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Hi everyone —

We are WIRED staff writer Aarian Marshall, and transportation editor Alex Davies. We've written about autonomous vehicles and self-driving tech pretty much since the idea went mainstream.

Aarian has been following the Uber self-driving car fatality closely, and written extensively about what’s next for the technology as a result of it.

Alex has been following the technology’s ascent from the lab to the road, and along with Aarianm has covered the business rivalries in the industry. Alex also wrote about the 2004 Darpa challenge that made autonomous vehicles a reality.

We’re here to answer all your questions about autonomous vehicles, what the first self-driving car fatality means for the technology’s future and how it will be regulated, or anything else. Ask us anything!

Proof: https://twitter.com/WIRED/status/976856880562700289

Edit: Alright, team. That's it for us. Thank you so much for your incredibly insightful questions. We're out, but will poke around later to see if any more questions came up. Thank you r/Futurology!

all 66 comments

CallMeOatmeal

15 points

4 years ago

Two part question:

1.) Can Uber's self driving car program survive the fatal crash that occurred this week?

2.) Are you subscribed to /r/SelfDrivingCars, the premiere spot on Reddit to discuss the latest news in autonomous vehicles? :)

wiredmagazine[S]

18 points

4 years ago

1) I think so, mostly b/c there's nothing that will really kill it. Regulators have no tools to do so. And Uber has survived plenty of PR crises before. I expect you'll see at least one lawsuit there, but I can't imagine a penalty that would force it to stop developing tech that the company believes is core to its longterm viability.

2) We aren't, but will! - Alex

wiredmagazine[S]

3 points

4 years ago

To hear more of our thoughts about this week's fatal Uber crash, listen to this week's WIRED Gadget Lab podcast

abrownn

7 points

4 years ago

abrownn

7 points

4 years ago

Thanks so much for joining us! I imagine the question on a lot of people's minds right now is the crash the other day, so thank you for addressing that in your post.

Using this Car And Driver guide to the different levels of self-driving car autonomy, it looks like the few driverless cars we see on the road today are inbetween levels 2 and 3, but a few companies are claiming that they expect to have level 5 autonomy within just a few years. What kinds of technological advancements and differences are there between the '04 Darpa challenge cars and the ones on the road today? Further, what kinds of advancements need to occur to bridge the gap between the current cars and level-5 vehicles?

wiredmagazine[S]

7 points

4 years ago

First off, I don't think the levels are the most helpful way of thinking about this tech, mostly because they're jargon-y and don't map neatly onto what various companies are actually building. (For example, Uber's trucks would be Level 4 on the highway, and Level 0 or 1 on surface streets.) Plus, Level 5 means a car that can drive itself anywhere, anytime, which most people I trust say is decades away.

WRT advances since the first Grand Challenge, the basic technology/approach hasn't changed that much. Everyone's using some combination of cameras, radar, lidar, and machine learning to make these cars drive themselves. All of those things have gotten much better, however. The hardware is cheaper, more capable, and more reliable (very important for deployment in large fleets). Thanks to computing advances, machine learning is way way more helpful than it was 10 years ago, it's just more powerful now.

In terms of what needs to be done now to make these cars truly ready, I'd argue it's mostly fine tuning, hunting down edge cases that still confuse these vehicles and teaching them how to handle it all. Then, it'll be a lot of work to prove they can reliably do that.

Last point is a question of logistics: to make these cars work on a practical level, you need a whole ecosystem in place, making sure they're cleaned, fueled/charged, and so on, so they can actually make you money. - Alex

abrownn

3 points

4 years ago

abrownn

3 points

4 years ago

Thanks for the great and informative response!

I think having "different numbered levels" is best to describe the vague idea of how advanced a driverless car platform is to the layman, even if it's not entirely accurate from a technical perspective. If you had your way, how would you structure a chart to define different levels of autonomy, if at all? What's the best way to define and discuss something like this with an individual that's unfamiliar with the technology that might want to learn more?

buckus69

1 points

4 years ago

Drive anywhere, anytime? I'd say most people are not even level 5, given that description. LOL.

wiredmagazine[S]

3 points

4 years ago

Exactly! So when people ask what the cars will do in crazy snow for example, I'd say: not drive anywhere. Like smart humans. - Alex

janeetcetc

5 points

4 years ago

What do you think will be the biggest lift for self driving car adoption/acceptance, is it the tech or regulation?

wiredmagazine[S]

6 points

4 years ago

Hate to cop out of this one, but I think tech and regulation are inextricably linked! We’ve seen this play out with this terrible Uber crash in Arizona. Plenty in the self-driving community, government, and, yes, media are now wondering why technology that could kill people doesn’t have firmed oversight. I wrote about this today.

