyone driving the twists of Highway 1 between San Francisco and Los Angeles recently may have glimpsed a Toyota Prius with a curious funnel-like cylinder on the roof. Harder to notice was that the person at the wheel was not actually driving.
The car is a project of Google, which has been working in secret but in plain view on vehicles that can drive themselves, using artificial-intelligence software that can sense anything near the car and mimic the decisions made by a human driver.
With someone behind the wheel to take control if something goes awry and a technician in the passenger seat to monitor the navigation system, seven test cars have driven 1,000 miles without human intervention and more than 140,000 miles with only occasional human control. One even drove itself down Lombard Street in San Francisco, one of the steepest and curviest streets in the nation:
Back in my San Fran days I navigated this street doing 45mph in a 63 Chevy Impala - NO PROBLEM.
The only accident, engineers said, was when one Google car was rear-ended while stopped at a traffic light.
Autonomous cars are years from mass production, but technologists who have long dreamed of them believe that they can transform society as profoundly as the Internet has.
Read the whole story here
Oh yeah, this is my dream - let a robot car do the driving for me - NOT!
They can have my car when they pry my steering wheel from my cold, dead fingers. If you ask me this invention is in the same category as the new Ultra Hi-Tech Bra:
Dr. Calvin Rickson, a scientist from Texas A&M University has invented a bra that keeps women's breasts from jiggling, bouncing up and down, and prevents the nipples from pushing through the fabric when cold weather sets in.
At a news conference, after announcing the invention, a large group of men took Dr. Rickson outside and beat the sh*t out of him.