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We live in an age of innovation. But even though technological developments are constantly happening, there is a gap between the inventions that change our daily lives. The washing machine saved countless hours of household chores, the mobile phone changed connectivity forever, and the internet gave us access to all the information in the world. Now a new revolution is on the way: in a few years, the steering wheel will be an additional equipment in your car.
Once In the pre-GPS era, my in-laws were on a road trip in the Netherlands. The car holiday clearly left the impression that the bumps lasted for nearly 30 years after that. We’re talking about a queue, a hot car and three impatient kids in the back seat. In addition to “windmill” and “tulip,” the next word the two-year-old has learned is “taxi turn.” Since then, car holidays with children have improved. Now we have air conditioning and an iPad. GPS replaced the NAF map folded across the dashboard as the map reader yelled “there it should take off”.
Imagine being able to sleep at work. Or send the car – alone – to take the kids for training. A grandmother who does not have a driver’s license can drive wherever she wants. And parking is no problem in the city, the car picks you up where you are heading and picks you up afterwards. This is not a futuristic fabrication at all. Steering wheels and autonomous cars are just around the corner.
today Self-driving cars are often rated 0-5. Level 0 cars without self-driving features. Level 1 has cruise control. Level 2 cars can drive without hands on the steering wheel. At level 3 you can stop looking at the road and at levels 4 and 5 you don’t have to worry about driving at all. The latter also has an optional steering wheel.
self-driving cars It is really old. As early as 1995, the first independent transcontinental engine took place in the United States. Today, autonomous driving is on the agenda of all major auto manufacturers. In March 2021, Honda became the first to be allowed to put a Level 3 car on the road in Japan. And last year, Germany became the first country to allow Level 3 cars. This spring, the first self-driving Mercedes S-Class will arrive on German roads – albeit currently limited to 60 km/h where there is heavy traffic. In the United States, 60 thousand Tesla cars are now operating in fully autonomous beta versions, and in Phoenix, fully autonomous taxis have been operating for four years already.
Technology no longer holds you back From sleep to work, that’s the law. And as usual, things are slower for legislators than for tech developers. The main question is who is to blame when something goes wrong. Because she will. No systems are free from errors. But while it may seem intimidating to let a car drive itself, it is undoubtedly safer for all of us when we’re not subjected to human judgments on the road.
Just look hereNorway is among the safest countries in the world in terms of traffic. As of 2020, nearly 2.8 million passenger cars were registered here and the number of traffic deaths was historically low; 95 people lost their lives on the road. By comparison, as of January 2022, there have been a total of 12 verified autopilot deaths at Tesla. In the world. On a total of two million cars. Since 2015.
There are solutions on legal challenges. It is only a matter of time. In the meantime, I’m driving a manual, diesel-powered, GPS-free SUV. After all, it is environmentally friendly to use the vehicles before entering the course again. I hope the car will last a few more years. Meanwhile, the lawyers finished the discussion. By the time my kindergarten kids are ready to take the initiative, it won’t be necessary. Maybe long before that. I look to the future.
Rani Victoria Colas-Stawrey, Doctor and columnist
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