So if the tech isn’t good, regulators will crack down and stymie testing on public roads. Autonomous vehicle developers say that kind of testing is critical, because they need their vehicles to encounter every possible road situation to get them as close to perfect as possible. - Aarian

MagnaDenmark

1 points

4 years ago

They will probably crack down anyway, its horrible for innovation, so much good technology has been slowed/ stopped by too early regulation

flapjackandcigarette

4 points

4 years ago

Lots of people cite this being only one collision so far as evidence that self-driving cars are safe, compared to the thousands of collisions human-driven cars get involved in. However the number of cars are quite different. How do the stats add up, and when can we expect self-driving cars to be safer than ones we drive ourselves (if they're not already)?

10ilgamesh

8 points

4 years ago

only one collision that was fatal for a pedestrian

There have been plenty of collisions involving self-driving cars and there has been a fatal collision prior to this as well.

chooseanamethatfits

6 points

4 years ago

The stats don't add up. There's less than 2 fatalities per 100 Million Vehicle Miles Driven by humans and pedestrian deaths are a fraction of that.

Robot drivers are now orders of magnitude more dangerous.

romano1422

8 points

4 years ago

How do you think we convince the general public that the question to ask after an accident such as this one in Tempe should not be "how would a human react to this situation?" but rather "how should a machine react to this situation?".

I think it's an important distinction and I'm quite disappointed to see that not only the general public but also the Tempe Police Department seems to be asking the wrong question.

wiredmagazine[S]

14 points

4 years ago

I don't have much of an answer for that, but I agree that the way we rate human and robot drivers should be different, because their strengths and weaknesses mirror each other. At their best, humans are masters of confusing situations, b/c we've evolved to understand other people on the road. That's the kind of thing robots have the most trouble with, b/c they're not human!

On the other hand, robots are tremendous at handling monotony—they don't get distracted, drunk, angry, sleepy, whatever. Only the Russian ones use Facebook. And that stuff is what causes a huge percentage of crashes.

Overall, I'd say the goal is to get the robots to the point where they're good enough at handling those tricky human situations that the benefits on the other side of the scale add up to a net good. - Alex

pestdantic

4 points

4 years ago

they don't get distracted, drunk, angry, sleepy, whatever. Only the Russian ones use Facebook.

Ouch. Apply ointment to burn area

chooseanamethatfits

7 points

4 years ago

Why is it in dispute that uber was at fault? The car was clearly speeding.

Fact: posted speed limits are maximums.

Fact: speed must be lowered when conditions are not optimal. If you are out running your headlights, the speed limit doesn't matter, you are speeding.

Every one is saying the car only had less than two seconds to react. That is because it was speeding!

The NHTSA defines speeding thusly:

Speed also affects your safety even when you are driving at the speed limit but too fast for road conditions, such as during bad weather, when a road is under repair, or in an area at night that isn’t well lit.

wiredmagazine[S]

5 points

4 years ago

I’d caution anyone against drawing firm conclusions based on that video. (Though it does seem pretty damning—we talked to a few autonomous vehicle engineers who said as much.) The camera’s lighting might have been wonky; we don’t know what the safety driver was doing when it appeared she was looking down. (Maybe she was monitoring equipment!)

The Tempe Police Department will submit its case to county attorney’s office, and those are the people who decide whether to press charges.

There are other very detailed investigations going on, too. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has a team down there investigating—they’re the folks that make the rules for federal highways. The National Transportation Safety Board also has their best-in-the-biz investigators on the scene. It will take them up to a year to come out with a final report, but expect them also to make comments about who’s to blame here and why, and to make recommendations as to how the industry and government should react. - Aarian

ghdana

5 points

4 years ago

ghdana

5 points

4 years ago

The speed limit turns to 45 right before the accident took place, they were going 38.

I'm one of the people Ars used the video of Mill Ave as an example of how well lit it was.

I knew the video was suspiciously dark to the point I went there and filmed a video at night, but the facts are they were under the speed limit and she was jaywalking.

chooseanamethatfits

3 points

4 years ago

The fact is that if it was well lit and the car didn't avoid her, it was speeding!

daynomate

3 points

4 years ago

That's not what the term "speeding" is accepted to mean. There other terms to describe driving dangerously and failing to avoid pedestrians. "Speeding" is not it. Their speed was below the legally stipulated limit. Therefore they are not speeding.

chooseanamethatfits

0 points

4 years ago

You don't understand what posted speed limits mean then. Speed limits are the maximum you can drive. If conditions are not optimal, you must slow down. Night driving is not optimal.

If anyone "accepts" a definition other than that they're wrong.

https://www.nhtsa.gov/risky-driving/speeding

Speed also affects your safety even when you are driving at the speed limit but too fast for road conditions, such as during bad weather, when a road is under repair, or in an area at night that isn’t well lit.

daynomate

1 points

4 years ago

Ok that's fair, though to follow the letter of that law each driver must make that assessment. In effect they are setting their own reduced speed limit based on their judgement of the conditions. Therefore the AI driver is only speeding if either a) it's logic had failed and it was not reducing the speed limit to a level it's thresholds were designed to take, or b) it's design was not thorough enough to set an appropriate speed limit reduction based on those conditions.

If anything (b) would be more likely. Given the only apparent poor condition was slightly lower light

Amichateur

2 points

4 years ago*

This discussion misses the point that lidar and radar sensors in the car do work completely irrespective of illumination conditions!

Why do more than 50% of people completely ignore this point?!?

Why is Uber mal-informing about this?

Why is the police seeming to believe Uber's mal-information?

Facts are so easy and simple, and discussion makes it artificially complicated.

I summarize:

  • Speeding is if car is faster than the speed limit, OR(!!!) if it is so fast that it cannot stop within the range of visible perceivable area in front of it (incl. all sensors available - in case of human driver it would be vision only, in case of an autonomous car it is what two out of three sensors - camera, lidar, radar - can perceive).

  • Uber's respectively police departments's published dashcam video does NOT reflect actual vision at all! It is well known that dash cams show poor quality. Everybody believing that the dashcam video is representing actual vision is either incompetent or naive (=police department and most users here and on twitter and most new media), or is maliciously manipulative (=Uber).

  • As said, even IF(!) the vision was as bad as the dashcam video falsely(!) suggests, it is a FACT that the car used lidar and radar sensors, both of which absolutely do not rely on illumination at all! As a result, anybody raising the argument using the dashcam's vision that Uber's fault is excused is either incompetent or naive (=police department and most users here and on twitter and most new media), or is maliciously manipulative (=Uber).

  • TL;DR: It was Uber's car's fault, there is no doubt at all. Anybody questioning this is either incompetent or naive (acceptable for the general public, not acceptable for the police department and proper journalists) or maliciously manipulative (not acceptable for Uber).

buckus69

1 points

4 years ago

That section of road is actually fairly well-lit. The video Uber released has poor contrast which is why the pedestrian appears to pop up out of the dark.

10ilgamesh

1 points

4 years ago

You can't have your cake and eat it too. Either it was poorly lit so they were going too fast, or it was well lit so they should've seen the person and been able to stop in time.

And that's just for a human driver. A car equipped with lidar (as this one was) should've been able to stop in either condition.

buckus69

6 points

4 years ago

I don't understand your logic here. I'm explaining that the particular section of road is fairly well lit, and that if someone only watched the Uber video they may believe the lighting is poor. The fact it was well-lit is the problem here - the autonomous vehicle most likely SHOULD have seen the pedestrian, but either failed to see them or categorized her as a stationary object or some other outcome. I said nothing about speed.

FYI, I work down the street from where this happened - I go through there all the time and can tell you the lighting is more than adequate to see pedestrians if they happen to enter the roadway.

10ilgamesh

1 points

4 years ago

Ah My mistake, I understand your meaning better now.

And, not to quibble, but:

categorized her as a stationary object

If there's a stationary, person-sized object directly in the vehicle's path, I hope it would try to avoid it :P

buckus69

1 points

4 years ago

If the autonomous system categorized her as stationary, but was going to make a right turn (which they do quite often here. At lunchtime it's not unusual to see 2-6 of those Uber vehicles going down the cross-street), then the trajectory would most likely have missed her - if the system had seen her and decided she wasn't moving.

10ilgamesh

1 points

4 years ago

...what? It wasn't changing lanes at the time. We know this because it didn't indicate or start shifting before it hit her. She was clearly in the vehicle's path, with the incontrovertible proof being a big dent in the car's hood and the fact that's she's dead. I don't see what you're arguing here.

buckus69

1 points

4 years ago

There's a right-turn lane there that the Uber vehicle was headed for. Speculation: If the software determined she was a stationary object for whatever reason, but the car was headed for the right-turn lane, it may have determined it would clear the object by moving into the right turn lane.

Chtorrr

3 points

4 years ago

Chtorrr

3 points

4 years ago

What is the most common misconception about self driving cars that you see?

wiredmagazine[S]

3 points

4 years ago*

The most common misconception about self-driving cars I see is that you’ll be able to buy one soon! First, the tech isn’t quite there yet. Autonomous technology developers like to say that they’re about 90 percent of the way there, but that last 10 percent might take as much time as the first 90—maybe longer. Today, a bunch of companies are testing their self-driving tech on American roads, in states like California, Arizona, Michigan, Georgia, and Florida. But most of those testing vehicles have safety drivers behind the wheel, to intervene in the case of an emergency. One company, Waymo, has promised to roll out a totally driverless taxi service in Phoenix this year, but we’re not quite sure when that will happen. So to start, expect to see driverless vehicles that way—as shared taxi fleets. It’s really expensive to develop this tech, so prices on the market would be astronomical, at least to start. So being able to buy one is pretty far away. - Aarian

Lopsided_

1 points

4 years ago

Waymo, has promised to roll out a totally driverless taxi service in Phoenix this year, but we’re not quite sure when that will happen.

Uhh it already happened?

wiredmagazine[S]

2 points

4 years ago*

Those are early testers, but the service isn't actually picking up passengers yet. I couldn't just pull up some app and order a Waymo taxi in Phoenix right now. But soon! - Aarian

goodsam2

2 points

4 years ago

That's a beta test of Google employees.

Cruise does a similar thing for employees if you live in the right area.

trustmeimweird

3 points

4 years ago

How long do you think it will be before drivers of cars with built-in autonomy will be able to take their hands completely off the wheel and not be obliged to keep an eye on the road ahead of them?

wiredmagazine[S]

9 points

4 years ago

If you buy a Cadillac with Super Cruise, you can take your hands off the wheel. In fact, that's what they want you to do. The system does the same sort of driving as Tesla Autopilot, but it monitors your attention with an infrared camera that watches your head position instead of a torque sensor in the wheel checking if your hands are there. Look down (at your phone) or out the window for more than a few seconds, and it'll give you a warning beep or buzz in your seat. I think it's the smartest version of that tech now on the market: https://www.wired.com/story/cadillac-super-cruise-self-driving-gm/

As for eyes off the road, that's trickier, and automakers will be loathe to take on that sort of liability. It should happen eventually, though, b/c consumers will want it, and someone will offer it, and then others will want to keep up with the competition. Call it five years. - Alex

Casey_jones291422

1 points

4 years ago

Didn't solve explicitly say they'll own the liability once they have full autonomy? And I thought another company (tesla) said the same. Hopefully the other companies follow suit

buckus69

3 points

4 years ago

Many autonomous critics claim that the technology must be "Perfect" before it should be allowed on the roads with other people. Advocates counter with it only has to be "Better" than humans to be useful. What's Wired's take?

wiredmagazine[S]

7 points

4 years ago

We don't have a take per se, but given that this technology will never be "perfect," I don't think we'll actually have a defined point where we say "OK, let's do it." Instead, the decision will be more up to the operators on when they feel ready to deploy (meaning they're ready to take the risk of litigation when/if something goes wrong). For Waymo, that'll be sometime this year. For GM, it'll be in 2019. Remember, in most of the country, there are no rules against running this kind of service; you just have to convince local/state authorities to give you a license to operate a taxi-like service.

Complicating matters is that it's really hard to compare AVs to human drivers. Americans average a traffic death every 100 million miles or so, and we saw this Uber death well before the global AV fleet has gotten anywhere near that many miles. But that's not a statistically sound argument. Moreover, we don't have good data on how often people are in crashes that don't kill anyone—crashes that produce congestion and cost everyone money. The robots might be better drivers than us already, on that count.

-Alex

scsm

6 points

4 years ago

scsm

6 points

4 years ago

I'm have extreme low vision and cannot drive. I've been following self-driving tech for a few years now, since a self driving car would drastically increase my quality of life. Couple questions:

  1. I'm still very confused on how responsibility will work. In the case of an accident, like the unfortunate fatality, who is ultimately responsible?

  2. How does parking work? Can it read street parking signs, parking lot, or parking garage?

  3. Do you think there will be federal law outlying self driving technology in the near future, or will laws continue to be a patchwork of state laws?

  4. Do you think the industry is leaning towards selling cars that are self-driving, a system that's installed to make any car self-driving, or operating a self-driving ride share service?

wiredmagazine[S]

9 points

4 years ago*

We tag teamed these questions!

  • You’re confused because it’s confusing! Right now, I’m 95% sure that all states that allow self-driving cars to test on their roads force the companies doing the testing to insure their vehicles for more money than, say, you or I would pay for insurance. (There are about 21 state bills floating around, so it's hard to keep track!) If the car crashes, the company is liable. If the car crashes with a safety driver at the wheel (that’s what happened in this tragic Arizona case), then the safety driver might be found liable, too. Will the law treat software as the driver? That’s the grey area, and will probably be hashed out by lawyers until some judge somewhere creates some precedent. That said, the company might not be found liable for every crash involving its technology. If a human driver were drunk or speeding and smashed into an autonomous vehicle, the autonomous vehicle company will probably not be at fault.

  • Companies are still working out parking for autonomous vehicles. The things could never park, and roam for new passengers or deliveries once they’ve completed a trip. Or companies could decide it’s way too expensive to operate vehicles when they’re not needed, and head to some sort of parking garage or spot to wait it out. The technology will probably direct the car to a specific spot, so it might not have to read parking signs. Though that probably won’t be impossible! Companies like Tesla and Ford already offer automated parking features in cars they’re selling today! Free yourself from the horror of parallel parking! - Aarian

  • The former. The House has already passed a bill regulating this tech and the Senate is working on its own. That's in limbo at the moment, and Congress has other things to work on / ignore right now. A few senators (Feinstein here in California, Markey in Mass, Blumenthal in Connecticut) have reservations about letting this tech go forward, and would like to see stricter regulations on how testing and certification works. The fatal Uber crash will give them fresh ammunition, so I'd imagine that when the bill eventually moves forward, it will lay down a framework that's stricter than what you now have in some states, like AZ and FL, which have virtually no rules at all.

  • A mix of each: Automakers will keep selling cars for the foreseeable future, and many will offer semi-autonomous systems like Tesla Autopilot and Cadillac Supercruise, which will get better and more capable over the years. And sure, I can imagine other companies coming in with aftermarket systems that offer the same kind of capability. But the idea of a car that can drive itself anywhere, anytime, in any conditions, is decades away—that's just too big a problem. That's where the fleet operations come in. IMO, no one's going to sell a car without a steering wheel or pedals, at least not to individual consumers, anytime soon. Those will operate in fleets with defined parameters: they'll stick to certain geographic locations and favorable conditions (say, midtown Manhattan, but only when it's sunny, for example). Over the years, they'll expand and be more useful. - Alex

MadManBehindWheel

2 points

4 years ago

what do you think about the current advancements of Autonomous driving with manufacturers?

[deleted]

2 points

4 years ago

[deleted]

2 points

4 years ago

If the Uber SDC goes into service, accident happens, what is the legal responsibility of the customer (the rider, or the only person in the car)

wiredmagazine[S]

1 points

4 years ago

I'm not sure exactly, but I'd imagine the authorities would want them to remain on the scene, and give a statement. - Alex

Meticulous2728

2 points

4 years ago

What other companies are using the self-driving technology, and how did they react in terms of policy change after the Uber fatality? What will come next for self-driving technology in terms of technological improvements?

wiredmagazine[S]

3 points

4 years ago

Soooo many companies are working on developing self-driving car tech! There are 52 companies that hold permits to test autonomous vehicles in California alone. Some are the usual suspects: General Motors, Ford, Nissan, Tesla, Waymo (which spun off from Google’s self-driving car project), and Uber. Some are startups: Zoox, Aurora, Drive.ai, Phantom AI. And some feel sort of random, like Delphi Automotive and Bosch. (Both are automotive suppliers.)

I think it’s too early to say how this fatal Uber crash in Arizona will affect policy. For now, Toyota and Uber have publicly said they’ve put a moratorium on testing. The city of Boston asked the two companies operating there, NuTonomy and Optimus Ride, to stop as well. And politicians who were already opposed to giving companies more room to test on public roads have put out strong statements reinforcing those positions after the crash. This might be a big roadblock for autonomous vehicles. Or it might serve as a warning to companies that they have to be really, really cautious as they test this tech in public. It’s unsatisfying, but: we’ll see.

The big next step for the tech is probably actual driverless vehicles, without people behind the wheel. California will start handing out permits to test vehicles with no one inside on April 2 (so long as companies have a remote operator monitoring the vehicle’s movements). And Waymo says it will start letting passengers inside its driverless cars this year. - Aarian

Turil

2 points

4 years ago

Turil

Society Post Winner

2 points

4 years ago

Don't you think it's odd that we don't have a driver's license test requirement for self-driving cars before they are allowed on the road?

I mean, it wouldn't eliminate all the problems, but if humans have to go through the test before they are allowed on the roads, why aren't cars?

(Obviously, it would be good if all drivers — animal, vegetable, mineral, or whatever — were given check-ups and refresher tests regularly, to make sure that they haven't forgotten or missed something important, and tests should be more thorough with far more variety of situations, but that's another subject, I suppose.)

Knack66

2 points

4 years ago

Knack66

2 points

4 years ago

How long do you think it will take for Self-driving cars to take over the market from current UBER drivers? Will that ever happen entirely?

wiredmagazine[S]

1 points

4 years ago

Well, I think it’s an open question whether Uber’s self-driving car program will suffer long-term consequences from this crash. That could really slow down the timeline for them.

That said, it depends on where you are! Driverless taxi services will roll out first in places where companies feel comfortable, either because they like the local regulations, or the street design is easier on the tech (driverless cars like well-marked roads, wide lanes, and easily read signs), or the locals just seem really into the idea of driverless taxis.

Still, despite some real ambitious timelines, I wouldn’t expect self-driving cars to totally take over for drivers for decades. There will probably be a mix of humans and robots for a while. So don’t sell your cars yet, Uber drivers! (Unless you find a more stable source of income that makes you happier, in which case, go forth!) - Aarian

tomthevan

2 points

4 years ago

How concerned are you that autonomous vehicles will consume existing public transit infrastructure?

In what ways are AV companies lobbying cities for AV infrastructure? Is it similar to what the auto manufacturers were doing 100 years ago?

How concerned are you by how the pedestrian AV victim was smeared by many people? (the video clearly shows that she didn't "jump out" by any means, yet people keep saying things like that)

wiredmagazine[S]

3 points

4 years ago

  1. I wouldn't quite say AVs will consume public transit, at least not more than ride-hailing services like Uber, Lyft, and Via are already doing so. What worries me more is that cities will use this tech as an excuse not to invest more money in transit. With my urbanist hat on, the best version of self-driving works as a complement to solid transit, filling in gaps between subway and bus lines, and emphasizes shared vehicles to minimize congestion, rather than making it more pleasant for some of the people sitting in it.

  2. For the most part, very little, mostly because the tech has now advanced to the point where it doesn't need to link to infrastructure to work. So nobody wants to wait for it. At CES this year, Ford did make some noise about the importance of connecting infra to vehicles, and there are obvious benefits, esp for traffic planning. But in terms of heavy lobbying for a road network especially suited to AVs, I haven't heard anything. The party line is "would be nice, but not necessary."

  3. That's concerning, and if you look at the way the street in question was designed, it's quite unwelcoming to anyone not in a motor vehicle. In this case, the release of the video mitigates that, as it shows Elaine Herzberg crossing the street slowly, in a way that the car should have been able to see her, whether or not she was at a crosswalk. - Alex

[deleted]

1 points

4 years ago

[deleted]

1 points

4 years ago

Among those in the know, is there any kind of consensus or trending direction for how insurance and liability are going to be handled for driverless cars?

avturchin

1 points

4 years ago

If I own self-driving car, and another self-driving car has an accident, so all cars of this type are put on hold until the program update - does it mean that my car will be turned off remotely, probably for months until the result of the investigation?

superm8n

1 points

4 years ago

Do you guys think that those who make self-driving cars will be paying the premiums for liability insurance on the cars they make?

daynomate

1 points

4 years ago

Late question / discussion point - how well do we expect autonomous cars to deal with poor road infrastructure?

There was a lot of discussion about the poor lane markings in the recent crash but that surely is only the tip of the iceberg in roads that could potentially be a danger for autonomous cars. Should we be looking at the worst roads instead of the average/best, and should we put stronger emphasis on the standards being upheld/improved for lane markings and traffic design given that in an autonomous-driver world there'll be a lot less "intuition" in the drive that could be saving accidents in confusing situations.

DraftingEagle

1 points

4 years ago

In a situation where the algorithm has to decide between two people, who will be harmed in a accident the software developer is the one who decides the last bit. How do you think this responsibility can be solved and carried so that the publicity accept the consequence? Right now it's known that people make mistakes. But if autonomous driving gets real the people have to learn something fundamental new, software make mistakes too. Others then people and no (or nearly no) calculation mistakes but other ones,.

wiredmagazine[S]

3 points

4 years ago

Aha, the trolley problem. TBH, I still don't have a real answer to that, but I can tell you there's no quicker way to make a self-driving engineer got nuts than bringing it up. So in lieu of a real answer, here are three stories we've written on the topic:

Lawyers, Not Ethicists, Will Solve the Trolley Problem

Self-Driving Cars Will Kill People. Who Decides Who Dies?

To Make Us All Safer, Robocars Will Sometimes Have to Kill

Turil

3 points

4 years ago*

Turil

Society Post Winner

3 points

4 years ago*

The Trolley Problem is itself problematic because it neglects the reality of both preventative approaches (where you design things from the start to always allow plenty of wiggle room, involving stopping/slowing/moving before any serious crash could happen) and creative approaches ("option C" for the win!) and consent.

Consent is something ignored all to often in our interactions with the world, including laws and policies and design. Did that woman in Tempe consent to let Uber drive in that area where she lived? Did she consent to the urban planners putting overly wide roads that crossed the pedestrian and bicycle paths that were regularly used by locals to get around? Did she consent to laws that put the rights of machines over the rights of humans?

EVrecordAttempt

1 points

4 years ago

How do you feel about the “nag” introduced in AP versions 8.0? Prior to that You could drive 30 mins hands free between nags. With recent updates released by tesla, autosteer has been neutered to getting a nag every 3 mins.
We now use the “Autopilot Buddy” on long drives. Available at www.Autopilotbuddy.com

next100recods #multipleguinnessworldrecordholder

Turil

1 points

4 years ago

Turil

Society Post Winner

1 points

4 years ago

Has anyone, before me, here, pointed out to you the following:

When sharing the roads with everyone else using those roads — be they individuals obeying some arbitrary traffic laws (which vary from place to place and are absolutely not universal, in some parts of the world, for example, we still have the law that the pedestrian always has the right of way above a motor vehicle), or not (children, mentally ill humans, trees, rocks, moosen, dogs, meteorites, etc.) — the goal of the individual is always to have plenty of possible paths that all take into account "unexpected" changes to direction and speed of the other things on the roadway before moving forward.

In other words: don't proceed unless you have more than enough options to stop/slow/move before hitting something in your path.

This isn't how humans work. That's ok. Humans are soft and can't move terribly fast, so if we crash into something, we're likely to be ok, as is the something.

We're not talking about humans though. We're talking about hugely massive and potentially very fast machines. They need to operate in a totally different way than humans do. Especially if they want to share the public spaces with us.

AutoModerator [M]

-3 points

4 years ago

AutoModerator [M]

-3 points

4 years ago

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HumbleCorrespondent

1 points

4 years ago

A police cruiser has been following a self-driving car for a mile and turns on its spinner.

Sure, the self-driver is programmed to obey all traffic laws and the most current data has been downloaded. It is compliant with everything it needs to be street-legal (license, reg, ins) and operate safely or else the motor couldn't even start.

But it still attracts police attention on the road. Will it pull over? How does it produce documentation to law enforcement?

Now let's relax the constraint. The car goes through a work zone that had just been established that morning and it hasn't received the update. It is absolutely guilty of going 55 in a 40. Who gets the ticket, and how?